Top Health And Wellness Tips (Part I)

Having been a primary care physician for over 15 years now, I still get asked a lot of questions about how people can really learn to feel well. I also believe that the way we feel is foundational to our wellbeing.So I decided to take this opportunity to revisit some important issues that I feel every woman needs to pay attention to in order to enhance her overall wellbeing.So here we go!1. I DON’T LIKE DIETS, WHAT ELSE CAN I DO TO LOSE WEIGHT?A lot of what I counsel my patients and clients on is that rather than focus on a diet, look at incorporating sustainable lifestyle changes that lead to healthy eating. A frequent down side to diets is that not only are they usually are temporary and some diets on the market may restrict your intake of calories so rigidly, that you may actually look like your losing weight but what is happening is that you are losing muscle and not fat! When you get off the diet, you gain all the weight back. So as part of adapting long term lifestyle changes look at ways that you can adapt ideas to include more healthy recipes.2. I’M GOING THROUGH MENOPAUSE AND MY DOCTOR WILL NOT PRESCRIBE HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY. WHAT ELSE CAN I DO?This was a question that is a hot topic around the ‘water cooler’ and was asked a lot by my female patients. Especially after a lot of them had to be suddenly taken off their Premarin® after the results of the ‘Women’s Health Study’ in 2002 showed an increase in heart attacks, strokes and blood clots for women who had been on hormone replacement therapy for a long period of time.The main reason that a lot of women may seek medical attention during menopause is due to the bothersome symptoms such as hot flashes, vaginal dryness or mood swings that affect her overall wellbeing. I usually recommend that women start preparing for menopause and beyond in her younger years. This is why women’s health is an issue that is very dear to my heart. For those women who may require hormone replacement therapy there are bioidentical hormones. I would recommend these for as short a period of time as possible whilst emphasizing lifestyle modifications such as healthy eating and health fitness.3. I DON’T HAVE ENOUGH TIME TO EXERCISE WHAT IS THE BEST KIND OF EXERCISE- CARDIO OR RESISTANCE TRAINING?Here’s what I think- there is no ‘one size fits all’ answer to this question. It really depends on what your overall fitness goals are and also what stage of life you are in. For instance being a woman over 40 myself at this stage of life, I am focusing on resistance training in order to gain muscle mass and strengthen my bones in order to reduce the risk of osteoporosis. There are 5 components of health fitness, but the two main types that we commonly focus on is cardio and strength (or resistance training). I usually recommend alternating cardio days with resistance days. It’s a great idea to review fitness articles to keep you up to date on creative ways to incorporate physical activity into your daily life.4. I HAVE A FAMILY HISTORY OF HEART DISEASE WHAT SHOULD I LOOK OUT FOR TO MAKE SURE I AM HEART HEALTHY?I get really passionate about the answer to this question, because there has been a myth out there that due to the fact that the female hormone estrogen helps to protect us against heart disease and so a woman we do not need to be worried about heart attacks. Women’s heart health is an issue that requires that we as women be proactive in our own health and wellbeing. Do not discount any worrisome symptoms as the persistent heartburn may not just be heartburn. And if you do go to see your physician and it gets brushed off as just ‘stress’, then please seek a second opinion! As women we are gifted with an ‘inner knowingness’ and I encourage you to begin to listen to that voice as your guide toward total wellbeing.5. I WORK IN A VERY STRESSFUL ENVIRONMENT, WHAT CAN I DO TO REDUCE MY STRESS LEVEL?
Granted stress is inevitable in our lives. However, it is more important how we relate to and handle stress. Stress and stress related issues, in my estimation are responsible for close to 80 % of visits to a physician’s office. And I can say that professional women especially tend to have a higher burden of stress related not only to work but also other competing dynamics such as child rearing, relationships and societal expectations and demands to name but a few. There are healthy ways we can adapt to protect our emotional health. In her book, ‘Anatomy of the Spirit’ Caroline Myss made a very powerful statement that ‘our biography becomes our biology’. It points to the power that our emotions have to color not only our moods but also our physical bodies. Guard your thoughts and with that you will guard the temple of your soul-the physical self.Next issue, I’ll review things we need to do for our family members and then simple steps you can take immediately to improve health and wellbeing.

Can You Advertise Your Small Business Online?

The sites online are full of advertisements big and small. Yes small businesses are advertised too. So you can think of small business online advertising. There is a kind of misconception that to advertise online you need to pay hefty amounts. So much so that at times it is not recovered from the sales of even big businesses. It is difficult to break even for the big businesses, so small business online advertising is out of question was the dictum.The scenario is however changing fast. You do get advertising firms on the net who charge much less for the space and you do get good sales with referrals from the net.Firstly we need to define what is a small business? Small and big is a relative term. By small we mean that there is not much investment done in the business. So if the investment is less you need to invest less in advertising as well. A large business normally has a good capital investment. It can bear the brunt of the advertising, which a small business online advertising firm cannot bear. Not any more there are many good advertising companies on the net that charge minimal. There are companies that charge as commission on the sales that happen through the net. So, one need not make a hefty investment either.The businesses that you do from home could be called as small businesses. If you design web sites you can get good clienteles online. That is something people will look up for online. If you have some artistic traits and you do business in it. Even that can be advertised online. Say you give coaching of something you can think of online marketing and advertising. Since the income from it is purely net income you can afford the online advertising fees. If you bake cakes, teach, design something then online advertising is the ideal option.You can make a careful survey of people who offer space online for advertising. You can search various site via Google search. You can also look out for various advertisements to see the type in which they are advertised. It always helps if you have a web page. Many spaces are available online that offer free space for web page. The basic designing of a web page is easy too. There are help options available as well. If you check out various online advertisements, you get an idea as to how you need to advertise your product or services. You can save on the cost by designing your own advertisements.The advertisements need to be noticed. They should have many clicks that increase the sales option. It has to be attractively made and flashy. It has to have lot of visibility with strategically placed advertisements. They can be done in java and flash script. Many companies charge much less. Some companies charge only on the sales that have taken place by the online advertisements. So the small business online advertising can definitely be done.

Depreciate Property Improvements Correctly With Cost Segregation

Most commercial building owners are grossly overpaying federal income taxes because they are not depreciating their property as quickly as they should. A cost segregation study allows property owners to both defer and reduce federal income taxes. When properly performed by an appraiser with expertise in cost segregation, this is a conservative tax planning tool which reduces federal income taxes by properly allocating the cost basis between land, 5-year, 7-year, 15-year, 27.5-year and 39-year property.Cost Segregation Study BenefitsBenefits of a cost segregation study are substantial, immediate and enduring. Year 1 federal income tax savings are typically at least two times the cost of a cost segregation study. In many cases they are five to fifty times the cost of the study. The present value of federal income tax savings for a property held for ten years are typically at least ten times the cost of the study. In many cases, the present value of tax savings as much as 30 to 50 times the cost of the report. The cost segregation study is only required once. Its cost is not recurring, but the benefits are recurring during the term of property ownership. A cost segregation study can also materially reduce local property taxes by separating real and personal property for newly constructed properties.Detailed ExamplePreparing a cost segregation study requires only a limited time commitment from the owner, perhaps 10 to 15 minutes. This limited commitment of time results in substantial tax savings, which are both conservative in approach and well documented. Some owners believe their accountant is properly segregating components into the proper classifications. Many accountants cannot thoroughly research this highly specialized field to understand the myriad of items which can be segregated and are inadvertently overstating their client’s income tax liability. Furthermore, not obtaining a cost segregation study increases exposure in case of an audit since there is no clear audit trail. A cost segregation study prepared by an appraiser with expertise in land valuation, construction costs and market value clearly documents each of these items. Further, a cost segregation expert can almost certainly sharply increase allowable depreciation.Who Benefits from a Cost Segregation StudyIf you own real estate and pay federal income taxes or expect to during the ownership period for the property, you will benefit from the results of a cost segregation study. This is true whether the ownership to the real estate is titled in a corporation, limited partnership or limited liability corporation. For syndicators, a cost segregation study is appropriate if limited partners will receive material net taxable income during the holding period even if the general partner does not currently pay federal income taxes. The cost segregation study will increase depreciation shield, thereby decreasing and deferring federal income taxes for the investors.Decreasing and Deferring Federal TaxesSince a cost segregation study decreases and defers federal income taxes, let’s review the long-term impact of this deferral. When the property is sold, capital gains tax will be due if the owner does not enter into a 1031 exchange. However, capital gains tax rates are typically 20% – 25% for high net worth individuals, while the ordinary income tax rate is 35%. In addition, the deferral during the ownership period has material benefits because of the time value of money. All investors would much rather pay a 20% – 25% tax rate when an asset is sold as opposed to paying a 35% tax rate today.When Should You Obtain A Cost Segregation StudyThe best time to obtain a cost segregation study is when you build or purchase a property. Documentation is most readily available for performing a study and a contemporaneous property inspection can be performed to best document results. However, there are options to perform a cost segregation study for property which has been developed or purchased previously.Elements of Preparing a Cost Segregation StudyThe appraiser starts by gathering documents from the property owner and performing a site visit. As necessary, depending on the special-use property found during the site visit, the appraiser would confer with tax counsel and review relevant tax court decisions. For newly constructed properties, most of the costs detail can be obtained from construction draws or invoices from contractors. For existing properties, the appraiser performs a quantity take-off for 5-year, 7-year, and 15-year property and estimates replacement cost using recognized sources. The appraiser then values land, 5-year, 7- year, 15-year, 27.5-year and 39-year property based upon inspection, analysis and IRS regulations and court rulings.Does this only apply to large owners?Both large and small owners of income property or owner-occupied commercial property can benefit from a cost segregation study. Commercial properties with a cost basis of at least $200,000 will likely see a material benefit in excess of the cost from a cost segregation study. In fact, owners of single-family rental homes can probably achieve worthwhile benefits by obtaining a cost segregation study.Qualifications to Consider when ordering a Cost Segregation ReportThe ability to value land and real property are critical elements when engaging a tax reduction expert to perform a cost segregation study. In addition, it is essential they have a detailed understanding of rules for classifying 5-year, 7-year, 15-year, 27.5-year and 39-year property. The ability to justifiably increase short-life depreciation materially increases the benefits of a cost segregation study. While most accounting professionals have a rudimentary understanding of the 5-year, 7-year and 15-year property classifications, few have a detailed understanding of this highly specialized niche. Be certain the report provider has scrutinized both the federal income tax code and the meaningful tax court cases to allow you to maximize your depreciation and minimize your federal income tax liability.

How to Use Art Therapy As a Means of Stress Relief

Art is therapeutic and is sometimes called expressive art or art psychology that is facilitated by the art therapist, in applying art media, the creative process, and the resulting artwork to explore their feelings, resolve emotional conflicts, further self-awareness, manage performance and obsession, increase social skills, improve reality orientation, decrease anxiety, and raise self-respect. A purpose in art therapy is to get better or reinstate a client’s functioning and his or her sense of personal well-being. Art therapy practice requires information of visual art, the creative process, as well as of human development, psychological, and design theories and methods. It is used as the focus and medium of communication. Almost any medium can be used for art therapy include painting, drawing / sketching, sculpting and clay modelling.Today art therapy is widely practised in a wide variety of settings including hospitals, psychiatric and rehabilitation facilities, wellness centres, forensic institutions, schools, emergency centres, senior communities, private practice, and other clinical and community settings. During individual and/or group sessions art therapists elicit their clients’ inherent capacity for art making to boost their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Research supports the use of art therapy within a professional relationship for the therapeutic benefits gained through artistic self-expression and reflection for individuals who experience illness, trauma, and mental health troubles and those in search of personal development.A helpful treatment for people experiencing developmental, medical, educational, and social or psychological impairment where the individual has also survived trauma resulting from combat, abuse, and natural disaster; persons with adverse physical health conditions such as cancer, traumatic brain injury, and other health disability; and persons with autism, dementia, depression, and other disorders. Art therapy helps people resolve conflicts, develop interpersonal skills, manage challenging behaviours, decrease depressing stress, and achieve personal insight as it also facilitates people with their social skills.The benefits of art therapy in these types of conditions can help with people who are reserved or shy, or who, for some reason or another, have a hard time functioning within social situations. On the whole, the benefits of art therapy can be quite wide. It can improve lives by helping people improve their mental, emotional, and even physical states therefore increases the quality of life for many people, and it is worth considering if it can aid you in some way or another to enjoy the life-affirming pleasures of art making.The many benefits that can be experienced by the use of this healing modality are:• Allowing unspoken words to be expressed
• Encourages to build trust in a safe environment and be understood
• Help increase their self-esteem and self-respect
• Assists in gaining a new, more objective perspective on their challenges
• Allows you to start experiment with change that can later be applied
• Provides a secure outlet for feelings such as fear, guilt, ache, rage and anger
• Encourages clients to make constructive choices and to gain hope for the future
• Tap into internal power and use existing strengths to build more skills which can facilitate them manage complex emotions and circumstances in other areas of lifeArt therapy can help children and teens to process:• Experiences of sorrow, loss or separation
• Trauma and developmental stress
• Life transitions
• Injury/ accidents
• Birth of a sibling
• Parental separation/ divorce
• Hyperactivity
• Disabilities physical, learning or invisible
• Emotional issues (fear, anxiety, depression, self-esteem, anger etc.
• Behavioural issues (aggression, withdrawal, impassivity, tantrums etc.It could simply be the act of executing artistic expression on your own or with others, or possibly it’s in search of professional help with a qualified art therapist. Either way, the benefits of art therapy make it worth exploring as a mechanism for healing.