Getty ImagesReading Gretchen Rubin's terrific tips on how to get more reading done, it occurred to me it's been months since I've finished a book cover to cover. A stack of books to read stands waiting next to my side of the bed, but I find I'm less inclined to read before falling asleep, something I used to do all the time, what my husband still does every night.
The reason is easily traceable to a screen. Not the TV screen-we don't have one in the bedroom and if anything, I'm watching less TV, not more. When you work online, and from home most of the time, it's pretty easy to be connected via computer or BlackBerry all day. I can't seem to walk by an open computer without sitting down, even if it's not a traditional work time. Pretty Pavlovian.
The question of whether too much tech is helping us or distracting us-at work, on the road, at dinner with family and friends-everywhere, really, is the source of many studies and articles. The New York Times pulls together some of the latest findings
Blog Posts by Dory Devlin, Shine staff
Getty ImagesReading Gretchen Rubin's terrific tips on how to get more reading done, it occurred to me it's been months since I've finished a book cover to cover. A stack of books to read stands waiting next to my side of the bed, but I find I'm less inclined to read before falling asleep, something I used to do all the time, what my husband still does every night.Read More »from Is technology distracting you or helping you?
- Dory Devlin, Shine staff | Work + Money – Mon, Jun 7, 2010 10:39 PM EDT
Getty Images: Helen Thomas retires after making controversial comments about Israel.Oh, Helen.Read More »from Helen Thomas: A bitterly disappointing end to a trailblazing career
We may not always have agreed with the questions you asked 10 presidents, often displaying your biases from the coveted front row of the White House press room. But we loved that you were one of the first women, certainly the most famous, to ask them. And we cheered when you didn't accept that your advancing age should keep you from doing what you love. All of which makes it so devastatingly disappointing that a trailblazing 58-year career should end so abruptly and bitterly at the age of 89.
Helen Thomas' remarks on Israel on video to an unsuspecting rabbi at a Jewish heritage celebration at the White House in May went viral this month, and the justifiable outrage that surrounded it led to her resignation from Hearst, where she worked as a columnist since 2000. Her speaking gigs dried up completely, too. When Rabbi David Nesenoff asked for the veteran reporter's thoughts on Israel, he was pretty shocked to hear her vitriolic plea for the country "to get the hell out of
- Dory Devlin, Shine staff | Work + Money – Mon, May 10, 2010 6:08 PM EDT
AP Photo/Susan Walsh: Solicitor General and Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan looks to President Barack Obama as she speaks during and an announcement in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Monday, May 10, 2010.If President Barack Obama's choice for retiring Justice John Paul Stevens' replacement on the U.S. Supreme Court gains the U.S. Senate's approval, Elena Kagan would be the third woman on the nine-member court. She would join Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor, Obama's first Supreme Court pick, to make it the first time the court's composition is fully one-third female.Read More »from President's pick for the U.S. Supreme Court would be third woman on the highest court
Like Sotomayor, Kagan hails from New York City. The Upper West Side, where she attended Hunter College Elementary and High Schools, moving onto Princeton and Oxford. And, like every other sitting Supreme Court justice, she hails from one of two Ivy League law schools, Harvard. (The other: Yale.)
Ivy League credentials aside--though some are not pleased about how important those elite sheepskins continue to be--Kagan seems to stand out as a good choice because of her finely developed skill of bringing disparate sides of a debate together to at least argue civilly, even if there is still stark disagreement. The
- Dory Devlin, Shine staff | Vitality – Thu, May 6, 2010 7:21 PM EDT
Getty ImagesLots of research focuses on the connection between stress at work and the risk of heart disease in men, but when researchers from Denmark took a close look at women in high-stress nursing jobs, they found a troubling link between stress on the job and heart problems in women under age 50.
Following nurses between the ages of 45 and 64 for 15 years, researchers discovered that the women who described work pressures as a "little too high" were 25 percent more likely to develop heart disease as those who said work pressures were manageable. And nurses who said work pressures were "much too high" were more likely to experience heart disease--after big risk factors, such as smoking and unhealthy lifestyle choices--were considered.
What's most striking about the findings, published in Occupational and Environmental Medicine, is that when the results were broken down by age group, it revealed that women under age 51 were at the most risk of heart disease, compared with their peers inRead More »from Study: Work stress can raise younger women's heart disease risk
Georgy Girl: 1966Before there was Bridget Jones, there was Georgy Girl.Read More »from Lynn Redgrave: 1943-2010
Lynn Redgrave played the frumpy but spunky London girl in the 1966 film, which finds her unexpectedly wooed by her father's middle-aged boss. It won her an Academy Award nomination year, the same year her sister, Vanessa, was nominated. They both lost to Elizabeth Taylor for "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?"
Teresa Barbieri/Getty Entertainment: Lynn Redgrave in September 2009 at the Toronto International Film Festival
Lynn Redgrave died yesterday after a 7-year battle with cancer. It has been a tough year for her revered theatrical Redgrave family, which has seen its share of tragedy and personal pain. Her brother, actor Corin, died last month at age 70, and a year ago, her niece, Vanessa's daughter, actress Natasha Richardson died following a head injury sustained during a skiing accident.
Redgrave received lots of praise for her housekeeper role in 1998's "Gods and Monsters." But it was her honest, gutsy stage performances, especially the one-woman shows in which she unflinchingly bared her dysfunctional family disappointments, that stand
- Dory Devlin, Shine staff | Work + Money – Thu, Apr 29, 2010 2:32 AM EDT
Amazon: Reading about Laura Bush's requisite book, out before her husband's, it's clear you'll find what you'd expect from a memoir by a recent first lady: Steadfast defense of her husband's most-criticized presidential moments, details about foreign trips, sharp yet still-polite words for President Bush's congressional foils. What makes "Spoken from the Heart" stand out, it seems, is the former first lady's recollections of earlier times, life-changing sad times.Read More »from Laura Bush shares major life moments before the White House
For the first time, she writes about the car accident she was involved with as a 17-year-old, driving her father's Chevy Impala on the way to a drive-in with a good friend. On a dark night in 1963, she ran a stop sign and collided with another car. The driver in that car was a friend from school, Mike Douglas, and he died.
From the New York Times:
"I can never absolve myself of the guilt," she writes. "And the guilt isn't simply from Mike dying. The guilt is from all the implications, from the way those few seconds spun out and
Getty ImagesIf you've been making the monthly minimum payments on your credit cards and loans but those daunting balances are not giving way, it's time to get serious about tackling your debt. You're not alone: The average credit card debt per household is about $16,000. Add in "good debt" such as mortgages and student loans, along with the changes from the recent federal CARD act, and it's not easy to know the best direction to take when knocking back personal debt.Read More »from 5 ways to tackle your debt
Here are five ways to tackle your debt now.
Read the fine print. The first step is to gather all of your loan documents, with credit card statements at the top of the pile. Write the interest rates for each and the balances owed. You will want to make more than the minimum payment each month on the account with the highest interest rate because you are losing more money with every month and every year you carry balances on high-interest cards. Ideally, once you pay off that first high-interest account, you can then up the monthly
Getty ImagesExperiences with human resources departments vary from company to company, and maybe that's why it's often such a big unknown to employees about just what they should know and do with their HR departments. That's one reason why this "Ten Things Human Resources Won't Tell You" article from the Wall Street Journal online via SmartMoney mag is so very helpful.Read More »from What HR won't tell you
If you get the sense that your company's HR department has been cut in size along with the rest of the company divisions, you're probably right. HR departments are undergoing changes in direction as they aim to prove they can add to the bottom line, not merely manage all of the paperwork and communication that goes with hiring, firing, and tending employed workers.
That said, it takes some sleuthing to figure out whether your HR department is a true resource for you for career advancement at your company, or, as this article alludes, answers to the company and only the company.
At consulting companies, where turnover is high,
- Dory Devlin, Shine staff | Work + Money – Thu, Apr 15, 2010 3:00 PM EDT
New York Times/Sam Potts Op-ArtI've got to share one of the funniest pieces of reading this week of too many tax forms and school vacation for the kids with no vacation for mom. The most-together thing my husband and I did together was jointly read the electronic tax forms and e-file together, and we felt pretty darn good about it since there's actually a bit of a tax return after years of my freelancing and typically paying a good chunk of owed taxes on April 15.Read More »from What (made-up) tax deduction would you like to take?
Anyone who has freelanced, or as Sam Potts writes, been marginally employed in this economy of too few jobs will appreciate these special deductions for freelancers in The New York Times. Some highlights: "The Delayed Adulthood Penalty: Multiply the number of years since your 25th birthday by the number of roommates you currently have (excluding children but including spouse) and multiply the result by $-10. Enter on line 14b below.)
The Twitter Deduction is the best. "Note: If you do not Twitter, you do not qualify as a freelancer and may not use this
- Dory Devlin, Shine staff | Financially Fit – Thu, Apr 8, 2010 9:54 PM EDT
Getty ImagesA new trend in the making? Probably not, but it sure is a headline-worthy move.Read More »from Michigan community college makes job-or-money-back offer
A community college in Lansing, Michigan, the third largest in the state, and where unemployment is stubbornly at 11.7 percent, is making the promise for certain courses that if grads don't get jobs within a year, they could get their tuition reimbursed.
Before you decide there is no way they could possibly make such a promise and move on, consider that it applies only to six-week training courses that cost about $2,400 and train students for in-demand tech jobs in the region. Jobs like call-center specialists, pharmacy technicians, quality inspectors, and computer machinists. The jobs pay between about $12 and $16 an hours, Time reports.
Still, it's a head-turner and a pretty bold way to attract more students. A few more details: the money-back guarantee will only be available to 61 students in a pilot program, all of whom must have high school degrees, go through "employability skill training," go to