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India’s #MeToo Movement

Indian Women Weigh In On India’s #MeToo Movement

In the aftermath of India’s own #MeToo movement, a significant number of women have begun speaking out about the #MeToo moments that they have experienced.

As Amulya Gopalakrishnan says on her TOI blog, What the good guys need to know about #MeToo — yes, it’s You Too, “Indian media can no longer pretend that sexual predation is out there in Hollywood, or that it’s a rare or remarkable occurrence. It’s in here, and it implicates us intimately — our friends, families, colleagues, ourselves.”


Priya Florence Shah:

For me, personally, it’s triggered some unpleasant memories. Of being hit on by a dentist who was supposed to touch nothing more than my teeth.

Of being felt up by friends in a disco under the pretext that they were drunk (the old fall-back). Of a close relative who copped a feel, again when he was supposedly drunk and I was in a vulnerable situation.

And it’s forced us to have uncomfortable conversations with friends and partners, over what constitutes sexual harassment and why you can’t expect a woman to provide evidence of being harassed.

I contacted some of my friends and mentors on Facebook who posted some insightful and thought-provoking commentary about the #MeToo movement in India and got their permission to reproduce them here.

I hope their posts will make men and women rethink their position on sexual harassment and the #MeToo movement. Because a woman (think Melania Trump) can be just as much of an advocate and co-conspirator of patriarchy as men.


Vandana Saxena Poria writes:

#longpost #metoo

A couple of days ago I had breakfast with an old friend who is a senior director with an MNC. We were talking about the Kavanaugh incident.

He laughed and said, “Well come one, we have all fooled around in the past and it was harmless… don’t you think it was a bit over the top? Especially because this happened so long ago and it was a different time back then?”

I actually mildly lost it with him. “That fooling around was with other human beings that did not see it as ‘fooling around’. They saw it as an invasion of their bodies. But the biggest invasion was in their minds. Because we learnt from society that it was OUR fault. We were manipulated to believe that it must have been something WE did to ENCOURAGE the fooling around. we smiled too much, we were too ‘available’, we were too friendly, that actually that is what we are there for – to be there for the pleasure of men to ‘fool around’. It has scarred us for life because we were touched against our will, yet made to see that it was us who were responsible and that it was so shameful. Do you know that the guilt has lived with us for decades, that we must have done something to deserve someone doing this to us? That has affected the way we see the world, talk to men, and bring up our daughters? Some of us have had to have counselling, often twenty years later, to deal with the impact, because we could not deal with it before. And now, when we have an opportunity to say something, you justify the stance of ‘fooling around’ and ‘along time ago’?”

He was visibly shaken. He said, “I had never thought of it from the victim’s point of view. And what she must have gone through. Or that it could or would have stayed with her.” He stopped speaking.

On a verbal Tsunami, I continued, “That is what I would call ‘male privilege’. The business world today hasn’t changed much. I’ve worked with a lot of women in the corporate sector over the last decade in India. Often they talk openly to me. Not all, but a proportion of male senior leaders and mid-level managers are absolute predators, still looking for opportunities to nudge women in this direction. Dropping inappropriate comments at work, waiting for them to drink a little, put a hand here or there, make lewd comments. And if you brush them off, or complain about it, then your career is at stake – you might not get that promotion or that contract. What do the women do? Change jobs. What do the men do? Get promoted.”

With eyebrows raised and a few looks at the floor, I had to say the last bit. He has known me for ten years, I decided to let him know other challenges I have faced.

“And time and again, I’ve been told by female friends about myself ‘Don’t wear that – it is too revealing (with a kurta and a tiny slit below the neck); wear a dupatta; don’t smile so much, you are encouraging them; don’t be so friendly; don’t talk about your wide range of interests; don’t wear eye make up – it makes your eyes look bigger and they get turned on. Seriously??? This is what I have to put up with EVERY DAY. I have to change the way I look and talk, so I am not ‘giving the wrong signals.’ Is this fair? No, but it is the world we live in today. And yes I have lost contracts in the past, and had to deal with situations that would have been totally different, had I been a man. The way they behaved, using the contract to taunt me as if it was a drug that I needed and it gave them the right to play their petty little power games. I am sorry. But I would rather walk away than lose my own dignity and self-respect. I have the luxury that I can afford to do that. Others have to keep changing jobs or watch their business decrease. Then society wonders why we don’t have enough women in senior positions.”

He looked really uncomfortable at this stage. But nodded. Afterwards, he sent me a message. “Your experiences have clarified my thoughts on the matter. The #MeToo movement is needed.”

Job done for 1. Now 3,857,864,898 more to go.

And for those men that are predators, or partake in ‘harmless fun’, please note that the sword of Damocles is swinging dangerously above…

#metoo #timesup #whyididn’treport


Jainee Gandhi wrote:

I have an easy afternoon today and was catching up on Twitter and the news. All my women friends know of the #metoo incidents being shared and very few male friends will be aware of it.

This affects women directly is because I don’t know a single woman in India who can say that she has not suffered this. Just read that Sajid Khan is asked to step down as director of Housefull 4, it’s bull shit that no one knew how he was before the story came out.

Bollywood stories sell like hotcakes, hence the focus is on that industry, but the whole goddam country needs to rewire itself. Men who have done this need to be shamed publicly, I don’t even want to go the legal route and get them to jail.

What will happen If every single person gets the courage, will every single house have a #metoo story. Maybe houses won’t break but there will be a crack in most of the houses. It’s saddening and sickening that this is hushed topic inside a household.

The #metoo movement can feel pretentious for a lot of people and every single one who tells me this is privileged. I am happy for you irrespective of your gender that you have never faced this. But just because you have never faced this and never realised ten intensity of it, does not make it null.

India is such a hypocritical, patriarchal country, we worship 10,000 goddesses but when it comes to treating the women in our lives, everything goes tumbling down.


Neelam Kumar wrote:

#metoo is also our Swatchh Bharat campaign. Women, please realise that in a crisis, men unite, and therefore become strong, whereas we women begin in-fighting and judging.

To all those women saying, “But how come it never happened to me?” pl put your hand on your heart and honestly say if you have escaped being fondled, “felt up” or molested by powerful males in the extended family, trusted relatives, doting cousins, extra loving uncles, besides the scumbags in crowded places?

In your growing up years, you were too afraid, confused or ashamed to speak up and brushed it aside as ” normal” behaviour of predatory males.

Well, the time has come to reset society’s button. To establish the “New Normal”. To create a safe society where women are not consumable items any more.

So don’t miss this moment in history. Your daughters will thank you for it.

Unite and Speak Up!


Latika Manaktala writes: 

“Everyone is doing #Metoo now for Publicity”

Waittt.. before you say something like that THINK- That kind of publicity also comes at a cost- the cost of being Judged, Publicly Criticized, Threatened, acknowledging of Assault and Humungous Courage to expose yourself to the world.

When someone speaks up -they risk on losing everything. The publicity you say? How long does that kind even last? Till the media is interested in you? Or for commoners like us- till it gets enough Social media likes?

Just before #metoo came into being.. 4 of us were sitting, bantering, leading to sharing our history of #metoos. That conversation was somehow very therapeutic as we were releasing our stocked up agony of years and decades and had never really shared our #metoos(read assaults) with a group as big as 4 people.

For some of us keeping our mouth shut for years, meant to endure anxiety, stress, panic attacks, reliving the horrific moments several times, feeling socially estranged, psychologically scarred and damaged self-esteem.

So what has changed now? What has led to people sharing now and not before..? Well.. A lot!!! SUPPORT.. I guess? (From a great pool of Gentlemen and Ladies out there who have our back.)

I don’t have any renowned person to shame here which would give me enough mileage but I have the audacity now to share my years of agony today through this post and never had this before.

So like they always say in a hopeful tone- “Time will come” So I guess it’s just the TIME. The time has now come- To shatter your silence and heal yourself. If not publicly, then at least with your friends and family.

Asking the victims to forget their tormented past – remain silent is telling them that no harm is done; there is nothing to be resentful about. It is reinforcing loss of self-esteem.

Behind this drama of #metoo lies personal betrayal, traumatic times. For a lot of people, public acknowledgement is the first step in proper healing, repairing an impaired self. It is also a hope to restore social trust and saner society.

Welcoming #MaDurga through this post this time.


Would like to share your own thoughts on the #MeToo movement? Please post your own experience in the comments below.

I leave you with this very moving video from a good man who recommends we #BelieveWomen. Too bad it takes a man saying that for people to believe it.

Indian Women Weigh In On India’s #MeToo Movement

How To Start A Business In India Step-By-Step

How To Start A Business In India Step-By-Step

India has emerged as the best place for women entrepreneurs to start a business with high level of optimism on various factors that are important to judge business growth, according to a study by PC maker, Dell.

Dell Women’s Global Entrepreneurship Study conducted among 450 women entrepreneurs across India, the US and the UK, by research firm Penn Schoen Berland, found that Indian women entrepreneurs are more confident of their business growth, as compared to counterparts in the US and the UK.

Starting a business might not be the easiest job on earth, but it is definitely not the most difficult. Now is the right time for you to get out of the cubicle or kitchen, wherever you are, and start your own business.

Work hard on your own terms, and not only will you add to the country’s prosperity, but also create your own individuality.

In this how-to series, we aim to help women entrepreneurs learn how to set up a business in India.

1. Decide what your business will be

First things, first. Decide what your business would be about. Are you manufacturing products, providing services or will you be a re-seller? Do you want to be a distributor or would you be hiring staff to create the products?

You need to understand that there are various forms of business entities in India and yours will fall under one of them. The types are:

• A Private Ltd. Co. where there are rights of shareholders are restricted regarding transfers and has to have minimum of two members with a maximum of 50.

• A Public Ltd. Co. is where shareholders have the power to transfer their shares and there is no limit to the number of members as long as there is a minimum of seven.

• An Unlimited Co. is where there is no limit to the liabilities of any of its members.

• A Sole Proprietorship is where the business is owned by an individual.

One Person Company is a new concept in India which has been introduced by the companies act 2013. In the old Companies Act 1956 a minimum of two directors and shareholders were required to form a private limited company. However, in case of a One person company, only one person is required, who can be a shareholder as well as the Director. Hence the name, One Person Company.

• A Partnership is where the business is owned by two of more people where they have agreed to equal share of the profits.

• Cooperatives are voluntary organisations under Cooperative Societies Act 1912.

• A Subsidiary Company is where private, public, unlimited and sole proprietorship have the permission to have foreign direct investment (FDI) of up to 100%.

• Joint Hindu Family business is a business type governed by Hindu law and in this type, only members of the same family can manage this business.

• In a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) while all members have limited liability, only one has unlimited liability in the business.

2. Do your research

Do enough research – of the market, the product, the target buyers and other factors which will affect your business in the long and short term. Everyone out there has a business idea and most of them are really good.

However, the path from ideation to implementation is not a short one and this is what decides whether the business will be a success or not. Just having an idea and arranging for funds isn’t enough to get the ball rolling.

If you are getting investments into your project, it is your prerogative to do all the research and only once everything has been cross-checked, to jump in.

3. Work with the facts

Don’t move ahead based on assumptions. You need facts. Assuming that the market will get better in a few months is not a good enough reason for you to start a business selling a product which isn’t selling well at this point of time.

What if things don’t revive after a few months? Your dreams and you, both will not succeed.

4. Get your digital signature

Once you’ve decided what you are doing your business in, you need a digital signature certificate from a Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) authorized agency.

This takes up to five days but is important. This can be obtained from any one of the six vendors in the country.

The documents required include:

• Class-II form

• Self-attested copy of Driver’s License/Ration Card/Voter ID/Aadhar Card or Latest Utility Bills

• Self-attested PAN card for Indian nationals

• Self-attested copy of Passport in case of foreign nationals

5. Do your paper work

With the above step done, you will need to prepare the INC-29 form which is done by a Company Secretary. This procedure is a bit complicated and requires a lot of documents. So, while resubmission is allowed, it is not wise to waste time. Hence, do all checks and submit accordingly.

You will also require the Director Information Number (DIN) for which one, two or three directors of the company can apply. The DIN is what the MCA identifies the company directors.

The documents required include:

• Scanned passport sized photographs

• Scanned copy of PAN (if Indian nationals, passport with foreign)

• Self-attested Voter ID/Latest utility bill/driver’s license/Aadhar card.

If you are a foreign national, you will need to get the scanned copies notarized from the Indian embassy.

Before registering the name of your company, you will need to confirm from mca.gov.in that the name has not been taken and neither is there any registered trademark to the same name. This can be checked at ipindia.nic.in

5. Submit the paperwork

Once the INC-29 is ready, it needs to be submitted/filed along with the fee, stamp duty and authorized capital fee. These are dependent on your location.

6. Get certified

Moving ahead, you will need to get the Incorporation Certificate from the government which is a big step ahead.

7. Registrations required

When you are registering your business, you will also need to get your bank account registration, TAN number, registration of various acts and all fermented and suggested ways. You will need to register your PAN as well as TAN numbers.

There are a bunch of other registrations that need to be done, depending on the type of company you have formed for your business – sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability partnership, private limited company, or public limited company.

8. Decide your pricing

Once all the above steps are done and the main paperwork is behind you, you decide the pricing of your products or services.

9. Attract funding

If you require funding or angel investors, this is a good time to go ahead and approach them with a solid business plan. No idea how to write a business plan?

This business plan course teaches you how to write a business plan by going through each section of a business plan one by one, explaining what to write in each section of the business plan. When you finish this course you will be able to write a fantastic business plan that gets the attention of investors.

However, do remember that if they are going to pump in their money into your project, they will automatically have an opinion, which might not go well with you. If they are the money-people, then it is advised that you stay in their good books.

10. Hiring talent

If you are planning to manufacture, getting raw materials, staff and renting, and buying property needs to be completed. Once your staff has been hired, they need to be trained accordingly. Calculate the manpower strength you will need.

11. Get a website

There are many ways to promote your business online without a website, but if your business is online, then you need to create an online store and you need a website. This not only makes your business looks formal and serious but is the best way to advertise it.

For this, you will need a domain and hosting service and once you’ve got them, you can either create a website yourself or you can outsource is to a freelance designer.

12. Focus on marketing

Advertising is important. If you are a manufacturer, you will need to personally meet your prospective clients and get orders in the beginning. If you are a seller or a re-seller then you need to advertise your brand as well as your product.

While word of mouth is still the best way to spread news, along with traditional advertising, you now also have access to the vast world of digital marketing. Create a website and get it optimized for search engines using SEO. Start a blog and post regular updates to it.

Join buyer and seller groups on Facebook, start your own Facebook group, pin your products with links back to your website on Pinterest, send out updates about new products on Twitter and Linkedin, and promote your business on your own Facebook business page.

Hire a social media agency to do this if you don’t have the time to do it yourself. Or join this FREE ‘Mass Traffic & Conversions’ Masterclass if you want to learn the skills to promote your business online.

If you want to learn more, this Entrepreneurs’ Marketing Guide will show you how to market your business yourself, in as little as 30 minutes of work a day.

13. Cost cutting

Make sure you keep a track of expenditures, big as well as small, right from day one. Not only does this ensure no money is getting wasted it also tells you where you can cut some costs.

There will come times in your business, whether in the beginning or once it is on its way to growth when you’ll need to cut costs. Keeping track of expenditures ensures that too much is not spent right from the very beginning.

14. Track your finances

Having said that, keep a financial buffer. A working spouse is always great if you are dropping your 9-to-5 job and starting a business. If not, it will be difficult.

In families where both the partners are working, while the income is more, so are expenditures. A financial buffer is important before you start your business.

Calculate how long it will take for you to start bringing home a decent amount of money to the table. Until then, your family and you will be surviving on the buffer amount.

You are ready to start your business. All the best!

How To Start A Business In India Step-By-Step

7 Natural Ways To Alkalize Your Body Daily (And Why You Should)

Almost every health issue is connected to the gut. Almost 90% per cent of our health issues arise from improper care of the stomach and one of the most dangerous but very common health issues that arise from improper care of your stomach is “Acidity”.

Acidity has become so common in every house nowadays that you can easily find someone in almost every family who is a regular patient of acidity. You might be wondering what’s dangerous with acidity? It’s common!

Yes, it’s common rather I would say it’s very common but still one of the dangerous issues that it should not be overlooked at any cost.

Why Is Alkalizing Your Body Good For You?

Acidity can cause:

  • Upset Stomach
  • Breathing Difficulties
  • A headache
  • Weakness or Fatigue
  • Shock, Coma or Death
  • Cardiovascular damage
  • Joint pain, aching muscles and lactic acid build-up
  • Acceleration of free radical damage etc.

According to the MD Anderson Cancer Center, some studies have even shown that acidic environments help cancer cells grow. So the idea is that a diet high in alkaline foods (high pH) and low in acidic foods will raise the body’s pH levels (make the body more alkaline) and prevent or even cure cancer.

Now that you know the benefit of alkalizing your body, and understand why is alkalizing your body good for you, we’ll discuss some natural ways to alkalize your body.

Acidity in our body is rising continuously due to various factors, some which are unavoidable and some are avoidable. Some of the reasons behind high acidity in our body are consuming pesticide-ridden crops, sugary drinks, food items made in overheated oil (pakoras, samosa etc.), pollution, and too much caffeinated and nicotine-related drink like tea, coffee.

When we become acidic, a number of diseases follow and lead us down a life path full of discomfort and pain. But if we learn to alkalize our body regularly and if we are ready to change our destructive habits we can lead a healthy and peaceful life.

So let’s understand step by step about acidity and alkalinization of the body. No talk about acidity or alkalinization is complete without mentioning Ph level. Ph means “puissance d’hydrogen” or power of hydrogen. It is the Ph level that denotes whether your body is acidic or alkalized.

If your Ph level is below 7 that means you are acidic. If your Ph level is above 7, this means your body is neutral and if it is above 7 you are alkalized.

We can measure the level of acidity in almost everything like an animal, soil, water, plant, and people. The pH actually is the measurement of the concentration of the hydrogen ion in the body.

In the context of human the ideal pH for our bodies should be slightly alkaline it should lay between 7.30 to 7.45. You can always check your pH level through your urine.

As the level of pH depends on many factors like your hydration, infection, and bacterial overgrowth also, you must take care of all these factors before a PH test.

If you are a diehard fan of fried and deep fried eatables or you have remained sick for many years or you have just recovered from your sickness, your body may be acidic.

And if it is so it’s a high time to fold up your sleeves and raise your ph level above 7. In this article, you’ll learn some easy ways to alkalize your body daily, so that you can save your body from unwanted side-effects of acidity.

  1. Drink Alkaline Water Daily

Alkaline water plays a pleasant role in improving the Ph level of your body. Alkaline water is known to neutralize the acidity of the body caused by modern diet, pollution, stress, and junk foods.

Alkaline water is rich in various minerals and negatively charged Hydroxide ions (OH-). This acts as a natural antioxidant and donates electron so that free radicals could pair up and neutralize.

Alkaline water

The negative charges of ionized alkaline water attract the positive ions of acids and neutralize them immediately within the body. It can help alkalize your acid body fast.

This water also improves the absorption of essential nutrients, improves metabolism by cleaning the cells. Even cooking with alkaline water improves the taste and quality of the food.

  1. Drink Coconut Water Daily

Coconut is another food which is known to have great alkalizer. Coconut is rich in medium chain triglycerides (MCT) which are known to reduce acidity. MCT in the form of oil is widely used in many medicines.

You can drink coconut juice or coconut milk or eat fresh coconut meat to reduce acidity and alkalize your body naturally.

Coconut for alkalization

Coconut is a great source of energy, it improves digestion, it repairs tissue, bowel function, dissolve kidney stones, promote weight loss, and Boost your stamina and immune system. If possible start consuming coconut daily.

  1. Start Every Day With Fresh Lemon in a Glass Of Water

Here’s how to alkalize your body in the morning. Lemon is an acidic fruit. So how does lemon alkalize your body? You’re right. Lemon is an acidic fruit, but when it enters your stomach it metabolizes and become alkaline.

Clean water with some fresh lemon juice is one of the highest rated metabolism enhancer and energy booster. Fresh lemons when added to water, oxygenate the body and enhance enzyme function.

Alkalize Your Body With Lemon

This is a great detoxifier and detoxifies the liver and helps your liver get rid of toxin uric acid. If you want to alkalize your body daily start your day with a glass of water with a fresh lemon juice in it.

  1. Consume Unsalted Almonds Daily

Almonds are packed with various vitamins and minerals like calcium, zinc, and magnesium, which help greatly in reducing the acidity and increasing alkalinization of the body.

Almonds for alkalization

These minerals help balance the acidity in our body while balancing blood sugar levels. It’s always better to choose almonds when feeling hungry over saturated fat containing snacks. This will keep you fuller for a longer time. As a bonus, it will affect your pH level positively.

  1. Add Multivitamins To Your Diet

Multivitamins are an excellent source of various vitamins and minerals that may not be possible to consume through your diet as per your daily requirement. So include at least one multivitamin tablet daily in your diet.

The combination of various vitamins and minerals like Vitamin C vitamin A, potassium, zinc, magnesium are known to alkalinize the body.

Multivitamins

Vitamin D helps the body to maintain an alkaline state while improving calcium absorption. Taking a multivitamin every day in your diet can keep your pH level on point.

  1. Reduce Stress

Stress affects your metabolism in an intense way. When you’re stressed your body starts producing more cortisol. Your metabolism slows down and your body loses the capability to eliminate the toxins naturally. This lowers the ph level and causes acidity.

Reduce stress

So it’s very important to keep yourself away from stress but the biggest question is how?  The best solution is to do yoga or meditation for at least 30 minutes daily in the morning. You can also do whatever you are fond of like listening music, book reading, sports etc.

And here comes the most difficult part….

  1. Workout Regularly (Especially In The Morning)

We are living in the world where we are very vulnerable to accumulate toxins every day. We accumulate these toxins from various sources like junk foods pollution etc. that’s why it’s very important to work out every day.

Regular exercise eliminates and flushes out these toxins from our body on the daily basis. When we do work out our body secrete such hormones which are very essential to neutralize the negative impact of acidity.

Work out daily

A person who regularly works out has better metabolism, better digestion, and a better capability to absorb nutrients from food. The chances of accumulating toxins like lactic, acid uric acid are very low for the person who regularly works out. So if you’re really serious about combating, acidity you must include a workout in your daily routine.

A workout after consuming lemon water in the morning is more beneficial than a workout in the evening because in the morning our metabolism remains at its peak. But if you are not comfortable with a morning workout, you can opt for evening workout also. After all, something is better than nothing.

I hope you’ve enjoyed these home/natural remedies to alkalize your body ph to restore good health. If you did, do leave a comment below.

Author Bio:

Prashant Kumar is a highly trained fitness trainer who loves CrossFit and writing about various healthy eating habits and fitness regimes on Health Product Info. He has helped many professionals to achieve their body transformation goals. Currently, he is preparing for Tekki Shodan from Shotokan karate.

7 Ways To Alkalize Your Body Daily (And Why You Should)

Love Yourself

Self-Love: How To Transform Your Relationship With Yourself

By Priya Florence Shah

How we see the world and interpret the actions of others depends on our relationship with our self. To change your relationships with others, you’ve got to change your relationship with yourself.

Why do we feel unhappy or unfulfilled in our relationships? Why do we complain, judge others or blame them for our problems? Usually, it’s because we feel that way about our self.

Our relationships and life experiences are a reflection of our inner world. How we see the world and interpret the actions of others depends on our relationship with our self.

To change your relationships with others, you’ve got to change your relationship with yourself.

  • Own your feelings

Accept that you alone are responsible for the way you think and feel. No one can make you feel that way. Own responsibility for allowing yourself to feel the way you do.

  • Be self-aware

Step back and observe yourself from a distance. How do you react to people and situations? Are you reacting unconsciously from the “wounded child” or responding in a calm, compassionate manner? When you’re conscious and aware of your feelings in a situation, you have the power to respond, rather than react.

  • Be authentic

Be true to yourself. There’s no need to put on a mask or a persona for someone else. You are perfect, whole and complete the way you are.

  • Love yourself unconditionally

Accept yourself for who you are, the parts you like, the parts you don’t. You’re part of divine creation. When you know and believe that, you will love and accept yourself the way you are.

  • Never belittle yourself

Never put yourself down or disrespect yourself. Don’t allow anyone else to treat you in a way that you don’t approve of. Never accept less than what you deserve – from yourself or anyone else.

  • Take care of yourself first

Remember the airline stewardess telling you to put on your own oxygen mask before helping the person next to you? You can’t take care of someone else, your family, or your kids if you don’t take care of yourself first. Make yourself and your health a priority and do what it takes to get well, in every way.

  • Get in touch with your Higher Self

Your intuition is your Higher Self, the self that knows without knowing… sees without seeing. It is this self that will guide you towards your higher purpose. Any time you spend in meditation, prayer or solitude, cultivating your relationship with your higher self, will be time well spent.

Learn to connect with yourself at a deeper level, find your purpose, and understand your role in the universe. It will transform your relationship with yourself, and with everyone in your life.

Watch the video below by Kartika Nair, an amazing spiritual teacher. She teaches a prayer called Ho’oponopono that helps you dissolve emotional blocks and manifest your desires.

© Priya Florence Shah is the Publisher and Editor of Naaree.com

Self-Love - How To Transform Your Relationship With Yourself

Returning To Work After Maternity Leave Childcare And Workplace Flexibility

8 Tips To Help You Go Back To Work After Maternity Leave

Childbirth is one of the most wonderful moments in a woman’s life. The idea of bringing new life into the world through your body is something that cannot be put into words. However, what can be put into words is the employment status of said mothers.

The study shows that only 47.5% of women on maternity leave were paid for their absence. This is a staggering statistic that illustrates how skewed our view of gender equality really is.

However, future moms rarely have a choice in the matter. Once the pregnancy starts taking shape, a leave of absence is necessary for the process to go on smoothly.

As the baby comes to the world, new moms are forced to look for new work or reintegrate themselves into existing positions. But how can you really do that?

How can you adapt to a new (or existing) workplace after a long hiatus due to maternity leave? These tips will help going back to work after maternity leave.

  1. Don’t quit your job

In India, women have enviable workplace maternity leave entitlements since The Maternity Benefit Amendment Act increased the duration of paid maternity leave available for women employees from the existing 12 weeks to 26 weeks.

However, women in countries like the US do not get paid maternity leave. In fact, the US is the only developed nation not to have paid leave for new moms.

If you live in the US and have a stable job in a profession which you feel passionate about – fight for it. Don’t let your boss or manager fire you just because you have a baby on the way. Know your rights when going back to work after maternity leave.

Instead, negotiate your way into a maternity leave – paid or unpaid – without losing the job. It is much harder to get back into the groove if you become unemployed due to your pregnancy.

Being employed while pregnant will allow you to get news and updates from work. You can always call up a colleague or have someone over for coffee and talk. However, if you close that door for good, your return to form will be much more difficult afterwards.

  1. Prepare for multitasking

Being a parent is full-time work. Whether you are a single mom or a happily-married wife, chances are that you will take the majority of the blow when it comes to the baby. Father figures are important in the healthy development of a child – however, moms still take precedent.

A mother and her child have been connected for nine whole months – mind and body. This means that your child will always seek your attention before anyone else’s.

Going to work and taking care of your child will start to take a toll on you if you don’t organize your time effectively. Make sure to have strict hours set for your child and know when you will be unavailable due to work. A balanced work-home life isn’t impossible if you put everything on paper and start prioritizing.

  1. Reevaluate your career path

Going on a leave of absence for six or more months will change your perspective on life in general. You can use this time to reflect on your career path so far and make new plans. For example, you may want to focus on new skills and networking when you get back from your maternity leave.

Alternatively, you can choose to take on a different career altogether. In that case, you can find a professional writer who will help you create a new resume.

Applying for new and exciting job opportunities is a viable option just as going back to secure work is. Every woman is responsible for her own professional development. Use the opportunity given to you and think about what is best for you and your newborn.

  1. Go straight to your boss

Whether you are coming back to your old work or applying for new work, make sure to speak to your manager or CEO as soon as possible. Tell them about your recent experience and your new position as a mother as well as a professional.

Emphasize your willingness to work hard and make up for anything that you might have missed in your absence. Most bosses and managers are reluctant to take back a woman after maternity leave due to her being out of the loop. Of course, this varies across different US states and world countries.

Don’t wait to be patronized and confront the issue of your absence firsthand. Your manager will appreciate the initiative and honesty in your voice, making your transition into the workplace that much easier.

  1. Look for a nanny early

Find a babysitter if you plan on getting back on track with your professional career – and do it fast. Babysitters are a cheap and easy way to ensure that your newborn has some care and attention while you are away.

You can hire students or professional nannies depending on your budget and needs. Your husband should also take the brunt of babysitting while you are working – this is especially true if he works from a home office.

The baby should get as much attention while you are at work as it would with you present in the house. Hired help in the form of a caring nanny would do the trick nicely.

  1. A gradual return

Pregnancy takes a huge mental and physical toll on a woman, so don’t rush to get back into the fold. Your first day back to work after maternity leave can be a shock to your system.

No one can blame you if you take it easy in the first weeks of your return. Instead, ask your boss to work shorter hours for the first several days. Gradually raise your limits until you are back to full capacity as you were before you left.

This will make your return much smoother and easier to handle. Not to mention that you will spend most of your first days on the job getting up to speed with recent developments.

If this is impossible, make sure to take breaks, sit down often and consume plenty of sustenance.

  1. Support groups help

It may sound like a downer but you are not the first professional woman who became a mother. There are numerous support groups, forums and amazing counselling organizations all around the globe.

You can enrol in one of these groups if you want to get some advice on motherhood, career development and to feel better in general. Don’t shut your motherly instincts away just because you have to work.

This is a great opportunity especially if you don’t know any mothers around the neighbourhood who can talk to you. Take care of yourself just as much as you do for the baby. It needs you to be mentally prepared for all the growing pains and challenges that follow.

  1. Check in with your doctor

Lastly, make sure to give your doctor a visit from time to time. You have recently gone through a tremendous physical ordeal. Your doctor will give you the necessary advice to get back to work as painlessly as possible.

It will also help you alleviate any fatigue you might experience as a result of your recent pregnancy and childbirth. Talk to him or her anytime you feel differently about your body or your child. A simple pat on the back from our trusting doctor can do wonders for our mood during the week.

In Summation

It will never be easy for new mothers to get back on their career track. Some professions simply expand and develop too fast for someone to jump back in without problems.

However, there is always space for progression and development for women across the globe. There are a plethora of career opportunities available at every step – some specifically tailored for moms.

Make sure to explore all of your options before you give up on going back to work after a maternity leave. After all, you’ve done it all for the little one in your life – go the extra mile and do a little bit more.

About the author:

Daniela McVicker is an author and editor at Rated by Students. She is a firm believer in giving women a chance at professional development and independence. She enjoys blogging, reading classic literature and listening to soft jazz.

Having difficulty going back to work after maternity leave? Get over 30 legitimate work-from-home job options to help you earn money from the comfort of your living room couch? Download our brand new ebook, “I Want To Work From Home: A Guide To Legitimate Work-From-Home Options In India.

Tips To Help You Go Back To Work After Maternity Leave

7 Surprising Health Benefits of Garlic And How To Eat It

7 Surprising Health Benefits of Garlic And How To Eat It

Garlic, an odoriferous herb has been known to mankind since the ancient times. Romans, Greeks, Egyptians and Chinese lavishly indulged their taste buds in its bounteously beneficial bulbs.

Belonging to the onion family garlic is a precious reserve of rich antibiotic, antifungal and antiviral properties, guarding your body against infections and providing effective cure to several maladies.

Garlic – The Miraculous Odiferous Herb

That eating garlic is good for health has been a common household knowledge for years, but it is only in recent that scientists have uncovered its mystery.

Their studies have unravelled the high presence of hydrogen sulfide as the factor responsible for the herb’s miraculous medicinal benefits.

Garlic’s Rich Chemical Profile

Garlic is famed for emitting a pungent smell. But where exactly does the smell come from?

Scientists tell us that it is from – allicin, the same sulphur compound that also imparts it with medicinal goodness that cures heart ailments, cancer and a host of other diseases.

According to a report published by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, US Allicin boosts the body’s natural supply of hydrogen sulfide.

In turn, reducing quantities of unhealthy fats and eliminating cholesterol from the body. It also enhances the body’s ability to produce antioxidant and transmits cellular signals to cause blood vessels to relax and increase blood circulation.

A Multitude Of Health Benefits

Garlic was considered a divine herb by the Greeks. It is said that the Greeks had their athlete mouth raw garlic before they went for the Olympic events.

Modern day scientists and health experts, based on the findings of their experiments conducted also believe in garlic to be an elixir.

Many diseases, they claim, can be prevented and cured by the consumption of the herb. Besides keeping us healthy, garlic can work yield wondrous effects on the following diseases:

  1. Garlic for Heart Ailments

In a recent study done by the University of Alabama, researchers found the positive impact of garlic on our blood. On mixing garlic juice to a sample of human blood, they found the red cells readily producing a substantial quantity of hydrogen sulfide.

The compound acts as a preventive agent and treatment of ailments related to the heart. Other than that, it also successfully addresses the metabolic issues of the body such as hyperglycemia, thrombosis, atherosclerosis and hypertension.

Garlic is known to reverse plaque build-up and in the process alleviate early heart disease symptoms. Countries such as France and Italy where lots of raw garlic is eaten have substantially lower rates of heart diseases than in the UK.

  1. Garlic Combats Cancer

Garlic’s power to boost allicin in the body is associated with its ability to fight different types of cancers, like breast, prostate and colon cancer. A high intake of garlic reduces the risk of cancers related to oesophagus, colon, stomach, pancreas and breast.

Garlic has high quantities of anti-bacterial substances which ward off cancer-causing substances. Garlic-eating cancer sufferers too could benefit a great deal from preventing their symptoms from aggravating.

  1. Garlic Alleviates High Blood Pressure

Blood pressure is a common affliction in the modern day society. The good news is that you don’t have to rely on hyper-sensitive medication in order to bring down your blood pressure levels.

Health experts have discovered a link between consumption of aged garlic and reduced blood pressure levels.

It has been found that taking about four capsules a day has dropped blood pressure levels in people with uncontrolled hypertension. A similar positive result could not be found with the intake of regular medication.

  1. Garlic Cures Colds and Infections

Garlic is a brilliant remedy for those with persistent common infection as it has a remarkable potential to destroy millions of harmful microorganisms in our body.

One could get rid of the common cold by consuming raw garlic with warm water every day. Including garlic in one’s diet in a regular way can help in the prevention of various infection-based diseases.

The herb has antimicrobial, antiviral and antifungal properties to keep all kinds of infections at bay.

  1. Garlic Improves Insulin Sensitivity

A preliminary study published in the Nutrition & Metabolism journal in 2011 concluded that eating of raw garlic helps in increasing insulin sensitivity in our bodies.

Diabetes, especially the Type 2 is caused when the insulin level drops. Garlic regulates blood sugar levels in our body, hence halting or decreasing effects emerging out of diabetes complications.

  1. Garlic Has An Anti-inflammatory Effect

A health article published by Food and Chemical Toxicology in August 2013 revealed that raw garlic is highly beneficial for those suffering from inflammatory conditions.

Again, it is allicin that provides our bodies with anti-inflammatory effects, both preventive and curative. However, medical and health experts suggest patients consume raw garlic instead of the cooked form. Cooking destroys much of the healthy enzymes found in the garlic cloves.

  1. Garlic Has Anti-Aging Benefits

The high presence of hydrogen sulfide in garlic retards the process of hardening of the arteries. As a result, our blood circulation is well-maintained, making our skin look less aged with time.

Allicin in garlic thus reduces wrinkles, too. The Vitamin C content in garlic creates healthy collagen that keeps our skin glowing.

For Best Results, Use Garlic Raw

Garlic, when eaten raw yields maximum health benefits.  Cooking destroys the allicin found in the herb.

Health experts also suggest that we allow crushed garlic to sit for at least 15 minutes before use, for it to adequately release its enzymes.  You could add a dash of raw garlic to flavour your soups, pasta and even put some minced stuff in cheese sandwiches.

Growing garlic in your garden is a good idea too, for doing so will help you acquire its equally beneficial green leaves too. All that you need to do is stick in some cloves in the fall and dig for their harvest in the summer.

Cloves To Love!

After having discovered the diverse health benefits of garlic, you wouldn’t want your diet to be without it.

So, now whenever you see the purplish-white garlic bulbs in the market don’t shun them, nor allow them to wither away in your kitchen after their purchase.

Get going with garlic and gain its goodness. Just peel the cloves, and, chop, mince or pound and to your culinary preparation add a pinch of their pungent flavour.

Wait no longer, fall in love with garlic. And, experience the bliss of wellness and good health!

Author’s Bio

Mitravinda is a Nutritionist at DietChart with a doctoral degree in Food Science and Nutrition. She is a teacher, researcher and an author. Her passion for the subject prompted her to start writing blogs on various nutrition-related topics such as Health Benefits of Green Tea, Diet Chart For Weight Loss, Health Benefits Of Green Tea, etc. Through her blogs, she wishes to help people gain a deeper understanding of the relationship between food, nutrition, lifestyle and health.

Surprising Health Benefits of Garlic And How To Eat It

Digital Marketing Career

How To Succeed Spectacularly In Your Digital Marketing Career

Have you ever asked the question, “Is digital marketing a good career in India?”

If you’re not sure of your job prospects or career after a digital marketing course, you should know that the future of a digital marketing career in India is bright.

With the increasing requirements for certified digital marketing professionals in the business world, this has become one of the hottest careers for young people in India.

The digital economy is growing ten times faster than the conventional economy, which will result in a colossal number of employment opportunities in this field.

The best part of this career option is that you can build your skills and capabilities and grow quickly. Because of the relative scarcity of certified Digital Marketing experts, this career option generously compensates the individuals who specialize in it.

A career in Digital Marketing is about diligent work, achieving mastery, and applying your new-found skills to help your clients succeed in business.

8 Abilities Required for a Successful Digital Marketing Career 

Besides specializing in one or more aspects of digital marketing (e.g. SEO, SEM, Social Media Marketing), here are some of the abilities you would be required to display to become a digital marketing expert.

To the degree that you have these abilities, you can expect to grow as a digital marketer.

  1. Innovativeness

Innovativeness is an essential part of cleverly positioning a brand among its competitors. It’s also important in creative ideation and designing campaigns.

  1. Scientific temperament

Digital marketing requires testing and tracking. Analytics play a huge role in this field and a scientific temperament is an asset that will put you head and shoulders above other marketers.

  1. Communication skills

Excellent communication skills, especially writing and correspondence, are critical to work as a distributed team. Without effective communication, you will not be able to achieve the results you desire or work as a distributed team.

  1. A love of learning

Given the dynamic and ever-changing nature of the internet and digital media, you must be open to learning new skills all the time and understanding the medium and its newest iterations.

  1. Enthusiasm for digital media

Digital Marketing experts who are truly enthusiastic about this field will, without a doubt, see more achievement and success coming their way. Passion for your work will take you much farther than if you merely consider it a job.

  1. Ability to multi-task

Most campaigns include juggling various digital media channels and tracking all sorts of analytics. Multitasking is another critical skill for any digital marketer to be able to handle the surplus of information coming your way.

  1. Comfortable with technology

Technology is a huge part of digital marketing, so a tech-savvy person is more likely to succeed in this field. If you’re not tech-savvy, you’ll at least have to be comfortable with technology. Of course, with technology becoming more intuitive and user-friendly every day, this may change.

  1. Willingness to experiment

Digital marketing is an evolving field. A lot of it is educated guesswork, so the willingness to experiment, fail and try again is a huge asset in this field.

5 Tips To Succeed Spectacularly In Your Digital Marketing Career

  1. Be patient while learning your new skills

Even though you can get a Digital Marketing certification in a few months, as opposed to the years it takes to earn a formal degree, you need to be patient with yourself while learning your new skills.

You’ll be absorbing a humongous amount of information and it takes time to be able to digest all of it and put it into practice.

  1. Be a constant learner

Digital Marketing requires constant learning since the web is a dynamic and ever evolving medium. There are new updates, technologies and techniques being tried and tested all the time and you’ll have to learn to keep up with it.

  1. Get specialized

No digital marketer is a ‘Jack of all trades.’ Every DM worth their salt learns to specialize in one or more fields they have an affinity for.

You can choose from specializations in blogging, content marketing, SEO/SEM, social media marketing, mobile marketing, CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization) and more.

Having a specialization in one or more aspects of digital marketing will help you position yourself and give you an edge over others in the field.

  1. Brand yourself online

Learning digital marketing is of no use unless you know how to leverage it to brand yourself and grow your own visibility, as well as your client’s business.

Starting a blog and writing about your digital marketing journey can help you apply your skills and learn the practical aspects of build an audience online. It will also help you get noticed as an expert in your field.

  1. Grow your network 

No one can succeed all by oneself. You need to stand on the shoulders of giants to reach new heights in your career.

To achieve success in a career in Digital Marketing, you need to connect with other digital marketing experts and build relationships with them, so you can collaborate with and learn from them.

Although you can connect with other experts online, the best way to build a relationship is face-to-face, at conferences and networking events.

Check out this list of the top 120+ Digital Marketing conferences in 2018 and see which ones you can attend to meet new people and learn new strategies.

  1. Get lots of testimonials

At the end of the day, your success in any field depends on how well you apply your new skills to provide value to others.

If you’re able to able to create a lot of happy clients and get a bunch of testimonials and LinkedIn recommendations, you’re more likely to succeed in your new career.

It’s all about being proactive, getting work done, and demonstrating good outcomes to prove yourself to your clients. Focus on your results and case studies and you’ll go far.

We hope you enjoyed this digital marketing career guide and are seriously considering digital marketing as a career, whether as a full-time employee, a digital marketing consultant or a work-from-home option.

We wish you great success in your digital marketing career.

About the author:

Laura is a Marketing Manager at WebDigify and is also experienced in Template Design. She also likes to share her thoughts on SEO Digital marketing, Digital Marketing Strategy, and web development techniques.

The future of a digital marketing career in India is bright. Learn how to succeed in your digital marketing career

10 Ways To Keep Clients Happy In Your Freelance Business 

10 Ways To Keep Clients Happy In Your Freelance Business 

So, you’re a freelancer. You get to enjoy working in your pyjamas, making your own schedule, and choosing the types of clients you take on. Congrats! Being a freelancer is not easy, but for many people, it’s worth it.

One tough part about having a freelance business is that you usually have to wear a lot of hats. You don’t have a big corporate budget to work with—all you have is what you earn, so usually, you have to take on multiple roles in your company to ensure everything runs smoothly.

We would call you a superwoman, but you already know that.

Perhaps one of the more difficult sides of freelancing is dealing with clients. You don’t have any customer support staff or assistants to handle client communication. It’s all you, all the time.

Sometimes, that means you leave clients on the backburner. As you know, your clients are the lifeblood of your business, and without them, you’d have no business!

How can you make sure you’re keeping your clients happy and coming back for more (or refer you to their contacts)? There are a few client management tips we’ve used in our own businesses that work very well.

The good news is, many clients don’t require a lot of extra effort to stay happy; you just have to be mindful of keeping the relationship positive.

10 Ways to Keep Clients Happy

  1. Ask for feedback
  2. Reply to clients on social media
  3. Over-communicate
  4. Be available
  5. Compliment your client
  6. Create scope documents for projects
  7. Send thank-yous
  8. Don’t miss deadlines
  9. Update your client regularly
  10. Invoice on time

Tip 1: Ask For Feedback

When completing a project for a client, don’t hesitate to ask them for feedback via a review or short survey.

When asking, you can explain to your client that getting feedback helps you improve your services so you can serve them better—this will make them more inclined to give you honest reviews.

Of course, it can be tedious asking every client to give you feedback, so we suggest optimizing your time and using an automation tool like Broadly, which will help you get feedback without you even having to lift a finger.

That way, you can show off your awesome client reviews without expending any extra energy trying to collect them. It’s a win-win for both you and the client.

Tip 2: Over Communicate

You’ve heard it before, but we’ll tell you again: Communication is key. In any relationship, personal or business-related, it is imperative you keep the lines of communication open and clear.

In the client-freelancer relationship, this would mean explicitly communicating some or all of the below:

  • Goals
  • Objectives
  • Metrics used to measure those goals/objectives
  • Communication system during projects
  • Deadlines

Basically, lay everything on the table. You don’t want to start a project without knowing the rate, what’s expected, and how you’ll work together, and your client probably doesn’t want to either.

Keeping communication very straightforward will help both of you know what’s expected. Clearly outlining these things in writing (via email) will also serve to protect you later on should an issue arise—you can just reference the email to back you up.

Tip 3: Be Available

Because you’re a freelancer, chances are your work hours are already a bit wonky compared to the regular 9 to 5ers. Though your abnormal work schedule can be a good thing, you can’t use this as an excuse to clients who are trying to get ahold of you.

It’s your responsibility to be available when a client reaches out to you, especially if you are in the midst of working on their project. Especially if you know that client is on a corporate schedule, you know that they will primarily contact you between regular work hours—keep that in mind and do your best to respond as soon as you can.

If a client does contact you during abnormal hours (even for you)—like, say, 10 p.m. on a Saturday—kindly reply to them and let them know you will handle whatever it is on Monday. It is in both of your best interests to respect one another’s time… especially downtime.

But whatever you do, don’t ignore them! Radio silence is a fast-track to losing clients. Sometimes it’s worth it to coddle a little on off-hours if the client is extremely important to your business.

Tip 4: Reply To Clients on Social Media

Sometimes, clients will try to reach you on various platforms. Though it may not be ideal for you, it’s important that you acknowledge all of these forms of communication if you want to keep your past, present, or future clients happy. Basically, this circles back to communication and being available.

Social media can also be utilized to get more clients, but we must caution you if you use this method. A client can easily recommend you to someone else via social media, and it’s in your best interest to have a timely reply—”thanks for thinking of me, Jane!” works great.

However, when sifting through potential new clients who have reached out to you on social media that you do not know, be weary. There has been a 100% increase in fake social media accounts, and a lot of these accounts are used to phish, or steal your private information.

We recommend bookmarking these security tips of the day to help you stay vigilant in keeping your business information safe and sound when replying to clients and vetting new ones.

Tip 5: Compliment your client

You may roll your eyes at this one, but nothing gets you places quite like a little flattery. Now, don’t take it the wrong way—you don’t have to pander to your client every day. All you have to do is be aware of what your client is working on and maybe give them some encouragement.

For example, if an artist commissions you to write product copy for an entire collection of theirs, a nice thing to say would be: “The new prints look awesome! Love the color schemes you chose. Can’t wait to get going on these.”

Especially if the client is another small business owner, you should lift him or her up. Think about how great it feels when a client gushes over your work. Return the favour if it’s honest.

Tip 6: Create scope documents for projects

To help minimize the amount a client “checks in” on you during a project, create a scope document at the beginning. The scope document can cover everything you agreed upon when communicating your goals, objectives, deadlines, etc.

This way, if the client reaches out to you with a redundant question, you can just point back to the scope. Hopefully, though, they will consult the scope document before getting in touch.

The scope document will essentially serve as the outline for both of you so nothing gets forgotten or swept under the rug. It’s all clear what is supposed to be happening in the specified time frame.

Additionally, this kind of organization will impress your client—nobody wants to work with someone who seems completely dishevelled and unreliable. They want professionalism, and scope documents are a perfect way to showcase that.

Tip 7: Send thank-yous

Simple but impactful, a handwritten thank you note via snail mail can really boost your client’s perception of you. Anyone can send a quick email, but if you take the one extra step to handwrite a note and send it through the mail, your client will appreciate the gesture so much more.

When to send a thank-you? Following a completed project is always a good time: “Thank you for choosing to work with me on _____! It’s been wonderful working with you. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch regarding any additional needs in the future.”

You can also use holidays to double as well-wishes and thank-yous. Sending out holiday cards to your clients is a thoughtful gesture that will leave a lasting impression.

People like working with people, and showing you that you care about your clients as humans increase your chances of them wanting to work with you again.

Tip 8: Don’t miss deadlines

This should go without saying. If you promise a client to have something complete by a certain date, you should be fully prepared to deliver that project on or before that date.

It’s not so much the fact that you absolutely can’t turn it in a day late, but it’s a respect thing. If you don’t honor the deadlines you set with your client, how do you think it makes your client feel?

It makes them feel like they aren’t important to you, which will probably make them want to stop working with you.

Every client should feel like your top client, no matter how much they are paying you. A simple way to show appreciation for their business is to get the work done when you say you will.

Reliability is a big part of earning repeat business—if you never deliver on time, why would someone want to work with you again?

Tip 9: Update your client regularly

Depending on what you sussed out about your communication plan during the beginning stages of the project, you should have a good idea about when and how often to update your client on the progress.

However, it never hurts to be extra diligent in keeping them posted. A lot of companies are weary about hiring freelancers because of the lack of commitment to the company compared to in-house employees, so showing them that you’re engaged in their project and want them to be updated is a huge plus.

Tip 10: Invoice on time

Do not wait months after a project has been completed to invoice your client. If they ask you to invoice on a certain schedule (usually the 1st or 15th of the month), you should do your best to stick to that schedule.

Yes, sometimes invoicing is a pain, but don’t you want to get paid? If you wait too long, companies’ budgets can be a lot different than they were when they hired you, and you might have a hard time getting paid for your work.

On the client end, receiving your invoice in a timely manner means they don’t have to mess up their books when you invoice seven months down the road.

Conclusion

Treat your clients like you would want your clients to treat you. If you want to be trusted, then don’t miss deadlines. If you want to establish a long-term relationship, consider taking the extra step to send a card.

Everything always boils down to stellar communication. Working remotely has its perks, but you must keep clear and open communication with your remote clients if you want them to give you repeat business and refer you to others.

Author Bio:

Britney Cooper is a world travelling freelancer. She is passionate about entrepreneurship, travel, and technology. When she isn’t writing, you can usually find her out on a hike or trying to book a flight to her next adventure.

Want over 30 legitimate work-from-home job options to help you earn money from the comfort of your living room couch? Download my brand new ebook, “I Want To Work From Home: A Guide To Legitimate Work-From-Home Options In India.” Also available on Amazon Kindle.

10 Ways To Keep Clients Happy In Your Freelance Business. Make sure you’re keeping your clients happy and coming back for more

Freelance Writer

8 Things To Know Before You Become A Freelance Writer

We all long to call ourselves writers, don’t we? If you ask me, being a writer has always been my dream, and today I live it, thanks to the internet.

Today, freelance writing is considered one of the most coveted jobs because you can do it from anywhere in the world. The perks of sitting in your comfort corner and earning while in PJs are enough to make one want to be a freelance writer.

However easy and comfortable that may sound, becoming a freelance writer without experience will demand a lot of hard work and patience on your part. So be ready for that!

When I had taken up freelance writing, I was an amateur without the least bit of knowledge in the field. But today, freelance writing is considered one of the most coveted jobs.

So if you’re thinking of ditching your day job and taking up writing as a work-from-home job, here are 8 things you need to know before you break into the world of freelance writing.

  1. Rates and Payment

While freelancing comes with its own set of merits, the biggest challenge is that of payment. Payments can be made on the basis of rates per word, per write-up, or as per the working hours.

You can simply use this to your benefit and charge according to your convenience. Also, make sure that the rate you charge is neither too high (to fetch you no work) nor too low (to suffice for your efforts).

Since countries like India are offering copywriting services at lower rates due to the low cost of living, you may have to charge more economical rates, so that you find work for yourself.

However, do keep in mind not to lower your worth and settle for anything lesser than you deserve.

  1. Taxes

When seen from the perspective of paying taxes, freelancing comes with a significant benefit of several exemptions. If you are an amateur freelance writer, we suggest you maintain your books and accounts properly.

Although a tedious process, it can actually pay off when you finally have to file taxes. Since you will be a freelance writer, you can save up on professional tax, as that will be exempt for you.

Keep a proper record of all the invoices of your expenses so that you can calculate the deductions while filing for tax return.

  1. Know your audience

The first and foremost thing that you must have a clear understanding of is about your readers when you become a freelance writer.

Since most newbies start with web content writing and SEO copywriting, you must remember to write in a voice and tone that is most appropriate to the targeted audience.

For example, if you are writing for a youth magazine, then you should use a more casual tone with the colloquial dialect. If it is a creative zone, then you can go out of the norms and write your heart out.

But if it is an informative medical piece, you must make it formal as you know the target will be people from the medical background or people looking for information regarding the issue.

To get a better insight, go through the published content on a site before writing for the same.

  1. Stick to the brief

When you start your journey as a freelance writer, you will be told that writing skill is the biggest asset you can have. Although partly right, there are more important things that you must keep in mind before you kick start as a freelancer.

As a freelancer, you must learn to be specific to the requirements of a writing contract and deliver work as per the brief you are given by the editor. If the requirements are for a blog, then make sure you make it informal wherein you give a personal overview of the topic.

At the same time, pay attention to details. Make sure you are abiding by the guidelines of the site and maintaining the word limit for the content that you have been hired to write.

  1. Research

As a freelance writer, the foremost thing is an access to reliable sources that you can use to conduct extensive research on the topic that you have given to write on.

The availability of a good search engine isn’t everything! You must know how to carry about detailed research and should know the right places to look for data relating to your content.

However, while using Google and other such similar search engines, you must know the sources that you can trust. For example, if you are writing an article on monetary and financial topics, then the official website of the World Bank and other business papers like The Economic Times should be the ideal options for you.

Put more real-life facts to make your piece more credible and relatable. And if you think you are not sure about something, just Google it instead of giving inaccurate information in your writing.

  1. Learn SEO copywriting

It is a new era of digitalisation, and online content is taking over printed publishes. Search engine optimisation has become crucial to making sure that a piece of online content gets a higher search ranking to attract more readers.

Assignmenthelp says “it becomes vital that you learn the various techniques to make your writing SEO compatible. Before you start pitching for work, do make an effort to know more about keywords and the different rules relating to them.”

Learn how to use and where to place keywords, so that your writing can be optimised to the fullest. Having said that, also remember that whatever you write, people will use it, not the search engine. So make sure that your content is not written around a keyword.

  1. Editing

As a writer, your work does not end after you are done writing a piece. Editing is the key to good copywriting, and therefore you should get into the habit of re-reading your copy as many times you can.

Revising your writing helps you to make changes to the tone and style to make it even better. When you are composing an elaborate piece, it is quite likely to make mistakes or miss words in between.

Effective editing helps you to fix such issues so that you deliver blemish-free work. Also, keep aside some time to proofread your writing for grammar and spelling mistakes.

While you can use many tools available online, I suggest you read it yourself because the human brain can trace errors that at times the software fails to catch them. Once you’re done revising, give it the last read to make sure that the content is coherent.

  1. Plagiarizing

Plagiarizing is the biggest hurdle for any writer- be it a freelancer or not. It can have fatal consequences for your professional career and can taint your reputation.

Now, you would not want that, right? So when you are writing content for online publishing, make sure that you do not copy or borrow material from someone else’s article.

There are several online plagiarism checkers available that can detect even the slightest trace of piracy in your writing. So beware!

I am not telling you not to use ideas at all. But if you do, make sure that you do it legally. If you are wondering how to apply ideas in an appropriate way, the answer is citations.

Simply cite the references of the sources that you have taken information or ideas from in your content. Another way to use ideas is by quoting the author. This will make your work more credible and therefore get your more work.

While being a writer can be a fun job where you can give vent to all the creativity within you, being a freelance writer can have its share of challenges too.

Unlike full-time work, the incomes will be a lot more inconsistent as work will depend upon the seasonal demand. At times, there will be an influx of projects while sometimes there will be none.

So make sure that you have some saving that you can rely on. But again, what is the best thing? The fact that you save time on the commute and can work from the comfort of your house gives the best opportunity to grow as a writer.

So what are you waiting for? Go kick start your career as a writer today. Good luck!

Author Bio:

Nathan William is an engineer by fate and a writer by choice who offers to do my assignment for students. Besides being an active blogger, he loves honing his culinary skills.

Want to start your freelance writing career and work from home or anywhere in the world? This freelance writer course will help new and aspiring freelance writers start and grow a freelance writing business from scratch.

8 Things To Know Before You Become A Freelance Writer