The 10 Habits of Highly Organized People

You know those folks who seem to have it all together? They’re not perfectionists (far from it). Instead, experts say, they follow a few simple rules.
1. Walk away from bargains
Just because you can buy a cashmere sweater for $20 or three bottles of ketchup for the price of one doesn’t mean you should. “Ask, ‘Do I have something similar?’ and ‘Where am I going to store it?’ before making a purchase,” advises New York City professional organizer Julie Morgenstern, author of Shed Your Stuff, Change Your Life.

2. Make peace with imperfection
Efficient people give “A-level effort” to the most important projects (say, work assignments or a kitchen redesign), and for the rest they do just enough to get the job done, says Renae Reinardy, PsyD, a psychologist who specializes in hoarding disorders. Maybe you give yourself permission to bring store-bought cookies to a school bake sale or donate a bag of stuff—unsorted!—to Goodwill. “Trying to do every task perfectly is the easiest way to get bogged down,” says Reinardy.

3. Never label anything “miscellaneous”
You put a bunch of things into a file or box and write this catchall across the front. “But within a week you’ve forgotten what’s in there,” says Morgenstern. Instead, sort items into specific groups—”electric bills,” “lightbulbs,” and so on.

4. Schedule regular decluttering sessions
Rather than wait until an industrious mood strikes (we all know where that leads), have a decluttering routine in place—whether it’s spending 15 minutes sorting mail after work or tackling a new project every Sunday afternoon.

5. Stick with what works
“I have clients who will try every line of makeup, every cell phone—it’s exhausting,” says Dorothy Breininger, president of the Delphi Center for Organization. Don’t waste time (and money) obsessively seeking out the best thing.
6. Create a dump zone
Find a space to corral all the stuff that you don’t have time to put away the moment you step in the door, says Breininger. Once you’re ready to get organized, you won’t have to hunt all over the house for the dry cleaning or your child’s field trip permission slip.

7. Ask for help
“The organized person is willing to expose herself to short-term embarrassment and call for backup,” says Breininger. Which is to say, that elaborate four-course dinner you planned? Change it to a potluck.

8. Separate emotions from possessions
It’s healthy to be attached to certain items—a vase you picked up in Paris, your grandmother’s pearls. But holey concert tees or cheap, scuffed earrings your husband gave you years ago? Just let them go.

9. Foresee (and avoid) problems
You wouldn’t leave the house on a gray day without an umbrella, right? People who appear to sail through life unruffled apply this thinking to every scenario, says Breininger. Have a cabinet packed with leaning towers of Tupperware? Organized folks will take a few minutes to short-circuit an avalanche before it happens. (In other words, rearranging that cupboard now is easier than chasing after wayward lids as they scatter underneath the fridge.)

10. Know where to donate
It’s easier to part with belongings if they’re going to a good home. Identify a neighbor’s son who fits into your child’s outgrown clothes, or choose a favorite charity. “It will save you from searching for the perfect recipient every time you need to unload something,” says Morgenstern.

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Study fails to link saturated fat, heart disease

NEW YORK (Reuters Health)

The saturated fat found mainly in meat and dairy products has a bad reputation, but a new analysis of published studies finds no clear link between people’s intake of saturated fat and their risk of developing heart disease.

Health

Research has shown that saturated fat can raise blood levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol, and elevated LDL is a risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Because of this, experts generally advise people to limit their intake of fatty meat, butter and full-fat dairy.

The American Heart Association (AHA) suggests that adults get no more than 7 percent of their daily calories from the fat; for someone who eats 2,000 calories a day, that translates into fewer than 16 grams of saturated fat per day.

But in the new analysis, which combined the results of 21 previous studies, researchers found no clear evidence that higher saturated fat intakes led to higher risks of heart disease or stroke.

The findings, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, may sound like good news for steak lovers, but a past AHA president cautioned against “over interpreting” the results.

“No one is saying that some saturated fat is going to harm you…people should enjoy their food,” said Dr. Robert H. Eckel, a professor of medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Denver.

But, he pointed out, many studies have shown that dietary saturated fat can raise people’s cholesterol, and the new analysis is not going to change recommendations to keep saturated fat intake in check.

Perhaps more importantly, though, Eckel said that the thinking on diet and heart health is moving away from a focus on single nutrients and toward “dietary patterns.”

A number of studies have linked the so-called Western diet to greater heart disease risks; that diet pattern is defined as one high in red and processed meats and saturated fats — but also high in sweets and other refined carbohydrates like white bread.

On the other hand, diets described as Mediterranean or “prudent” — generally high in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish, unsaturated fats from vegetable oil — may help lower the risk of heart disease and stroke.

It’s that type of eating pattern that people should strive for, Eckel said.

For the current study, researchers led by Dr. Ronald M. Krauss, of the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Center in California, pooled data from 21 studies that included a total of nearly 348,000 adults.

Participants, who were generally healthy to start, were surveyed about their diet habits and then followed for anywhere from five to 23 years. Over that time, 11,000 developed heart disease or suffered a stroke.

Overall, Krauss and his colleagues found, there was no difference in the risks of heart disease and stroke between people with the lowest and highest intakes of saturated fat.

The analysis included what are known as epidemiological studies — where the researchers looked for associations between people’s reported diet habits and their risk of heart disease and stroke. These types of studies have inherent limitations, like depending on people’s recollection of their eating habits.

In addition, the study could not address whether saturated fat intake has different effects on heart disease and stroke risk for different age groups. Nor could it look at the effects of replacing saturated fat in the diet with polyunsaturated fats — like those found in vegetable oils and fish — or with carbohydrates.

Some other studies, the researchers write, have shown that consuming polyunsaturated fats in place of saturated ones may lower heart disease risk.

SOURCE: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, online January 13, 2010.

Wacana Ilmuan:
Yang nak belanja saya makan nasi arab dah tak perlu takut hehe

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Artikel Minggu Ini: Krisis lelaki pertengahan usia

Oleh Hafizah Iszahanid
hafiza@bharian.com.my

Perubahan fizikal, seksual mula dirasai pada usia 40 tahun

LELAKI dalam lingkungan usia 40 ke 60 tahun kerap dikaitkan dengan krisis pertengahan usia. Walaupun mungkin ada yang memandangnya dari sudut negatif, ia sebenarnya sebahagian proses kematangan normal.

Semua orang akan melalui detik perubahan emosi dalam hidup. Namun, bagaimana anda menangani perubahan itu yang akan mempengaruhi hidup. Ada lelaki yang berjaya mengharunginya dengan baik.

Bagaimanapun, tidak dinafikan bagi sesetengah lelaki, krisis pertengahan usia sangat merumitkan hingga membawa kepada tekanan perasaan atau mungkin perceraian.

Pakar Perunding Psikiatri Pusat Perubatan Universiti Malaya, Dr Muhamad Muhsin Ahmad Zahari, berkata jika wanita mengalami putus haid, lelaki pula kerap tersepit dalam permasalahan di usia pertengahan.

Ada penyelidik yang melihatnya sebagai andropaus, namun bagi Dr Muhsin ia sebenarnya lebih kepada keupayaan seseorang lelaki itu untuk menangani masalah yang dihadapinya.

“Perkara paling asas ialah menjaga pemakanan dan bersenam, selain berada dalam persekitaran yang positif,” katanya.

Kata Dr Muhsin, lelaki dengan emosi yang tidak stabil mula berfikiran negatif, membandingkan kejayaan dirinya dengan rakan, sekali gus memberi tekanan dan mula berasakan kehidupannya akan berakhir tanpa sebarang pencapaian.

Keadaan ini diburukkan lagi dengan perubahan hormon yang mempengaruhi bukan saja fizikal tetapi keinginan seksual dan dihimpit permasalahan peribadi dengan pasangan.

“Hormon testosteron bukan saja mempengaruhi keinginan seksual, tetapi apabila parasnya menurun ia juga menjejaskan pemikiran dan tubuh badan,” katanya.

Dr Muhsin berkata, krisis pertengahan umur di kalangan lelaki juga boleh dilihat pada perubahan fisiologi. Menghampiri usia 40 tahun hormon testosteron menyebabkan perubahan fizikal yang boleh dilihat, antaranya jika dulu tegap tetapi sekarang sudah gemuk dan buncit. Fungsi seksual juga berkurangan sekali gus mempengaruhi sosiologi.

Perubahan biologi dilalui oleh semua orang lelaki dan wanita tetapi perubahan itu tidak sama. Ia berkait dengan isu paling asas, menjaga pemakanan dan mengawal berat badan dan berada dalam suasana persekitaran yang kondusif.

Ada kala tekanan perasaan pada pekerjaan ditambah dengan masalah kesihatan akan menyebabkan lelaki hilang kawalan dalam hidupnya. Ada juga lelaki yang berkeinginan memulakan hubungan baru kerana melihat kehidupan sosialnya yang semakin stabil dan anak-anak juga sudah meningkat dewasa.

Dr Muhsin berkata, lelaki yang berdepan dengan krisis pertengahan umur kerap tidak menyedari masalah sebenar. Isteri atau ahli keluarga yang rapat boleh membantunya. Perubahan sikap dan mood boleh memberi petunjuk masalah sebenar dialami.

Jika ia dikaitkan dengan masalah andropaus, ia perlu dirujuk kepada doktor. Mengambil terapi gantian hormon antara rawatan yang ditawarkan perubatan Barat. Namun, keupayaan mengawal diri, bersenam dan menjaga kesihatan adalah antara langkah paling asas dan utama.

Wacana Ilmuan:

Tengahari tadi, masa saya jalan-jalan di Kajang, sempat saya masuk ke kedai cermin mata. Katanya sapa saja yang berumur 40 akan akan mengalami rabun dekat. Emmm rasa saya belum lagi, tidak, kata penjual tu, mesti ada punya, saya pun mula survey mana yang sesuai dan meninggalkan kedai.

Bila sampai dirumah saya jumpa artikel ni, artikel ini bukan tazkirah untuk saya saja, tapi tazkirah buat yang sebaya. Maklumlah dengar apa yang ada dalam artikel diatas rasa macam kena tempiasnya, mudahan dapat berkongsi dengan yang terlepas pandang kat berita harian. bagi yang lebih muda, bersedialah menghadapinya akan tiba masanya untuk anda pula eheh..
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Dubai has long been known as a symbol of extravagance and a city where money could buy anything, but a daunting economic recession has been threatening the financial hub’s vitality.

Since their crisis began two weeks ago, Dubai continued to slide deep into financial trouble with its stock market losing 20 per cent of its value.

Dubai World, the government’s main investment and development company, has also started to sell its assets and deal with credit downgrades from global ratings agencies.

Al Jazeera’s Renee Odeh reports how money markets are losing faith in the Middle East’s financial capital.

AlJazeera.net

Wacana Ilmuan:

Satu kaedah yang patut di ketahui

al Mustasmir Jabaan maknanya Pelabur adalah pengecut. Mungkin inilah yang dikatakan sebagai sifat pengecut yang baik.

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1001 Makna

Gambar di atas adalah sebuah masjid di pekan Asatia dalam daerah Afar, Ethiopia. Lihatlah gambar ini, buatlah sebanyak mungkin persoalan, andaian dan ulasan yang anda mahu…lihatlah dalam dirimu, umatmu dan agamamu, fikirkan nasib bangsamu dan kiralah nikmat tuhanmu….


WIKIPEDIA:

Asaita is a town in northeastern Ethiopia, and before 2007 was the capital of the Afar Region of Ethiopia. Located in the Afambo woreda, part of the Region’s Administrative Zone 1, this town has a latitude and longitude of 11°34′N 41°26′E / 11.567°N 41.433°E / 11.567; 41.433Coordinates: 11°34′N 41°26′E / 11.567°N 41.433°E / 11.567; 41.433 and an elevation of 300 meters.

Asaita was the seat of the Aussa Sultanate, the chief Afar monarchy, but is 50 kilometers south by unpaved road from AwashAsseb highway. A telephone line from Kombolcha to Asaita was in operation in 1964.[1] The town of Semera, a planned settlement situated squarely on this highway, at some point before 2007 became the new Regional capital.

To the southeast of Asaita, located at the southern edge of the Danakil Desert, are a group of twenty salt lakes which cover the territory to the border with neighboring Djibouti. These lakes include Lake Gummare, known for its flamingos, and Lake Abbe, the final destination of the Awash River.

Based on figures from the Central Statistical Agency in 2005, this town has an estimated total population of 22,718, of whom 12,722 were males and were 9,996 females.[2] According to the 1994 national census, this town had a population of 15,475.

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Ulasan Artikel

Tauhid tiga serangkai disyariat dalam Islam?

Oleh PANEL PENYELIDIKAN YAYASAN SOFA, NEGERI SEMBILAN
Utusan Malaysia 30/11/09

MINGGU ini kita menyambung kembali persoalan tauhid tiga serangkai yang telah pun diberikan lontaran awal pada dua minggu lepas. Sebelum soalan pertama dilontarkan mengenai tauhid tiga serangkai atau tauhid tiga bahagian yang diformulasikan atau direka oleh Ibnu Taimiyyah ini,

sebaiknya kita melihat dahulu secara ringkas definisi yang diberikan kepada ketiga-tiga tauhid ini.

Tauhid rububiah didefinisikan dengan makna mengesakan Allah pada ciptaan, pemerintahan, takdir, pentadbiran dan perbuatan-Nya serta dalam memberikan suatu kesan.

Manakala tauhid uluhiah didefinisikan dengan makna mengesakan Allah dalam hal peribadatan tanpa mengambil seorang manusia pun bersama Allah sebagai sembahan.

Tauhid Asma’ dan Sifat pula didefinisikan dengan makna mengesakan Allah pada apa yang dinamakan dan disifatkan dengan diri-Nya, sebagaimana yang terdapat di dalam kitab-Nya atau yang didapati daripada lidah nabi-Nya yang telah menetapkan dengan apa yang telah ditetapkan bagi diri-Nya.

Dalam membincangkan pembahagian ini, maka perkara utama yang perlu dipersoalkan dan bincangkan ialah adakah pembahagian ini telah dinaskan oleh syarak dan terdapat dalil-dalil yang menunjukkan ke atasnya? Adakah pembahagian ini merupakan perkara yang disyariatkan ataupun perkara baru yang dicipta (bidaah)?

Persoalan ini, mengandungi beberapa jawapan:

Jawapan Pertama

Ibnu Taimiyyah yang merupakan pereka pembahagian tauhid ini mendakwa dirinya bermazhab Hanbali.

Namun Imam Ahmad ibnu Hanbal r.a. sendiri, yang dikatakan menjadi tempat sandaran bagi orang-orang yang melakukan pembahagian tauhid bidaah ini, tidak pernah menyatakan bahawa tauhid itu mempunyai beberapa bahagian; tauhid rububiah, tauhid uluhiah dan tauhid asma’ dan sifat.

Beliau juga tidak pernah menyatakan bahawa sesiapa yang tidak mengetahui tauhid uluhiah, tidak dikira makrifatnya tentang tauhid rububiah kerana tauhid rububiah ini telah diketahui oleh orang musyrikin.

Sesungguhnya akidah Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal r.a telah disusun di dalam kitab-kitab karangan pengikutnya. Misalnya, di dalam kitab biografinya yang ditulis oleh Ibnu Jauzi dan lain-lainnya, tidak terdapat langsung pembahagian tauhid rekaan ini. Maka dari manakah Ibnu Taimiyyah mengambil tauhid ini?

Jawapan Kedua

Tidak berkata walau seorang daripada Sahabat-sahabat Nabi r.a: “Sesungguhnya tauhid itu ialah tauhid rububiah dan tauhid uluhiah, dan sekiranya seseorang tidak mengetahui tentang tauhid uluhiah, maka tidak dikira makrifahnya tentang tauhid rububiyyah kerana tauhid rububiah ini telah diketahui oleh orang musyrikin”.

Justeru, saya mencabar kepada setiap orang yang mempunyai ilmu yang mendalam, supaya menaqalkan kepada kami pembahagian yang diada-adakan ini daripada sahabat-sahabat Nabi r.a, sekalipun dengan mengemukakan satu riwayat yang lemah.

Jawapan Ketiga

Tidak terdapat dalam sunnah Nabi SAW yang luas dan menjadi penjelas kepada kitab Allah, sama ada dalam kitab-kitab hadis sahih, sunan-sunan, musnad-musnad dan mu’jam-mu’jam yang menyebut bahawa Nabi SAW pernah bersabda dan mengajar sahabat-sahabatnya, bahawa tauhid itu terbahagi kepada tauhid uluhiah dan juga rububiah yang telah diketahui oleh orang musyrik.

Sekiranya berkumpul jin dan manusia bersama-sama mereka untuk menetapkan bahawa pembahagian ini adalah datang daripada Nabi SAW dengan isnadnya, sekalipun dengan isnad yang lemah, nescaya mereka tidak akan mampu untuk mendatangkannya walaupun dengan satu jalan.

Jawapan Keempat

Telah tercatat dalam sunnah yang banyak, bahawa dalam dakwah Rasulullah SAW mengajak manusia kepada Allah, Baginda SAW menyeru mereka ke arah penyaksian kalimah syahadah: Tiada Tuhan melainkan Allah dan bahawa Nabi Muhammad adalah pesuruh Allah. Baginda SAW juga mengajak mereka meninggalkan penyembahan berhala.

Di antara hadis yang paling masyhur menyebut tentang perkara ini ialah hadis Muaz ibnu Jabal r.a. Ketika beliau diutuskan oleh Nabi SAW ke Yaman, Baginda SAW bersabda kepadanya: Serulah mereka kepada penyaksian “Bahawa tiada Tuhan melainkan Allah dan bahawa Nabi Muhammad adalah pesuruh Allah”. Sekiranya mereka mentaatinya, maka hendaklah kamu khabarkan kepada mereka bahawa diwajibkan ke atas mereka solat lima waktu sehari semalam. (riwayat al-Bukhari dalam Sahihnya)

Diriwayatkan oleh pengarang kitab Sunan dan Ibnu Hibban, bahawa seorang Arab Badawi memberitahu Rasulullah SAW bahawa dia telah melihat anak bulan. Lantas Rasulullah SAW memerintahkan supaya berpuasa dan Baginda SAW tidak menyoalnya melainkan tentang pengakuannya terhadap kalimah syahadah. (diriwayatkan oleh Abu Daud, al Nasaei, al Tirmizi dan lain-lain)

Sekiranya tauhid itu terbahagi kepada tiga bahagian sebagaimana yang mereka perkatakan, maka sudah tentulah Nabi SAW menyeru sekelian manusia kepada tauhid uluhiah yang tidak mereka ketahui dan bukannya tauhid rububiah kerana mereka telah mengetahuinya.

Demikian juga, perlulah Baginda SAW bersabda kepada Muaz r.a, “Serulah mereka kepada tauhid uluhiah,” dan Baginda SAW bertanya terlebih dahulu kepada orang Arab Badawi yang melihat anak bulan Ramadan, “Adakah kamu mengetahui tentang tauhid uluhiah dan perbezaan di antara tauhid ini dengan tauhid rububiah, dan adakah kamu mengetahui tauhid asma’ dan sifat?”

Jawapan Kelima

Di dalam kitab Allah yang ternyata tidak dicemari dengan kebatilan, tidak membezakan di antara tauhid uluhiah dan tauhid rububiah.

Begitu juga tidak dikatakan kepada mereka: Sesiapa yang tidak mengetahui tauhid uluhiah tidak dikira imannya, bahkan dia adalah lebih kafir daripada Firaun dan Haman. Tetapi Allah SWT memerintahkan dengan kalimah tauhid secara mutlak sebagaimana firman Allah SWT kepada Nabi-Nya dalam surah Muhammad ayat 19: Ketahuilah, bahawasanya tiada Tuhan melainkan Allah. Begitu jugalah dengan keseluruhan ayat tauhid yang disebut di dalam al-Quran.

Sekiranya kamu kehendaki, maka bacalah surah al-Ikhlas yang menyamai sepertiga al-Quran. Adakah kamu mendapati di dalamnya ayat yang membezakan di antara uluhiah dan rububiah sebagaimana yang mereka sangkakan?

Jawapan Keenam

Melalui pembahagian yang direka ini, memberi kefahaman kepada kita, seolah-olah Allah masih belum lagi menyempurnakan agama-Nya. Kemudian, datang seseorang yang kononnya untuk menyempurnakan agama Allah yang masih lagi mempunyai kekurangan dan menjelaskan tentang tauhid dan pembahagiannya kepada manusia pada kurun ke-7 Hijrah.

Pada kurun ini, lahirnya pembahagian tauhid uluhiah, rububiah, asma’ dan sifat yang dicetuskan oleh Ibnu Taimiyyah (661- 724 H). Seolah-olah semua umat tidak mengetahui tentang apa yang diperkenalkan oleh pemuka-pemuka pembahagian tauhid rekaan ini.

Selepas kita mengetahui jawapan daripada soalan pertama ini, yakinlah kita dengan sempurna bahawa tauhid ini tidak mempunyai sumber yang sah daripada al-Quran dan hadis.

Ia menunjukkan bahawa pembahagian ini hanyalah rekaan semata-mata. Persoalan kedua akan dikemukakan pada minggu hadapan, insya-Allah.

Wacana Ilmuan:

Sebenarnya saya muatkan artikel di atas untuk memberikan contoh bagi artikel yang tidak ilmiah. Ada beberapa sebab yang dapat dilihat menunjukkan artikel diatas tidak ilmiah:

1-Tidak berdasarkan kaedah pengistibatan yang betul.

Dengan hanya mendakwa konsep itu tidak ada dalam alquran dan sunnah, konsep itu terus didakwa tidak tepat, sedangkan tidak semua perkara yang berbentuk ijtihadi mesti ada dalam quran dan sunnah secara terperinci.

Konsep yang dianggap betul dan memenuhi tuntutan Islam ialah konsep 20, sedangkan konsep sifat 20 juga tidak disebut secara tepat dalam alquran dan sunnah. Bila ada orang yang bertentangan dengan pendapat kita maka kita akan kata ianya tidak ada dalam sunnah, sedangkan pendapat kita sediripun tidak ada dalam nas secara jelas. Tindakan sedemikian perlu kita jauhi kerana lebih bersifat provokasi sahaja.

2-Menyorok pendapat yang menyokong

Salah satu ciri artikel yang tidak baik ialah bila penulis hanya menyebut pandangan ulamak yang menyokong pendapat penulis, mencari-cari pula pandangan tokoh yang menghentam pihak yang ditolak pendapatnya.

Apabila tidak ada langsung pandangan ulamak yang menyokong pihak yang ditolak maka pembaca menyangka perkara itu menjadi kesepakatan para ulamak. Sebaiknya penulis perlu menyebut bahawa ada ulamak yang tidak menyokong beliau. Contohnya dalam artikel diatas, penulis sepatutnya memberitahu bahawa ulamak tersohor masakini Dr Yusuf Qardawi menerima konsep Tauhid yang dirumuskan oleh Ibnu Taimiah. Kalaupun tidak mahu menyebut barisan ulamak lain cukuplah sekadar menyebut beberapa tokoh sahaja.

3-Menjadikan perkara khilafiah sebagai qatiyah

Antara ciri artikel tidak ilmiah ialah bila penulis membesarkan masaalah khilafiah sehingga mencapai tahap qatie. Dengan itu perbincangan akan tertumpu pada mencari manakah kumpulan yang betul dan mana pula yang sesat walaupun pada hakikatnya perbincangan tertupu pada mana yang lebih tepat.

Mudah-mudahan sedikit komen saya pada artikel diatas akan memberi panduan kepada penulis untuk membaiki mutu tulisan masing-masing.


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Artikel Minggu Ini

Can you work from home without going to office?

Monday November 23, 2009

THERE was a time in my life when I was a full-time homemaker and a part-time freelancer. I left the workforce to take care of my two boys, and my wife became the sole breadwinner.

I must confess that those were the most cherished years of my life. My wife was also able to take her turn at home when I went back to work.

We learnt to survive on one income. And it was a lot of fun for the boys.

The Public Works Department recently allowed 35 of its draughtsmen to work from home for three months.

The Chief Secretary Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Hassan has given his nod of approval, stating that the work-from-home concept is workable if employees have the integrity to do the work at home as well as it would have been done in the office.


The Chief Secretary to the Government, Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Hassan, says: “The civil service is a very big organisation that is outcome-driven, and if working from home will increase productivity, that is something we will definitely recommend to the Government.”

“The civil service is a very big organisation that is outcome-driven, and if working from home will increase productivity, that is something we will definitely recommend to the Government,” he said.

“I also work from home. But I also work from my car, and when I go back to my hometown, I take my work with me. In this age of the Blackberry and Internet, it is not impossible to work from one’s home.”

If you have ever sent Sidek an email, you will learn that he walks the talk because his response is virtually instant. And not just an automated reply, mind you.

Although I spent most of my time at home playing with the boys, I also did the occasional part-time work to supplement the household income and also to keep my brain active.

In those days, such information technology was not available, but that did not prevent me from doing work for an overseas client whom I never even met.

This was a project for a UN body in Cambodia. It involved them sending me the material via a diskette (no CDs or thumb drives in those days) by courier. I edited and laid out the publication and then couriered a draft back to them for approval.

After the okay was given via fax, I proceeded to print the book in Puchong and had the order shipped to Phnom Penh.

They promptly sent me a cheque by mail.

Today, such a project would have seen me fully using the whole plethora of IT tools, including SMS, email and video chat. If the client so desires, I could easily email the book files to any printer in the world. And payment would have been instant through e-banking.

Technology has made so many things possible, not just for the able-bodied people, but also the disabled, and those recovering from serious illness.

Yet, in reality, working from home is not something embraced by most employers.

Somehow, there is the fear that employees cannot be trusted if they are not physically around.

The result is we end up with many employees, not necessarily the most productive ones, hanging around the office way after official working hours, when they could be at home enjoying family time.

The work-from-home concept should be encouraged in both the public and private sectors.

My son, who used to switch off my computer in the midst of work during my stay-at-home days so that I could take him to the park, is now a graduate tutor at a college. When he has to mark the papers, he has the option to do so at home.

It is about integrity, as Sidek rightfully points out. The point is that employers must start to trust their employees more and not just let those who will shirk or shortchange them determine the policy of the company.

Deputy executive editor Soo Ewe Jin believes we can marry modern technology with good old-fashioned values to truly enhance our quality of life in both the workplace and the home.

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الانتحار بالجيش الأمريكي.. رقم قياسي جديد في 2009

إسلام أون لاين

معدل الانتحار في 2009 بلغ حتى الآن 211 حالة

توقع جنرال كبير بالجيش الأمريكي أن تسجل حالات الانتحار بالجيش رقما قياسيا جديدا في عام 2009، في ظل نقص المستشارين المتخصصين لمساعدة الجنود على حل مشكلاتهم النفسية الناتج أغلبها عن المشاركة في عمليات عسكرية خارج البلاد، والتي يتمركز أغلبها في العراق وأفغانستان.

وتظهر النتائج أن عدد حالات الانتحار أثناء الخدمة بلغت حتى الآن في 2009 نفس عدد العام الماضي بالفعل وهو 140 حالة، في الوقت الذي يقترب فيه الرئيس الأمريكي باراك أوباما من إرسال قوات إضافية يبلغ قوامها 40 ألف جندي لأفغانستان.

ونقلت “رويترز” الثلاثاء 17-11-2009 عن الجنرال بيتر تشياريلي نائب رئيس هيئة أركان الجيش قوله: “سجل سلاح البر 140 عملية انتحار لجنود في الخدمة، ما يساوي العدد الإجمالي لحالات (الانتحار) في 2008 فيما يبقى شهر ونصف الشهر لنهاية العام، وسننهي العام بكل تأكيد برقم يفوق العام الماضي”.

وبحسب شياريلي فإن الـ 140 هم ضحايا الانتحار للجنود المتواجدين بالخدمة، بينما بلغ عدد المنتحرين من جنود الاحتياط والحرس القومي، منذ يناير الماضي وحتى اللحظة 71 جنديا، ليصبح إجمالي عدد المنتحرين هذا العام 211 جنديا، وفق بيتر شياريلي.
طالع أيضا:

* عام 2008.. أعلى معدل انتحار بالجيش الأمريكي

وأضاف الجنرال: “نود عدم حصول انتحار جديد هذه السنة أو في السنوات المقبلة، لكننا نعلم أنه لن يكون الأمر كذلك”.

وأوضح أن الجيش ينكب على دراسة الإفراط في تناول الكحول واستخدام المخدرات أو الأدوية بنسب أصبحت “أكثر ارتفاعا مما كانت عليه قبل ثماني سنوات”، في إشارة إلى بدء الانتشار الخارجي الواسع للجنود الأمريكيين منذ الحرب على أفغانستان في 2001.

ووفق إحصائية الجيش الأمريكي فإن إجمالي عدد المنتحرين في عام 2008 قد بلغ 197 جنديًّا منهم 140 جنديًّا في الخدمة و57 من قوات الحرس القومي والاحتياط، وفي العام 2007 بلغ عدد المنتحرين بالجيش الأمريكي 115 حالة انتحار.

ثلثا المنتحرين

وتشير دراسة للجيش الأمريكي إلى أن عمليات الانتشار المتكررة للقوات المسلحة في العراق وأفغانستان منذ سنوات تعتبر عموما من أسباب ارتفاع حالات الانتحار في صفوف العسكريين، حيث إن ثلثي الجنود المنتحرين تم نشرهم في الخارج.

لكن تشياريلي حذر من تعميم أسباب الانتحار أو افتراض أنها مرتبطة بالضغط على القوات المنهكة من الحرب في العراق وأفغانستان.

وكان الجيش قد كشف في الآونة الأخيرة أن حوالي واحد من كل خمسة جنود من الرتب الأقل يعانون من مشكلات صحة نفسية مثل الإحباط.

عنف أيضا

ولا يقتصر أثر هذه المشكلات على الانتحار بل يتخطاه إلى ارتكاب أعمال عنف وهو ما بدا واضحا في حادث قاعدة “فورت هود” بولاية تكساس الأمريكية، حيث أطلق ضابط في مطلع نوفمبر الجاري النار على زملائه فقتل نحو 13 جنديا أمريكيا وأصاب 31 آخرين.

وتعاني “فورت هود” التي تعد أكبر قاعدة عسكرية على مستوى العالم، من وجود أكبر عدد من حالات الانتحار مقارنة مع غيرها من القواعد الأمريكية.

وبحسب مصادر أمريكية بلغت حالات الانتحار في القاعدة منذ غزو العراق عام 2003 نحو 75 حالة، بينهم 9 حالات في شهر يوليو من عام 2009.

وتستقبل القاعدة الأمريكية عددا غير قليل من الجنود الذين عملوا في العراق وأفغانستان وهم يعانون من ضغوط نفسية بسبب الحروب وطول مدة المهمات التي يتم تكليفهم بها.

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Loss of innocence

By MICHELLE CHAN

http://thestar.com.my

Monday November 2, 2009

Enforcement officers hot on the heels of sex traffickers in a bid to curb the thriving flesh trade in the Golden Triangle.

IN the stillness of a juvenile court, Naing, 15, stood motionless with a blank look on her face. She hardly heard the charges as they were being read out, overcome by numbness as she recounted the horrifying three months spent in forced prostitution in a country away from her home in a Myanmar village.

Targeted by human traffickers, some village children easily end up as sex slaves.

The smell of musty bedsheets in poorly-lit rooms lingered in her mind like slow poison. The constant beatings were not half as bad as being forced to entertain three to five men every day. Clients pay 300-700 baht (RM30-RM70) for a 30-minute session, and 1,000 baht (RM100) for an overnight job. But Naing hardly received any of the ill-gotten gains.

Naing shuddered. She was free, but still trapped. In the courtroom, all was cold and sterile. As the television screen buzzed to life, the blurry images slowly formed the close-up side profile of a man. He was sitting in the dock of a separate courtroom nearby.

Naing felt a surge of emotions. First fear, then anger, and finally a rush of hatred and despair. The sight of her former tormentor-cum-sex broker was too much for her. She could hear the distant echo of a question: “Do you recognise this man?” All she could do was burst into tears.

Her reaction was damning evidence against the sex broker (pimp), whose persuasive words and promises of a better job turned into a terrifying nightmare for the naïve teenager. The pimp was jailed and Naing has since been repatriated to her village.

Like many ethnic immigrants ensnared by South-East Asia’s flesh trade, life for Naing is no fairytale, but it is slightly better than the plight of many women and children trapped in the vicious limbo of human trafficking. It is an industry that includes paedophilia, human slavery and to an extent, organ harvesting.

However, not all victims of sex trafficking can find an easy escape.

As law enforcement officers tighten the noose around sex traffickers, sex agents quickly adapt. “Most traffickers know the confines of the law quite well, and can find a loophole rather quickly,” said Duean Wongsa, the project manager at Trafcord, northern Thailand’s anti-trafficking unit.

Mae Sai, on the Myanmar-north Thailand border, is teeming with sex workers who stream in daily via motorcycles, buses, trucks and even on foot.

One of the common ways of avoiding detection is “catalogue-selling” their services where photo albums of girls in various poses are sent out as brochures, instead of conducting the conventional “cattle market” style where the girls are made to parade in front of prospective clients. Another way is to screen the clients before the girls are sent over.

“It is also more difficult to find victims of trafficking, as the sex brokers are extra careful in covering their tracks,” said Duean. These sex agents could be anybody. Many young girls are trafficked by people they know – aunts, uncles, friends and relatives, whose stories and promises of a better life entice them to leave home.

Also, sex agents survive by changing their base of operations. Once a hotbed of prostitution in Thailand, Chiangmai now serves as a hub for the transit of sex workers. The border towns of Tak and Tha Khi Lek – Mae Sai (Myanmar-North Thailand) are teeming with sex workers who stream in daily via motorcycles, buses, trucks and even on foot. Once they are in Thailand, makeshift visas are readied for the passage to Japan, Europe, Bahrain, South Korea and Singapore.

Some of the workers head for the shores of Malaysia, where they end up in brothels working 20 hours and servicing up to 10 clients daily.

In 2005, Trafcord co-operated with Tenaganita for the first time, in a Malaysian case. Ten girls, aged 14-15, were discovered working in a brothel in Johor Baru, servicing Singaporean clients. The girls originated from Thailand, Myanmar and China, and were lured there thinking they would be working as receptionists. The story is all too familiar. They ended up in prostitution and misery.

Regional co-operation is what Trafcord aspires to achieve, to stamp out trans-border human trafficking. Since 2003, MOUs have been signed with Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos to curb the vice in the Mekong area, where rampant trafficking has bedevilled the authorities for years.

Traffickers’ lair: A tribal village where victims are lured away from their families and end up in slavery

But tackling human trafficking is not only the authorities’ job. It involves the effort of social workers, psychologists, lawyers, immigration officers and a network of people to bring one case to a closure. And the road to repatriation and restoration is often laborious and thankless.

“Human trafficking will not disappear in the near future because of economic situations, globalisation and the social fabric of our time,” explained Duean. “Although we try to co-ordinate and push for the process of law to protect victims of trafficking, it boils down to the government to take the lead in stamping out trafficking.”

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How Accurate Are Medical TV Shows?

By Robert Isenberg
Special to MSN TV

Let’s face it: We love doctor shows. And we like our doctors too, be they smart, sexy or full of sass. We can’t wait to see another patient pulled open so a pair of gloved hands can massage a heart back to life. There’s nothing as intense as a fresh gurney rolling through the halls — frantic physicians fight against time.

Physicians themselves are getting passé, which is why nurses and first-responders are getting more airtime than ever. And this fall, we have three new medical series debuting in primetime, not to mention a pair of cable shows with A-list stars which debuted over the summer.

But as much as we love hospital dramas, actual healthcare professionals tend to roll their eyes at them. After all, TV producers want to explore emotion and character, but real hospital work can be very different from the Hollywood version seen on the small screen. Since “ER” has been beaten to death by doctors, we wondered how the latest series measured up. So we asked a few healthcare workers about how well these shows mimicked the real inpatient experience. Here’s what they had to say:
‘Trauma’/NBC

Series: “Trauma”
The gist: Paramedics in San Francisco race to rescue victims on the street.
Health care professional: Jim Holman, Administration Chief, Pittsburgh EMS Bureau Paramedics
What they got right: Many of the technical aspects are accurate: Use of endotracheal intubation, use of a special drill — an intraosseous infusion line into the tibia. Paramedics use a “log-rolling” technique on a patient to keep the spine intact. And much of the mass casualty incident (MCI) scenes were realistic.
Want they got wrong: Keeping an accident scene safe is an emergency responder’s highest priority: The fire in the MCI was a little hokey, because responders would assess the scene for hazards, such as leaking fuel. The depiction of a chest compression was terrible: At one point, the hand placement on a patient’s chest looked like the Heimlich maneuver. A helicopter wouldn’t be used for a woman whose only injury was a fractured arm, nor would a helicopter be used in high-density urban environments, nor would the ground crew be along for the helicopter ride. Helicopters don’t just land on the roof of a building that is not a designated and licensed helipad. Meanwhile, ambulances do not drive up to trauma hospitals fast and slam on the brakes — it’s way too dangerous and there’s no need. Finally, an intern who talked to a veteran paramedic in manner depicted in the premiere would be reprimanded. An intern is there to learn.
‘Nurse Jackie’/Showtime………………………….

Wacana Ilmuan:
Tengok TV jgn sunnguh2 sgt, kena ada skill gak

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