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Posts tagged ‘painter’s world’

Keeping Your Painter’s Brain Alive and Fit: Neurobiotics*

Ever hear of “Neurobics”?

 

I hadn’t either until someone gave me the book, Keep Your Brain Alive,by Lawrence C. Katz, Ph.D.* and Manning Rubin.* Published in 1999, the small book offers “83 Neurobic Exercises to help prevent memory loss and increase mental fitness.”

WHAT IS NEUROBICS?

Neurobics is a form of brain exercise that breaks your brain’s normal patterns of activity. Its aim: to enhance the brain’s natural way of forming associations. And, that’s basically how we learn.

WHAT CONDITIONS MAKE AN EXERCISE NEUROBIC?

It uses one or more physical senses – seeing, hearing, smelling, touching, tasting, plus emotional “sense” in novel ways and different combinations.
It engages your attention in a way that gets your attention.
It breaks a routine activity in a non-routine or unexpected way.

TWELVE NEUROBIC EXERCISES ADAPTED TO OUR PAINTER’S WORLD

I’ve adapted these exercises from three activity areas covered in Katz’s and Rubin’s book.

Starting and ending the day

Eat something different for breakfast.
Brush your teeth using your non-dominant hand.
Close your eyes and use sense of touch to choose what you’ll wear.
Wear earplugs at dinner and listen with your eyes to your spouse.

Commuting

If you drive to work, close your eyes, then get in and start your vehicle.
Buy several inexpensive steering wheel covers in different textures, and switch.
Open the window while driving so you can smell, hear and feel a mental road map.
If you walk to work, take a few different turns. Or, say “hello” to 2-3 new people.

At Work

Move things around – reposition your computer mouse, phone, a few basic tools.
Brush or roll on paint, using your non-dominant hand.
Write down a problem. In two columns, write words associated with it; cross-reference.
In the paintshop, keep a chessboard set up, or a 500-1000 pieces jigsaw puzzle in process.

FUN TIP:Once a month, switch a smaller, simpler task with a coworker, even your boss.

* Lawrence C. Katz, Ph.D., (1956-2005) was professor of neurobiology, Duke University Medical School. * Manning Rubin comes from a long line of prolific writers, and was senior creative supervisor at K2 Design, New York City, New York.
Tip: Check Manning out if you’re interested in creative writing, professionally.)

 

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Think About It: Your brain is like any other organ in your body.

Exception: It controls everything within your body. Treat it right, friends.

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Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

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Painting It: While Trump and Clinton Talked about Eradicating Gang High-Crime Rates in Chicago…

I shared this true story with Celebrating Chicago Cubs Friends…

 

Friday Morning, Northwest Chicago – My mother was trying to convince an inventor client on the image benefits to his business in getting the exterior of his shop painted. The building looked like an abandoned barn in the middle of another bankrupted farm’s field.

 

Mom and Jerry stood at the open overhead doorway of his loading dock. It faced the alley. Walking in that alley were eight or nine members of a notorious gang. They wore black leather jackets with a dragon emblem on the back, tight blue jeans, knee-high black leather boots with noisy cleats, also bandanas and black leather caps.

 

To Mom’s surprise, her client called the group over as they passed the loading dock. He offered them the job of painting the barn-like, two-story building. Bigger surprise: They took him up on the offer.

 

Promptly, Jerry jotted down a list of the materials and supplies they’d need. He handed the leader 2-one-hundred dollar bills. And, he sent them to the nearest paint store, located three blocks west on West Grand Boulevard. He offered them his car keys to bring everything back; but they refused.

 

TWO FRIDAYS LATER…

 

My mother had an appointment to deliver the draft of a project contract proposal to Jerry. She pulled her auto up to the curb in front of his property. As she walked past the side of the house, toward the job, his wife darted out of the back door.

 

“What do you think?” She smiled. “They did a terrific job, even on the carved trim around the dormers and porches. This house hasn’t looked this good since it was built in the 1950s…”

 

Come to find out: The infamous gang had painted the exteriors of both the large, 2-story house, and the shop. And, they looked superb!

 

MOTHER’S BIGGEST SURPRISE…

 

Upstairs, in Jerry’s shop, worked nine black leather jacketed young-young adults. Members of a different notorious Chicago gang, associated with the Hells Angels. (Remember hearing about them?)

 

The group was busy packing shipping boxes with plastic-wrapped, soft-fabric insulated hot/cold tote bags for foods and beverages. Jerry’s inventions in the 1970s. Note: Most of the prototypes were stolen away, initially, by a woman to whom he’d given a job to help her get back on her feet. Talk about crime!

 

Anyway, Jerry had given temporary jobs to the “teen hoods. “ The scourge of society. “The no good hoods.” They’d been on the job three previous days that week, putting in seven hours. Free pizza lunches and two “junk food” breaks included each day.

 

That scene in his shop was not a new one. The man was just as well known for his giving jobs to notorious gang members, as they were for robbing, stealing and threatening every other business place in the area.

 

Frankly, both Trump’s and Clinton’s camps could have learned a lot from people like Jerry, about eradicating major gangland crime in big cities like Chicago.

 

Gutsy people that put themselves out there. Inventive people who offer doable alternatives, not ineffective and stupid threats to well-connected gang members.

 

Before the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians game on November 2,  2016, I was watching “campaign clips” for both Trump and Clinton.

 

“Bob,” my mother commented, “high gangland crime in cities gets derailed by people like Jerry. Not by politicians, laws and the courts.”

 

I agreed. An image of a black leather jacketed gang member in Osceola County, Florida, flashed in and out of my brain. We “met” when I spotted him making a drug sale directly outside the men’s restroom inside the local public library. He still completed the sale, then casually walked upstairs and sat in front of a public computer.

 

People on the front lines – on the streets – almost always know the better solutions to problems that politicians tend to talk a lot about. During presidential campaigns especially. Why is that?

 

Are we paying the wrong people to eradicate high level, gangland crime?

 

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Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob” – especially as we head into a new, and unprecedented, leadership and constituency relationship!
Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

Painter’s World: The Physician/Group-Insurance Company Generic Collaboration

I’m about ready to pull my graying  hair out, and go bald.

 

I take a Brand name medication that requires a prescribing MD’s prior-authorization request to access. Suddenly, the M.D. decided to stop completing and submitting a prior-authorization form for the Brand name to the insurance company.

 

“Totally unnecessary. Generic is exactly the same as brand name.”

 

What was that? Try to convince the Major Pharmas of that one!

 

Take note, fellow healthcare consumers:

 

As of the end of 2015, over 3 billion, 874 million* Americans take a generic form of a Brand name prescription drug. The National Prescription Audit’s most recent report** shows that 84.3 percent of prescription sales are the generic compound. Total generic sales topped $1.7 trillion dollars between 2005 and 2014.

 

At least 70 percent of those 3,874,000 are taking the generic, versus Brand compound, because of one or more of the following reasons.

 

  1. Their insurance company – eg. employer group, individual, family, Medicare, HMO – approves and has in its RX formulary only the generic versions of the Brand name prescription.

 

  1. Their healthcare provider will not order the Brand name as – eg. “medically necessary,” “Fill with RX Brand only,” etc. Note: See “Important Note” below.

 

  1. The patients cannot afford the cost of the Brand name pharmaceutical products.

 

  1. The local in-network pharmacies carry, or will order, only the generic version(s) of the Brand name product.

 

  1. The healthcare provider’s group, and its insurance company, will not certify the physicians in the group to write prior-authorization requests for and to prescribe Brand name products, when a generic is available. Note: See “Important Note” below.

 

Important Note: This includes if and when the patient tries and cannot take any of the generic (s) of the Brand name product. This includes if and when the patient has tried and retried, unsuccessfully, to take all of the generic compounds on the market. This can even include when a hospital consulting specialist determines that a patient must go back to taking the Brand name product.

 

One smaller health insurance company has found a solution. Well, it would appear to be one…

 

In its pharmacy formulary, the company includes a “suspension”/liquid form of a particular Brand name product. It is considered a compounded, “Specialty drug. At a Specialty drug tier/level price. This tier or level usually carries the highest price drugs in the insurance company’s pharmacy formulary.

 

A patient is caught in a bind. No choices that really benefit him or her.

 

Five of the Patient’s Options

 

  1. The patient can take and stay on a generic, regardless of adverse reactions, interactions, etc.

 

  1. The patient can self-pay 100 percent of the retail cost of the Brand name prescription drug.

 

  1. The patient can order the Brand name product from a Canadian pharmacy, hopefully one with a good track record for prompt delivery and sound ethical practices.

 

  1. The patient can change from the prescribing physician to one that will submit that prior authorization request for Brand name only.

 

  1. The patient can switch to a similar Brand name product that is in the insurance company’s pharmacy formulary, and does not require a prior authorization.

          Cautions: A.Most Brand name products listed in the formulary will require prior-authorization.                 B. Also, many newer Brand options come with much higher price tags.

 

What about simply changing your medication?

TIP: It may be wise to change from a medication that’s working only if you have to do so.

 

Real World Scenario. It’s very interesting to see and hear the reaction of another, leading healthcare provider, when told that a prescribing physician refuses to support an established patient’s need to stay on a Brand name prescription medication.

 

M.D.: “Did he/she say why?”

PATIENT: “I won’t do it…It’s totally unnecessary. Generic is exactly the same as Brand.”

M.D.: Tilt of his head…His eyes lower…He shakes his head left-to-right. “Hummmm.”

 

Guess what! A few poignant letters, including to the company’s president/ceo and group medical director may have gotten them all talking again, and rethinking their prior authorization policies. We’ll let you know. Keep your patient/healthcare consumer fingers crossed.

 

SOURCES

* “Statista Report on (Generic) Pharmaceutical Products and Markets, for 2015.”

* Also, The Generic Pharmaceutical Association.

** National Prescription Audit (for Generics), Report May, 2016.

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Responsible healthcare boils down to responsive treatment of the patient.

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Many thanks for trying to do your best in your world.

And, thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2016. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

Painters and Decorators: Becoming an Adaptable Painter

Okay, you know your limitations. And, you still want to paint.
1. Assess the job requirements.

Example: The job requires bending over, and you can’t do it. Move on! Many times, finding another way will not work.

TIP: Certain actions specify certain reactions.

 
2. Acknowledge you can do the work.

Example: How can you develop a better or easier way to do it, which does not exacerbate your limitation?

 
3. Simplicity. Find the easiest and safest way to accomplish your work.

TIP: Simplify steps and movements, methods, tool use, etc.

 
4. Intelligence. Work smart. Assess the situation, in order to paint in as stress-free environment as you can.

 

Adaptability depends on relating your abilities with your expectations.

 

When painting, consider your skills and abilities to be ever-changing. All you need to do is utilize them in different and new ways.

 

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Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2016. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

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