Archive for category lifestyles

Subprime Lifestyles

By now, everyone who hasn’t been hiding out under a rock has heard about the subprime mortgage fiasco. Banks lent money to people who didn’t qualified for it by using twisty, unethical strategies like “liar loans” (literally falsified loan applications, which is otherwise known as loan fraud), the deliberate targeting of people who weren’t in a position to understand what they were getting themselves into and slick sales pitches designed to hide the true cost of interest rate jumps, exorbitant fees, balloon payments and other surprises. As a result, wave after wave of foreclosures, bank failures and other financial disasters have been racing through the American economy (and the economy of other countries).

So what does that have to do with self-help? Simply this: The subprime crisis is directly related to the skewed way we as Americans look at money, debt and personal wealth, and how we act on these views. Until we learn to recognize these issues and take steps to eliminate them, history will simply repeat itself in more and more damaging ways.

Here are some of the issues that lead to the subprime mortgage collapse. Do you recognize any in yourself? If so, how are they affecting your decisions, and what sort of danger could you be letting yourself in for? Read the rest of this entry »

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Amish Lifestyles in a Modern World

I consider myself a normal person in the fast-paced world, probably just like you. We have our luxuries that we take for granted and never even notice we have them unless we have a power outage. Through my relationship with the Amish, and my desire to learn more about their customs and work ethic, I recently offered my services to assist one of the families of fourteen (14) on their small family farm. I was soon regretting that decision. I found myself assisting the young Amish children, ages 7 through 13, in throwing wheat sheaves onto a horse drawn hay wagon . Needless to say, the young Amish children put me to shame. I could not keep up!

I have learned that the Amish are very hard working and decent people with an unbelievable work ethic . They are trained from a very young age that if a job is worth doing it is a job worth doing right. That instilled value is what makes their products so special. They live a very simple life with minimal furnishings in their homes. It goes without saying that there are no refrigerators, televisions, computers, radios, electricity, telephones, fans, etc. What took me by surprise was finding there are no pictures, doilies, what-knots, or even couches inside their homes! An Amish home is furnished with wooden beds, handmade quilts, basic dressers, a kitchen table with a few hardwood chairs, and wooden floors without even a throw rug. Read the rest of this entry »

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