How to Coach your kids at home for less stressful life!

Ask yourself this question: do you manage your i-phone or does your i-phone manage you? Now replace the word i-phone with your kids and the answer becomes even more disturbing!

No doubt, as a dedicated loving parent you often feel a kind of helplessness or a loss of control, when it comes to the sensitive task of nurturing and developing your offspring. However competent you may be in the professional business world, raising children is a clear leveler and very little in life prepares you for it.

Whatever the scenario and however old your children are, there is way forward. With a just little mental preparation and open-mindedness, it’s possible to fulfill the role of a lifestyle coach and parenting mentor rolled into one for your children, by learning a few simple techniques, increasing your emotional discipline and keeping your ego in check.

It was a revelation for me to watch myself on video coaching for business and introspectively observing myself conducting lifestyle coaching in parallel. I observed how similar the two techniques were and thought to myself, what if I used the same principles on my son? Maybe it just might work? Well 2 years later, I finally understood that the path of least resistance is actually the opposite of what I was originally doing.

In essence, coaching your children features 5 simple steps as follows:

Once you have agreed on the topic for discussion and brief rules of engagement, before you rush in to offer your parenting advice, it’s critical to listen first. Remember that “hearing is just noise and listening is information”, so truly listen and refrain from going through the motions, even if it hurts emotionally a little at first! It will always serve you well to consider that ‘listen’ is an anagram of ‘silent’.

Agree with your son/daughter on an ideal vision that both of you are content with. Brainstorm and both input on the description of what it looks like. This may take a measure of creative negotiation within an open-minded framework, however the focus should always be on positive outcomes, rather than dwelling on any problem.
Status quo

Now working in collaboration with your son/daughter compare the vision of where you want to be, with the current status quo. Observe that you are both discontent with the prevailing situation; however, determine that together you can collaborate to meet your combined needs to achieve the ideal vision. Agree that some compromises either side may need to take place for a better overall outcome to reach the vision you share.

Action Plan
List 5 positive and concrete steps that each (parent and child/teen) of you will commit to. They must be tangible, realistic, measurable and constructive. Write the 5 steps down on a large piece of paper, Flip Chart/Wall and agree to review the progress made within a set time frame.

Meet up at a neutral location after the agreed time frame (period of time can vary depending upon the natural logic of the topic), to review the progress of the action plan, by evaluating the success or otherwise of each point. Accept that it’s not a perfect world, so if all points are not achieved, then reset the dials and try again. Also consider adding new action points to ensure a stronger success. Keep in mind that the focus should always be on achieving the vision or something close to it, as a positive outcome.

By following the above process with your son/daughter, you will effectively bond the relationship by working together to reach a shared goal. In turn, as a guiding parent you will effectively eliminate conflict from the equation, as the problem will become a kind of separate entity, that you and your son/daughter are trying to solve together from two different perspectives.

To conclude, I ask every parent reading this article to think back to your own childhood and ask yourself whether you responded better to a nagging parent or an inspirational coach/mentor?

Now adapt and apply the same principles at work too!

May the art of this coaching force be with you!

Learn how to coach at

Life is now, so embrace the spirit within your kids.

Grant Holmes

Coffee culture and the brand wars of Cyprus

This drug can turn a profit in a recession, chill the otherwise stressed island people and it's responsible for many hours of idle talk. Yes COFFEE is the drug that I am speaking of!

During the boom years of Cyprus all the major brand names and/or franchises such as Costa Coffee (UK), Starbucks (US), Flo Cafe (Greece), Gloria Jeans (Australia), Coffee Beanery (US), Segafredo (Italy), Illy (Italy), Caffe Nero (UK) and their many copies, actually convinced the population at large in Cyprus that a simple Coffee (however dressed) could or should cost as much as 5 euro. What's more astonishing, is that they got away with it for such a long time and Cypriots/Expats alike were literally hooked on a Coffee Budget of up to 10 euro per day!

They applied every trick in the book by confusing us with sizes, when small became > large, medium became > extra large (the unusual norm) and large turned into a well, soup bowl! Intense marketing, comfy sofas, wooden decking on the balcony, fancy umbrellas and fake claims of sustainability, all duped us into buying more Coffee than we really needed.

Then came the recession, which started to hit the peoples pocket in 2012 and then it exploded in 2013. Suddenly, even that overly sugary Frappuccino or luxury Frape was at risk of being cut from the dwindling expenses of the average Cypriot household.

The major franchises stuck with their unsustainable prices for as long as they could, to squeeze tevery last drop of money. Occasional special offers and discounts appeared on the market and the people kept drink Coffee to moan about the financial crisis.

Then enter the new wave of Coffee Houses, that understand all the people really wanted was a combination of a decent place to sit outside (perhaps to combine with smoking), quality coffee and a reasonable price, which is easy enough to deliver, as the mark ups are so huge!

All of a sudden here in Larnaca we saw even more trendy Cafe bars opening everywhere, from Ermou Square to Makarios Avenue and of course Finikoudes. Coffee Island (Greece) has already relatively recently opened 7 outlets in Larnaca alone (same as Limassol). In Nocosia they operate 15 outlets and it's easier to partner with them.

Coffee Island and to a lesser extent Lavazza have understood the pulse of the people by meeting the above mentioned criteria for a decent Coffee in a recession. Many other small individual Coffee businesses have also opened too and the market is going crazy at present (all be at lower prices) even in a recession, such is the love of the Coffee culture among all Cypriots.

Two Cypriots join International Programme

Two Cypriots have been selected to take part in a two-year art historical and archaeological programme being organised by the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) at the University of London.

Dr Michalis Olympios, of the University of Cyprus, and Anthi Andronikou, who is currently studying in Scotland at the University of St Andrews, will be taking part in the programme.

They will join a group of fourteen other participants, including leading academics from around the world in visiting research centres in Greece, Israel, Jordan and Turkey to examine the art historical and archaeological evidence for co-operation between different ethnic and religious groups in the Middle Ages.

Art of the Crusades: A Re-Evaliation is a research project led by Professor Scott Redord of SOAS that will examine at the mediaeval period in the eastern Mediterranean to look for the connections between Byzantine, Crusader, Muslim Arab, Muslim Turkish and Judaic culture in the period.

In a radical departure from traditional ways of looking at this period, those taking part in the programme will look for evidence of how different groups of people lived together and influenced each other.

The programme is funded by the Getty Foundation as part of its Communicating Art Histories Programme.

Source: in-cyprus

The dangers of EMF's and over-using Smartphones

The social and health impact on mobile phones today are many fold and it appears that we are nurturing a generation addicted to Smartphone usage, whereby the real consequences will not be fully known for another decade to come.

Ask yourself this crucial question: Do you control your Smartphone or does your Smartphone control you? If you hesitate, then the answer is the former. Just imagine for a moment, we now use our Smartphone with over a million Apps even at the dinner table, which is a real conversation and friendship killer. We use Smartphones to wake us up in the morning, control our finances, virtually manage our social life, support our business and store our memories through photos or videos.

The Mobile Industry has come a long way since the humble Ericsson or Nokia that was used primarily for phone calls. However, despite the convenience and ease of use, our health is at clear and constant risk:

Facts About Cell Phone Use
  • It is estimated that talking on a cell phone as little as 500 minutes a month can increase the probability of brain cancer by 140% to 300%.
  • Cell phone radiation has been shown to damage and break living DNA.
  • Cell phone radiation causes leakage of the blood-brain barrier allowing toxins to damage sensitive brain tissue.
  • Cell phones worn by men on a belt clip can reduce sperm count by 30%.
  • After using a cell phone for 6 years the risk of developing an acoustic neuroma (tumor of the auditory nerve) increases by 50%.
  • Cell phone radiation increases estrogen and adrenaline levels in the body disrupting hormonal balance.
  • A 2-minute cell phone call alters a child’s brain function for an hour.
  • Cordless phones have even higher cancer risks than cell phones.

Less Signal Bars Mean More Danger
Pay close attention to the digital signal bars on the display panel of your cell phone (usually on the top right hand corner). Fewer bars indicate a weaker signal. A weaker signal means the cell phone will actually generate more power to maintain the connection. In fact, for each bar lost due to poor signal strength the cell phone will increase its power by up to 1000% to maintain the connection. More power means greater exposure to the radiation for the caller.

Simple Solutions
First and foremost it’s important to understand that it’s impossible to completely shield yourself in a populated area of planet earth from EMF exposure and radiation. However, there are some simple things that you can do to minimize the risk as follows:
  1. Talk outdoors in an open space, which allows an easier connection from your cell phone to the nearest cell phone tower, using less power/radiation to stay connected.
  2. Avoid making cell phone calls from cars, buses, trains, subways or airplanes. These enclosures tend to concentrate the radiation within the enclosure.
  3. Use the speaker facility on your Mobile and avoid placing close to your ear.
  4. Turn your WiFi off and put your Mobiles on flight mode at night - you will sleep supremely better!
  5. Use cable in your office or at home and turn off the WiFi.
  6. Avoid living near a Cell Phone Tower.
  7. Install an old fashioned cord phone and use it instead of a cordless phone or a mobile.
  8. Take regular salt baths to ground yourself.
  9. Walk on the sand and swim in the sea often to further ground yourself.
  10. Make Sunday an EMF free day!

When all's said and done we may look at Smartphone users in the future like we do smokers today. It may be trendy for a while, but our health and social connection with loved ones and friends is ultimately more important.  
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