I am interested in writing up some kind of self-assessment, to be completed annually or every six months or so (ish) to get a rough idea of whether my eternal quest for self-improvement has been going well over time. I'm not exactly looking to gather literal, usable data, but that would be interesting too. What should I ask, and how should I format it? [more inside]
I'm wanting to improve my rote memory and not sure exactly how or where to start. [more inside]
I got a quote to remodel part of my house a few days ago. I signed a handwritten contract in my home. I just got a MUCH lower bid on it. Can I back out of the first contract? [more inside]
I'm researching resources for a manager (M) who mentors with someone (S) who has experienced discrimination and disadvantage throughout their life. M wants to support S practically and with sensitivity. [more inside]
Mrs. _db_ and I just closed on a house - yay! Now the fun begins of working on some of the little things we don't love as well as indulging in all those improvements we've been looking forward to. While we already have some things in mind, I'm sure there are things we have overlooked. What improvements can be made to a home that result in the greatest increase in quality of life? [more inside]
What are best practices for filling a long, dry 1/16" wide crack in my basement floor? [more inside]
I am getting conflicting opinions on when you can (and can’t use) CFL and LED lights indoors, especially with a flush mount light fixture. I am more confused now that ever. If someone can offer some insight, it would be great. [more inside]
Toilet not being used for months. How do I keep it from getting gross? [more inside]
Looking for a word that means something like "a feeling of contentment while continuously striving for improvement." Any ideas?
There are loads of things I'm crap at including driving tests, reading maps, i.t, maths and statistics, science and anatomy and handling conflict. Some of these would help me professionally and all are areas I'd like to improve in... or at the very least have an elementary grasp of to be better rounded or whatever.. Whilst I'm sure self talk/prior negative experiences/crap teachers and/or feedback/brain wiring (maybe...) keep me a bit stuck with these subjects.. at various points I have sat down semi seriously at least to try and tackle these knowledge deficits. Granted discipline ain't always my strongest trait.. but have you had any related success stories to overcoming a subject you were intimidated by/felt 'doomed' in(?!) I'd love to get your tips and insights.
In 6-8 months, I'll be finishing school and and looking to start practicing as a professional independently in my field. I don't want to go into detail, but I will be a health professional who will be responsible for preserving lives in potentially dire situations. I'm smart and capable, but I don't always sound like I am. I need to learn to speak more elegantly, eloquently, and beautifully so I will inspire confidence in clients and potential clients. I'm a female from a sort of upper middle class background from southern CA with a host of less charming and confidence inspiring collloquialisms (like saying 'like' like a whole lot!). Right now I'm a student living on student money so I can't afford private coaches or expensive lessons. The ideal for me would be to sound like Julie Andrews in The Princess Diaries (of course I don't want to fake her accent though, just speak in the same manner). I'm at a loss on where to start.
I'm looking to raise my game in all sorts of areas and seeking advice on the things you've invested time and money in that lift your life out of the ordinary... [more inside]
I am going to get some windows replaced. Help me avoid the pitfalls of bad contractors, shoddy work, and overpricing. How should I approach this? [more inside]
I want to learn how to renovate or add on to a house.
The good news is that I found white hexagonal tile under the nasty vinyl flooring. That's also the bad news. Here is the floor currently. Basically, the tiles themselves are in pretty good shape considering they are about 100 years old. There are a few cracks, but the real problem is that the glue from the floor that was above it will not come off from in between the tiles. Detail shot. This is pretty much the kind of floor we want, but the mrs. is about ready to call it and just install a new hex floor on top. I'm not quite ready to give up. [more inside]
I'm asking this Q for a friend and I really hope someone will be able to help. We moved into our house about two years ago. We've had problems with our sprinklers in the past and when we had them repaired, a sprinkler expert told my wife there was "something wrong" with how we get water to the front since they couldn't shut off the water. That didn't make sense to me, but now that I've tried to fix the sprinklers in the front myself, I've encountered the same problem. When I turn off the shut off valves near the water meter (what I think are the main valves), nothing happens, though it does turn off the water to the backyard. When I need to repair plumbing inside the house, the valve close to the house does the trick, but again, I can't shut off water to the front sprinklers. I have no idea how the sprinklers were installed, but it is getting frustrating and I'd like to know how to go about troubleshooting this. Is there any way to identify where a valve might be to shut off the water to the front sprinklers? Here's a simple diagram I drew. Thank you!!!
I have a bathroom that has had some serious moisture issues over the years. I recently installed an exhaust fan and that's mitigated the problem somewhat. My big issue is this: the wall paint (semi-gloss latex) is peeling off where the wall and tile meet. It started bubbling up here and there and I made the mistake of pulling on a little piece today and the paint came off like peeling an orange. I need to repaint several of the walls in the bathroom while trying to prevent the paint from peeling off again. How do I seal the walls or at least where the wall and the tiles come together to keep the moisture out? [more inside]
My "Williams 30,000 BTU Natural Gas Direct-Vent Wall Furnace" is an eyesore and I'd love to build my own custom cover for it, but is that safe? Can I only use metal or can I use wood? I'd have a friend build it since I don't know much about it, but I'm wondering what I can do to hide or replace it. BTW I rent my apartment, so any changes I make should technically be reversible. Link for reference.
We're first time homebuyers, and getting a little overwhelmed thinking about all the things we might have to fix and/or replace in whatever house we buy, and how that should affect what we're willing to pay for a home. What are the most expensive (and/or frustrating to fix) things we should be keeping an eye out for and factoring into deciding whether to make an offer on a house and the offer price (i.e. adjusting up/down compared to comparable homes)? [more inside]
Started a mosiac project and now I need the grout to stop setting. [more inside]
What have you been wrong about, realized it, and it changed your life? I remember reading Albert Ellis' wonderful self-help book A Guide to Rational Living where he gives a great list of irrational and self-defeating beliefs that people have. Among these beliefs was the importance people placed on other's opinion of them as well the emphasis people placed on being perfectionistic in their own lives. Much of this underlies Cognitive Behavioral Therapy but the effect is even more prevalent than that. We all have had beliefs that have held us back, and I'm curious as to what things you once believed that were holding you back in your personal or professional life. Anything will do. It can be anything from knowing the importance of making good first impressions to the need for keeping oneself physically fit even when one doesn't want to. I'm looking to see whether I share of any of these traits or not. So what are the beliefs that have held you back or others that you know?
I know self help books have a bad reputation, but some transcend the genre. Any subject, from parenting to finance to spirituality is ok. [more inside]
I have some masking tape adhesive residue on my windows. They are vinyl windows double pane with argon gas inside. I use naptha with is lighter fluid although I use the actual stuff from a paint store to remove adhesive on other stuff it works well. It is safe on plastic. What I'm wondering will it damage the stuff that holds the glass panels to the frame (I think its silicone not sure though) I dont want it to get damaged and let the argon gas leak out.
Hi, thanks in advance for helpful comments, suggestions, recommendations. I am looking to begin an improvement project on a single fam home the day after tomorrow in Arlington, TX. So, of course I waited to the last minute before deciding to seek alternate options to Home Depot and Lowes (the only big box home improvement stores in the area). That's all I need, Mefites! I will have to go get the materials from Southwest Arlington TX, so preferably
Help us figure out how to cover up or replace this god awful kitchen floor. We just purchased a farmhouse that was renovated in the mid 50s. The mudroom and kitchen have 9" asphalt tiles that are all coming up (so not level), and on top of that, the prior owner used these rooms as a kennel for his incontinent daschund. [more inside]
Lets say you have 30 minutes a day for the next six months, and at the end of the six month period you have the vague goal of being an extra awesome, turned-up-to-eleven version of yourself. What types of things do you focus on? What skills/behaviours/changes to your life do you take on to achieve that goal? Big or small changes, it doesn't matter.
Based on this thread, touch typing has changed people's lives. I have been watching my fingers type for more than forty years, so I may not be able to make the change, but I'm willing to put forth a good effort. What software-based training program is likely to be effective to help an adult fast finger-typist become a fast(er?) touch typist?
I'm looking for a water detection system with a wireless alarm. [more inside]
The ASA physical status classification system is used by anaesthesiologists, surgeons and epidemiologists the world over. It has a major flaw - it makes no odds whether index patients have 1 or 5 systemic diseases: only the leading/worst is counted. This has the advantage of simplicity but is potentially misleading and should be done better in the 21st century. Numbercrunchers with a biomedical background needed ... [more inside]
How can I improve myself when it's difficult to find better people to be around and when being around better people doesn't really seem to help?
How can I improve myself when it's difficult to find better people to be around and when being around better people doesn't really seem to help? [more inside]
I need to paint my previously painted cement block porch while putting in the least money, time, and effort. What can be painted over a chipped paint job without it chipping again? [more inside]
Is there anything out there to help me improve my balance, something that starts off easy, since even attempting to balance on one foot almost always results in me falling and/or getting rug burns? [more inside]
What are humans no better at now than they were in the past? [more inside]
I realized I'm a turd recently. How do I stop being such a self-involved, small-minded teenage asshole? Techniques, media, a stern talking to--I'd appreciate anything that might give me some perspective. [more inside]
What is the proper way to replace rotted siding and fascia (looking for someone to enumerate the layers and materials) so that the house is well sealed and weather protected? [more inside]
Suggestions for ultra-practical upgrades to this life? I received a ~$5,000 windfall with some hefty strings attached, the main of which is that I must spend it within 60 days. Another kicker: whatever money I don't use before the deadline goes to a cause I'm ethically opposed to. I'm a single mom who, right now, would rather buy makes-life-easier/peace-of-mind type things, not silk sheets or espresso makers. [more inside]
I need help finding/choosing some curtains for our new room! [more inside]
I've spent decades working on the same personal flaws, and despite clear goals and clever attack strategies, nothing ever seems to stick. Is it even possible to permanently "fix" specific aspects of one's character or personality? If so, how? and how long does it take? [more inside]
What's the best bang for my buck when it comes to improving my Scrabble game in a very limited time period? [more inside]
Simple question: Where do I got to find short( 8'-20') lengths of SCH 80 steel pipe in nyc?
No good deed goes unpunished: Gave my lovely little Greenwich Village basement art studio to someone for a few months. I got it back in the most atrocious shape...with my beautiful plaster walls completely hacked to bits from him incompetently drilling screw after useless screw into my wall, taking huge chunks of plaster out, and making occasional giant gouges with long anchoring screws (and even incomprehensibly applying adhesive spray insulation to glue wood boards to the wall. *sob*) The wall is about 11x9 feet. How much should I expect to pay to get this fixed? I'm handy, but know nothing about plaster and feel gutted about letting someone treat this super-old plaster wall so badly. [more inside]
You know those people whom you admire - those people who are confident, smart, funny, humble, kind and a gazillion other qualities besides? Those people who have had a lifetime of experience and are sagely, and take troubles in their stride calmly. Those people who have fortitude and courage. Those people whom others wish to emulate. I want to know how I can be like them. [more inside]
I am a big fan of consistency- the rewards that can be reaped by simply doing something often over a long period of time are like slow motion magic. Please tell me about some of the things that you do for a few minutes a day to reap mega rewards in the future. [more inside]
I used to think that reading was noble in and of itself. Now I realize that I use it as an escape. I use it to avoid doing other things. Important things. It's like a vice, but it's READING! How can that be bad? [more inside]
After comparing the first few strips from Questionable Content to the most recent ones, I'd like to find others examples of dramatic improvements over time in people's drawing/drafting/cartooning/CGI skills. I'm looking for inspiration as well as some insight into how such improvement was achieved in a given case, if possible.
We've decided to move. We currently live in Omaha, NE and are considering moving to Cedar Rapids, IA, where I grew up, because greatschools.org indicates that the schools there kick ass compared to Omaha and vicinity. (Our kids are 3 and 1, so we've got time, but you know... no time like the present.) We're still a little conflicted about whether to go to CR or not, but I'll save that question for next week. This week's question IS: what should we do to our house to get it ready to sell? [more inside]
"I loved that place. They really knew how to communicate with their employees." Have you ever thought this or said this? [more inside]
What are the potential problems, if any, of venting a portable A/C unit into a closet or attic? [more inside]
What's a dignified way to portray Buddha in my house? [more inside]
How can I improve myself? Problem - nobody in my life has ever accepted me as I am. [more inside]