Attention Service Members!!

Units can make an OCONUS PCS or deployment your second job. This is why APO Shoppers is going to make you an offer that you can't possibly refuse.

We are going to offer you our deployment guide absolutely FREE. No catch, no BS.

Special Offer

The Deployment Guide - Unrestricted is unlike any other guide you may have seen floating around on the Internet. This comprehensive guide walks you through everything that you are not told during those boring briefings and never ending slide shows. You have nothing to loose! It's Free!   Learn More
Grab the Deployment Guide Now!

Setting Your Goals Part 2

If you haven’t read part one, stop now and go back to read.
We all know that goals help us make the best out of life because in goal-setting, we can map out the detailed work that we need to put into each year of our lives in order to accomplish our lifetime goals.

Apart from a detailed action plan, goal setting also allows us to evaluate and manage the resources we have in order to acquire the resources we need to reach our targets. Here are a few items that need to be considered when setting goals.

Attitude. Attitude is probably the best indicator of whether a person will succeed or not. If you have had a history of sabotaging your chances at success then it is time to evaluate the beliefs you hold about yourself and of success. If you think you have problems in these areas, then consulting with a therapist would help you clear your blocks to success and get you started on achieving your goals without constantly putting the brakes on.

Time Management. Time is the only resource we can’t ever have more of, because of this it is imperative that to be successful, we need to make wise use of our time. Plan beforehand your priorities and decide which of your priorities would be at the top of your list and which could take a back seat at certain periods of your life. In other words, ask yourself how far you are willing to go to get what you want and to what extent will your sacrifices be (e.g. time away from friends or family).

Limitations. Lack of knowledge or skill required of your goal may be a limitation. If a certain goal requires you to acquire a degree or special lessons, properly plan or manage the time and resources you have to fulfill the requirement. Additionally, physical capabilities may come in the way of sport-related goals. Assess your capabilities earlier and find ways to get around such setbacks.

Financial Concerns. Some education you need for a goal might require you to shell out money. You may find yourself juggling work and school. Being able to manage your finances well to accommodate your needs will greatly impact the success you’ll achieve or the speed at which you will reach your goals. Come up with a realistic approach on earning the money you need and want and create stages to measure your progress.

Family Planning. Some people have always included having a family as a part of their lifetime goals. For those who fit the bill, it is important that they create a time frame on when they will start creating their own family or when they plan on being a parent. You should consider your emotional capacity to become a parent too.

Chill Time. To prevent burn-out, always remember to include recreation and chill time in your daily, weekly, monthly and yearly plans. The key is to strike a balance between work and relaxation. As they say, “All work and no play makes one a dull boy. All play and no work makes one a mere toy.”

Setting Your Goals

Over the years, you will hear many troops whining and complaining about where they stand in their career. If you’re one of these people, stop for a second and evaluate one thing… your goals.

The first rule of thumb when setting goals is that you must know what you out of life. From that, you can begin building long-term and short-term goals that will help you get what you want.

For starters, you can envision the next 20 years of your life and what you want to be and have in those years. Create milestones for two year interval leading up to the 20-year game plan you made. This provides a gauge to measure your progress against and makes sure that you do not lose sight of your goals.

For the first five years, create yearly plans and milestones. For each year, break down your goals from bi-annual targets to monthly to weekly to daily targets. For each day you can create a to-do list that will allow you to not only measure your success but relish your accomplishment on a daily basis, which in turn builds your confidence and increases your level of competence.

Plans are not supposed to be set in stone because as we change so too some of our plans. So always give some time to review your accomplishment and milestones and be more flexible about changing some of your targets or courses of action.

Always remember that as you set goals, you have to provide an overview of the resources, time and knowledge you need to accomplish your goals and include the acquisition of those requirements into your action plans.

Getting Around Austria

Austria’s main airlines are operated by the Austrian Airlines Group, which focuses on travels to and from Eastern Europe and the Middle East. One of these airlines, Lauda Air, is the brand for charter flights. The the rest of the airlines provide, on top of domestic, regional European flights that include destinations as Berlin, Milan, Barcelona, Paris and Rome.

The Vienna airport is 18km away from the city; the Salzburg airport, 4km. Airports have stores and facilities available for your convenience. Most airports have duty free shops, tourism information, restaurants, left luggage, currency exchange and car hire and car parking. You may look up a specific airport (e.g. Klagenfurt, Graz and Linz) to get more details on the services available there. Take note of the fixed fees on porter service.
To get to and from the airport, passengers have the option of travelling by bus, taxi, train, coach provided by hotels and even chauffeur-driven cars.

Travelers who choose to get to Austria by train may do so via the Austrian Federal Railways. The Austrian Federal Railways’ stops include major cities in and outside of Austria including cities in Germany, Russia, Greece, Romania, Turkey and the city of Brussels, Paris and Italy. You can purchase a Eurail, an international pass for railways, to avail of unlimited travel options across Europe and other offers.

If you prefer to travel by car or by motorcycle, crossing the Channel Tunnel will prove to be an interesting drive. Just remember that if you decide to travel by car, do your bookings in advance. Car rentals are available at airports and railway stations. Here are few pointers to remember when travelling by car:

1. Always bring your UK driving license or national driving license.
2. Make sure you have the car registration documents in your travel.
3. Prepare exact amounts for toll booths to avoid delays in your drive.
4. Turn on your lights when driving, whether inside the city or not.
5. Remember that there are strict laws for driving under the influence and the use of seatbelt.

Additionally, motorcycle or motorbike drivers and passengers are required to wear high visibility jacket and helmet at all times.
Cruise and ferries may also be availed when travelling around Austria and some even bundle cruise trips with hotel stays.
Consider these options on your next trip to Austria.

Common Running Injuries

Not too long ago, there was an article in the Army Times that highlighted the fact that many service members suffer from running injuries. I had to look up a couple of these injuries. I know I’m getting redundant posting running articles, but I find that I always need improvement in running.
You may think that running is the easiest form of exercise because the technique is just to allow each of your feet to rapidly touch the ground alternately. Think again. Since running requires a fast movement, a running athlete is prone to injuries. Here are the most common injuries in running and its effective prevention method. (ughh… sounding like a TM, huh?)

Runner’s Knee
Runner’s Knee is also known as (ITBS) Iliotibial Band Syndrome. Runners knee is experienced when an athlete stresses too much in the exercise. You can feel a sudden feeling of soreness felt within the legs because of wrong stretching technique before the sports event or choosing the wrong sports gear – or ill fitting military gear. You can take a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), massage and use cold therapy would lessen the pain. By NSAID, I do mean Ibuprofen, AKA Ranger Candy, AKA the MF IAM (military fix it all medication).

Shin Splints
Just like Runners knee, shin splints is an injury felt by an athlete, or in this case service member, in his legs as a result of overtraining, wearing the wrong running shoes and poor flexibility. Cold therapy, massage technique and medication of NSAID also cure Shin Splints together with an ample amount of rest. Yes, the same stuff that they tell you at sick-call PLUS rest.

3. Achilles tendonitis or Achilles Tendinopathy is a result of putting too much pressure on the tendons thus allowing the muscles to work beyond its endurance. It is also cause by rapid changes in the distance and speed in an athlete’s exercise with weak joints and wearing the wrong shoes. Similar to Runners knee and shin splints, Achilles tendonitis can be cure by massage, cold therapy and NSAID, for chronic condition, however surgery is adviced.

Austria Part 1

Austria is home to some of the most celebrated music festivals in the world like the Salzburg Festival (of “The Sound of Music” fame), Haydn Festival and the International Chamber of Music Festival in Vienna. Its capital, Vienna, has also been dubbed as the musical capital of Europe. For enthusiasts of both music and art, a trip to Austria would certainly be an enthusing option. Austria is, after all, the birthplace of Mozart.

For those who are just mildly or even remotely interested in the arts, Austria’s artistic influence would merely be an added bonus to some of the other must-sees in the area including horse dances, the country’s snow-covered Alps during winter and the breathtaking castles. The Schloss Bernstein, for one, sits atop a village of the same name and provides a majestic view of its namesake. The castle sits beside Europe’s second largest river, the Danube River.

Horse dances is a travel experience you wouldn’t want to miss when in Austria. The people of this country are very fond of horse riding. Schools that showcase Austria’s 400-year old horsemanship stage open door performances. Just remember to book your ticket beforehand.

Austria experiences rain showers the whole year round and its summer is moderate in temperature—something to consider on your visit. Another thing to keep tabs on is the culture of the locals. The usual etiquette when meeting someone for the first time applies, e.g. addressing the person by their last name until given the permission to do otherwise and offering a handshake.
German is the national language of Austria and is the language predominantly spoken by locals. It can sometimes differ from Standard German, depending on the locality. Some of the minor languages in use in Austria include Slovene, Hungarian, Croatian and Turkish. A simple “Guten Tag” or “Gruss Gotta,” however, is acceptable when greeting people in public; “Auf Wiedersehen” when saying goodbye.

When going around town, it is customary to give cab drivers a 10% tip and to leave a 5% tip on top of your restaurant bill, regardless of the usual service charge.
Additionally, take note of the following duty free items when shopping for gifts to take back home:

1. 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g tobacco or a proportional mix of these products
2. 1L of spirits over 22% or 2L of fortified wine or spirits up to 22& or 2L of sparkling wine or liqueur and 2L of still wine
3. 500g of coffee or 200g of extracts, essences or concentrates of coffee
4. 100g of tea or 40g of tea extracts
5. 50g of perfume or eau de toilette
6. Medicines sufficient for the journey

All the mentioned items above must be carried by a person over 17 years old.

Problem Solving

Every problem has a solution and all you need to do is equip yourself with a fine-tuned ability to think creatively. Creative problem solving requires a little more imagination than your standard rational problem solving methods. It requires you to see a problem in a completely different light.

Here’s a good exercise that you can practice with your troops:

Pose a possible problem.

Everyone take a piece of paper and write the first word that comes to their mind. Write that word at the center of the paper. Focus on that word for about two to three seconds and then write down the two words that first pop out the top of your head after focusing on the first word. Continue the exercise until you are able to build a tree of connected words.

After warming up, you can then focus on solving the problem you have at hand. Here are some pointers to get you in the frame of mind to solve problems creatively.

Forget about assumptions you’ve made. Remove all preconceived notions you have or the assumptions you’ve made about the problem in order to open up your mind to new ideas. You do not have to throw away everything you know (in fact its best you keep a list of the things you know), but for a few minutes you can allow yourself to think outside the box.

When you have freed up your mind you can allow yourself to get to know your problem once again, ideally in a different light, and pay close attention to the minutest details involved—the who’s, what’s, why’s and when’s. You can break down the problem into different parts and dissect each part. This way, you will be more capable of seeing loopholes in the most unlikely areas of the problem. You can address these loopholes and perhaps the problem in the long run.

Take notes. Make notes of the assumptions you have made about the problem and review them accordingly. As you progress in your creative problem solving, you might find inconsistent assumptions. Scratch invalid ones to make decision making and finding a solution easier and more precise.

Listen to other people’s ideas. Two heads are better than one. Be receptive of other people’s ideas because the answer could be just a few improvements from other people’s ideas.

Lastly, be patient and persevering. Always remember that enlightenment does not always come as swiftly as we want it too and that Thomas Edison failed at least 100 times before he came up with the most important inventions of our time like the light bulb.

With these pointers, you should be ready to take on any problems. Get creative now!

What Is The Durable Power Of Attorney For?

During deployments, Legal Offices on post usually always provide services for general and special POAs but what is a durable POA? A Power of attorney is legal and it gives a person the authority to act as an agent dealing in all matters of the principal. The power of attorney which is durable means that the contract has to state the validity of the document if the principal falls sick or dies.
This is useful in cases when the principal seriously falls ill or disabled and also if the property does not need funds to set up. This legal document is also used in the case of couples who are married who have a joined account. Every legal document is different from another so the laws for creating them are also different. South Carolina prepares the power of attorney in the same way as they prepare a will. California has a different system so before you make this document you should have sufficient knowledge about legal matters. One problem remains with the durable document; the principal might not want his agent to take liberations on few things. Therefore it should be stated in the contract that which decisions the agent can take and which ones he cannot and also state that the legal contract will be valid if the principal becomes disabled.

Many responsibilities and decisions could be covered by the power of attorney. These include:

• Gifts which play a huge role in tax planning
• Access the deposit boxes which were used as safes.
• Signing the tax returns, the IRS documents, also settling disputes over tax.
• Pursue matters which are legal or proceedings on the principal’s behalf.
• Collect the principal’s benefits from insurances such as health.
• Amending or setting trust funds.
• To ask the agent to withdraw.

The laws are very different in every case. In cases such as divorce, once the couple is separated, the agent is also terminated. The contract can be termed as invalid if the principal is found ineffective while signing the document.

The contract can become invalid if the agent becomes ineffective,dies or is unavailable.

To keep away from such difficulties, most legal offices either offer Special POAs, or General, or offer help with your will packet.

You have many options from where you can shop online. We list quite a few on the “APO/FPO Shipping Stores” page. Being in an OCONUS location, you don’t have the luxury of visiting the traditional stores have stores of the US where you can shop conveniently. Shopping for clothes online is famous especially among those who do not have enough time or money to shop in stores on the economy.

When you shop online, you will undoubtedly deal with items which do not fit you properly. If you normally shop in popular stores in the US, then you may be in luck. Many of the traditional stores stateside have their online stores as well for example Banana Republic, Old Navy, Ann Taylor, JCPenny, Macy’s and much more. You will find a large variety of items online as compared to that found in the traditional stores and are able to select the best size for yourself. When you purchase online, you have to be a little cautious. Unless you previously shopped there on several occasions, you are not aware how a piece of clothing will fit you when you are not even trying it on. You may not know the exact colour and texture of the clothing you select. It is important that you read the full description of the clothing that you select carefully before you purchase it. The pictures displayed online are not exact, so you should read the description carefully to know the exact type of cut on the clothing.

Shipping times will vary. Even when you pay expedited charges. Generally using overnight shipping is a waste of money. You usually want ti go with priority shipping. I’ve seen packages arrive in less than a week to my APO box.

There are many times that you have to return a certain item because it did not fit you right. Before doing so read the return or exchange policies before you make a purchase. Most online stores require you to contact them first for an RMA number which authorizes you to send the item back. But some online stores allow you to return or exchange your item by completing a form included in your order. But it is best that you read the policy so that you are on the safer side.

Article Submitted By: Unknown

-

-

Aposhoppers Promotes Magic Jack For Military Members In OCONUS locations

Military members and their families live on the go. Many times they are sent places that require them to be without normal services like phones. While cell phones are widely available while in OCONUS locations, the ability to save money would be an even bigger asset when dialing back to the states. That is why the Magic Jack is so innovative to military members and their families. We can use it for only $19.95 a year. That is really efficient. It is secure as well.

There are other reasons why the Magic Jack is wonderful choice. The Magic Jack is a device that allows you to make calls using your Internet connection. It can be considered VOIP service. It is perfect because you can use it anywhere you have a computer. The portability factor is what makes it amazing. That means that anybody, even your child, can take this device and plug it into a computer with an Internet connection, and using a regular phone that is connected to the Magic Jack, make a call. That allows what previously was a limited situation, to become a very normal life. That can really help with the stresses of daily life in the military. Especially when a loved one is deployed and and their family is back in the states.

The sound quality on the Magic Jack is good. It sounds as good as any land line. The better the Internet connection is, the better the sound quality is as well. Be aware that it is dependent on that fact. If you internet is slow, you can experience some delays in conversation. Family members can be reached easier and at less cost then ever before. All thanks to this handy little device.

Some prices are varied by the location that you buy yours, but there are offers that allow you to get the device for a bit less than $19.95. Keep in mind that you buy the Magic Jack separately from the service. The Magic Jack purchase is a one time fee. It can be purchased for a similar price. (Between $19 and $30.) When you consider that most people pay $29. a month for local phone service, it is a huge annual savings. Lets say $30 for the Magic Jack and $20 dollars a year for the service versus $20 a month for regular phone or voip service. That goes a long way in the Military. Money is normally tight and savings have to be real.

The Magic Jack is widely available to anyone that wants to get this device. You might want to get one for each member of the family. When you compare it to a phone contract, the savings are obvious. Even month to month no contract plans can’t beat the Magic Jack price. It really adds up at the end of the year. Do the math for your land line or cell phone.

This handy device can be used anywhere in the world as well. Military families can obviously benefit from it, but really anyone can use this while traveling. Since you don’t need anything more than a phone and a computer with an Internet connection, you can call anywhere and at any time. You could even get the Magic Jack specifically for an overseas trip. If you have a cell phone company that is trying to charge you huge fees for traveling overseas, just toss the cell phone and get this little gadget. Tell the cell phone companies what they can do with their annual increases. Set yourself and your family free from high costs for communication.

In the end you really can’t go wrong with the Magic Jack. Your family can use it to stay in touch at a fraction of the cost that traditional phone service costs. Military members and their families get savings that can’t be beat. Take advantage of this savings for your family and stay in touch at very little cost.

Go To PT With The Best Running Shoes

Okay, we’ve all been to the Post Exchange to stand in front of a wall with those funny looking red, white, and blue signs with the pictures of feet on them. Sometimes you don’t need a sign to figure it out. Looking at ugly, bulky shoes? You’re standing in front of the “Flat Feet” wall. Staring at shoes that look decent or normal but there is never a normal size in stock? That’s the “Normal Arch” wall. By process of elimination, if you’re standing in front of some stylish overpriced running shoes, you’re standing in front of the “High Arch” wall.
If we were in an ideal world, I’m sure that most of us prefer to stroll to PT formation with no footwear. However, this would make us more prone to injuries. Shoes serve as protection and at the same time, contribute to running performance. To get your hands on the best running shoes, the next time you drag your feet through the Military Exchange Store or any athletic shoe store, think of these pointers:

1. Determine the form of your foot by taking a look at your foot print. The forms may be: a) neutral-arched, a curve along the sides of the foot connects to the heel and toe. b) mid-ached foot or flat foot, the prints reveal a minimal curvature along the outside of the foot. c) High-arched foot characterized by a thin band between the heel and the toe. I’m sure most services told you about your arch when you first joined the military. If not, do the paper bag test.
2. Select the shoes that would suit your foot type. Stability shoes are good for the neutral-arched foot. It provides support to the middle part of the foot. Motion-control shoes, those heavy, with dense midsoles fits best for the flat foot. And cushioned shoes, with soft midsole and curved shape are good for high-arched foot.
3. Stick on your own size. Determine if your shoes are tight or not before running. At least there would be half-inch allowance in your shoes to allow proper circulation the moment your feet swell. Be sure, the heel does not slide up or down when running or walking. Check for those ridiculous seems on the inside of your shoe. They sometimes contribute to blood under the toe nail.

Eastbay.com

4. When buying, test it well. To have a good preference, use the socks you often times use in running. Also, both feet don’t exactly measures the same, go by the size of the larger foot. And try to fit some shoes during the afternoon, when feet usually get swollen.
5. Unfortunately for us flat footed people, as far as running shoes, go for the function, not for the fashion.

 Page 1 of 3  1  2  3 »