The advantages of using a merchant account

In today’s fast pace of technological advancement, more and more people are engaging into online business. They have seen the fast proliferation of the information technology. With this, the industry is trying to cope up with the growing needs of the market by creating various techniques, strategies, and devices that will best suit the necessities of the consumers as well as the online businesses. Moreover, with the proliferation of the credit card industry, more and more people are enticed to do “cashless shopping,” where convenience is the name of the game. In fact, some statistical reports can attest that in the U. S. alone, nearly 500 million credit cards are being issued every year. From this point, consumers are enticed to use their credit cards, which accounts to almost 50% of all the expenses, which is more than $50, of the average consumer.

That is why certain marketing tools such as the merchant account were created in order to compensate the growing demands of the market. This can be very useful especially because almost 60% of the products and services available in the market are being sold online. The Concept of Merchant Account Merchant accounts are actually “bank accounts” created by a particular online business with a merchant bank, which provides necessary consent to accept credit card payments via online transactions. The “merchant account provider” will be the one to make the necessary transfer of funds into the business’ bank account as soon as there are payments made by the consumer. In line with this, many online businesses are wondering whether it is really necessary for them to get a merchant account. Hence, for those who wish to know the answer, here is a list of what merchant account can do for the business: 1. A good way to start online business One of the greatest benefits of using merchant account for online business is that it can provide instant ease in online transactions especially for those who are just starting new. 2. Safe transactions The merchant account provider will provide the necessary tools that will safeguard the financial matters of the online business. This refers to the management of fraudulent activities over the Internet such as scams, identity theft, etc. They will also provide the business with advanced “customer service” such as automated payments, security, and handling orders. 3. Flexibility With a merchant account, the online business can customize the needs of the company by choosing the credit cards that will only be allowed in their online transactions. Moreover, they can also select the proper kinds of credit cards that are appropriate in the kind of business that they have. 4. Convenience Merchant account is the most economical and feasible way of accepting credit card payments online. The process is quick to establish, hence, both the business and the consumer will not have a hard time accessing the benefits through this online transaction. 5. No super add-ons The best thing about getting a merchant account is that the businessperson will simply get what he or she needs. This means that when the business will apply for a merchant account, there will be no extra requirements needed. Unlike applying for credit cards, most merchant account providers will not evaluate your credit history. That is why merchant accounts are also applicable even to the new online businesses. Indeed, merchant account can provide online businesses a thousand and one ways as far as online transactions are concerned. Sales will be on its optimum peak because most of the consumers nowadays are purchasing items online, and without a merchant account, the business will be at a lost.

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How to get control of stagefright and feel more relaxed and confident in front of any audience

Remember the last time you got up in front of others to sing, give a presentation, or just to state your opinion? Did you feel awkward or maybe even a little afraid? You might have found yourself making silly mistakes or blanking out on what you were supposed to say. Most of us suffer from stagefright at some point in our lives. In fact, the vast majority of people avoid having to get up in front of an audience. They limit themselves from much of the success they would enjoy if they could just get over their stagefright. Feeling uneasy in front of a crowd is perfectly understandable. Even famous performers suffer from serious problems with stagefright, sometimes to the point where they have to stop performing. But it doesn't have to be that way. Stagefright can be conquered. Here are some professional tips that will help ease your mind on stage, making your next performance, presentation, or report a breeze. 1.) Try to remember when you first experienced stagefright. Somewhere in your past there was one time that set the fear and anxiety into motion. It could have been a simple teasing from a family member when you made a mistake. If you are able to pinpoint the incident, it will help you to get past your stagefright. 2.) Practice a technique called Future Shaping. Close your eyes and remember a time when you felt the most intense stagefright experience ever. See it, feel it, or imagine it in your mind. Next, imagine yourself feeling the way you WANT to feel in that situation. Imagine you're replacing one feeling for another. Practice this technique often, and you'll notice a big difference the next time you get in front of an audience. 3.) Here's a strategy that uses a little hypnosis. When you begin to feel stagefright coming on, take a minute and close your eyes. Breath deeply and slowly two or three times. Calm yourself down, then snap your fingers together when you feel better. Tell yourself that, if you should feel stagefright coming on again, you will simply release it by snapping your fingers. Practice this technique from time to time for best results. People who have no problem getting up in front of a crowd seem to have success fall into their laps. Always being ready to speak will make others see you as a leader. You'll get more prospects, move up at work, and gain the admiration of others. As a speaker or performer, getting past stagefright will improve your performance immensely. With all the simple, helpful techniques that are available, there is no reason to have to live with stagefright.

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Inside a job interview answers to the 15 most frequently asked questions part 1

Copyright 2006 Ed Bagley Some surveys have shown that there are more than 90 questions that could be asked during a job interview. Of these, 15 in particular are asked most frequently during an extended interview (more than 20 minutes) for a regular work-a-day job. Always remember that in a job interview, it is not just what you say, but how you say it that really counts. Your choice of words is powerful, and can move job interviewers to a more positive impression by how you say what you say. Here, in no particular order, are the answers to the 15 most frequently asked questions during a job interview: 1) Which position are you most interested in? When you are responding to an advertisement, the company will likely know the position for which you have applied. Many times companies key their advertisements so, when they are advertising for more than one position, they can identify the position for which you have applied. Most public service organizations will have a specific job number with the job announcement. However, no matter what position for which you may have applied, many companies have more than one position to offer, and the interviewer is probably going to consider you for any position available based on your submitted resume and interview performance. Key to answering this question is to realize that different companies and organizations may call essentially the same positions by different job titles; therefore, it is best if you answer the kind of function you are interested in performing rather than a specific job title. Hence, say "I am interested in accounting," or “I am good at accounting,” rather than "I am interested in the Junior Accountant position.” 2) Are you looking for full-time or part-time work? When you are dealing with a large business or public service corporation, chances are the position is full-time, and you should be prepared to accept full-time employment. However, when you are trying to get your foot in the door, it is well to remember that many companies hire full-time employees from their part-time and temporary help. This makes sense from a business standpoint in that they are then hiring a person they have had an opportunity to observe on the job. When you are considering a public service position (working for the federal, state or local governmental entities, for example), it generally makes sense to accept any position as long as two factors are present: 1) That it is a full-time permanent position, and 2) You are entitled to all the normal benefits. Most public service positions offer opportunities for advancement within the organization, and some even allow you to apply, take tests and interview for positions during your normal working hours. You can, in some cases, look for a better job and get paid for looking during your normal working hours. This is indeed a good deal for the employee; most private businesses would not tolerate this action and, quite frankly, some would find a "legitimate reason" to fire you if they thought you were looking. 3) Are you willing to travel or relocate (go where the company sends you)? Decide which is more important to you: where you live, or whether you want the position, and answer accordingly. You may be willing to travel (this could be anything from commuting to another city to work to being out of town two weeks every month), but not willing to relocate. When you are married and earn a secondary income for your family, relocating is not always practical. 4) How much money do you want to earn? Rather than trying to figure out what they are willing to pay, or revealing what you are willing to settle for (both very risky at best), say this: "What is your salary range for this position?" This tells them nothing, puts the ball back in their court, and you remain a class act. Another possible answer: "While the salary I would receive is certainly a consideration, I am far more interested in a position that uses performance to determine promotion and compensation. I am interested in being rewarded for my production for the company, thereby proving my value to the company.” Do ask about benefits if the interviewer does not detail the company benefit package, as the benefit package can add substantially to your salary base. In some cases the benefit package can add 30% to your salary. 5) When can you start work? The answer is immediately when you are not working, or two weeks—or whatever the notice of termination time is—when you are working. When you are employed and can begin work immediately, your potential employer might wonder if you would quit on them without notice. 6) How long do you expect to work? Use "As long as it is mutually beneficial for both of us.” When you are the spouse of a career military person, the interviewer may want to know how long you will be around (that is, your spouse's rotation date). That is why it is best to use the suggested answer. After all, you can not predict everything that might happen. Many military families have found this out when a war or military action started.

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Online search for used car

: Looking for a great deal in used car with online sites? Now a day’s automobile market has become so vast that no one can easily find the auto which they are looking for. Numbers of online sites can help you to find the ideal used car which you are looking for in your near by area. These used car online sites have a vast database of used car which make your work easier to find the used car according to your requirement and in you budged. The best thing of searching online is anyone can easily search. You can look for the used according to the model, budget in your near by area so that you need not have to travel far to view the used car or to pick it up. Online sites give you all the latest new about the latest car available in the market which you can read and review of the used car which you want to buy. Before you decide you can view number of used cars so that you can find the exact used car according to your requirement.

Online sites search for used car also help in finding the right used car finance deal for you. Which saves your time and all other legal formalities can be done very fast. Most of the customer prefer the online shopping because you don’t have to visit numbers of automobile shops to find the car of your interest and in your near by area. If you have planned for buying a used car then don’t waste your time and energy start searching online to get the best deal in the market. Anna Josephs is a freelance journalist having experience of many years writing articles and news releases on various topics such as pet health, automobile and social issues. She also has great interest in poetry and paintings, hence she likes to write on these subjects as well. Currently writing for this website Best Cheap Used Car. For more details please contact at annajosephs@gmail.


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Procrastination 4 essentials to break through

: “I have learned that most regrets come from the things I DIDN’T do. I have learned that regret lasts forever.” Simply Brilliant Procrastination - putting off what you can do today until tomorrow. 7 years, 5 months, and 2 days later you’re wondering why you never started that book. It would have been completed. You could be reaping the rewards and writing full time. You see yourself sitting on the garden patio of your dream home surrounded by towering palms and luxurious flowers.

As the ocean breeze glides across your face the telephone rings. You made the Best Seller List. In regret the vision is bright. In procrastination it’s doom and gloom. Back in the present you may be saying, ”There’s too much competition. No one will publish my book”. What if you flip flop the picture so you are pulled towards the intense vision you had in regret like it was a magnet.

Why not create that vision sooner rather than later. Procrastination leads to stress, poor health, and regrets that last for life. Action results in fulfillment, life experience, and wisdom. Get the 4 steps to break through procrastination below. Step 1- What are you procrastinating on? Is it appropriate to hold off or irrational postponement? Will this make a positive impact in your life? Choose the area that you will stop procrastinating and make a renewed commitment.

Step 2- Discover the source to find the solution. Consider when your car doesn’t start. You look for the source of the problem. When you find the source it is easy to take action to make the repair. Look behind procrastination to find what is restraining you. It may be an unpleasant task, lack of interest, someone else’s goal, a large overwhelming project, fear, poor time management, or indecision.

Be brutally honest and get to the source. Step 3- Based on the source; decide if this is a goal you want to keep. If so, choose a strategy that feels good to you. It may mean developing new habits. Discover the source and set up the strategy in a way that you know you will take action. Here are some possible sources and solutions to get your ideas flowing: An Unpleasant Task/ Lack of Interest- Schedule it at the beginning of the day so it is not hanging over your head all day long. Think of how great you will feel to have it done. Reward yourself when you follow through.

Someone Else’s Goal- Set a boundary...say no or accept only the part of the job that you feel good about. If you can not say no (ex. employment situation) then you may choose to follow the above solution. A Large Overwhelming Project- Break the project into small manageable tasks. What part can you do? What can you delegate?

What is the first step? What daily steps can you take? A great solution for decluttering! Lack of Focus Due to Multiple Projects- Prioritize the projects then break them down into small manageable tasks as in the step above. Focus on completion of one project at a time. Fear- What is the fear telling you? Is it valid or an irrational assumption? Usually what we anticipate doesn’t occur.

Picture the ideal end result. Affirmations and visualization can help. Focus on how great you will feel simply for having the courage to try. As Eleanor Roosevelt says, “you gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you stop to look fear in the face. Your must do the thing which you think you cannot do.” Poor Time Management- Schedule a block of time daily or weekly to work only on this project.

Keep the appointments. Begin with small blocks of time (whatever you can commit) until you are consistently keeping the appointments. Then consider committing more time. Indecision- When you don’t know what to do set a deadline to make up your mind. Then get whatever support and information you need to be able to make an educated decision.

Step 4- Hold an intense vision- Think of that clear, exciting picture that shows up in regret. Allow that to pull you towards it. You have great capabilities when you take action, even if it’s learning in action. Focus on how great you will feel when you go for it! After all, it is through the journey that the great and memorable moments take place. What project will you stop procrastinating on? The first action I will take by _____ (date) is __________________________________(action). Starting Now! Copyright 2006, Beth A. Tabak, All rights reserved.

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Top 6 things not to do with angry customers

1. Don't make threats. Have you ever said this, "If you don't calm down, I'm not going to help you." Or, "If you continue to yell at me, I'm going to have no choice but to terminate this phone call." If you've ever made these, or similar, statements, I'd bet that your sole intent was to regain control of the conversation. But the problem is, your customer perceives this type of language as threatening and it does not make them back down and it does not create calm. Try a phrase like this instead: "I really want to help you, but your tone/language is making it really hard for me to do that." And then pause for 2-3 seconds to let your words resonate with the customer. 2. Don't argue. Trust me on this one - you can never win an argument with a customer. Certainly, you can prove your point and even have the last word, In a discussion on the futility of arguing with people, Dale Carnegie once said "you may be right, but as far as changing your customer's mind is concerned, you will probably be just as futile as if you were wrong." Your goal in complaint situations is to retain the customer, not to be right. If you win the argument, you may very well have lost the customer. Carnegie encourages us to carefully consider some hard questions before going to battle with customers: "Is my reaction one that will relieve the problem, or will it just relieve frustration? Will my reaction drive my customer further away? What price will I pay if I win (the argument)?" Carnegie advises, "The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it." By the way, customers will spread negative word-of-mouth advertising to 50 people if they get into argument with you! 3. Don't hang up on the customer. I realize I sound conservative on this one, but I stand firm. If you hang up on a customer who is already livid, do you think a "disconnect" helps the situation or hurts the situation? The customer still has the problem and most customers won't give up their fight because you chose to hit the flash button. Most will call back and guess what? They will be angrier than ever AND it will cost far more in time and money to resolve the issue. If you just can't handle the customer, offer to transfer to a supervisor or co-worker. 4. Don't make the customer feel helpless. I cringe every time I hear an employee say, "This is all I can do." When customers feel helpless, some will resort to whatever they feel it takes to get their needs met. This behavior may include yelling, demanding to speak to a supervisor, or starting a blog about your company. This simple phrase changes the entire tone of a tough situation: "Mr. Bryant, what I can do is?" 5. Don't raise your voice. When I want my five-year-old daughter to use her "inside voice", I don't yell, "Lauren, USE YOUR INSIDE VOICE!" I speak in my "inside voice" with the expectation that she will mirror the calm tone of my voice - and she does without any further prompting from me. We must use the same technique with demanding customers. Escalating your voice when dealing with an upset customer will not create calm. It will only incite your customer. Lowering your voice presents you as confident, in control, and credible. In many cases your angry customer will begin to calm down because he realizes his intimidation tactic (yelling) isn't working. Try making one of these statements in a low volume when dealing with an angry customer. "What can I do to help?" or "What can I do to fix this situation?" 6. Don't tell a customer she is wrong. You will be smart to never tell a customer s/he is wrong or mistaken. Telling a person they are wrong arouses opposition and will make the customer want to battle with you. (Ever tell your spouse they are wrong?) It's difficult, under even the most benign conditions to change people's minds. So why make it harder by starting out on the wrong foot? If you know your customer is wrong, it's better to start off saying, "I thought the contract read otherwise, but let's take a look." The next time you find yourself the target of verbal abuse from an angry customer, keep in mind these six "don'ts" and you'll be well on your way to getting the angry customer to back down and regaining control of the conversation.

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Debt relief part 2

Credit Card Debt: Ask yourself these 10 questions about your credit card debt. 1) Did I charge more this month than last without any major purchases such as a new TV. 2) Is my income less and my credit card bill more this month than last? 3) Did I only make the minimum payment on my cards. 4) Did I borrow from one credit card to pay another. 5) Did I use 3 or more credits to make purchases during the month. 6) Did I charge consumables like groceries, gas, or entertainment without paying off that entire amount each month. 7) Do I continuously pay over the limit fees on credit cards. 8) Do I get a new credit card when I max the others out? 9) Am I concerned about the interest rate that I pay? 10) Did I lie or cover up credit card use to my significant other? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you need to get a handle on the cards. If you answered yes to more than 3 questions, it is time to take a serious look at how to get control. Spending with plastic is easy, sometimes too easy. It does not feel like you are parting with your money. This means that the temptation is to spend without thinking about the consequences until you open the bill. Start by using only 1 credit card to make purchases. Use the one with the lowest interest rate and best payment terms. Only make payments on the others. Do not carry the extra cards with you. If you don’t have the card, you can’t use it. Place the cards you are not using in a safe place. Pay as much as possible on each card you are not using and make more than the minimum payment on the one you are using. As the balances are paid off, cancel the account. Get rid of revolving accounts at department or home improvement stores. These cards usually charge maximum interest rates. The credit card business is very competitive, and you may negotiate a lower rate. You may even get a card with an introductory rate for 0% for 6 months to 1 year. If this is the case, get the new card, but transfer the entire balance of as many high interest cards as possible to the new card. Now, here is the difficult part. You MUST close those higher interest accounts that you transferred and destroy the cards. If you don’t do this, you are now going backwards again. JUST DO IT! A note of advice is not to close the accounts until you have paid them in full. Some credit card companies will charge you the maximum interest rate if you close the account with a balance. Start paying for consumables like groceries and entertainment with cash or a debit card. If you don’t have the money, don’t buy it. The focus on my business is teaching people to follow their dream by becoming debt free and remaining debt free. We should not be a slave to our bills or debt. Most programs deal with managing your money, paying the bills but remaining in debt, broke and unhappy. I have discovered some cool videos that is filled with FREE information that will train you to take $300 and turn it into $30,000 in 6 months. That alone could get you out of debt, but there is even more video training available that could put you in financial position to retire in 12 months. I know that sounds too good to be true, however it is possible. You must believe you can do it and work at it until it happens. Get all 3 parts of this report by visiting my website.

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Keys to building vision

Recognize the source and purpose of vision. It’s purpose is to be shared with all those around us. Living life based purely on our own personal needs is really living life at the most primitive level. It makes no allowance for the wonder of investing into our fellow humans beings and the generations yet to come. The inheritance we leave behind is the materials that another generation will build upon. One of the reasons I love writing, is it is my personal investment to those who find my life helpful to theirs. The thought that someone one hundred years from now may glimpse my life and evaluate my thoughts, both excites me and empowers me to write more. A selfless life is committed to investing beyond our own needs and into the needs of another. Not wishful thinking or a good idea it is “supernatural” If everyone planned their life as a result of their vision for it, we would call that common sense or just the natural process of living. The truth is, not everyone lives their life according to the ultimate purpose for which life is lived. Most people live life from one circumstance to another and plan in the midst of this process. Living life with purpose and intent, or according to our destiny is supernatural. It goes beyond the natural approach to living, by taking responsibility for the decisions we are to make ahead of time. At this level of living we move beyond the norm and venture into the supernatural. Wishful thinking is really living life in a knee jerk fashion. Vision is all about purposeful living. Fashioning our daily lives according to the blue print, which we have seen ahead of time. Visionaries do not live their life by “chance”, they live their life out of purposeful action. Vision is not contrary to our creators will Regardless of our spiritual persuasion, we need to accept that we are designed for greatness. Heaven and earth conspire to create a quality of life, which goes beyond temporal living. Living life at its poorest form is ignorance and at its greatest level, enlightenment. Life lived at a quality of total awareness, is a life lived with extreme potential. Vision is available to every person on earth. Poverty of imagination is poverty at it’s worst. As our mind begins to dream of potential, our will begins to change towards the probabilities of what can be. As we each take up our personal responsibility to dream on a level beyond the natural, we enter in to a dimension of creativity. Creativity is the gift that we were all born with, but circumstances conspire to rob us of the initiative to birth the seed of creativity. The will of our creator is to empower each one of us with the same creative capacity. Not based on abilities and talents, though we may use them positively or negatively Poverty of spirit is the main reason why many of us live it what could have been, rather than what can be. When we excuse our lack of achievement on our lack of provision, we exclude ourselves from the power of creativity. One only needs to travel into less affluent Nations to recognize the creative genius that appears as a result of need. Resources may well be in poor supply, but invention and creativity is never an orphan. Starting where we are at is a fundamental philosophy to success. If we are waiting for all we need before we start we will never start. The hidden inertia that compels vision forward is initiative. Resources and provision are drawn to those who live by vision, and the momentum that gathers as a result of initiative is fair reward to those bold enough to act upon it.

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Stop waiting on your life

This week I was sitting on the phone with tech support, and over and over again, I thought of things I could have done while I sat there -- waiting -- not living my life. Are you “on hold” in your life? Are you waiting for a spouse to come along, or for him/her to act better towards you? Are you waiting on the motivation to get your home organized? Are you waiting on a great job to fall into your lap? Are you waiting on winning the lottery to plan your retirement? Stop waiting on your life! The only difference between you and the people who are getting what they want, is that they kept moving and you didn’t. Here are some ideas to help get you started again.

Focus on the who, not the what. If you find that you’ve been stuck in a goal for a while, try restating it in “who am I” terms instead of “what I want” terms. For example, instead of saying “I want to lose 30 lbs.”, say “I am someone who takes care of herself by keeping my weight around XXX which is a healthy range for my height and age.” Be as specific as possible. Notice that “I want to be someone who helps others” could mean anything from a clerk in the grocery store to a heart surgeon. Focus on who you want to be. Then ask yourself what actions would be fit with your desire “to be” instead of “get”. Analyze it. Did you know that a full 80% of your problems come from 20% of your life? It’s true! Determine what that 20% is that’s affecting so much of your life, and start working to make it happier, more efficient, more satisfying. Assign Value. A big mistake I see in my coaching clients is not assigning a true value to your time, to your energy, to your money, and to the “real estate” (space) of your home or office. Realize that for each thing you say Yes to -- from a pair of shoes to watching a movie -- you have said No to something else. Always ask yourself - is this *valuable* enough to me to crowd my life with, or even to bump something else from my closet, my schedule, my money? Establish routines. I know you have “pizza night”-- so why not “bills night” or “clean your room night” as well? Like the pizza night, routines show up in all kinds of ways in your life. While they sound boring and confining, routines are actually freeing. The same way you don’t have to think about dinner on pizza night, instead of being worried and anxious on Monday morning wondering if you remembered to pay the car insurance, you’ll feel calm knowing that you always go to the bank on Friday afternoon and pay bills on Wed. evening. Routines take the stress out. Accept Control-ability. We’ve all heard about deniability from political spin doctors. I’d like to introduce the concept of ‘controlability’ in your daily life. You can’t control world politics, but you can vote. You can’t control terrorism, but you can be prepared in your own home. You can’t control the construction crews on the freeway, but you can control how much time you allot for a trip. Knowing what you can control and exercising that, and letting go of what you can’t, puts you in the driver’s seat of your life. Feeling good about yourself will come naturally when you stop waiting and start creating the life you really want to live. Stress and frustration will be reduced as you make choices instead of being pushed around. You’ll experience a higher sense of self acceptance, and the self improvement will become easier and easier. Stop waiting, Start today! ====================

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What you need to know about using an online pharmacy

When using an online pharmacy you will generally be able to shop for all of the typical pharmacy items you are accustomed to like vitamins, over the counter medicines, diabetic supplies, and the like. Also, you will be able to have your prescription filled by the online pharmacy and either pick it up in store or have it mailed to you. Different pharmacies have different rules regarding mailing prescription drugs, so you should check with your online pharmacy regarding any special rules. Once you have entered all of your information from prescription number to your name and address, as well as other identifying factors, the online pharmacy website will ask you for your insurance payment information as well as how you want to pay for the prescription. Some online pharmacies will allow you to either pay online or at the store for in store pickup. However, if you are ordering for delivery from the online pharmacy you will have to pay online.

Always be sure your online pharmacy has a secure checkout system. You can be sure of this if in the direction bar it says https:// rather than just http://. That extra s means the page is secure and you can enter your payment information without the stress of wondering whether your information will be stolen while using the online pharmacy. An online pharmacy is generally the web presence of your general pharmacy.

However, you should always check for verification of your online pharmacy before you place any orders. You will want to make sure your online pharmacy is a Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Site as is defined by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. If you have any questions or concerns about an online pharmacy then find another online pharmacy that seems more legit or can at least answer your questions. When you search for online pharmacy on the Internet you will get plenty of results from some of the bigger chains.

If you are familiar with these pharmacy chains then you should trust their online chain as well. Remember, never enter any credit or bank information on an online pharmacy website unless the site is secure.

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Easy weight loss make a start right now

Oh dear, oh dear, it's that time of year but yet again! The holidays are over, Christmas has come and gone, and what is there to look forward to! Summer holidays I suppose, but they do seem such a long time away. Anyway, I must confess that at the moment, even the thought of a holiday horrifies me, because after my over-indulgence during the festive season, the last thing that I want to be doing is even more eating and drinking. So, if there is nothing to look forward to for now, and we are in the midst of the January depression, what on earth CAN we do to lift ouselves out of the blues at this time of year! Here's one thought for you, start right now and get fit. I suggest that not only will that make you feel heaps better, after a few weeks, you will even start to look forward to that summer vacation. Let me give you another more serious and compelling reason for this, and that is that we all shoud start to take our long term health much more seriously than we do at present.

At least that is my humble opinion. Did you know for instance that current statistics reveal that 75% of Americans are overweight and 40% are obese. That is just in the US, and I am prepared to hazard an educated guess that the rest of the developed world is not far behind. For those who desire to lose weight and obtain optimal health therefore, it can be overwhelming trying to figure out where to start. >From the Atkins Diet to the South Beach Diet, from low fat to low carb diets, there are numerous weight-loss plans to choose from. In addition, given conflicting information as to what works best, it can be difficult deciding what to do. For those who have tried many diet plans with no success, it becomes more difficult and frustrating. Many people forget that a diet might work wonders for their friend but won't work well for them. This is not necessarily because the diet is "bad", but because each body reacts differently. However, there is a way to lose weight that is easy, fast, and doesn't involve deprivation or calorie counting. It is important to address some background information about body genetics and why weight loss can be difficult before I start to discuss weight loss tips. At the start of any diet, it is important to note that each person has a different body build. Some people are short and stout, while others are tall and thin. Some have big hips and shoulders, and others are short and very muscular. Genetics can determine body shape and a person's natural build just as it can do eye color, hair color, skin color, and so on. The good news is that genetics do not determine whether or not one will be fat, but will determine one's body shape. This means that not every woman can expect to be tall and thin like a Hollywood actress or supermodel such as Tyra Banks. Not every man can expect to be defined and muscular like The Rock. The goal really, in my opionion, is to be at a comfortable weight for one's body shape and to feel good about it. Having said all that, why is it that people are overweight! I have listed ten of the most common reasons below:- 1. Slow metabolism - People who are overweight have a hard time "burning off" their intake of food. As a result the fat is stored up in the body, rather than used. 2. Emotional eating - Those who struggle with weight often eat when stressed, or when other emotional upheavals are happening in their life. 3. Hormonal imbalances - This does mainly apply to the ladies, (complex creatures that we are!). 4. Eating portions - We can all be guilty of the syndrome that I like to call "greed not need". So watch out for those portion sizes. 5. A build up of toxins in the body - This can be due to too much junk food, candies, sodas, too much coffee, these can all contriubute to this. 6. Eating too late - Late-night eating can cause food to convert to fat a lot more easily, as well as making sleep more difficult. 7. A high susceptibility to growth hormones - These are the hormones which are given to animals to help them grow faster and larger. Some meat and dairy can have some residual growth hormones. These hormones can sometimes result in increased fat storage. 8. Not eating breakfast - This really does make your metabolism slow and sluggish. 9. Numerous diets - Going from diet to diet has a negative impact on the metabolism and causes weight loss to be much more difficult. 10. Food ingredients - The reasons why are amazing and beyond the scope of this article. Here Are Seven Simple Steps For Easy Weight Loss Now that there is a better understanding of body genetics, and why people have a tendency to be overweight, here are my tips for fast easy weight loss. #1: Drink some water first thing in the morning. Ideally you should drink eight ounces of distilled water, bottled water, or filtered water (not tap water). #2: Eat a big breakfast. Suggested foods to choose from are apples, bananas, rye bread with no sugar, plain yogurt, tuna, tomatoes, carrots, peppers, raw honey, and such like. #3: Drink distilled water throughout the day: I recommend that you try and drink at least eight glasses per day. #4: Walk non-stop one hour each day. This doesn't have to be power walking, just walk at your own pace. Walking is one of the best forms of exercise you know! #5: Try and stop eating after 6:00 PM. This is very hard for many people, but do the best you can. You will be surprised at how much you benefit from this. #6: Do a candida cleanse. Candida is yeast overgrowth in the colon that can cause all kinds of health problems. Check online for "Candida Cleanse" or go to your local health food store. #7: Do a colon cleanse: This cleanse cleans out the digestive system, which is clogged and sluggish in many overweight people. Once again, check online or go to your local health food store. More and more people worldwide are becoming overweight. Extra weight can result in many health issues and negatively impact your emotional state and self-esteem. However for those struggling with this problem, there is hope, because you can lose it and keep it off if you really want to. Now that you have a understanding of body genetics and why you might be overweight, why not take some positive action today! Commit to trying at least a few of the steps, you will be glad that you did.

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Telling a child they have asd autistic spectrum disorder

Recently my husband and I decided it was time to tell our son he had ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder). The reason for this was because he’s more mature (just turned 13 years old) and very soon he’ll be starting high school. We felt it better to come from us than through someone else. He was told during a private father and son discussion, away from distractions. As parents we’ve reinforced to him that he doesn’t have a disability, just a different way of processing information and viewing life. He exhibits minor smatterings of this disorder and medically, he’s totally fit and healthy and has never been on medication (though this had been suggested). We often re-affirm how smart he is and discuss with him the many different types of genius each person has. In his case, it’s the amazing cartooning style he has and his black and white sketches and although totally colour blind, his paintings using colour are also unique and beautiful. I recently asked his permission to write about him and ASD as my intention was to write how we dealt with this as a family, and that someone else might also benefit from it. He kindly gave me his permission and here’s what he says: I don’t really understand things – I look around and see what everybody else in class does but I can’t understand what’s going on (in maths class). I get very upset and stressed with myself and feel stupid with what’s going on around me in class and I hate myself for it. I always suspected that there was something different about me. It was confirmed when my parents finally told me. I feel good that I’ve been told, but not good about the ASD. Now I feel more stupid and dumb as well as disabled. The fact is I fall under ASD but I would rather know than not, it explains why I have difficulty with certain things. Dad could’ve told me in a different way about the ASD, he should’ve just got straight to the point. He (dad) told me in a roundabout way as did mum and I’d rather have been told more to the point and then had it explained to me more. It makes me angry when I tell other children about the ASD because they think I’m joking and say there’s nothing wrong with me. It’s sort of good to know they don’t believe me because it makes me feel more normal. ASD makes me angry because I have to deal with the fact I have ASD. When I think, I move my fingers, it clarifies things for me. I really need help with mathematics. All I want now is to become very intelligent. Flowers essences have helped me to calm down, release stress and to think better. My advice to other parents of ASD children is to give them more attention, not just from the parents but also from teachers. Give them extra tuition with subjects they have trouble with, and tell them there’s nothing wrong with them, they just think differently. What we did that worked for us: Never making idle promises. When he was very little and something had been promised it became his reality, when the promise didn’t eventuate all hell broke loose; If old fashioned parenting didn’t work, something new was tried. Yelling and screaming makes things worse not better; Set firm boundaries which were explained and why, and then enforced them; Willingness to try new/alternative health therapies, I’ve tried many, some with great success; Turned to brain exercises by visiting a brain gym® instructor. Brain gym (educational kinesiology) enhances learning and performance in all areas. We noticed a difference in our son almost immediately and followed up with teachers and after school care coordinators who also noticed a difference; Flower essences; Some coaching but only when he was in the right head space; Listening and noticing changes however subtle (he’s quite introverted); Chose an age where we felt he’d understand what ASD means without adding too much technical information. Several weeks ago he was one of the top ten Community award winners for water-saving strategies. We met the Lord Mayor as well as the other nine water-saving families of the city at an awards ceremony. Today we found out he’s also been awarded a Young Star Award in the category of Community and have been invited to an awards evening in the coming weeks. He’s also in the running for the overall Young Star Award to be awarded in June 2006. To say we’re proud of him is an understatement. It’s been hard work and at times very tiring, particularly the very early years, and has required a ton of patience, thinking outside the square and consistency with our parenting techniques. Reflecting on my life now I simply couldn’t imagine life without him in it. He’s opened my heart and expanded me as a human beyond my wildest imagination and for that I shall always be thankful. Michaela Scherr http:// michaelascherr. com

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From the couch to the deathbed

In many Western countries, going to a psychiatrist for therapy and counseling is well-accepted as a means to maintain mental and emotional health. For most patients, the psychiatrist is considered a source of calmness, reason, and understanding. Seen as a professional counselor who possess the right knowledge and skills about handling life problems and personal conflicts, the psychiatrist is often seen as the “last straw” of an emotionally disturbed and desperate patient. However, not too many people see psychiatrists as normal people who also encounter difficulties and struggles in life. In truth, at the very core, they are also vulnerable to pain and frustration. Known as the Father of Psychoanalysis, the famous psychiatrist Sigmund Freud was widely acclaimed for his writings and theories of psychology. Freud became an instant celebrity in different medical and psychological associations for his theory about the unconscious mind and how he believed that sexual desire was a strong determinant or motive for human though and action. Credited with the such remarkable psychological concepts such as the id, ego, and the superego, Freud became a highly respected yet controversial figure in the European scientific community. Even today, pictures of Freud are used in pop culture are symbols of human intellectual intricacy and discernment.

In real life, according to his biographers, Freud also faced stress and anxiety in the same manner that his patients did. After carefully studying his early life, biographers believe that they have unlocked the secret to Freud's own secret fears and frustration, which would later become anchors to his theories. As a young medical practitioner, Freud dissected hundreds of eels to look for “eel testicles.” At that time, the origins, reproductive processes, and migratory behavior of eels were still mysteries that challenged the scientific community. After failing to locate the reproductive organs of the eels, Freud abandoned his study and chose the another field on which he could pour out his complete devotion as a man of science. His biographers often refer to this time in Freud's life as the starting point for the psychiatrist's focus on human sexuality.

In his writings, Freud conveyed his belief that sexual desire was somewhat a “motivational energy for life” and viewed psychosexual development as the explanation for specific human thought and behavior. Aside from his work on psychosexual development, Freud was also concerned about overcoming depression through the use of cocaine. It is not widely known that the psychiatrist was a user of cocaine, a substance that he believed to be useful as a stimulant and cure for depression. Long before antidepressant prescriptions were formulated and sold in pharmacies as doctor-prescribed drugs, Freud was already convinced about the use of chemicals and other drug formulas to address emotional problems. Surely, if he were alive today, Freud's use of cocaine would be frowned upon and will be considered illegal. In fact, recent journals have focused on the correlation between Freud's cocaine use and his preoccupation with sexual desire as motivating factor.

Far from the pop image of the psychiatrist as a stable, rational dispenser of reason and understanding, Freud himself came to a point where he found no more reason to live. Perhaps like many of his patients who came to him out of despair, Freud also reached a point where he thought that no more help was available to him --- whether it was from the field of medicine or psychiatry. On September 23, 1939, Freud asked his doctor-friend to assist him in committing suicide. After almost a lifetime of helping other people deal with their own problems, Freud chose to escape his own troubles through a morphine overdose.

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Weight loss the two words that guarantee success

Did you know that being successful with losing weight starts with just two words? Two words will either guarantee you'll lose weight, or guarantee the you WON'T lose weight. You see, words are very powerful. Especially the words that we say to ourselves... our self-talk.

Whatever we say to ourselves goes directly to our subconscious and is accepted as complete truth. Did you catch that? Whatever you say to yourself or others is accepted as a complete truth to your subconscious mind. How do you describe yourself? Do you see yourself as healthy, slim and energetic? Or do you see yourself as heavy and overweight? Do you tell yourself (or complain to others) that "you can't" lose weight? If you say to yourself....

"I am fat" ... your mind says OK, you're fat and gets to work in the background on taking actions that make (and keep) you fat. or "I am healthy and slim"... your mind says, OK, and gets to work in the background on taking actions that make (and keep) you healthy and slim. [Note: You literally can't lose weight if you see yourself as overweight... your mind won't let you. This is one reason so many struggle with losing weight... and keeping it off. ] Your subconscious doesn't argue with you, or reason with your statement. It just goes to work following your instructions. This one, small lifestyle change can make a difference between being successful in reaching your weight loss goals, and continual struggle to lose weight. It's simple, just replace your current thoughts and words with ones that support your "new" you starting with those two most important words, "I am": "I am healthy" "I am slim" "I am fit" "I am healthy and trim" "I am at my goal weight of (your goal) pounds" Saying "I am" gives your mind a statement and command in the affirmative... as if it were already true. Do this regularly, every day, and watch your thoughts and self talk closely. If you catch yourself slipping, immediately stop your negative thoughts and replace them with those above, or your own "I am" statements. Before you know it, your actions and results will start taking shape (literally :) ). It's a proven fact, your mind acts on what you tell it, just tell it what you want! You CAN do it!

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Getting the most bang out of your party planning buck

Throwing a party can be such a fun adventure. You envision a room filled with happy, smiling guests all complimenting you on the food and the drinks. The only thing standing between you and making that fantasy a reality is your budget. You may be having champagne dreams while your bank account can only shoulder soft drink essentials. There are ways to incorporate any budget into your event planning and still come out with a party to be proud of. One of the first tricks to cut cost may be in the time of day you have your event. If you are hosting something like a birthday party or a wedding or baby shower, choosing to have it in the early afternoon has many benefits when it comes to your pocketbook. While you are in the event planning stage, consider the difference in cost when you are only supplying light beverages and small snacks as opposed to a full bar and an entire dinner. The money saved would be noticeable. Most people don't indulge in alcoholic beverages in the early afternoon, so you could instead serve a punch or coffee or iced tea. This is very refreshing and along with some small snacks and perhaps a tray of assorted sweet tooth delights, you've offered your guests refreshment without the added cost that an event later in the day requires. Another consideration when event planning is whether or not you need the services of a caterer. Caterers can be invaluable, especially when you are hosting an event of a significant size. If however, your guest list isn't as vast, doing much of the menu planning and cooking yourself can save more than a few pennies. Perhaps the best money saving technique when it comes to the area of food is to host a potluck event. This idea can be included as part of your event planning process. You plan the party or gathering based on the idea that every guest will supply an item of food or drink. Some many bring a main course or a salad while others will bring a bottle of wine. Once everyone has arrived there is an enormous amount of different food to sample. This is a great way to include the guests in the party planning process and they feel good knowing they've contributed. Food isn't the only area that you can scrimp and save in. If you are hosting a children's birthday party you can ask a friend or relative to dress up as a clown instead of hiring a clown. There are many adults who love to interact with children and the only payment they'd expect would be a room full of young smiles and a slice of birthday cake. Decorations also don't have to break your budget. If you're hosting a garden party, you can create beautiful, soft lighting by hanging the white lights that normally adorn your holiday tree around your garden. Your guests won't be the wiser, but you will for having opted not to invest in a new set of lights you probably will never use again. Careful thought while you are event planning can save you money and let you enjoy your party without fretting about finances.

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Toilet seat covers and how they can protect you

On average a well run company will clean its restrooms 3 days a week. Of those 3 cleaning days the toilet seats will be cleaned maybe once. If you work for a company that has 50 employees with 5 toilets in the building, the average toilet seat will be sat on 50 times before it is wiped down and cleaned off. What this means is that when you sit down on a toilet in that company, 50 more people have sat there before you with nothing separating there bare behind from the toilet seat you're now sitting on. Toilets breed bacteria and germs, it is a moist warm environment where certain bacteria that are extremely bad for us thrive. A great way to protect yourself from germs living in a toilet and germs spread from person to person is to utilize a toilet seat cover when you sit on a toilet. Many private and public restrooms make available toilet seat covers which are usually mounted on a toilet stall wall in a toilet seat cover dispenser. For every restroom that offers toilet seat covers there are at least 10 that do not. A toilet seat cover can be folded up into a relatively small piece of paper smaller in size than the average envelope. They can be easily carried in a pocket or a purse for when you need it. Toilet seat covers come in one basic style and are used as a barrier between you and a well used toilet seat. Some toilet seat covers are treated with a wax so they can be dispensed more easily from a toilet seat cover dispenser. Toilet seat covers can be purchased on cleaning supply websites and are usually sold in packs of 250 to 1000 toilet seat covers per pack. Toilet seat cover dispensers come in many styles and colors and can accent any taste in decorating. These dispensers can easily be mounted on a toilet stall wall or on a permanent wall behind the toilet. Toilet seat cover dispensers come in many colors including white, black, stainless steel, chrome and transparent black. These dispensers start at about 5 dollars and can be a welcome sight in any public restroom. Toilet seat covers are not as expensive as you would think, the average toilet seat cover costs just over a penny each. By providing basic sanitary needs for your employees you can cut down on costly absences and maintain a more productive work environment. It is a proven fact that an employer who shows they care will have employees that care more about their jobs and therefore are more productive. If you are an employee that works for a company that does not have toilet seat covers available in their restrooms you can still protect yourself by obtaining your own and using a toilet seat cover whenever you are in public restroom.

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Guide to hiring a roofer

The average life of a roof is approximately fifteen years. If the roof is under fifteen years old yet you are having problems, it will likely be able to get repaired as opposed to having to install a completely new roof. However, if your roof exceeds this age it may be necessary to install a new roof. To accomplish either repairs or new installs, a roofing contractor should be employed. A roofer will be able to properly install or repair roofing materials to ensure a quality finished product. Before hiring a roofer it is always wise to get recommendations from friends or family. Whether or not you have recommendations, get several quotes before determining the roofer to hire.

A quote should be detailed and include the work to be done, cost, and time-frame for completion. Be sure clean up is included in the quoted price. If you want to save some money, offer to do the cleanup yourself. Ask the roofer how long they have been in business. Roofers with many years experience are preferable. Also, make sure they have a physical address. Many roofing scams are conducted by people working out of a truck with no valid business license or permanent address. Ask for references and check them. Roofers should be properly insured.

Ask for proof of insurance to be sure you are protected from any damage to your home. Roofing repairs and new roofs may require specific building permits. Make sure the company you work with is familiar with local building codes and that they obtain proper licenses or permits. Most locations also require inspections during certain phases of construction and a final inspection when the work is complete. Check your local building codes to ensure the roofer is complying with all regulations. You may be liable if this does not occur. Before starting the project get a contract. This should include all the details of the project, time frame for completion, and price.

It should clearly outline payment policies and warranties. Read the warranty carefully to make sure you are adequately protected. Also, be sure the contract states they are responsible for clean up. Roofing materials can be very messy and you do not want to have to clean up and dispose of waste yourself. But keep in mind you can save yourself some money if you choose to tackle the cleanup process yourself. Never be rushed into hiring a roofer. Take the time to interview potential roofers and check experience and references.

Roofing repairs can be expensive and a new roof is a major investment. Protect your home by doing some research. Hire the roofer who has the best combination of experience and price and with whom you feel most comfortable.

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Common surround sound formats

Common Surround Sound Formats In case you hadn't figured it out by now, surround sound is named as it is because the sound literally surrounds the listener. While there have recently been significant leaps and bounds in this technology there was a huge gap in time between the introduction of this technology and the significant improvements we have seen in recent years. This is especially true when the evolution of sound technology is compared to how fast the world of video has evolved over the last three decades. There are many different formats on the market today. This can be confusing for many consumers though the good news is that most devices that interpret the formats do so automatically. In other words, you won't need a PhD in terminology in order to enjoy the latest blockbuster hit to come out on DVD with your surround sound system. You will however need a good AV receiver and even better speakers in order to get the maximum enjoyment from your home theater and surround sound system. If you are simply curious or like to know a little about a lot, then you just might find some of the following explanations for common surround sound formats to be useful. Dolby Digital AC-3 is by far the most commonly seen surround sound format. It is a 5.1 channel format (this means five speakers plus one subwoofer). This is what most DVDs will include and some programs that are found on digital cable or satellite channels will have this type of surround sound as well. You can use Dolby Digital for older mediums that do not include surround sound in their format, as surround isn't required in order to use the system. Pro Logic is a system used by Dolby in order to translate or decode the signals from other mediums such as old videocassette tapes or television broadcasts. This is becoming widely known for its ability to take two speaker sounds and turn them into shockingly realistic surround imitations. DTS is the largest competitor for Dolby when it comes to sound. DTS is this company's answer to Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. This is mostly seen only on DVDs. DTS-ES is the above-mentioned company's answer to Dolby's 6.1 surround system (this is 6 speakers plus 1 subwoofer). Of course DTS is also going to have their own answer to Pro Logic and that answer would be DTS NEO:6, which is said to produce great imitations of surround sound from existing 2 channel mediums very much like Pro Logic. You may be wondering why we went through all of this information and the primary reason is so that you know there is a difference and you purchase equipment and DVDs that are compatible with one another. Failure to do so could result in a sound that is less than desirable. Most systems will at the very least support both Dolby Digital and DTS, however, you should make sure that you are aware of the format your system requires from the start in order to make the proper decisions when purchasing. Much like anything in life the proper formats and surround sound system comes down to a matter of choice. The more speakers (such as you would find in the 6.1 or 7.1 surround systems) will present a great quality of sound than fewer, however poor quality speakers can completely ruin the beauty of the sound of your surround sound system. Your speakers should be your single largest investment when it comes to building your ideal surround sound system. There are many things that go into creating not only the perfect surround sound system for your home but also the perfect surround sound set up. Do not get so caught up in researching these systems online that you neglect to walk into your local stores and actually hear the sound systems you are considering for purchase. There is noting like hearing the quality of the sound to help you make your final selection. 667

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Basic firearm safety for hunters

Basic Firearm Safety For Hunters Every year, hundreds of hunting accidents occur across America; just ask Vice President Cheyney. Many of these accidents could have been avoided by practicing a few basic gun safety techniques. Know your weapon If your weapon came with an owner’s manual, read it from cover to cover. Practice taking apart your weapon and inspecting it thoroughly. If you know what your weapon looks like normally, you will be quick to recognize any abnormalities of the weapon in the field. If you drop your weapon or fall while carrying it, take it apart and inspect it for damage. Make sure that the slide operates smoothly. If you are in doubt about the integrity of your rifle, don’t fire it. Educate yourself about the ammunition that you choose to use. A .22 caliber bullet fired from a rifle can travel over two and a half miles. This knowledge is necessary to line up a safe shot. Transporting the weapon Always keep your weapon unloaded until you are ready to fire. If you are going to hike to a new location, unload before starting out. Store the rifle and ammunition separately and, if possible, keep the storage container locked. Never carry a loaded rifle in your vehicle or on an ATV. Sighting your prey When sighting up your intended shot, there are many things to consider before pulling the trigger. Never shoot at a partially obscured target. Identify your prey fully before even raising your weapon to take a shot. If you are in doubt about what is moving, control your excitement and wait until the target can be fully visualized. Never hunt after dusk or before daybreak. Know what is in front of and behind your target before shooting. Do not shoot animals that appear on hilltops and near the tops of ridges as you cannot identify what may be behind your target. If your game is near water, rocks, or buildings, keep in mind that bullets can ricochet off hard surfaces. Do not use the gun’s scope to sight your game. Use your binoculars first, and then if the shot is clear, switch to the scope. Treat your weapon as if it is loaded at all times Never look down the barrel of a weapon for any reason. Keep your muzzle pointed away from yourself and others at all times. Learn and use various safe carrying positions for transporting your rifle in the field. Keep a clear head Never go hunting or handle a weapon if you have had any alcohol or medication that may impair your judgment. Even a sleeping pill the night before can affect your reflexes during the day. Get plenty of rest the night before your trip and go home early if you find yourself becoming drowsy. Sighting a big buck or a fat bird can be exciting. It’s important to keep a level head at all times and not let your emotions cloud your judgment. Don’t allow yourself to act without thinking through the action to determine if it’s safe first. Wear your safety gear Bring along hearing and eye protection and wear them before shooting. Include safety orange in your choice of head gear and upper body clothing. This helps other hunters in the area distinguish you from the prey. Word count 545

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Investing for retirement while saving for health

Any time of year can be the right time to consider setting up a Health Savings Account (HSA). If you need a new way to reduce taxes while you put money away, an HSA may be just the thing for you. These high-deductible health insurance plans coupled with IRA-style savings accounts are really pretty easy to understand, offer a number of benefits and are becoming more popular. What is an HSA? HSAs were developed to maximize your savings on health insurance while providing a valuable tax break. The two parts of an HSA program are an eligible, high-deductible health plan and a tax-advantaged savings account. For an individual, an HSA-eligible health insurance plan must have an annual deductible of at least $1,050 for individuals and $2,100 for families. Online health insurance agents like eHealthInsur ance. com have a variety of HSA-eligible health plans from insurance companies you know and trust. The second part of an HSA program is an IRA-style savings account that allows you to reduce your taxable income by building savings. You can deposit funds up to the total of your health plan's deductible into the HSA each year. So, within certain regulatory limits, the higher your health plan's deductible, the more you can tuck away tax-free. How does the Tax Savings work? If you make $40,000 a year and you put $2,000 in your HSA, you'll only pay taxes on $38,000. Like an IRA, the HSA is meant to encourage you to save for retirement. Funds placed into your HSA can be invested and the balance will roll over each year into retirement. You can use your HSA funds to cover medical expenses such as over-the-counter drugs, eyeglasses, co-payments and any medical costs incurred before your annual deductible is met.

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