Archive for February, 2013

Annual IB Spring Ball

Posted: February 23, 2013 by Alison in FYI, Just For Fun, Networking
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Hey guys! The annual IB spring ball will be coming up soon. I hope to see some IB alumni there! I know I will be! I’ll be sure to announce dates and times when I know more. Keep your eyes on this space!

Effective Natural Treatments for Tension Headaches
Posted By Dr. Ben Kim
Source: http://drbenkim.com/tension-headache-acupressure.html

Tension-type headaches typically involve dull or pressure-like pain in and around your temples, forehead, scalp, or the back of your neck. Often times, the pain associated with a tension-type headache will feel like it is being created by a band of pressure that is tightening around your head.

Although emotional stress, anxiety, and depression are among the most common causes of chronic, intermittent tension-type headaches, tension headaches can also be caused by pure physical stressors, such as poor posture, sleeping with your neck in an awkward position, or any type of physical injury that has caused muscles in and around your head and neck to become tight.

Unlike migraine and cluster headaches, tension-type headaches tend to respond quickly to simple physical measures. What follows are the key recommendations that I typically share with clients who are looking to overcome chronic tension-type headaches via simple lifestyle measures:

  1. Spend a minimum of 20 minutes each day in a session of meditation or deep relaxation. Doing so can help alleviate emotional stressors that may be contributing to your tension-type headaches. For meditation and relaxation sessions, I have found EarthRain to be an enormously effective tool.
  2. Be mindful of positions that your neck and head are forced to take on for extended periods throughout the day. Strive to position your neck and head in such a way that you do not feel tension in your eyes, neck, or shoulders. Reading and writing with your neck bent down and to one side are killer culprits – do what you can to minimize this posture.
  3. Upon receiving approval from your primary health care provider, consider applying manual pressure to the following acupuncture points:
    1. Gall Bladder 20 (GB-20): Located behind your head in the first major depression that you can feel below the base of your skull, about two finger widths away from the midline of your neck. Picture of GB-20 For those with knowledge of human anatomy: This point is at the junction of the occipital and nuchal regions, in a depression that lies between the origins of the sternocleidomastoid and trapezius muscles. It is approximately at the level of the lower margin of the external occipital protuberance.Application of pressure to GB-20 is meant to affect:
      • Semispinalis capitis muscle
      • Splenius capitis muscle
      • Rectus capitis posterior muscle
      • Obliquus capitis superior muscle
      • Greater occipital nerve
      • Less occipital nerve
      • Suboccipital nerve (C1)
      • Motor fibers from dorsal rami of upper cervical nerves
      • Branches of the occipital artery and tributaries of the companion vein
    2. Belly of Your Temporalis Muscle*: Located in the center of your temple region. Palpate this region with your first and middle fingers pressed closely together until you find a tender, muscular zone. If you have trouble locating this point, place your fingers against your temples and then bite down on your molars a few times – you should feel the main muscle belly of your temporalis muscles bulge in and out.Picture of approximate location of belly of Temporalis muscleFor those with knowledge of human anatomy, pressure on the belly of the temporalis muscle is meant to affect:
      • Deep temporal nerves that branch off from the third division (mandibular) of the trigeminal nerve
      • Cutaneous branches of the greater occipital nerve
      • Deep temporal artery and companion vein
    3. Large Intestine 4 (LI-4): Located in the soft, fleshy web that sits between your thumb and forefinger.Picture of LI-4 at Acuxo.comFor those with knowledge of human anatomy, this point is meant to affect:
      • A muscular branch of the median nerve
      • The deep branch of the ulnar nerve
      • Proper palmer digital nerves from the first common palmar digital nerve
      • The superficial branch of the radial nerve
      • Tributary branches of the cephalic vein, the radial artery, and the first dorsal metacarpal artery and companion veins

For optimal results, use your fingers and/or thumbs to massage these points on bothsides of your body for a few minutes at a time, up to several times a day. When you correctly locate these points, you should feel some tenderness when you apply pressure to them. Apply enough pressure/massage to create a mild, dull, and possibly achy sensation.

If you are not sure about the location of GB-20 and LI-4, I highly recommend that you take a look at the following book, the best of its kind:

Acupressure’s Potent Points: a Guide to Self-Care for Common Ailments

I recommend this as a must-have reference book for every person who is interested in natural health remedies, as it provides excellent illustrations of all of the major acupressure points that can be used to treat a wide variety of health challenges. I will continue to refer to various points that are illustrated in this book as I write more articles on how to use acupressure to address different health challenges.

Beyond using acupressure to address tension-type headaches, you can also go through a series of six simple stretches to keep the muscles that surround your head and neck at a healthy tone. To view these stretches, click here:

Simple Exercises to Promote Healthy Neck Muscles and Ligaments

It may also be helpful to stretch your mid and upper back in the following fashion:

How to Stretch the Thoracic Region of your Spine

Please note: If you find that consistent application of the suggestions provided in this article does not lead to significant improvement with your headaches, you should consult with your primary health care provider to rule out other less common causes of pain and discomfort in your head and neck regions.

* The belly of your temporalis muscle does not contain a classically defined acupuncture meridian point. It is a point that I have found through personal clinical experience to be an effective treatment site for tension-type headaches.

Spotting A Liar

Posted: February 12, 2013 by Alison in Food For Thought
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by Roger Martin  |   8:00 AM February 5, 2013
Source: http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2013/02/dont_let_strategy_become_plann.html

I must have heard the words “we need to create a strategic plan” at least an order of magnitude more times than I have heard “we need to create a strategy.” This is because most people see strategy as an exercise in producing a planning document. In this conception, strategy is manifested as a long list of initiatives with timeframes associated and resources assigned.

Somewhat intriguingly, at least to me, the initiatives are themselves often called “strategies.” That is, each different initiative is a strategy and the plan is an organized list of the strategies.

But how does a strategic plan of this sort differ from a budget? Many people with whom I work find it hard to distinguish between the two and wonder why a company needs to have both. And I think they are right to wonder. The vast majority of strategic plans that I have seen over 30 years of working in the strategy realm are simply budgets with lots of explanatory words attached. This may be the case because the finance function is deeply involved in the strategy process in most organizations. But it is also the cause of the deep antipathy I see, especially amongst line executives, toward strategic planning. I know very few who look forward with joy to the commencement of the next strategic planning cycle.

To make strategy more interesting — and different from a budget — we need to break free of this obsession with planning. Strategy is not planning — it is the making of an integrated set of choices that collectively position the firm in its industry so as to create sustainable advantage relative to competition and deliver superior financial returns. I find that once this is made clear to line managers they recognize that strategy is not just fancily-worded budgeting and they get much more interested in it.

Obviously you can’t execute a strategy without initiatives, investments, and budgeting. But what you need to get managers focused on before you start on those things is the strategy that will make these initiatives coherent.

That strategy is a singular thing; there is one strategy for a given business — not a set of strategies. It is one integrated set of choices: what is our winning aspiration; where will we play; how will we win; what capabilities need to be in place; and what management systems must be instituted?

That strategy tells you what initiatives actually make sense and are likely to produce the result you actually want. Such a strategy actually makes planning easy. There are fewer fights about which initiatives should and should not make the list, because the strategy enables discernment of what is critical and what is not.

This conception of strategy also helps define the length of your strategic plan. The five questions can easily be answered on one page and if they take more than five pages (i.e. one page per question) then your strategy is probably morphing unhelpfully into a more classical strategic plan.

This definition of strategy can be disconcerting to those who have spent a lifetime generating traditional strategic plans. Not long ago I facilitated a day long strategy session with the senior team of a very successful $10 billion company with an outstanding CEO. By the end of the day (in part thanks to a goodly amount of pre-work by the head of strategy), we got to a nice set of integrated choices. I congratulated the group on its great thinking and working and affirmed what I judged to be an excellent strategy.

My enthusiasm notwithstanding, the CEO was troubled. I asked him why. “Is that all we have to do,” he asked, as if he thought he had cheated on an exam. I am sure he expected that he had to full binders and long lists of initiatives to feel that he had been thorough in this year’s strategic planning process. I reassured him that he had given strategy anything but short shrift. And that day strategy prevailed over planning. I suspect that CEO will never go back.

So if you pass the five-page mark is time to ask: Are we answering the five key questions or are we doing something else and calling it strategy? If it is the latter: eject, eject!

Download a free chapter from Playing to Win, Roger’s brand-new book with A.G. Lafley.

More blog posts by Roger Martin
Roger Martin

Roger Martin

Roger Martin (www.rogerlmartin.com) is the Dean of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto in Canada. He is the author of Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works. For more information, including events with Roger, click here.

 

Friday Humor: Happy Cat

Posted: February 8, 2013 by Alison in Just For Fun
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