Dealing with chatty coworkers, grocery shopping and more
Q: What’s the best way to deal with a chatty co-worker? My officemate is unfocused and always wants to start conversations not related to work. How can I nicely tell her now is not the time to chat?
A: The office can certainly be a tough place to be, and having a chatty co-worker definitely does not make it any better. In this case it is important to be assertive without being aggressive. In a very clear yet polite way tell your co-worker than you have work that you need to focus on and that you would be more than happy to talk to him/her on your break or another time that is more fitting. This way your co-worker will get the hint that you need to focus but will not feel like you are telling them off. Consequently, they will respect you and your time more.
— Professional life coach Shannon Graham, www.321lifecoach.com
Wine & Dine
Q: Our family likes to dine out, but we’re concerned about our children’s weight. Is there a healthy way to do both?
A: Joining forces with first lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign, restaurant association members have pledged to offer more healthy choices for families dining out, such as more fruits, juices, vegetables, whole grains and milk options. Here are a few tips: Choose lean meats and go for grilled or baked rather than fried, breaded or crispy. Choose low-fat milk. Watch portion size and salt. Choose a side of vegetables rather than fries. Since kids’ menu options are often high in fat and calories, ask for a half-order of something off the regular menu or have two kids share. Lastly, review nutritional information and make good choices.
— Annika Stensson, National Restaurant Association director of media relations
Q: I see celebrities wearing long, layered necklaces in pearls, metals and beads. This neck candy trend is appealing. Any tips on how to carry it off or what to pair it with?
A: A bold, “look-at-me” necklace glamorizes even the most mundane outfit and makes you seem trendy no matter what else you wear. Try the latest version: neckwear in woven yarn or cloth is arty and hip. Big chunks of metal or stone with global influences also work, but keep the rest of your look clean and simple to avoid looking nutty.
— Dannielle Kyrillos, editor-at-large of DailyCandy.com, the free daily e-mail about food, fashion and fun
Q: Grocery shopping is so difficult. My little ones beg and plead for candy and sugary cereal. How should I talk to them about the right choices?
A: Before heading to the store, have your children help make a list of the ingredients you’ll need for healthy meals and snacks. When you’re at the store, let them find the items and cross them off your list. Giving kids a job to do will help distract them from the candy aisle, and will give you an opportunity to talk about the importance of good nutrition. Another way to keep kids occupied while grocery shopping: Have a scavenger hunt in the produce section. Explain that eating brightly colored produce provides the nutrients their bodies need to stay healthy, and see who can find fruits and vegetables using all the colors of the rainbow.
— The experts at FamilyEducation.com