Tuesday, May 25, 2010

5 Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires

They’re just like you. But with lots of money.

When you think “millionaire,” what image comes to mind? For many of us, it’s a flashy Wall Street banker type who flies a private jet, collects cars and lives the kind of decadent lifestyle that would make Donald Trump proud.

But many modern millionaires live in middle-class neighborhoods, work full-time and shop in discount stores like the rest of us. What motivates them isn’t material possessions but the choices that money can bring: “For the rich, it’s not about getting more stuff. It’s about having the freedom to make almost any decision you want,” says T. Harv Eker, author of Secrets of the Millionaire Mind. Wealth means you can send your child to any school or quit a job you don’t like.

According to the Spectrem Wealth Study, an annual survey of America’s wealthy, there are more people living the good life than ever before—the number of millionaires nearly doubled in the last decade. And the rich are getting richer. To make it onto the Forbes 400 list of the richest Americans, a mere billionaire no longer makes the cut. This year you needed a net worth of at least $1.3 billion.

If more people are getting richer than ever, why shouldn’t you be one of them? Here, five people who have at least a million dollars in liquid assets share the secrets that helped them get there.

PLUS: 13 Things Your Financial Adviser Won't Tell You

1. Set your sights on where you’re going
Twenty years ago, Jeff Harris hardly seemed on the road to wealth. He was a college dropout who struggled to support his wife, DeAnn, and three kids, working as a grocery store clerk and at a junkyard where he melted scrap metal alongside convicts. “At times we were so broke that we washed our clothes in the bathtub because we couldn’t afford the Laundromat.” Now he’s a 49-year-old investment advisor and multimillionaire in York, South Carolina.

There was one big reason Jeff pulled ahead of the pack: He always knew he’d be rich. The reality is that 80 percent of Americans worth at least $5 million grew up in middle-class or lesser households, just like Jeff.

Wanting to be wealthy is a crucial first step. Says Eker, “The biggest obstacle to wealth is fear. People are afraid to think big, but if you think small, you’ll only achieve small things.”

PLUS: 17 Things Your Mother Wants You to Know

It all started for Jeff when he met a stockbroker at a Christmas party. “Talking to him, it felt like discovering fire,” he says. “I started reading books about investing during my breaks at the grocery store, and I began putting $25 a month in a mutual fund.” Next he taught a class at a local community college on investing. His students became his first clients, which led to his investment practice. “There were lots of struggles,” says Jeff, “but what got me through it was believing with all my heart that I would succeed.”

2. Educate yourself
When Steve Maxwell graduated from college, he had an engineering degree and a high-tech job—but he couldn’t balance his checkbook. “I took one finance class in college but dropped it to go on a ski trip,” says the 45-year-old father of three, who lives in Windsor, Colorado. “I actually had to go to my bank and ask them to teach me how to read my statement.”

One of the biggest obstacles to making money is not understanding it: Thousands of us avoid investing because we just don’t get it. But to make money, you must be financially literate. “It bothered me that I didn’t understand this stuff,” says Steve, “so I read books and magazines about money management and investing, and I asked every financial whiz I knew to explain things to me.”

PLUS: 6 Moneymaking Tips

He and his wife started applying the lessons: They made a point to live below their means. They never bought on impulse, always negotiated better deals (on their cars, cable bills, furniture) and stayed in their home long after they could afford a more expensive one. They also put 20 percent of their annual salary into investments.

Within ten years, they were millionaires, and people were coming to Steve for advice. “Someone would say, ‘I need to refinance my house—what should I do?’ A lot of times, I wouldn’t know the answer, but I’d go find it and learn something in the process,” he says.

In 2003, Steve quit his job to become part owner of a company that holds personal finance seminars for employees of corporations like Wal-Mart. He also started going to real estate investment seminars, and it’s paid off: He now owns $30 million worth of investment properties, including apartment complexes, a shopping mall and a quarry.

“I was an engineer who never thought this life was possible, but all it truly takes is a little self-education,” says Steve. “You can do anything once you understand the basics.”

PLUS: 17 French Restaurant Words You Need to Know

3. Passion pays off
In 1995, Jill Blashack Strahan and her husband were barely making ends meet. Like so many of us, Jill was eager to discover her purpose, so she splurged on a session with a life coach. “When I told her my goal was to make $30,000 a year, she said I was setting the bar too low. I needed to focus on my passion, not on the paycheck.”

Jill, who lives with her son in Alexandria, Minnesota, owned a gift basket company and earned just $15,000 a year. She noticed when she let potential buyers taste the food items, the baskets sold like crazy. Jill thought, Why not sell the food directly to customers in a fun setting?

PLUS: 15 Foods You Should Never Buy Again

With $6,000 in savings, a bank loan and a friend’s investment, Jill started packaging gourmet foods in a backyard shed and selling them at taste-testing parties. It wasn’t easy. “I remember sitting outside one day, thinking we were three months behind on our house payment, I had two employees I couldn’t pay, and I ought to get a real job. But then I thought, No, this is your dream. Recommit and get to work.”

She stuck with it, even after her husband died three years later. “I live by the law of abundance, meaning that even when there are challenges in life, I look for the win-win,” she says.

PLUS: 20 Secrets Your Waiter Won't Tell You

The positive attitude worked: Jill’s backyard company, Tastefully Simple, is now a direct-sales business, with $120 million in sales last year. And Jill was named one of the top 25 female business owners in North America by Fast Company magazine.

According to research by Thomas J. Stanley, author of The Millionaire Mind, over 80 percent of millionaires say they never would have been successful if their vocation wasn’t something they cared about.

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4. Grow your money
Most of us know the never-ending cycle of living paycheck to paycheck. “The fastest way to get out of that pattern is to make extra money for the specific purpose of reinvesting in yourself,” says Loral Langemeier, author of The Millionaire Maker. In other words, earmark some money for the sole purpose of investing it in a place where it will grow dramatically—like a business or real estate.

There are endless ways to make extra money for investing—you just have to be willing to do the work. “Everyone has a marketable skill,” says Langemeier. “When I started out, I had a tutoring business, seeing clients in the morning before work and on my lunch break.”

A little moonlighting cash really can grow into a million. Twenty-five years ago, Rick Sikorski dreamed of owning a personal training business. “I rented a tiny studio where I charged $15 an hour,” he says. When money started trickling in, he squirreled it away instead of spending it, putting it all back into the business. Rick’s 400-square-foot studio is now Fitness Together, a franchise based in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, with more than 360 locations worldwide. And he’s worth over $40 million.

PLUS: 10 Smart Money Moves to Make Now

When extra money rolls in, it’s easy to think, Now I can buy that new TV. But if you want to get rich, you need to pay yourself first, by putting money where it will work hard for you—whether that’s in your retirement fund, a side business or investments like real estate.

5. No guts, no glory
Last summer, Dave Lindahl footed the bill for 18 relatives at a fancy mansion in the Adirondacks. One night, his dad looked out at the scenery and joked, “I can’t believe we used to call you the black sheep!”

At 29, Dave was broke, living in a small apartment near Boston and wondering what to do after ten years in a local rock band. “I looked around and thought, If I don’t do something, I’ll be stuck here forever.”

He started a landscape company, buying his equipment on credit. When business literally froze over that winter, a banker friend asked if he’d like to renovate a foreclosed home. “I’m a terrible carpenter, but I needed the money, so I went to some free seminars at Home Depot and figured it out as I went,” he says.

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After a few more renovations, it occurred to him: Why not buy the homes and sell them for profit? He took a risk and bought his first property. Using the proceeds, he bought another, and another. Twelve years later, he owns apartment buildings, worth $143 million, in eight states.

The Biggest Secret? Stop spending.
Every millionaire we spoke to has one thing in common: Not a single one spends needlessly. Real estate investor Dave Lindahl drives a Ford Explorer and says his middle-class neighbors would be shocked to learn how much he’s worth. Fitness mogul Rick Sikorski can’t fathom why anyone would buy bottled water. Steve Maxwell, the finance teacher, looked at a $1.5 million home but decided to buy one for half the price because “a house with double the cost wouldn’t give me double the enjoyment.”

America's Fittest Cities 2010

Washington, D.C. tops an annual ranking of which cities are in the best shape

Not all cities are equal from a fitness standpoint. In some big cities one in three people are obese; in others it's only one in five. In some cities there is one baseball diamond for every 10,000 people; in others there are five times as many ball fields.

So says this year's American Fitness Index report, published by the American College of Sports Medicine. It takes the biggest 50 metropolitan areas and ranks them by fitness levels. The top city on the list, now for three years running, is Washington, D.C. The least fit is Oklahoma City, Okla.

The index considers 30 factors. The most important ones are measures of the city population's disease rates, mortality, physical attributes and lifestyle--even how many people eat full servings of fruit and vegetables. The rest of the ranking is based on the number of dog parks, golf courses, swimming pools and the like.

"We are thrilled to be the fittest city in the nation for the third consecutive year," Washington Mayor Adrian Fenty said in a statement. "We are investing in our recreation centers, building new swimming pools and opening more parks so our residents can exercise, swim, walk, bike and compete in sports."

Washington isn't normally thought of as a health-obsessed city. That designation might bring to mind outdoorsy places like Denver or Minneapolis, two other cities in the top 10.

But the Washington metro area "has a low smoking rate, a better-than-average number of folks eating fruits and vegetables and a lower-than-average rate of obesity," says Walter Thompson, a professor at Georgia State who advises the index. Another example is the diabetes rate: Only 6.7% of the D.C.-area population has diabetes, compared with 8.3% nationwide. The youthful population of government aides and interns surely helps.

The nation's capital is also a well-endowed city when it comes to community recreation centers, ball fields and other places to exercise. Washington has the second-highest rate of people walking or biking to work, aided by 60 miles of bike lanes.

On the other hand, just because there are a lot of parks and bike lanes being built doesn't mean that everyone uses them. And by giving points simply for having infrastructure, the index might favor wealthier cities or those with bigger governments. "It's a fair point," says Brenda Chamness, who gathers the data for the index. Chamness points out that research has found that fitness levels rise along with the building of new facilities. "If individuals do not have access to safe, convenient and affordable places to exercise, they would be less likely to exercise."

Another city that does well is affluent Boston, with a low smoking rate and state-mandated health insurance. Both Seattle and Portland, Ore., make the top five as well, thanks to low obesity rates and lots of opportunities for physical activity.

At the other end of the spectrum is Oklahoma City, which comes in dead last among the largest metropolitan areas.

Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett is used to people saying he's from an obese city. "I'm not saying we shouldn't be last," he says. "There are issues here that are real that we're not running away from. We have an obesity problem." In Oklahoma City almost one in three people weighs in as obese, and the diabetes rate is a sky-high 10.5%. The city lacks farmers' markets, and virtually everyone drives to work.

But Mayor Cornett thinks the city gets unduly penalized because of technicalities in how the rankings are computed. Because the city doesn't run the schools, it can't classify school playgrounds as city-owned parks, as some other metro areas do.

Cornett is working hard to improve the city's ranking. Two years ago the city launched a website, called, where 41,000 people have logged on to record how much weight they have lost. The city has made it halfway to its goal of dropping 1 million pounds. Cornett say he personally dropped 38 pounds.

The city only has about half as many parks, tennis courts, swimming pools and recreation centers per capita as a typical city, but is trying to reverse the tide. A recent bond issue, Cornett says, will pay for gymnasiums inside urban schools, 53 miles of bike trails, 450 miles of new sidewalks, a 77-acre city park and a plan to make 180 acres of downtown into a pedestrian mall.

"It is not OK for anyone to be obese," Cornett says. "There needs to be a cultural shift."

Monday, May 24, 2010

Adjectuve Clause, Conditional sentence , Passive Voice, and Degree of Comparison

1. Adjective clause

An adjective clause—also called an adjectival clause—will meet three requirements. First, it will contain a subject and verb. Next, it will begin with a relative pronoun [who, whom, whose, that, or which] or a relative adverb [when, where, or why]. Finally, it will function as an adjective, answering questions such as: What kind? How many? or Which one?

The adjective clause will follow one of these two patterns:

  • Relative Pronoun [or Relative Adverb] + Subject + Verb = Dependent Clause
  • Relative Pronoun [Functioning as Subject] + Verb = Dependent Clause

Examples include:

Whose big, brown eyes pleaded for another cookie

Word Class


Relative Pronoun






Why Fred cannot stand sitting across from his sister Melanie

Word Class


Relative Adverb





Can stand

That bounced onto the kitchen floor

Word Class


Relative Pronoun




Who hiccuped for seven hours afterward

Word Class


Relative Pronoun




2. Conditional Sentences

English conditional sentences can be divided into the two broad classes of factual/predictive and hypothetical (counterfactual), depending on the form of the verb in the condition (protasis). The terms "factual" and "counterfactual" broadly correspond to the linguistic modalities called realis and irrealis.

Factual/predictive conditions

In these constructions, the condition clause expresses a condition the truth of which is unverified. The verb in the condition clause is in the past tense (with a past tense interpretation) or in the present tense (with a present or future tense interpretation). The result clause can be in the past, present, or future. Generally, conditional sentences of this group are in two groups, the "zero conditional" and the potential or indicative conditional, often called "first conditional" or "conditional 1". This class includes universal statements (both clauses in the present, or both clauses in the past) and predictions.

The "zero" conditional is formed with both clauses in the present tense. This construction is similar across many languages. It is used to express a certainty, a universal statement, a law of science, etc.:

If you heat water to 100 degrees celsius, it boils.

If you don't eat for a long time, you become hungry.

If the sea is stormy, the waves are high.

It is different from true conditionals because the introductory "if" can be replaced by "when" or "whenever" (e.g., "When you heat water..."), which cannot be done for true conditionals.

The potential or indicative conditional, often referred to as the "first conditional" or "conditional 1", is used more generally to express a hypothetical condition that is potentially true, but not yet verified. The conditional clause is in the present or past tense and refers to a state or event in the past. The result can be in the past, present, or future. Some examples with the condition clause in the past tense:

If she took that flight yesterday, she arrived at 10pm.

If she took that flight yesterday, she is somewhere in town today.

If she took that flight yesterday, we'll see her tomorrow.

A condition clause (protasis) in the present tense refers to a future event, a current event which may be true or untrue, or an event which could be verified in the future. The result can be in the past, present, or future:

If it's raining here now, then it was raining on the West Coast this morning.

If it's raining now, then your laundry is getting wet.

If it's raining now, there will be mushrooms to pick next week.

If it rains this afternoon, then yesterday's weather forecast was wrong.

If it rains this afternoon, your garden party is doomed.

If it rains this afternoon, everybody will stay home.

If I become President, I'll lower taxes.

Certain modal auxiliary verbs (mainly will, may, might, and could) are not usually used in the condition clause (protasis) in English:

*If it will rain this afternoon, …

*If it may have rained yesterday, …

There are exceptions, however, in which will is used exactly as in the first example, namely when the action in the if clause takes place after that in the main clause:

(The weather forecast says it's going to rain.) Well, if it will rain, we must take umbrellas.

If aspirins will cure it, I'll [I will] take a couple tonight instead of this horrible medicine.[1]

Other situations in which will can be used in an if clause include when will is not being used as an auxiliary verb, in other words when it is being used modally to express willingness, persistence, or a wish:

If you'll [you will] just hold the door open for me a moment, I can take this table out to the kitchen.

If you will keep all the windows shut, of course you'll get headaches.

If you will excuse me, I think I will slip into something more comfortable.[2][3]

In colloquial English, the imperative is sometimes used to form a conditional sentence: e.g. "go eastwards a mile and you'll see it" means "if you go eastwards a mile, you will see it".

Construction of conditional sentences in English

In English, there are three coinditional sentence formulas. They are:

The first formula indicates the possible outcome of an event that is likely to occur: If + Present Simple/Present Progressive + Present Simple/Present Progressive/Future Simple/Future Progressive/Imperative

The second formula indicates the possible outcome of an event that is less likely to occur:

If + Present Perfect/Present Perfect Progressive/Preterite/Past Continuous + Conditional Present/Conditional Present Progressive

(In British and Canadian English: If + Imperfect Subjunctive + Conditional Present/Conditional Present Progressive)

The third formula indicates the possible outcome of an event that did not occur, and is therefore a missed opportunity: If + Pluperfect/Pluperfect Progressive + Conditional Perfect/Conditional Perfect Progressive

It is possible to reverse the order of the clauses, however, the protasis must always follow the word "If" (Eg. "If + I miss the bus, + I will be late for school" can be adjusted to: "I will be late for school + if + I miss the bus.)

3. Passive Voice

Kalimat pasif pokok kalimat dikenai oleh suatu pekerjaan, coba bandingkan :

Kalimat aktif : He buys a book = Ia membeli sebuah buku

Kalimat pasif : A book is bought by him = Sebuah buku dibeli olehnya

Kalimat pasif ini bisa dibayangkan awalan di pada bahasa Indonesia umpama : merobek – dirobek .

Jadi dilihat, dibeli adalah menunjukkan pasif dalam kalimat tersebut

Rumus pembuatan kalimat pasif ialah : to be + P2

ATAU to be + verb pada kolom 3

Object kalimat aktif menjadi subject kalimat pasif

Subject kalimat aktif menjadi object kalimat pasif yang didahului by :

The girl beats the cat = Gadis itu memukul kucing itu

The cat is beaten by the girl = Kucing itu dipukul gadis itu

Lebih jelas lagi langsung pada kata kerja dalam kolom 3 sesudah to be ; jadi :

To be bought = dibeli to be heard = didengar

4. Degree of Comparison

Degree of Comparison = Tingkat Perbandingan

Adjective (kata sifat) dan Adverb (kata keterangan) mempunyai tiga tingkat, yaitu :

+ Positive Degree ( tingkat biasa )

+ Comparative ( tingkat lebih / perbandingan )

+ Superlative ( tingkat paling )

à Kata – kata yang terdiri dari satu suku kata ditambah er untuk comparative dan est untuk

Superlative :

Positive Comparative Superlative

Long Longer Longest

panjang lebih panjang paling panjang

Young Younger Youngest

muda lebih muda paling muda

Large Larger Largest

luas lebih luas paling luas

Deep Deeper Deepest

dalam lebih dalam paling dalam

Fine Finer Finest

baik lebih baik paling baik

à kata – kata yang terdiri dari dua suku kata yang diakhiri

“ some” - “ow” - “le” – “ r” – “y” ditambah er untuk comparative dan est untuk superlative :

Positive Comparative Superlative

Handsome Hansdomer Handsomest

tampan lebih tampan paling tampan

Wholesome Wholesomer Wholesomest

sehat lebih sehat paling sehat

Narrow Narrower Narrowest

sempit lebih sempit paling sempit

Noble Nobler Noblest

mulia lebih mulia paling mulia

Clever Cleverer Cleverest

pandai lebih pandai paling pandai

Happy Happier Happiest

bahagia lebih bahagia paling bahagia

à Kata – kata yang terdiri dari dua suku kata atau lebih ditambah more untuk comparative dan most untuk superlative :

Positive Comparative Superlative

Usefull More useful Most useful

berguna lebih berguna paling berguna

Famous More famous Most famous

terkenal lebih terkenal paling terkenal

interesting More interesting Most interesting

menarik lebih menarik paling menarik

Necessary More Necessary Most Necessary

penting lebih penting paling penting

è Irregular - Degrees of Comparison

Tingkat perbandingan yang tidak beraturan.



Well better --- best

baik lebih baik --- paling baik


Ill worse --- worst

buruk lebih jelek --- paling jelek




banyak More --- most

Much lebih banyak --- terbanyak


Rumus Pemakaiannya :

as + { positive } + as

This box is as big as that one = Buku ini sebesar yang itu.

You are as tall as I am = Kamu setinggi saya.

Less + { positive } + than = not so + { positive } + as

He is less syupid than I thought =

He is not so stupid as I thought he was Ia tidak sebodoh yang saya kira

Your house is less near than I thought = Your is not so near as I thought = Rumahmu tidak housesedekat yang saya duga.

{ Comparative } + than - - - > membandingkan antara dua

He work more slowly than she does = Ia bekerja lebih lambat dari pada dia.

The first Problem is more difficult than the second = Soal pertama lebih susah dari pada yang kedua

You are taller than I am = Kamu lebih tinggi dari pada saya

He works harder than you do = Ia bekerja lebih berat daripada kamu

The + superlative - - - > memperbandingkan antara tiga atau lebih

He is the cleverest student in his class = Ia pelajar yang terpandai dikelasnya

Kirana is the most beautiful student in her class = Kirana pelajar yang tercantik dikelasnya.

For Children, a Social Network With Training Wheels

by : the new york times

On Tuesday May 18, 2010, 11:30 pm EDT

Mandeep Singh Dhillon's son, Zoraver, learned how to take pictures of himself with his father's computer when he was four years old, and he immediately wanted to share the results with relatives online. Mr. Dhillon liked the idea of his son developing skills at an early age that he would use for a lifetime, but was also hesitant to let Zoraver loose on the open Internet. He began working on an alternative.

Three years later the result is Togetherville, a social networking site intended for use by children between the ages of six and 10 and their parents. It aims to keep children safe from cyberbullying and other online dangers while allowing them to become comfortable with online interaction. The site, which has been in private beta for several months, was opened to the public on Tuesday night.

Togetherville allows parents to build a social circle for their children based on their own collection of Facebook friends. The children can then interact with the children of their parents' friends, and specific adults that their parents have chosen, in a semi-private environment. The content on the site is curated, so children can play games, make art projects and watch or share videos, but everything they have access to has been vetted in advance, Mr. Dhillon said. Children can comment on their friends' posts directly through drop-down menus of preselected phrases. If a user wants to say something that is not on the list, he can submit a request that it be added.

Mr. Dhillon said this type of interaction helps children develop social skills that they can't get from virtual worlds like Club Penguin, which protect children by having them act only through anonymous avatars.

"We teach kids from a very early age, never let your identity be online, never let anyone know who you are, but we're teaching some bad things," he said. "Kids don't learn how to be accountable."

Mr. Dhillon said the site, which has about 10 employees, would not charge a subscription or carry advertising, and that it would rely at least in part on parents giving their children allowances to buy virtual merchandise. The business model is not entirely clear, said Ann Miura-Ko, a partner at Floodgate, the site's main investor. The site's market is a potentially lucrative one, though.

"Once you have parents and their children operating on the same system there are a lot of opportunities," Ms. Miura-Ko said. Floodgate was also an early investor in Twitter and Digg.

Mr. Dhillon is pushing Togetherville not just as a business but also as a social tool. He has enlisted the help of various people who work on online safety issues. Stephen Balkam, chief executive of the Family Online Safety Institute, is one of those who has been advising Mr. Dhillon. He said that he thought the site could keep younger children off of Facebook, where they are more likely to find inappropriate content and are less protected from potentially harmful interactions with strangers or bullies.

But Vicky Rideout, who wrote a recent large-scale study of children's media use for the Kaiser Family Foundation, is skeptical of the claim that Togetherville will be a useful educational tool, saying there is no data to suggest a demand from children under 10 for more social media. She also dismissed the idea that children need an intermediary step toward unrestricted online networking.

"From the child's perspective, I'm not sure what the benefit is," she wrote in an e-mail message. "Believe me, kids will learn how to use technology and media when the time comes."