Advantages to Traditional Publishing

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When I first thought about writing a book, I thought the same way that so many other would be authors thought. I imagined getting huge advance and being given the royal treatment when I went into New York City to meet my publisher. I imagined a limousine picking me up at the airport and driving me to an amazing suite where I would stay a week while I hit the circuit of going from television station to radio stations, to other interviews, having my own makeup artist and hairstylist, going shopping in the Fashion District and even seeing a Broadway show while I was there.
After my visit, the publishing company would distribute my book and put it in the front of the store in every major book seller in the country. I would be given a number of copies of my books that I could share with my family and friends, and I would “live the dream”.
Nice dream. Reality was far different. I learned later that advances were seldom given to new authors (although I have met one).

Disadvantages to Traditional Publishing

The first thing that I learned was that when an author signs a contract with a traditional publisher, the contract always benefits the publisher at the expense of the author. The contracts are written in legalese so if the author doesn’t have a lawyer to look over the contract, the author might have to do things that they didn’t realize was not to their benefit. I heard of one author’s contract where she had to pay the expenses for attending book signings in distant cities. She was paid a set amount per book, but the number of books that she was able to sell was not enough to pay for her expenses. I had another friend had to buy copies of his own books so that he could sell them at live events. He made more money selling at the live events than anything that the publisher did for him. In addition, the publisher wouldn’t allow him to sell his books in digital format at all. Both had sold their rights to their publisher so they had no recourse. I have heard of other authors who had sold all their rights to publishers. The author has to make changes in manuscripts, might have to use a title and cover design of the publisher’s choosing. The author might not have any say at all.
I also learned was that the traditional publishing process takes about two years before you ever get your book on the shelves. Afterwards, if you were one of the lucky few who were able to get an advance, you won’t get paid until you sell enough books to pay your advance.

Self-Publishing

While I was learning all about traditional publishing, I started looking into self-publishing. The differences were enlightening. There was no promise of any advance. Before I was ever able to sell a book, I would have to put out money for editing, formatting, and cover design.
Of course, there are other problems with self-publishing. There’s a huge learning curve and expense to self-publishing that doesn’t exist with traditional publishing. I would have to take charge of marketing and book distribution. Getting into major bookstores would be difficult and advertising would be on my own dime as well.
I found however that self-publishing has its advantages. As a self-publisher, I own my own work. I have complete control over the content of my book, editing, formatting and cover design. I have complete control over the creative process. I can decide how I market my books, both on-line and off-line. I can handle my own distribution by working directly with independent book stores. I can determine whether I want to go on a book signing or attend a specific event. I can decide what public relations I want to be a part.
As a self-publisher, I can set my prices and can earn 70 percent or more of the cost of the books that I wrote and designed. As a self-publisher, I am a creative and an entrepreneur.

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To Do List FormulaI personally have been working on a book about how to change habits. Recently I read a book that I believe would be a great companion book to this book. The book is called The To Do List Formula, A Stress-Free Guide to Creating To-Do Lists That Work by Damon Zahariades. It is a how-to book that does exactly what it says it does.
When I first saw the title, I thought that it was one of those books that just goes through a system of making a to-do list and it was some sort of system that gives a complex system that I would never be able to do.
I was pleasantly surprised when I started reading and the book, instead of what I expected, this book explained the pros and cons of other systems and then showed a to-do system that incorporated the best of the other systems.
The To Do Formula explained how to incorporate a to-do list into an overall system that gets it done. Zahariades shows how to use a to-do list to accomplish lifelong goals. He also tells us how to use a calendar along with the to do list to make the best use of the time.
The to do list formula is simple and as the author says many times during the course of the book, it is easily adaptable to your personal needs. I highly recommend this book and I would give it five stars out of five. This is one book that I will go back to again and again. I plan to utilize many of the techniques recommended in this book including using the app todolist.com.

If you want to get more done every day, add this book to your reading list and make Zahariades recommendations your own.


smoothieBack in March, I was feeling achy all over. I think I must have had arthritis in every joint and I could barely walk up the stairs without losing my breath. I had so much pain in my ankles that I could hardly walk. I don’t do pills and exercise seemed out of the question as the healthful starting point for a healthier lifestyle. I knew that food was the better starting point for me.  I was eating all sorts of junk food, too many animal products and processed foods. I knew that a traditional diet plan was not the right move for me, so I decided to simply change some of my food choices and I knew that the easiest place to start was with breakfast, my first meal of the day.

I started by adding what I am now calling Triple K. Kale, Kelp and Krill taken every morning has improved my health exponentially. 

Kale

kaleThe first item K that I include in my breakfast is kale. Every morning I include kale in my morning smoothie. Now, don’t stick up your nose at it until you’ve tried it. This smoothie is delicious. I put kale in a blender and blend it until it is fully chopped, add a little soymilk (men should never use soymilk because of the phytoestrogens it contains so they would be better to use almond milk, coconut milk, or orange juice) a banana and some frozen fruit and blend it until smooth. Then I drink it and take my other nutritional supplements while drinking it.

Kale is super high in fiber. This helps create the bulk I need to fill me up and to keeps me full for a long time. With a combination of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, kale is a dieter’s dream food. This leafy vegetable is popular since ancient Greek and Roman times. It is low fat, no cholesterol but health benefiting antioxidant rich greens.

Nutrients in kale offer protection from vitamin-A deficiency, osteoporosis, iron-deficiency anemia, and believed to protect from cardiovascular diseases and colon and prostate cancers.

Kale is high in calcium. Per calorie, kale has more calcium than milk, which aids in preventing bone loss, preventing osteoporosis and maintaining a healthy metabolism. Kale is a great detox food. Kale is filled with fiber and sulfur, both great for detoxifying your body and keeping your liver healthy.

Kale, like other members of the cabbage family, contains health-promoting phytochemicals, sulforaphane, and indole-3-carbinol to protect against prostate and colon cancers.

Di-indolyl-methane (DIM), a metabolite of indole-3-carbinol is an effective immune modulator, antibacterial and antiviral agent through its action of potentiating “Interferon-Gamma” receptors.

Kale is also rich in ß-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. These flavonoids have potent antioxidant and anti-cancer activities. β -carotene converts to vitamin-A in the human body.

Zeaxanthin, an important dietary carotenoid, is selectively absorbed into the retinal macula lutea in the eyes where it thought to provide antioxidant and protective light-filtering functions. Thus, it helps prevent retinal detachment and offer protection against “age-related macular degeneration disease” (ARMD) in the older adults.

It is very rich in vitamin-A. Four ounces of fresh leaves carry 9,990 IU of this vitamin, providing 333% of RDA. Vitamin A is essential for maintaining healthy mucosa, skin and vision. Foods rich in this vitamin are known to offer protection against lung and oral cavity cancers. It is also high in vitamin-K. One hundred grams provides about 587% of RDA. Vitamin-K has a potential role in bone health through promoting bone formation and strengthening. Adequate vitamin-K levels in the diet help limiting neuronal damage and it has been used in the treatment of patients who have Alzheimer’s disease.

Four ounces of fresh kale contain 120 mg or 200% of daily recommended levels of vitamin-C. Scottish curly leaf variety has even more of this vitamin (130 mg/100g). Vitamin-C is a powerful antioxidant, which helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful oxygen-free radicals.

This leafy vegetable is notably good in many B-complex groups of vitamins such as niacin, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine), thiamin, and pantothenic acid, which are essential for substrate metabolism in the body.

It is also a rich source of minerals like copper, calcium, sodium, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure by countering effects of sodium. Manganese used by the body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. Iron required for cellular oxidation and red blood cell formation. Kale is an excellent source of vitamins A, C, K and B6, calcium, potassium, copper and manganese. More specifically, according to the DRV, it contains 684 percent of vitamin K, 206 percent of vitamin A and 134 percent of vitamin C. Its sulforaphane content protects against cancer, as does indole-3-carbinol, which also aids in DNA cell repair.

Kelp

When it comes to nutrition, kelp is kale’s ocean-loving cousin.

A four-ounce serving of kelp has approximately 43 calories. Kelp consists of 76 percent carbohydrates, 14 percent protein and 10 percent fat. Kelp contains, per weight, more fiber than even brown rice — 6.2 grams of fiber per four ounces of wet weight — without high levels of starchy carbohydrates. Kelp contains significant levels of tryptophan, threonine, isoleucine, methionine, cysteine and valine. Kelp also contains lower levels of leucine, lysine, phenylalanine, tyrosine and histidine.

Kelp, aka brown seaweed, contains high amounts of iodine, potassium, magnesium, calcium and iron, as well as vitamins, antioxidants, phytonutrients, amino acids, omega-3 fats and fiber, together relaying impressive health benefits that are hard to ignore.

Kelp possesses anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties that have provided health benefits to the humans for eons.

It contains vitamins B1, B12, B2, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium and iodine. Kelp improves thyroid functioning and helps improve energy levels, weight loss, liver function, brain function, constipation, digestion, functioning of pituitary gland and pancreas, improve symptoms of arthritis and memory loss.

Kelp also has an excellent nutrient density rating for vitamin K, a very good for folate and magnesium and a good rating for calcium, iron and tryptophan. One ounce of kelp gives us twelve calories (just one percent of our dietary need of energy).  Kelp is also relatively low in fat (0.2g per 1 ounce serving).

Like other plants, kelp absorbs a great deal of minerals from the sea water and sea soil in which it grows. Kelp contains more than twice as much sodium as potassium, 233 milligrams to 89 milligrams per 100-gram serving. Kelp also contains high levels of magnesium, iron, iodine and calcium. You can also obtain important trace minerals from kelp including phosphorus, zinc, copper, manganese and selenium.

As a green vegetable, kelp contains very high levels of vitamin K, important for blood clotting and bone health. Kelp also contains high levels of folate, or vitamin B9, which is involved in energy production. You can also obtain moderate levels of vitamin A, E, C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin and pantothenic acid.

Many foods contain iodine, but nowhere near the tremendous amount in kelp. A single tablespoon provides a whopping 500 percent of the DRV. Nothing else comes close — not scallops, nor cod, nor yogurt.

Iodine also helps regulate your thyroid gland to produce strong, healthy hair, skin and nails, as well as to form thyroid hormones, thyroxine and triiodothyronine.5 It’s also essential for proper formation of your skeletal framework and regulating your body’s energy and brain metabolism in a process regulated by your pituitary gland.

The myelination process in the central nervous systems of newborns is another key function of the thyroid hormone. Balanced iodine in the mother’s body is imperative in pregnancy and breastfeeding for optimal development of the baby’s brain.

However, it’s important to understand that balancing your iodine levels is crucial. Specialists usually recommend around 150 micrograms daily. Consuming too much could lead to either hypo- or hyperthyroidism.

As a food, kelp aficionados laud its flavor as the ultimate, seawater-laced brine that’s the essence of umami. Nori, one of the most popular seaweed species, is dried in sheets to make sushi rolls. Other varieties include dulce, arame, (also called sea oak), deep green wakame, kombu, and spirulina.

Kelp may help prevent breast, endometrial and ovarian cancers by decreasing levels of the sex hormone estradiol. A review showed it induced cell death of prostate, liver, oral, pancreatic and other cancers, inhibits Helicobacter pylori, which causes stomach ulcers, and targets inflammatory skin conditions.

Further, kelp contains alginic acid, which protects the plants from bacteria, but in your body can reduce radiation exposure and prevent heavy metals from being absorbed.

Alginic acid in the seaweed kombu is known for its positive effects on diabetes, as well as its ability to coagulate blood. It prevents cavities, promotes digestive health, protects against flu, aids digestion, protects vision and maintains heart health.

Sodium alginate derived from kelp reduced radioactive strontium absorption in the intestines by 50 to 80 percent allowing calcium to be absorbed through the intestinal wall while binding most of the strontium, which is excreted from the body.

The iron in kelp helps form healthy blood and prevent anemia and the antioxidants fight free radicals, altogether ensuring the growth of strong bones and optimal muscle function. This iron is accompanied by a measurable amount of vitamin C. Since vitamin C acts to increase the bioavailability of plant iron, this combination creates a synergistic effect.

Because I live in Missouri, kelp is not readily available, so rather than eating fresh kelp, I take kelp supplements in the form of tablets. I take a tablet of kelp every morning when I drink my kale/banana/soymilk/frozen fruit smoothie and another one in the evening with supper.

Krill

The final K in my triple K is krill oil. Krill oil comes from krill, a shrimp-like crustacean found in the ocean and proven to be the most effective, powerful way to add omega-3’s into my diet.

Krill oil is more powerful than fish oil because of a little-known antioxidant called “astaxanthin”. Astaxanthin is the strongest antioxidant in the carotenoid family, creating the beautiful shades of red found within shrimp, salmon and krill.

University studies show astaxanthin to be up to 500 times more effective than vitamin E, One time more effective than beta-carotene and four times more effective than lutein in various measures of antioxidant effectiveness.

This antioxidant has a remarkable way of defending cells against the effects of free radicals. It is one of the few antioxidants capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier and able to shuttle essential nutrients throughout your body.

Krill oil is safer than fish oil because fish oil has high levels of mercury and PCBs. Krill is not exposed to these toxins because it is harvested from the Antarctic Ocean, where these dangerous chemicals are virtually non-existent.

The omega-3 fatty acids in krill oil are structured so they are more easily absorbed and broken down by my body. Most fish oils are structured in triglyceride form, making them difficult for our bodies to break down and convert therefore they are less effective.

Incorporating the triple Ks of Kale, Kelp, and Krill is not difficult. I love the flavor of my morning smoothie so much that I have replaced ice cream with this morning drink and feel more than satisfied. (This is a big deal for me because I love ice cream.) I simply drink the shake and swallow a kelp tablet and take a krill capsule in the morning and I find that the superfood nutrition provides me with more than enough nutritional satisfaction that I feel full well up until lunch time. I can eat a salad for lunch and not be starved by suppertime. My body knows it is getting the nutrition that I need so I don’t feel deprived. I am getting all the nutrition I need for a healthy, active lifestyle.

help from kelp photoKelp is one of those lesser known superfoods. To learn more about Kelp, Check out Cygnet Brown’s book Help from Kelp available on Amazon Kindle https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01C0QNN1O

Here’s what a recent reader, Monika Werner said about Help from Kelp:

“I’ve heard about Kelp before, a friend of mine swears by Kelp tea, but I’ve never knew exactly what Kelp is and what it is good for. Cygnet Brown does an outstanding job bringing all the information about Kelp together and how you can incorporate it into your daily diet. I put it into my morning smoothie and love it. I really enjoyed the information how Kelp is not just a nutritional powerhouse for us human beings, but it can be very beneficial for gardening and animals as well. Amazing information everybody should know about if you are interested in taking your healthy lifestyle up a notch.”


I would like to introduce you to my first Guest Blogger, Pam Young. I hope you enjoy this post as well as I have. Take it away Pam. . .

My indie project is “weird” because I broke a six hundred page memoir about an awakening experience into three separate stories and published it as a trilogy in just over a year. In blogging about it, I publicly explored my spiritual journey.

 

Writing and publishing the first three Burnout to Bliss books in such a limited time was exhausting. I also learned more about indie publishing and shared it on my blog, Skating Thru 2012. But the most important thing I learned was not about publishing. It was about why I had written the series.

 

Indie authors understand the “why” of writing books is as either “write to market” (to make money) or as a “passion piece” (something you want or need to do). Non-fiction authors are also advised to determine their “why” before they even start writing because it shapes your story.

 

In the beginning, mine was “passion piece” because I viewed it as a legacy for my nieces, who were now the same age I was when I had that remarkable two-year experience almost thirty years ago. It began with pervasive discomfort in my once-loved job as a professor and disappointment with my inability to find someone who could “see me.” My nieces could be having a similar experience!

 

But the “why” changed while writing the books.

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When I completed BURNOUT – How a Desert Lizard Restored My Faith, I believed it worth sharing because it highlighted the madness (psychotic episodes) of professional burnout. I knew I wasn’t the only one who had felt such despair.  And sharing personal experience, at least according to National Association of Memoir Writers, is why people write memoirs — to shed light on the way. I also hoped to instill respect for other spiritual paths because my return to faith happened in a strange way while camping with Mexican Indian Shamans.

 

 

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Cycling in the City – How I Got My Confidence Back told a different story. As the first break-away from the job, it relates discovering the depth of damage from burnout and what I did to get better. I know I’m not alone in the experience of realizing that life no longer works. I saw sharing my story as a helping others. Part Two of that book is a model I created for making severe changes, like breaking addictions. But that was not the only reason for writing it. Having just learned about Amazon “Shorts,” I wanted to experience writing one. This story seemed perfect for the exercise.

 

 

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My understanding of “why am I writing this?” changed as I wrote 2 years, 1 Paycheck, 0 Plans – a story of healing because I realized the healing was continuing as I wrote. And it was not about forgiving the jealous friend who launched my journey. That was completed in my journals (1985-89). Instead, it was about Mom and the underlying reason for my being intensely depressed so long ago. I was making revisions when all the hidden, unexpressed rage suddenly had a voice. I felt as if Mom was there with me, encouraging me in spirit to do whatever it took.

 

 

My “why” for writing the series was no longer just a “passion piece” for my nieces. It wasn’t even about helping others. Instead, I now believe it was about healing old wounds so I could let go, surrender, and move on with my life. Some part of me must have known this would happen because in Book 1 the Preface identified the title for the next book as Surrender.

 

Finally understanding the true “why” for writing that trilogy, I am convinced that I was guided to do this project, not for others, but for myself — to complete the healing of events and my weird relationship with Mom that happened so very long ago.

 

[And it’s not finished yet. Book 4, BLISS, will be a book of lessons learned for having more joy in life. If you want to be among the first to know when it’s published, please visit Burnout to Bliss and click the red link below.]

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Pam Young has been many things: inner city English teacher, professor, Holistic Health Practitioner, yoga and DansKinetics instructor, psychotherapist, masseuse, and self-empowerment workshop leader. Now she writes with the same intentions while living in the mountains with critters.

 

You can find her books on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and other venues.

 

You can follow her on Twitter, Facebook, or her blog:

 

Facebook       https://www.facebook.com/drpamyoung


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So, what is guest blogging? I’m glad you asked. Guest blogging is simply writing a blog that is posted on another blogger’s blog that offers another person’s view that the host blogger invites to the blog. According to experts, guest blogging is five times more effective for gaining audiences than posting new content on your own blog. 

Guest Blogging Builds Relationships

Since blogging adds content for the guest blogger, you’re helping that person get additional content. Guest blogging not only builds relationship with you and your host blogger, but it also builds relationship with your host blogger’s audience. In addition, you’re improving your relationship with Google search engines. Simply by including links from the host blogger’s site to your site and back, you’re building quality links to quality content, the search engines will love you and reward you with more opportunity for views.

 

If you want to increase your audience and potentially your book sales, guest blogging is a win for you and for the person to whom you share your post. Guest posting will allow more exposure for your writing and your blog. By sharing your thoughts with another author’s audience, these readers may their way to your blog and you’ll have other people liking and promoting your work. You have something to share that no one else can, so you might as well spread it around.

 

How to Get Started Guest Blogging

 

To gain more of an audience, search for blogs that write in your niche and then read that blog and get to know the author of that blog.  Your style may fit into what this blog’s audience wants and needs. As a guest blogger, you will want to be sure that you are a good fit, which is why reading their posts would be a good fit. Does this author think like you do? You wouldn’t want to waste your time on a blog in which your views are not aligned to some degree with those of the blog host.

 

In addition, be sure that you have a link from the host writer’s blog back to your own.

 

You Should Also Allow Guest Posts on Your Blog

 

You should allow guests on your blog for the same reason you should guest on other blogs. You’re paying it forward by allowing some people to have the spotlight. You’re helping to promote them and, in turn, they’re promoting you too. Readers from their blog are going to come over to your blog to check out what their favorite writer wrote.

 

This is a way that you can give your audience a slightly different viewpoint. This guest has a slightly different view of your niche than you do, so it gives your audience a change of pace and a different way of thinking as well as getting to know another author in your genre. 

Want to Guest Blog?

I am currently looking for other bloggers, especially bloggers who have recently published a book to either be a guest blogger or allow me to guest blog on their blog.

 

When I guest post for someone else, I will be linking the post from my blog, promote it several times on twitter, share it on Facebook, thank you for allowing me to blog on your site, and I will answer any comments on the post.

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If you guest post on my blog, I will ask you to do the same.

 

If you have a blog and would like more exposure to your blog, please contact me at cygnetbrown@gmail.com and let me know which type of blogging exchange you would prefer.

 


 

dumpster-with-boxes-and-plastic-crates-600x400Recently I have been looking at all the ways that I can decrease the ways that I contribute to the problems associated with the American lifestyle. Last week, I wrote about how we can escape from the plight of living pay check to paycheck. {Here’s the Link to the Article}This week’s blog is about decreasing our garbage output. Every week, I noticed how the dumpster outside our housing project is packed full to overflowing every week with stuff that people are throwing out. Though I cannot change the habits of others, I have decided that I was going to do whatever I could to decrease what I throw out.

Reduce

The first thing that I have learned is that I need to first reduce the consumables that I bring into my own home. There are numerous ways that I can do this. First, I can reduce the packaging that I bring in with the groceries. I can buy from bulk bins and make food from scratch.

In addition, I am learning that I don’t need keep a lot of stuff around to enjoy life. I have been getting rid of things that I don’t need so that I no longer must store them. Our consumer-based society is based on the collection of a lot of junk and I have decided that I am going to free myself from that American obsession. I am starting to get a better grasp of the concept of “less is more”.

I can also reduce the number of miles that my food travels. This summer I have started buying from local producers rather than from grocery stores that truck produce in from California. Our current Republican government is trying to get us to consume more fossil fuels and encourage us to believe that climate change is a hoax. Some people try to make us believe that the earth is flat too, but that doesn’t make it so. By buying local I not only am helping reduce carbon emissions, I personally like the idea of helping out the local economy.

In addition, reading and writing articles, emails, and books online, I am able to reduce the need for using paper. I am not the only one who sees the benefit of using the computer and the internet to save trees.

Reuse

Though there are some things that you never want to buy used like underwear, pillows, and mattresses, there are still others that are just as good used as they are new. They also cost a lot less and are often better quality than those things that are bought new. Children’s and women’s clothing are at the top of the list of things that can be bought used. Children grow out of their clothing quickly and women often prefer to change out their wardrobes so there is a lot of good clothing out there that can be found at yard sales and used clothing stores. In addition, flea markets are a useful place to get many items that can be repurposed in your own home.
Things that you no longer need can also be given away or resold. These items can be donated to charity as well. Reducing the need for storage space to store those things can also make a positive impact on both the environment and your wallet.

Recycle

There are those things that you cannot avoid bringing into your home or allow others to reuse. Recycling takes on many faces. Aluminum cans, plastic, tin cans, glass, cardboard, and paper can all be separated and taken to the local recycling center to made into other products. You can also recycle tires, electronics, and batteries and avoid sending them to the landfill.

One of my favorite ways to recycle is to recycle organic materials by composting. Composting is a way that I can recycle organic materials right on my own backyard. I have composted for years and it is easier than many people think. Almost every home could compost almost all their homes organic household garbage and use it as sustainable fertilizer to produce 50 percent of their daily vegetable intake. Recently I took composting one step further by setting up a vermiculture system where worms are break down the compost into castings that make an excellent nitrogen source for plants.

Just the Beginning

This is just the beginning. As I make these habits a part of my every day life, I feel as though I am more in control of my life by controlling what does and what does not come into my home and what does or does not go into my home.

 

 

 


moneyLast week I wrote about how slavery is still alive and is a sickness in the world today. (Here’s the Link) There is, however, a different kind that no one really calls slavery and it is much more prevalent today. This type of slavery is called living from paycheck to paycheck. The majority of Americans–8 out of 10–live paycheck to paycheck. There are basically two causes for this type of slavery and that is either not earning enough money or having so many financial obligations that individuals are unable to spend their income in the ways that they want.

Most families have no reserves for emergencies. Fortunately, my husband had the foresight to give us a cushion in case of emergencies. Back in October, my husband became ill and was out of work until January. Most families would have had it extremely rough, but we were fortunate that he had the forethought to have a full six months of his income in reserve for such an emergency.

The solution to the slavery of paycheck to paycheck is simple, but not always easy. You either must spend less or earn more or a combination of the two.

How to Save Money

The most important thing for anyone to do is to try to limit their discretionary spending habits. I am not going to give any specific details on how to do this. I will just say that the place to start is to write down everything that you spend your money on for a month. What spending habits can you change even if it is just temporarily? Write down your monthly bills. Look over your list. Are there any there that you can eliminate or reduce? Are there bills that you could pay using automatic payments that will reduce your rate? Are there payments that you could pay every quarter, every six months or even annually that would save you money as well? Plan your purchases. Don’t buy on credit unless absolutely necessary. The object is to spend less money than you bring in and avoid adding any credit card charges. A great goal that will help you getting out of the slavery of living from paycheck to paycheck is to pay off any credit card balances at the end of each month. Using credit cards isn’t the problem. Having credit is good when you need it.

Seven Ways to Earn More Money

Sometimes, just saving money isn’t enough. Sometimes what’s needed is more income. However, taking the step of getting more income without first getting control of your spending could lead to a being more of a slave than you were in when you made less money. So, once you get control of your bills and know what you have to spend, then you can determine how to make additional income.

Get a Raise

The first way to get additional income is to leverage the experience that you have in your current job. If you have worked hard and done a good job, then asking for a raise might be an option for you.

Get a New Higher Paying Job

Another thing that you could do is to get a promotion or go out and look for a higher paying job.

Get a Second Job

If getting a higher paying job is not possible or you like what you’re doing but it’s not paying the bills, getting a second job might be a better option. However, having two jobs is not always a sustainable option. Burning the candle at both ends can wear a body out, keep you from your family, and can turn you into even more of a slave to working for some else.

Sell Your Excess

Today, more than ever, there are ways to sell the things that you no longer use. Go through your closets and storage areas and garage and go through the stuff that you are just storing and haven’t used in a long time. If you have storage units that
Now find the best places to sell your stuff. One man’s junk is another man’s treasure. For most clothes and household items you could have a yard sale and clear things out. You might also consider having a stall in a flea market. You can also sell some things to specialty shops. You can also sell on local Facebook selling sites or on eBay. For bigger things there’s Craig’s list.

Clearing out storage lockers that you are paying rental on not only pays you for what you sell out of them, but it frees up that money to invest.

Invest Wisely

One of the best pieces of financial advice is to invest in yourself. Once you have sold your Excess stuff and closed storage lockers that you no longer need, take the money that you saved and invest it in some way that will pay you back.

Start a Business

The final way to increase your earnings is by starting a business. There is a science and art to starting a business and it is the best way to get free of the slavery of living paycheck to pay check. With starting a business, you will use many of the principles already stated when developing personal finances. The difference between business expenses and personal expenses has to do with the art of utilizing credit. Credit in business should be used for moving your business forward.
Money guru Dave Ramsey has observed that “80 percent of personal finance is behavior” not education. Therefore, make positive financial behavioral changes on a regular basis. Replace bad habits with good ones and set yourself free.

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