Balance In Direct Sales: Take Time To Watch The Horses

As my direct sales business has grown over the past couple of years, I’ve had seasons where my life has been completely out of balance… it’s then when I have to pull back and reflect and get some perspective on life… including my home business.

A while ago, my daughters and I were out running errands… the usual mega-store run for everything you’ve ever needed or not in bulk, off to deliver an order to a friend and then back home again. We live in a small town and anytime we want to go ANYWHERE outside of our lovely town we have to drive through a beautiful community of horse farms and grand estates.

One horse farm along our usual route is magnificent…rolling hills, lush green grass, beautiful white fence. Each spring the mares and babies are out on the pasture by the road where we drive. I have to be careful when we pass by because we’re all ooooing and aaaahing – people in the cars behind me get mad because I slow down, people in front of me better not slow down because I’m not watching the road and I might rear end them… something about a colt running along side it’s mamma… breathtaking.

What does this have to do with doing a direct sales business? Not much really… except to say that there IS more to life than the business And sometimes you need to stop and watch the horses. It’s amazing – I can be driving along that country road and have my mind completely focused on what I need to do for my business… where I need to be, what I need to get, who I need to call… so much so sometimes that I don’t even hear the kids asking me a question as I’m driving. But when I get to the farm and I hear the kids say, “Oh oh oh.. mom look there’s a baby running”… immediately all the brain rush shuts off and I gaze and admire and remember there are other things to think about.

I am passionate about direct sales. But the reason I’m passionate is because of what I believe it can DO for the women (and men too) that are in the field. Unfortunately I hear of too many women (sorry guys, that’s the majority in our field) who spend too much time NOT taking time to watch the horses… those moments of quiet rest, to reflect on life rather than business.

I guess it’s all about balance. This is nothing new to you I know. So find your horse farm… and enjoy the moment… but remember to keep part of an eye on the car in front of you just in case!

Avoid Sticker Shock when Buying Ink Cartridges

Over the past year, I’ve had the dubious pleasure of buying two different printers: a black-and-white laser printer and a dual-purpose copier and color inkjet printer. My laser printer gets a good workout on a daily basis, while I usually reserve my color inkjet printer for photos.

Although both printers are well made and carry brand names (HP and Brother), they were incredibly inexpensive. In fact, one of the primary reasons I bought both was because of their bargain prices. Imagine my chagrin, then, when I had to replace the toner cartridges in my laser and the ink cartridges in my inkjet, and discovered that each cartridge cost about half of what I paid for the printer.

I quickly – and correctly – surmised that printer manufacturers sell printers at or below the cost of making them, and generate profits from the sale of original equipment manufacturer (OEM) ink cartridges. With dire warnings of possible damage to the printer or voiding the printer warranty, the manufacturers insist that consumers buy only OEM printer cartridges. I resented being gouged by their inflated prices, and so did some of my own research about OEM print cartridges and alternatives. Here’s what I discovered:

Option One: Compatible Ink Cartridges

Contrary to popular belief, compatible ink cartridges are not recycled. Rather, they are brand new, generic versions of OEM cartridges. They have all of the quality and reliability of OEM cartridges, but cost only a fraction of the price.

Option Two: Remanufactured Print Cartridges

As the name implies, remanufactured ink cartridges are, indeed, recycled. However, the old cartridges aren’t simply refilled. Rather, they are disassembled, inspected, cleaned, reassembled, filled with ink, and individually print tested to meet or surpass the specifications associated with OEM ink cartridges.

Cost Savings

I was astounded when I saw the price differences between OEM, compatible, and remanufactured ink cartridges. For example, one black and one colour ink cartridge for an HP DeskJet 920C might cost £50.45 for the OEM cartridges, but only £16.95 for remanufactured cartridges. A pack of four ink cartridges (black, cyan, magenta, and yellow) for the Brother DCP117C might cost £31.80 for OEM, but only £8.95 for the compatible version. Over the lifetime of a printer, those kinds of savings really add up!

Cartridge Life

Typically, remanufactured ink cartridges have a shorter “shelf life” than OEM or compatible cartridges. A remanufactured cartridge will be good for about six months, whereas a compatible cartridge is vacuum-sealed and will be viable for years.

Automated Forex Trading

Long gone is the time when only banks and private institutions could trade the Forex market. Now, individuals have access to trade their own money, and lots of it. The exchange of foreign currencies has since been open to private investors, central banks like Bank of America, and several countries. But now with the introduction of the Expert Advisor trading systems, the smaller trader can now automate their trades like the big companies do.

The systems allow the user to set their own parameters and trading guidelines. The program consists of software that has been develeoped for a specific type of trading style, not everyone trades the same. Some spot trade, some trade big, some hedge and so on and so forth. The developers of these types of software take into consideration any nuances of Forex trading as well as being aware that the market is trading 24 hours a day, even during weekends.

Without these types of systems in place, the trader would have to monitor the pair that is being trades on a constant basis along with monitoring opening and closing times which is almost impossible to keep up with. By using the Expert advisors a trader can setup trading signals to make life a bit easier such as a type of order, stop loss, trade entry, news tickers etc.

Some of the key benefits of using an automated trading system is that it gives the trader full control, but cuts out the emotional bond a trader has with his money…making the temptation to trade on a whim a lot less likely. This takes the guesswork out of trading if the trader implements the right trading signals for this trading style.

The EA is a mathematical algorythm and it performs solely on formulas, so if the EA doesnt perform like it should it can be changed, augmented and tweaked until the trader finds the recipe for success that they are looking for. Then, this process is repeated constantly to achieve a money making strategy.

Trading also involves the trends of the market, be it long-term or short-term. These trends play a big role in the amount of trades that a trader is involved in. The EA, if setup correctly, will take these trends in-stride and make the trades accordingly, minimizing the drawdown or losing trades. Using historical data, traders can analyze and test their trading theories and strategies, some EA’s have a built-in function to record such data.

Almost every expert advisor system being developed now is made using the MetaTrader 4 platform since it provides reliable historical data that you can download from their site or any other, multilanguage support, solid and user-friendly interface.