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April’s Fools Ideas

With April Fool’s Day around the corner, we’d all like to have some tricks in our pockets. Now, keep in mind that you should use only tasteful tricks that won’t harm anyone or hurt their feelings. The point here is to spread humor and fun on this day! Enjoy these ideas below.

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Do You Live in One of the Happiest Places in the World?

Where are the happiest places in the world to live? Norway has jumped to first place this year, with Denmark in second, Iceland in third and Switzerland in fourth. After this are Finland, Netherlands, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and Sweden. This comes according to the latest World Happiness Report that was released Monday by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network for the UN.

The US came in 14th, Germany was in 16th and the UK hit the 19th spot. Japan was in the 51st spot while China was in the 79th place.

What were the key measurements that made up the report? Real gross domestic product per capita was one measurement, another was generosity. Other measurements included a healthy life expectancy, freedom to make life choices, freedom from corruption and having someone to count on. As explained by Jeffrey Sachs, the report’s co-editor and director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University,

“The World Happiness Report continues to draw global attention around the need to create sound policy for what matters most to people — their well-being. As demonstrated by many countries, this report gives evidence that happiness is a result of creating strong social foundations. It’s time to build social trust and healthy lives, not guns or walls. Let’s hold our leaders to this fact.”

The report also focused on happiness in the workplace. As Jan-Emmanuel De Neve, co-author of the report chapter on happiness at work explained, “There is a clear distinction in happiness between white and blue collar jobs with managers or professionals evaluating the quality of their lives at a much higher level than those in manual labor jobs even controlling for any possible confounding factors.”

Interestingly, the report found that the single biggest cause of misery in rich countries was mental illness.

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Enjoying the Work/Life Balance

We can all learn something from Peter Muller and the recent decisions that he’s made. As one of Wall Street’s best quant traders, Peter Muller should be working hard. After working incredibly hard for years, Muller decided in 1999 that he needed a break and he went on a sabbatical.

As he told Business Insider, “I became enormously successful, but I wasn’t as happy or fulfilled.” He travelled the world and used his incredible musical talent as a pianist.

When he returned, he managed to find that work/life balance that is elusive to so many. He told Morgan Stanley that he needed room in his life for music as well as business. As he said,

“I took a big step back. And I figured, I’m going to pursue music… I recorded a couple of albums, and I became executive chairman of the group that I built. And I realized that I needed both [music and work] – they both feed and influence the other.”

He’s been performing with his band at least once a month for the last nine years. And while he has a “crazy, busy life” he manages to perform at least once a month and to give the money to charity.

Here is a sample of his work:

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3 Ways to Have a Successful Day

More than we could probably ever read in a lifetime has been written about how to be successful and what makes for success. This short list from Prevention.com, however, is unique and interesting for a few reasons. It’s quite short and offers concrete activities at a focused time. They found that successful and wealthy people do three main things when they get up in the morning, before even having breakfast.

Maybe they will make a difference for you, too.

The things are:

* Make that to-do list: Yes, before they even have their coffee, they make their to-do list and set their goals for the day. They detail tasks that need to get done and deadlines that need to be met – and they tick them off throughout the day.

* Turn on the music: This is interesting. They listen to uplifting playlists and enjoy this energy for their morning commute or at home before they head to the office.

* Get the mantra right: They read inspirational quotes and mantras from others to light that fire that they need for the day.
None of these ideas take very long and they don’t require too much brainpower. Try it. You just might like it.

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Creative Ways to Say I Love You on Valentine’s Day

It’s not always easy to come up with something creative to do for that loved one on Valentine’s Day. Here are some great ideas…many of which won’t break the bank! Have a great day with your loved one and be creative.

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Ode to the Inventor of Pac-Man

For those of you who love Pac-Man, today is a sad day. And that’s because Masaya Nakamura, the founder of Namco, has died. Namco is the Japanese company started in 1955 that that was responsible for Pac-Man.

Pac-Man was designed by the video game engineer Toru Iwatani and first came to the market in 1980. It was named, by Guinness World Records, as the world’s most successful coin-operated video game.  The company has actually estimated that Pac-Man has been played more than 10 billion times.

The spin-offs of Pac-Man have been never-ending. Pac-Man has been adapted for cell phones and Nintendo, for Xbox and PlayStation, for animated films, for TV series and for loads of merchandise.

And where did Pac-Mac’s classic design start? According to Bandai Namco, it was inspired by none other than pizza. The name comes from the Japanese phrase that describes the Pac-Man eating the dots. It’s called “paku paku” and from that we got Pac-Man.

 

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