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Dissecting the Block or Blocks to Getting my Centre Up and Running

lego pieces as a symbol of blocks
From stumbling blocks to building blocks

Over the past few days I have had the opportunity to visit a few facilities here in Israel. These facilities are offered for different needs and age groups. The experience reminded me, once again of the idea I have for a centre. It is about 30 years now since I first thought of the particular centre that became my dream and goal. What has kept me from opening the full centre? This post will outline 3 stumbling blocks with a view to transforming them into building blocks.

It all comes down to funding. One can easily ask how it can be that some can have an idea, open their centre and the rest is history while others can have an idea that is illusive. One can work on a dream for years and years and still find that 30 years down the line it’s not fully in reality.

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How An Effective Marketing Strategy that Includes Case Stories Can Save You Time

illustrating the importance of time and saving time

You have a company or small business and want to increase your customers or sales of products. What can you do to improve your marketing strategy for 2018 and why would you want to?

The Need:

If you’re a mom or wanting to become a mom and start your own family, let’s face it you will have bills to pay. Running a successful home has many demands on both your time, your energy resources or health and your finances. If you are a working mom, or a working woman with a goal to become a mom, then you will appreciate that you do not want to deplete your energy on your work. You and your family need for you to have good energy available for your time with your family. After all, most women do not have a goal to be 100% involved in work and allow their family time to disappear without the ability to spend any time with your family. Imagine for a moment what this would be like.

Precious moments turn into hours which became days. The days become weeks that become months and years. During the passage of time, you are very busy and focused on bringing in clients and so you arrange a relative or baby sitter to take care of your family. Or you are so busy chasing after earning that you miss out on either getting married or building a family or both. Before you know it, you are a mature woman and have not enjoyed those precious moments that create meaningful memories. Don’t allow your time to disappear as you work on building your career or business.

What will assist you? The best answer is a sound marketing strategy. Whether we like it or not, marketing is key! It is the difference between you sharing your talents, services and products with the world and earning what you need to be able to live a fulfilling life and missing out on those meaningful moments. It is the difference between having the right kind of clients who will pay what you deserve and enable you to live your best life and your sitting wondering when and how your life will ever improve.

Whether we like it or not, we actually are constantly putting a message out. An effective marketing strategy helps you to make sure that the message you put out is the right one to the right people at the right time.

What will the marketing strategy include?

Some aspects of marketing has changed over time with the development of the internet and digital marketing. Although paid adverts, cold calling etc still has a place, other methods of marketing have become important too. One of the methods that helps to improve your chances of success, is sharing successful case stories. In one article I read that “fifty-six percent of enterprise-level purchasers and 23 percent of small business owners said case studies influenced a technology purchase of theirs in the past six months”. [1]

A closer look at case stories:

Let us take a look at why case stories are important and effective:

  1. Case stories offer a live example. They share information and show or outline what your company offers. This in turn helps with branding.
  2. Case stories provide the opportunity to open the door for communication. That means that they become a talking point with potential clients, the press etc
  3. Case stories help you to get known and be remembered. Let’s take a look at how this works – of the adverts I remember best throughout the years, those that told a story stuck in my mind most. Having good music helped too. When it comes to the written word, making sure that the content flows smoothly, rhythmically and has a good format provides the ingredients that the music would. If you are creative, a good case story can be turned into a short video clip and help to bring the important message to life in a tangible way.

If you are preparing your marketing strategy for 2018, make sure to allocate a budget and attention to offering successful case stories for your potential clients to discover the best of what you are and what you offer.

Some help with writing those successful case stories

If you are looking for assistance to craft these case stories, I can help. For those mothers out there who are occupational therapists, or who manufacture and provide equipment used in occupational therapy, I offer a service that draws on my years of work experience as an occupational therapist. This clinical experience provides the insight to ensure that the content is written in a manner that best meets the needs of your clients.

If marketing is a task you are currently working on, do be in touch. I’d love to hear your needs and to help you by writing those case studies to tell the story that best represents your service, product and branding.

[1] https://zapier.com/blog/effective-case-study/

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Meeting the Needs of Those Interested in Occupational Therapy

Clarifying Facts with Problem, Anaysis and SolutionA few days ago, I had the opportunity to talk to someone who was interested in having me come to give a talk to a group he attended. To begin with it sounded wonderful that there was a group interested in hearing about occupational therapy and then a statement caused a problem. I would like to share about this comment in order to clarify exactly what is meant by “meeting the needs of those interested in learning about occupational therapy”.

The Request Made:

The person made a request that I make the group feel good by letting them know that occupational therapy began in Israel. In his opinion, Israel was the forerunner to OT. He was very insistent that the talk has to make the group feel proud about being Israelis.

My Response:

I would like to respond to this request on three levels. This will include what is meant by meeting the needs of those interested in learning about occupational therapy, a little about the time frame of when occupational therapy became recognized as a profession and something about the philosophy behind occupational therapy. Let us begin with the second idea first, then we will go to the third and we will end with the first idea, which was what he was most concerned about.

  1. The time frame of Occupational Therapy being recognized as a profession:The history of occupational therapy is fascinating and we will touch on a few ideas shortly. However, if we look at just a few facts in terms of time frame, an important detail will emerge. Occupational therapy became formally recognized as a profession in 1917 in the United States of America or the USA. This was during the time of WWI. The state of Israel as it is known on a secular level came into being post WWII. That means that for the secular Jew living in Israel who has a strong Zionistic attitude and likes to believe that everything began in Israel, just based on time frame, the request can not be. The correct fact is that the first course in occupational therapy was set up in Israel in 1964.
  2. A little background to the philosophy of occupational therapy:If we look at the philosophy of occupational therapy, it is true to say that the beginnings of the ideas of occupational therapy can be traced back to the Bible. However, if we are to find a correlation between occupational therapy and the Bible, we will have to look at the Torah, which means to consider Israel not as a secular state but in terms of the history of the world as described in the Bible, meaning in the Torah. This means the focus of the request will differ. Instead of wanting to find origins in the country that the secular Jew is proud of, we have to acknowledge that the Land of Israel has an important connection to the Jewish people as being the leaders in how to fulfill our role as human beings in this world according to the will of the creator of the world, the One who gave Israel to the Jewish people. That means that the focus of the land of Israel and the origin of occupational therapy both have to differ. In order to do so, we can no longer have a talk from a secular perspective but are forced to bring in a major factor which is G-d, the Creator of the Universe and all that is.
    The truth is that occupational therapy acknowledges the importance of looking at the spiritual dimension as part of ensuring health and well being. We see this in a few models one of them being the Canadian Model of Occupational Therapy. The topic of occupational therapy and spirituality we will leave for now and pick up in another post, and yes, in a book that is in process.
  3. Finally, what does meeting the needs of someone interested in learning about occupational therapy mean?
    When I mention that I am happy to listen to the needs of a group in formulating the talk to be offered about occupational therapy, I do not mean to alter truth or facts. Clearly, by looking at the basic time line of the start of occupational therapy as a profession, the state of Israel were not the forerunners, the Americans were. I do not alter fact in my talks. There is enough that is wonderful and exciting that I do not need to enter into fantasy.
    What I am happy to listen to is e.g. what is the age group I will be listening to. If the age group is a group of high school students then the talk will cater to ideas of OT as a career. If their need is to hear how OT can help them as teenagers working towards being successful in their transition to young adults then that is a realistic need and goal that can and will be addressed. Similarly, if the group consists of new mothers who are all young adults, then their needs would relate more to their role of mother in the phase of the life cycle of a young adult as opposed to an older woman who is finally blessed with children. As we can see, their needs are specific and realistic. Their needs also fit into what an OT can address and answer to.
    For those who have the need to explore fantasy, yes we can do an exercise of creative thinking and show how OT can help them to expand their thinking through accessing and maximizing their imagination. However, I would like to draw a distinction here, although there is benefit to working with the imagination, I can not and will not alter the history of occupational therapy to suit the imagination or fantasy of someone who will only invite me to speak if I meet a false need. To a group wanting information that differs from fact, my answer is find another speaker. To a group who is interested in learning about the real profession of occupational therapy, yes I am happy to give a talk. I offer talks in person or online. If you would like to book a talk, please contact me via my contact page.

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Learning About the Landing Page Feature on MailChimp

Landing Page

If you are working from home, chances are you will be building a following using an email newsletter. In order to develop your community you will need a landing page.

There are many options of platforms to build your email newsletter. Which one you will use depends on many factors. A few factors include:

  •  whether you are looking for a free option or paid
  • number of subscribers.

Improvements to MailChimp’s Features

If you use MailChimp, you will notice that there have been some changes and improvements in the last number of months. One of these developments is the fact that MailChimp now offers the opportunity to build your own landing page.

Since I need to build a landing page I’ve been researching how and where to do so. I tried developing a landing page myself on MailChimp but came up with a few questions. No, it’s not so difficult, my question was partly due to the type of gift I wish to offer.

Where to Learn How to set up the Landing Page Feature on MailChimp

Off I went to YouTube to find a solution. If you are searching YouTube, make sure that the video is current. I found some options of how to use MailChimp that were outdated and then I came across this one. Larry Snow does a great job of walking you through the process of setting up your own landing page with the new landing page feature on MailChimp.

I hope you enjoy the video. One detail I really value is that Larry answers questions if you comment under the video. He even takes a look at what you are working on. I value that.

Where are you at in your journey to work from home? Do you offer a service from your home, do you work online or a combination. Please let me know in the comments below this post. It helps me to know what kind of content, videos and resources will be of benefit to you.

Have a great weekend.

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A Service for Occupational Therapists that Gives you Time!

Time to Rest
As OTs we learn about the importance of a balanced lifestyle.  We learn about the importance of taking time for leisure time pursuits and taking time to rest. So often though, the demands to keep up with trends in our profession, managing a blog (if you have one), writing endless treatment notes impacts on the availability of our own time. In addition, we are expected to attend continuing education courses or workshops, meetings and more. Being an OT is full time work. So what happens to time for you? What happens to YOUR time for rest?

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Learning About Ghostwriting

Learning about Ghostwriting

Occupational therapy has a role to play in writing in many areas and on different levels. It could be assisting children to write, it could be assisting children or adults to type and improve their keyboard skills. It could be exploring the area of writing for leisure or for work. This post addresses some learning I am doing in the area of ghostwriting, which obviously relates to work. Ghostwriting has the potential to be a very good income stream, however it takes a lot to learn how to master this area of writing.

Yesterday I read an article by a newbie ghostwriter who shared some tips he had learned from his first ghostwriting job. He had 5 tips to share and the article did offer some valuable information but I got stuck fairly early on. You see, this ghostwriter mentioned working on a project of 25 000 words for a novella. So far it sounds good but the starting price mentioned in the article upset me. He mentioned that some ghostwriters start out at $0.01 per word. This is slave labour.

If you are looking to have a stable income, to cover your bills and have some spare to enable you to live. If you are looking to prepare for your retirement effectively, then don’t consider a job that will give you only $250 for hours upon hours of work.

To give an idea, I began writing a novel as part of a challenge to write a novel during the month of November. I don’t have the time available to concentrate on just writing, certainly when the pay is just further down the line, so I set myself a goal to write for half an hour daily. Thankfully, I have kept up my goal. November has been and gone and I am still working on my novel. It is currently at about 31 000 plus words. Yes, I do agree that I exceeded 25 000 words quite a while ago. But the point is that writing a novella takes many hours of writing. When the writing is complete one has to proof read the work a few times and edit. Editing can take many hours and days and even weeks or months. How long it takes obviously depends on your speed, time available to focus on editing and your familiarity with the topic. A good command of the language you are writing in and editing helps a lot too.

If research is required at any stage of the writing process then more time, work and effort will go into ensuring a polished finished product. The point is that writing a novella is work. It requires skill and time and these are not commodities to be brushed off with a token tease.

If you are considering getting into ghostwriting, do your research, be honest with all the steps in the process and cost your rates accordingly so that you can progress and live a productive life.

If you are the one looking to hire a ghostwriter, be honest with the work involved and recognize that their work will be of benefit to you for years to come. So pay your ghostwriter honestly. If you do not have a budget to outsource for someone else to write your novel / novella or other written material, schedule in some time for you to write the material yourself. Rather take a little extra time to get the book or product out honestly than take advantage of someone who needs to earn to cover bills. Or save up until you can pay your ghostwriter appropriately, so that the person doing the hard work for you can live. Really live. This means being able to pay all their bills with ease. After all, having a working computer, lights, electricity and telephone line, internet, somewhere to put the computer, a chair to sit on etc are all necessary to enable the ghostwriter to do their job. All these items require money to obtain and maintain them.

In addition, being able to cover one’s bills and to pay for the necessary food for a healthy diet and time for regular exercise are all important to enable your ghostwriter to concentrate on the work you assign to them. So respect your ghostwriter and pay them accordingly.

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Reflecting on a Satisfying Day

Collage for a vision boardThere are some days that reflecting on the day’s events brings quite a bit of satisfaction. After days of planning, quite some promoting the day of our Vision Board Workshop arrives. Any occupational therapy session usually requires planning and preparation and today was no different.

Getting Ready for the Workshop

Arranging the room to be suitable for a group was first on the agenda. Making sure the room was swept and clean was a part of that. Next came gathering the various materials and arranging them as necessary. Always good to have water available when doing any workshop of this nature.

As I looked at the table I nearly forgot one of the most important details, the boards upon which we would make our collages that would form our vision boards. Grateful to have checked all the materials prior to anyone arriving, I hurriedly gathered the boards and placed them on the table too.

Summary of our Vision Board Workshop

We had a wonderful group of ladies for today’s session. First step was to consider our goals for 2018. With a clean sheet of paper each, we busily brainstormed our needs for the coming year. Some of us needed to do a little free association and then we gathered the words and concepts to formulate specific goals. Each woman wrote their own goal and then shared them with the group.

With our goals in mind to focus our vision boards, we began looking at the pre-cut images and paging through the magazines that I had available. It was a very fun and peaceful workshop and the time slipped away without our knowing it.

Three hours provided the perfect amount of time for most of the ladies to gather the words and images that represented their goal and arrange them as they decided most represented their goal(s) for the coming year. With our completed vision boards in our hands, we took it in turns to consider one action for the coming week that would become the first step towards making this goal become a reality.

Have you set your goals for 2018? Do you need some assistance in doing so? If you have set your goals and need help to work towards achieving them, that becomes part of the personal development sessions and groups that I offer. If either of these are of interest to you, do be in touch to schedule an appointment. I work with women in Jerusalem.

I look forward to hearing from you

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Working on My Vision of Developing a Centre

Light bulb for my Vision

We all have a purpose in this world. What’s my purpose? Well I am still figuring it out but I have a vision of developing a centre. I have mentioned in a few posts about the centre that has been my dream for years now. It was a vision that came to me as a second year student. I’ve tried working on making it happen. I’ve tried all kinds of angles. More recently I decided to begin to blog about it. While I figure out my purpose, I decided it best to work on this centre a lot more actively.

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Introducing Our Upcoming Vision Board Workshop

Vision Board

Have you ever heard of vision boards? Have you tried making one or considered making one? We are gearing up to a fun, interactive workshop where we will be making Vision Boards / Prayer Boards.

What is the Purpose of a Vision Board? – Vision Boards are wonderful for:

– Clarifying what you want in order to set goals
– Adding detail to your goals to help you to know what you are working towards
– Giving you a visual reminder of your goals and direction
– Helping you to focus on whatever your goals and dreams are

Do have any goals that you are currently working on?

Did you set goals for the year at the time of Rosh HaShanah? If you would like to revise your goals for 2018 or help to set your goals, this workshop will help. Come and join us for a Vision Board workshop.

When?
It will be taking place in Jerusalem on Thursday 21 December from 1:00 pm – 4: 00 pm

No matter what your goal is, whether it is large or small, a vision board is a wonderful way to help you to achieve your goal. Join us and find out how to turn this vision board into a prayer board to add a spiritual dimension to your journey.

If you would like a little insight as to what will be happening in the workshop, do take a look at this short video.

Vision Board Workshops are fun, interactive and a practical way to actively bring your goals and dreams into reality.  Be in touch if you are able to join us.

For those who would like to continue working on achieving their goals, this workshop will be the introduction to a series of personal development workshops. If you prefer working individually, I offer one-on-one intervention too.

For our readers who are not in Jerusalem but would like to learn about  vision boards, be in touch or sign up to my newsletter. I am in the process of preparing a document that offers more information. I’d be happy to let you know when it is available as one of our printables.

Hope to see you there!

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Chanukah Sale of our Art, Creative Gifts and Books

Table display of Shoshanah's Art

For years I wanted to make a range of creative items together with my Mom that we could sell. I love her artistic, unique embroideries. I love the toys she comes up with. There is so much I thought we could do together. Now that she is retired and has moved near me, we are able to do just that. Come and join us at our Chanukah Sale where you will find many of our creative gifts and products.

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