Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Logic Behind 19 Common Interview Questions




http://lifehacker.com/the-logic-behind-19-common-interview-questions-1376990545?utm_campaign=socialflow_lifehacker_twitter&utm_source=lifehacker_twitter&utm_medium=socialflow

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

蠢女人 vs 好女人

蠢女人:盯着男人的缺点,老是生气;
好女人:欣赏男人的优点,很是开心。 

蠢女人:不分场合与男人吵,让男人丢脸; 
好女人:在外给足男人面子,私下里交流。

蠢女人:贬男人——其实贬老公就是贬自己;
好女人:赞男人——其实夸男人便是炫自己!

蠢女人:不停地唠叨那些陈年旧事;
好女人:与男人一起憧憬美好未来1。

蠢女人:抓住男人过错不放,以为自己看透了男人的本质;
好女人:总会设法原谅男人,把男人比作永远长不大的孩子。

蠢女人:会说 “你给我滚!”
好女人:会说 “别离开我!”

蠢女人:把男人当弹弓,拉得越紧飞得远;
好女人:把男人当风筝,悠然牵着手中线。

蠢女人:过于强调自我;
好女人:善于寄托依靠。

蠢女人:对男人寸步不离;
好女人:和男人若即若离。

傻女人:知道洗衣做饭,不愿梳妆打扮;
好女人:不仅洗衣做饭,而且精心打扮。

傻女人:带给男人压抑和压力;
好女人:带给男人激情和动力。

傻女人:让男人在她泪水中失败;
好女人:让男人在她笑容中成功。

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The 21 Things to Let Go to Become the Happiest Person in the World

We’ve been conditioned by ourselves and by society to cling to things that don’t really matter. When you realize that everything is nothing but perspective, you become free for the first time in your life.

It gives you peace, and it removes the burden of having to act according to who you “are.” And what is left?
Sheer happiness vibrating throughout your entire body.
lostjob-1024x685
You can’t control everything that happens in life, but you can choose how you respond. You can learn to see opportunity where others see misfortune. It’s all down to your perception of the event.
Virtually everything that makes us unhappy is the result of the way we think, the things we cling to, and the ways we mislead ourselves. You have unlimited talent and potential, but it can’t break through until you’ve freed your mind.
When you are no longer a prisoner of your own mind, you set yourself free to do the things that really matter and start creating some truly amazing shit with your life.
Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.. – Lao Tzu
If you complete this article and apply it’s lessons then your life can become stress-free, hyper-productive, and absolutely amazing if you just let go of the following 21 things.
It won’t be easy, and changing the way you think will take time, but you can start today, taking your first steps down the path to greater happiness, personal fulfilment and unlimited abundance.
Now, buckle up, strap in, and get ready to experience the truth.
1. Let go of the past. Living in the past isn’t living at all. It’s time consuming, painful and a little crazy. Don’t be preoccupied with old errors or things you’ve lost—all of that’s behind you. The past is not a thing. It’s an illusion, a concept we all share in because it helps us make order in the world around us, but it’s not real.
What’s past is gone. There is only the present, and that’s all you’ll ever have. Live in the now and be full of life. Maybe the present is terrible. Maybe you once had the “perfect” girl and a great job, and now you’ve lost both.
letgoofthepast1So what? You’re not going to get back to that level of happiness by wallowing in how bad you feel now; take the lessons learned and start taking action in the present to make for a better tomorrow.
It’s being here now that’s important. There’s no past and there’s no future. Time is a very misleading thing. All there is ever, is the now. We can gain experience from the past, but we can’t relive it; and we can hope for the future, but we don’t know if there is one. – George Harrison
Accept the things that have come before as lessons learned and stepping-stones towards a brighter future. Have a clear vision for that future, prepare in the present, and live for now!
2. Let go of the job you hate. You will live for on average 30,000 days. 10,000 of those days is spent working. When you actually stop and consider that, it’s obvious that working a job that makes you unhappy is completely insane. Why would anyone willingly spend a third of their life being miserable?
Building up your resume is like saving up sex for old age – Warren Buffet
Follow your heart and intuition and your ‘work’ will feel timeless. Find work that inspires you and everyone around you. The work that will generate the velocity to work insane hours, make the most in return, and love what you do all the while.
You can dramatically improve your happiness by letting go of the job you hate and start doing more of the things you love.
What’s your legacy going to be? Your work is your contribution to society, the mark you make, the thing you leave behind. Hone your skillset until nobody can ignore you, use your natural drive for doing what you love to fuel your efforts, and watch everything fall into place.
Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life. – Confucious
Don’t allow your obligations to dictate how all of this plays out: you can keep your day job, and use your weekends and nights to work towards breaking into what you really want to do. Resist the urge to do things solely for money and start doing the things that matter to you.
The things that put a smile on your face that screams out loud, “I am the happiest person in the world”.
3. Let go of your need to always be right. Nobody’s right all the time, and in many disagreements neither party is truly wrong in the first place—there are countless points of view and ways to think about any given situation.
When you find yourself drawn into a heated debate, understand that there is no real way to “win.” Just let go.
You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist. ~Friedrich Nietzsche
Conversations too often become competitions which turn into arguments or fights which can last years.
Instead of enjoying a healthy exchange of ideas, we sometimes find ourselves trying to prove ourselves—to prove that we’re the smartest, that we’re the best, that we know better.
Listening is put on hold while we think of what we’re going to say next.
needtoberight
Learn to listen, and people will appreciate that you’re thoughtful and that you care about what they have to say.
People will find you to be the best conversationalist in the world when you start listening and become genuinely interested in what others have to say.
4. Let go of all negative people in your life people. Some people just suck the life right out of you. Some people make you a better man. You have control over the people you surround yourself with, and you’re not truly obligated to keep those in your life who drag you down.
The people you keep close should love you, challenge you, make and make you want to be better.
Negative thoughts stick around because we believe them, not because we want them or choose them. – Andrew Bernstein
Those who bring negative energy into your life will only make it harder for you to feel happy or to get anything done—and they won’t be helping themselves, either. You’re not doing them any favors by keeping them around.
Simply let them go. There is no shortage of incredible people in the world, people who will help you achieve your goals and who will love and understand you—give them your time and energy, because they’re the ones that deserve it. Nobody else.
5. Let go of your need for control over everything. It’s true what they say: you’re only human. You’re no god. In general, expending energy trying to do impossible things is bad for your health. Controlling everything is one of those impossible things—and yet, many of us try to do it anyways, often without realizing it.
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Understand human limitations. Know that you can’t control much in life, but you can always control your reaction. Flow through the world smoothly. When there is resistance, flow around it. When there is opportunity, flow right through it.
Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend. – Bruce Lee
You can’t control the situations around you, your loved ones, strangers, or coworkers, but you can sure as hell waste your time trying to. Don’t fall into that trap. Let things be and handle difficult situations gracefully.
When you let go of your need to control everything, you’ll feel much happier and have more time to do the things that truly matter.
6. Let go of your need to impress others. People are drawn to the genuine article. We appreciate sincerity, even if we don’t realize it. And all of us recognize someone who’s faking it, even if it’s at the instinctive gut level.
Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner. – Lao Tzu
Don’t try to be something you’re not just to make others like you. It won’t work. It never has, and it never will.
This is a simple truth that well-liked, popular people know. The moment you drop the mask and embrace the real you, people will flock to you. What makes each of us our most appealing are the unique traits and experiences we have—they’re your greatest assets.
When you put yourself out there as someone you’re not, you cast those assets aside.
Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind. – Bernard Maruch
The harder you work to impress others, the less impressive you’ll be. Have confidence in who you are, fully express yourself openly, and devote yourself to those who appreciate the real you.
If you come across people who don’t appreciate the real you, people who want you to change who you are, don’t sweat it—do you really need them in your life so badly that you’d let them dictate who you are as a person?
Nobody should control you. You’re better than that. Stop letting the outside world tell you who you are and what you should do.
7. Let go of your resistance to change. Chances are, you believe the future can be better than the present. You probably have aspirations and desires and goals—as you should. Most of us do. Yet, paradoxically, many fear change even while we simultaneously want it.
Some changes look negative on the surface but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge. ― Eckhart Tolle
resistancetochange
Remember, we have no control over the things that happen to us and the changes that occur around us, but we always have control over how we respond.
Train yourself to see every change, whether wanted or unwanted, as an opportunity for something greater. You can’t see the future, so choose to believe that everything is happening for a reason.
Embrace reality and let it be. Change will help you flow from A to B.
Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like. – Lao Tzu
Always be moving forward in a positive direction. Follow your bliss, blaze your own path and embrace change – don’t resist it. When you let go and embrace change it becomes your greatest weapon against mediocrity.
8. Let go of your fears. Fear is just an illusion. It doesn’t even exist—you created it. It’s not something you can see and touch. It’s nothing you can cure with a pill. No amount of money can keep it at bay.
It’s a simple reality of human life, and it’s all in your head. Everyone feels fear. Winners don’t let it cripple them: they set it aside and just do it. Life’s too short to get hung up on what you’re afraid of.
Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free. – Jim Morrison
On the other side of fear is growth. Clear your mind, put things into perspective, and realize that worse than fear itself is not taking action because you’re afraid of failure or a bruised ego. Inaction is what keeps lives from becoming great.
Inaction is what will rob you of becoming the greatest you.
9. Let go of all excuses. How often have you known what you need to do but put it off for some bull shit reason? Your brain tends to want to maintain a comfortable status quo and avoid pain.
As such, you naturally create excuses not to do things that your subconscious perceives as uncomfortable or risky.
Excuses prevent you from doing what you’re afraid of, and they keep you safe—at least at the surface-level. But we know that excuses are simply limiting your growth. You don’t want a complacent, lazy life. If you did, you wouldn’t be reading this.
He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else.― Benjamin Franklin
Learn to identify when your making excuses. They’re limiting, and they’re almost always BS. Instead, focus on growth and improvement. When you feel yourself saying I don’t have the time or I’m just too tired, or when the temptation to distract yourself with idle pastimes rears its head, remind yourself of where you want to go.
Remind yourself that excuses will keep you from getting there. If you don’t want anything in your life to change, listen to your own excuses. If you want things to improve, kick them aside and don’t look back.
10. Let go of thinking you are not enough. You are enough and you deserve to have everything that you want. You’re also your worst enemy and your hardest life critic. If you want a girl, go get her. If you see a business opportunity, go seize it.
When you tell yourself you can’t do it, you’re always right. You can or you can’t. The decision is yours.
youareenough
On the other hand, when you tell yourself that you are enough—that you can do anything and be anything that you want—nothing can stop you.
If you think you are beaten, you are… If you think you’re outclassed, you are…Life’s battles don’t always go to the stronger or faster man, but soon or late the man who wins is the one who thinks he can. – Walter D. Wintle
The world is yours. It’s not magic; it takes work, and you’ll still be met with challenges and failures. But you control your mood, you control how you react to things, and you control what you do next.
Don’t let what others say or do affect you. Know who you are and be confident in what you bring to the table. You are enough, and nobody deserves happiness more than you.
11. Let go of attachment. At any second, on any day, at any moment, you could lose something or someone. Your house, your car, your phone, even your relationships—they’re impermanent, and none of them can make you 100% happy.
Happiness comes from within and that’s not a bad thing. It’s the best thing ever, in fact: it means that you can be happy right now, provided you change your mindset and just let go of attachment to the unnecessary. The most satisfying experiences in life are those which are experienced without any sense of attachment.
The reason many people in our society are miserable, sick, and highly stressed is because of an unhealthy attachment to things they have no control over. – Steve Maraboli
Easier said than done, I know. It’s not impossible, though. Eastern philosophy suggests that all suffering comes from attachment. Note that this is distinct from love—attachment comes from being afraid of losing something, but love is pure, kind, and selfless.
Where there is love, there is no room for fear.
12. Let go of all external validations. You know yourself better than anyone else. You also know, both instinctively and intellectually, what’s best for you. That doesn’t mean there’s any shortage of people in the world who would love nothing more than to tell you what to do. Don’t listen to them.
Don’t be affected by your environment—be above it, self-contained, someone carving out their own wild path. Make your own code of conduct and rules of honor, and live by those.
What the superior man seeks is in himself; what the small man seeks is in others. – Confucius
Don’t look to others to validate who you are and where you want to go. Just be you 100% of the time and never stop.
The same goes for other pursuits. You don’t need alcohol or drugs to have a good time and be accepted in the social crowd. You control your own mood—you don’t have to be dependent on anything external.
external-validations
This applies to women as well: when you need validation from women to feel satisfied, you’re coming from a position of neediness and instability. You’re saying you’re too weak to be you without getting something from her.
Therefore, you are always taking value vs giving value which creates an environment where love cannot grow.
That’s dangerous, unattractive, and a recipe for disappointment. Be confident in who you are without needing anyone else to make you feel worthwhile. If you’re just being who you are, and the girl isn’t into you—who cares?
At the same time, you’ll find that just being you, not needing external validation from anyone and being confident will increase your success with women tenfold.
13. Let go of all anger. How many times have you looked back on a time when you were pissed off and thought, “that was a great night?” Anger is natural, but it’s usually unproductive, time consuming and painful in the long run.
It will eat at you from the inside out, and it will take its toll on your heart and your mental health, especially when allowed to fester and grow over time – sometimes years.
letgoofanger
Whenever you’re angry, stop and put things into perspective. How significant is this, really? Will you even remember this or care about this next month? How about next year?
When you angrily linger on something instead of brushing it off, you magnify its effect on you. You give it power and surrender your thoughts to it.
The best fighter is never angry. – Lao Tzu
What’s more, anger tends to breed anger. Every time you really embrace your anger, you increase the likelihood that you’ll get a hot head more easily in the future. It becomes your default setting, and it multiplies the negative energy in your body and mind.
The world has enough of that. Don’t contribute anymore.
Instead, stay cool, calm and present. Don’t let things get under your skin. You don’t have time for that—you’ve got things to accomplish and goals to achieve, and anger is a set of bad winds drifting you off course from the things that truly matter.
14. Let go of bad relationships. You’ve probably known countless men who are miserable in their relationships. They complain about their girlfriends, they’re always fighting, and they make excuses not to be around them.
If the relationship can’t survive the long term, why on earth would it be worth my time and energy for the short term? – Nicholas Sparks
Everyone around them wonders, why do they stay together?
The answer is usually either that a) they don’t have the courage  to break it off and be single or b) there’s an unhealthy codependency there.
Neither option is good, and both hold you back from the happiness you two deserve.
It’s never easy ending a relationship, but it’s like taking off a bandage: getting it over quickly is better than drawing it out. For every week you stay in a bad relationship, it becomes that much harder (and much more devastating for both of you) when it all comes crashing down.
You find yourself entangled further and further, and the knot becomes increasingly difficult to untie. What’s worse, each week you stay in the relationship is one week gone from your life in which you could have been happy, free of that weight and negative energy.
Never allow someone to be your priority while allowing yourself to be their option. – Mark Twain
Never stay in a relationship just for the sex. Yes, physical attraction is a part of the formula for a healthy relationship, but it’s not the only thing.
Holding on to the wrong relationship will make you more miserable than just about anything else. They say 90% of your happiness or misery comes from the significant other in your life.
Choose wisely and never out of desperation, but always from a position of wholeness.


Source:
http://www.knowledgeformen.com/the-21-things-to-let-go-to-become-the-happiest-person-in-the-world/

Who are you??? MBTI chart for Harry Potter characters...

Friday, September 6, 2013

NSA surveillance: A guide to staying secure

The NSA has huge capabilities – and if it wants in to your computer, it's in. With that in mind, here are five ways to stay safe

Now that we have enough details about how the NSA eavesdrops on the internet, including today's disclosures of the NSA's deliberate weakening of cryptographic systems, we can finally start to figure out how to protect ourselves.
For the past two weeks, I have been working with the Guardian on NSA stories, and have read hundreds of top-secret NSA documents provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden. I wasn't part of today's story – it was in process well before I showed up – but everything I read confirms what the Guardian is reporting.
At this point, I feel I can provide some advice for keeping secure against such an adversary.
The primary way the NSA eavesdrops on internet communications is in the network. That's where their capabilities best scale. They have invested in enormous programs to automatically collect and analyze network traffic. Anything that requires them to attack individual endpoint computers is significantly more costly and risky for them, and they will do those things carefully and sparingly.
Leveraging its secret agreements with telecommunications companies – all the US and UK ones, and many other "partners" around the world – the NSA gets access to the communications trunks that move internet traffic. In cases where it doesn't have that sort of friendly access, it does its best to surreptitiously monitor communications channels: tapping undersea cables, intercepting satellite communications, and so on.
That's an enormous amount of data, and the NSA has equivalently enormous capabilities to quickly sift through it all, looking for interesting traffic. "Interesting" can be defined in many ways: by the source, the destination, the content, the individuals involved, and so on. This data is funneled into the vast NSA system for future analysis.
The NSA collects much more metadata about internet traffic: who is talking to whom, when, how much, and by what mode of communication. Metadata is a lot easier to store and analyze than content. It can be extremely personal to the individual, and is enormously valuable intelligence.
The Systems Intelligence Directorate is in charge of data collection, and the resources it devotes to this is staggering. I read status report after status report about these programs, discussing capabilities, operational details, planned upgrades, and so on. Each individual problem – recovering electronic signals from fiber, keeping up with the terabyte streams as they go by, filtering out the interesting stuff – has its own group dedicated to solving it. Its reach is global.
The NSA also attacks network devices directly: routers, switches, firewalls, etc. Most of these devices have surveillance capabilities already built in; the trick is to surreptitiously turn them on. This is an especially fruitful avenue of attack; routers are updated less frequently, tend not to have security software installed on them, and are generally ignored as a vulnerability.
The NSA also devotes considerable resources to attacking endpoint computers. This kind of thing is done by its TAO – Tailored Access Operations – group. TAO has a menu of exploits it can serve up against your computer – whether you're running Windows, Mac OS, Linux, iOS, or something else – and a variety of tricks to get them on to your computer. Your anti-virus software won't detect them, and you'd have trouble finding them even if you knew where to look. These are hacker tools designed by hackers with an essentially unlimited budget. What I took away from reading the Snowden documents was that if the NSA wants in to your computer, it's in. Period.
The NSA deals with any encrypted data it encounters more by subverting the underlying cryptography than by leveraging any secret mathematical breakthroughs. First, there's a lot of bad cryptography out there. If it finds an internet connection protected by MS-CHAP, for example, that's easy to break and recover the key. It exploits poorly chosen user passwords, using the same dictionary attacks hackers use in the unclassified world.
As was revealed today, the NSA also works with security product vendors to ensure that commercial encryption products are broken in secret ways that only it knows about. We know this has happened historically: CryptoAG and Lotus Notes are the most public examples, and there is evidence of a back door in Windows. A few people have told me some recent stories about their experiences, and I plan to write about them soon. Basically, the NSA asks companies to subtly change their products in undetectable ways: making the random number generator less random, leaking the key somehow, adding a common exponent to a public-key exchange protocol, and so on. If the back door is discovered, it's explained away as a mistake. And as we now know, the NSA has enjoyed enormous success from this program.
TAO also hacks into computers to recover long-term keys. So if you're running a VPN that uses a complex shared secret to protect your data and the NSA decides it cares, it might try to steal that secret. This kind of thing is only done against high-value targets.
How do you communicate securely against such an adversary? Snowden said it in an online Q&A soon after he made his first document public: "Encryption works. Properly implemented strong crypto systems are one of the few things that you can rely on."
I believe this is true, despite today's revelations and tantalizing hints of "groundbreaking cryptanalytic capabilities" made by James Clapper, the director of national intelligence in another top-secret document. Those capabilities involve deliberately weakening the cryptography.
Snowden's follow-on sentence is equally important: "Unfortunately, endpoint security is so terrifically weak that NSA can frequently find ways around it."
Endpoint means the software you're using, the computer you're using it on, and the local network you're using it in. If the NSA can modify the encryption algorithm or drop a Trojan on your computer, all the cryptography in the world doesn't matter at all. If you want to remain secure against the NSA, you need to do your best to ensure that the encryption can operate unimpeded.
With all this in mind, I have five pieces of advice:
1) Hide in the network. Implement hidden services. Use Tor to anonymize yourself. Yes, the NSA targets Tor users, but it's work for them. The less obvious you are, the safer you are.
2) Encrypt your communications. Use TLS. Use IPsec. Again, while it's true that the NSA targets encrypted connections – and it may have explicit exploits against these protocols – you're much better protected than if you communicate in the clear.
3) Assume that while your computer can be compromised, it would take work and risk on the part of the NSA – so it probably isn't. If you have something really important, use an air gap. Since I started working with the Snowden documents, I bought a new computer that has never been connected to the internet. If I want to transfer a file, I encrypt the file on the secure computer and walk it over to my internet computer, using a USB stick. To decrypt something, I reverse the process. This might not be bulletproof, but it's pretty good.
4) Be suspicious of commercial encryption software, especially from large vendors. My guess is that most encryption products from large US companies haveNSA-friendly back doors, and many foreign ones probably do as well. It's prudent to assume that foreign products also have foreign-installed backdoors. Closed-source software is easier for the NSA to backdoor than open-source software. Systems relying on master secrets are vulnerable to the NSA, through either legal or more clandestine means.
5) Try to use public-domain encryption that has to be compatible with other implementations. For example, it's harder for the NSA to backdoor TLS than BitLocker, because any vendor's TLS has to be compatible with every other vendor's TLS, while BitLocker only has to be compatible with itself, giving the NSA a lot more freedom to make changes. And because BitLocker is proprietary, it's far less likely those changes will be discovered. Prefer symmetric cryptography over public-key cryptography. Prefer conventional discrete-log-based systems over elliptic-curve systems; the latter have constants that the NSA influences when they can.
Since I started working with Snowden's documents, I have been using GPGSilent CircleTailsOTRTrueCryptBleachBit, and a few other things I'm not going to write about. There's an undocumented encryption feature in my Password Safe program from the command line); I've been using that as well.
I understand that most of this is impossible for the typical internet user. Even I don't use all these tools for most everything I am working on. And I'm still primarily on Windows, unfortunately. Linux would be safer.
The NSA has turned the fabric of the internet into a vast surveillance platform, but they are not magical. They're limited by the same economic realities as the rest of us, and our best defense is to make surveillance of us as expensive as possible.
Trust the math. Encryption is your friend. Use it well, and do your best to ensure that nothing can compromise it. That's how you can remain secure even in the face of theNSA.


http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/05/nsa-how-to-remain-secure-surveillance

Google Nexus 7 won't charge or turn on. Help Video.

Never thought that it would happen to me. Lucky it works for me.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Spoiled Children: Prevention

What is a spoiled child?

A spoiled child is undisciplined, manipulative, and unpleasant to be with much of the time. He behaves in many of the following ways by the time he is 2 or 3 years old:
  • Doesn't follow rules or cooperate with suggestions.
  • Doesn't respond to "no," "stop," or other commands.
  • Protests everything.
  • Doesn't know the difference between his needs and his wishes.
  • Insists on having his own way.
  • Makes unfair or excessive demands on others.
  • Doesn't respect other people's rights.
  • Tries to control people.
  • Has a low tolerance for frustration.
  • Frequently whines or throws tantrums.
  • Constantly complains about being bored.

What is the cause?

The main cause of spoiled children is lenient, permissive parenting. Permissive parents don't set limits and they give in to tantrums and whining. If parents give a child too much power, the child will become more self-centered. Such parents also rescue the child from normal frustrations. Sometimes a child is cared for by a nanny or baby sitter who spoils the child by providing constant entertainment and by giving in to unrealistic demands.
The reason some parents are too lenient is that they confuse the child's needs (for example, for feeding) with his wishes (for example, for play). They don't want to hurt their child's feelings or hear him cry. They may choose the short-term solution of doing whatever prevents crying which, in the long run, causes more crying.
A child's ability to cry and fuss deliberately to get his way usually begins at about 5 or 6 months of age. There may be a small epidemic of spoiling in our country because some working parents feel guilty about not having enough time for their children. To make up for this, they spend their free time together trying to avoid the friction that setting limits might cause.
The difference between giving children the attention they need and spoiling them can be unclear. In general, attention is good for children. However, it can become harmful if it is excessive, given at the wrong time, or always given immediately. Attention from a parent is excessive if it interferes with a child's learning to do things for himself and deal with life's frustrations. Giving attention when you are busy because your child demands it is an example of giving attention at the wrong time. Another example is when a child is throwing a tantrum and needs to be ignored. If attention is always given immediately, your child won't learn to wait.
Some parents worry about holding and cuddling as a form of attention. Holding babies is equivalent to loving them. In many cultures, parents hold their babies much more than we do in this country. Lots of holding does not spoil a child.

How long does it last?

Without changes in child-rearing, spoiled children run into trouble by the time they reach school age. Other children do not like them because they are too bossy and selfish. Adults do not like them because they are rude and make excessive demands. Eventually spoiled children become hard for even their parents to love because of their behavior. Because they don't get along well with other children and adults, spoiled children eventually become unhappy. They may show decreased motivation and perseverance in their school work. There is also an association with increased risk-taking behaviors during adolescence, such as drug abuse. Overall, spoiling a child prepares a child poorly for life in the real world.

How do I prevent my child from becoming spoiled?

  1. Provide age-appropriate limits and rules for your child.
    Parents have the right and the responsibility to take charge and make rules. Adults must keep their child's environment safe. Age-appropriate discipline must begin by the age of crawling. Hearing "no" occasionally is good for children. Children need external controls until they develop self-control and self-discipline. Your child will still love you if you say "no" to him. If your kids like you all the time, you're not being a good parent.
  2. Require cooperation with important rules.
    Your child must respond properly to your directions long before he starts school. Important rules include staying in the car seat, not hitting other children, being ready to leave on time in the morning, going to bed on time, and so forth. These adult decisions are not open to negotiation. Do not give your child a choice when there is none.
    Give your child a chance to decide about such things as which cereal to eat, which book to read, which toys to take into the tub, and which clothes to wear. Make sure your child understands the difference between areas in which he has choices and areas in which he does not. Try to limit your important rules to no more than 10 or 12, and be willing to take a firm stand about these rules. Also, be sure all of your child's adult caretakers enforce your rules consistently.
  3. Expect your child to cry.
    Distinguish between your child's needs and wishes. Needs include relief from pain, hunger, and fear. In these cases, respond to crying immediately. Other crying is harmless and usually relates to your child's wishes. Crying is a normal response to change or frustration. When crying is part of a tantrum, ignore it. There are times when you will have to withhold attention and comforting temporarily to help your child learn something that is important (for example, that he can't pull on your hair or earrings). Don't punish your child for crying, call him a cry-baby, or tell him he shouldn't cry. Avoid denying him his feelings, but don't be moved by his crying.
    Respond to the extra crying your child does when you are tightening up on the rules by providing extra cuddling and enjoyable activities when he is not crying or having a tantrum.
  4. Do not allow tantrums to work.
    Children throw temper tantrums to get your attention, to wear you down, to get you to change your mind, and to get their own way. Crying is used to change your "no" to a "yes." Tantrums may include whining, complaining, crying, breath-holding, pounding the floor, shouting, or slamming a door. As long as your child stays in one place and is not too disruptive or in a position to harm himself, you can safely ignore him during a tantrum. By all means, don't give in to tantrums.
  5. Don't overlook discipline during quality time.
    If you are a working parent, you will want to spend part of your free time each day with your child. This time needs to be enjoyable, but also reality-based. Don't ease up on the rules. If your child misbehaves, remind him of the limits. Even during fun activities, you need to enforce the rules.
  6. Don't try to negotiate with young children.
    Don't give away your power as a parent. When your child reaches the age of 2 or 3 years, have rules, but don't talk too much about them. Toddlers don't play by the rules. Young children mainly understand action, not words. By age 4 or 5, your child will begin to respond to reason about discipline issues, but he still lacks the judgment necessary to make the rules. During the elementary school years, show a willingness to discuss the rules. By age 14 to 16, an adolescent can be negotiated with as an adult. You can ask for his input about what limits and consequences are fair (that is, rules become joint decisions).
    The more democratic a parent is during a child's first 2 or 3 years, the more demanding the child tends to become. In general, young children don't know what to do with power. Left to their own devices, they usually spoil themselves. If they are testing everything at age 3, it is abnormal and needs help. If you have given away your power, take it back (that is, set new limits and enforce them). You don't have to give a reason for every rule. Sometimes it is just because "that's the rule."
  7. Teach your child to cope with boredom.
    Your job is to provide toys, books, and art supplies. Your child's job is to use them. Assuming you talk and play with your child several hours a day, you do not need to be his constant playmate. Nor do you need to always provide him with an outside friend.
    When you're busy, expect your child to amuse himself. Even 1-year-olds can keep themselves occupied for 15 minutes at a time. By age 3, most children can entertain themselves about half of the time. Sending your child off to "find something to do" is doing him a favor. Much good creative play, thinking, and daydreaming come from coping with boredom. If you can't seem to resign as social director, consider enrolling your child in a play group or preschool.
  8. Teach your child to wait.
    Waiting helps children learn to deal with frustration. All adult work carries some degree of frustration. Delaying immediate gratification is something your child must learn gradually, and it takes practice. Don't feel guilty if you have to make your child wait a few minutes now and then (for example, when you are talking with others in person or on the telephone). Waiting doesn't hurt a child as long as it isn't excessive. His perseverance and emotional fitness will be improved.
  9. Don't rescue your child from normal life challenges.
    Changes such as moving and starting school are normal life stressors. These are opportunities for learning and problem solving. Always be available and supportive, but don't help your child with situations he can handle by himself. Overall, make your child's life as realistic as he can tolerate for his age, rather than going out of your way to make it as pleasant as possible. His coping skills and self-confidence will benefit.
  10. Don't overpraise your child.
    Children need praise, but it can be overdone. Praise your child for good behavior and following the rules. Encourage him to try new things and work on difficult tasks, but teach him to do things for his own reasons too. Self-confidence and a sense of accomplishment come from doing and completing things that he is proud of. Praising your child while he is in the process of doing something may cause him to stop at each step, expecting more praise. Giving your child constant attention can make him praise-dependent and demanding. Avoid the tendency (especially common with the first-born) to overpraise your child's normal development.
  11. Teach your child to respect the rights of adults.
    A child's needs for love, food, clothing, safety, and security obviously come first. However, your needs are important too. Your child's wishes (for example, for play or an extra bedtime story) should come after your needs are met and as time allows. This is especially important for working parents where family time is limited.
    Both the quality and quantity of time you spend with your child are important. Quality time is time that is enjoyable, interactive, and focused on your child. Children need some quality time with their parents every day. But spending every free moment of your evenings and weekends with your child is not good for your child or for you. You need a balance to preserve your mental health. Scheduled nights out with your spouse or friends will not only nurture your adult relationships, but also help you to return to parenting with more to give. Your child needs to learn to accept separations from his parents. If he isn't taught to respect your rights, he may not learn to respect the rights of other adults.