Frozen food – Yay or Nay?

However, according to professional chefs in their elegant men’s and women’s chef coats and bib aprons, there are some potential negative impacts of using these types of consumables that you should be aware of before you make your decision.

The pros of frozen food

While the subject is quite debatable and is hotly discussed among many, there are certain pros to using meals that have been freeze processed. These include:

Convenience: They are incredibly convenient. You can buy it pre-packaged, and all you have to do is heat it up in the oven or microwave. This is a great option for busy families who don’t have time to cook from scratch every night.
Affordability: They are often cheaper than fresh items. This can be especially helpful if you are on a tight budget.
Nutrition: Freezing fruits and vegetables can retain their nutritional value just as fresh produce. In fact, some people believe that they are even more nutrient dense because freezing is done shortly after being picked. This means that the nutrients are not lost during transport or storage like they can be with fresh produce.
Saves time: As mentioned before, one of the biggest benefits of this type of meal is that it saves time. You don’t have to spend time grocery shopping or cooking. All you have to do is heat it up in the oven or microwave. This is a great option for busy families who don’t have time to cook from scratch every night.
Durability: They can be stored for a long time without going bad. This is especially helpful if you have a large family and can’t eat all the food before it goes bad. You can just freeze it and save it for later.
Cost efficient: It is often cheaper than fresh produce. This is because these products are mass produced, which drives down the cost.
Sustainable: Another benefit of this type of meal is that it is sustainable. By freezing partially prepared meals and produce, we are able to reduce wastage and save on resources such as energy and water.

The cons of frozen food

Despite these benefits, there are some negative aspects of frozen meals that should be considered.

Less variety: One downside of these products is that there is less variety than fresh produce. Most items are processed and pre-packaged, which means that you don’t have as much control over what ingredients are used.
Not always healthy: Although most of these products are healthy, not all of it is. Some are high in sodium, sugar and fat, which can be bad for your health.
May contain additives: They often contains additives such as preservatives and coloring agents to improve the taste or appearance of the product. While these additives are generally safe, they can still be harmful if consumed in large quantities.
Not always fresh: One downside of freezing meals and produce is that it is not always fresh. Often times, meals are cooked months before it is sold in stores. This means that some of the nutrients may have been lost during the freezing process.
May contain bacteria: Another downside of these products is that it may contain bacteria. This is one of the most common reasons for food poisoning. So, it is important to make sure that it is cooked properly and stored at the correct temperature.

How to make frozen food more nutritious

Is there a way to make frozen food more nutritious? Yes! There are a few things you can do to make them more nutritious:

Cook the meals properly: Make sure that you cook them properly. Undercooking them may mean that may contain bacteria that can cause food poisoning.
Add vegetables: One way to make these meals more nutritious is by adding vegetables. Frozen vegetables are a great way to get your daily dose of vitamins and minerals.
Use organic ingredients: If you are using these meals, try to use organic ingredients as much as possible. Organic ingredients tend to be healthier than non-organic ingredients.

How to make frozen food taste better

Taste can be one of the negatives of frozen food, but there are certainly ways to make it taste better.

Add spices: One way to make these meals taste better is by adding spices. Spices can add a lot of flavor and taste to your meals and make it more enjoyable to eat.
Cook with broth: Another way to make them taste better is by cooking it in broth. The broth will add flavor to the dish and make it tastier.
Use sauces: Sauces can also add flavor to and make it more delicious. Try using different sauces, such as BBQ sauce or teriyaki sauce, when cooking them.

The best and worst frozen foods

Some of the best frozen foods out there in the market include:

Fruits: Frozen fruits are a great snack or addition to smoothies. They are healthy, delicious, and easy to eat.
Vegetables: Frozen vegetables are also a healthy option and they taste great too. Try adding them to stir fries or soups for added flavor and nutrition.
Pizza: Frozen pizza is a classic comfort food that everyone loves. There are so many different kinds of frozen pizzas available these days, so you’re sure to find one you love.

Some of the worst frozen foods include:

Dinners: Most freeze processed dinners are unhealthy and not very tasty. They are often full of sodium and other unhealthy ingredients.
Desserts: Desserts can sometimes become icy and hard when frozen. They are also often high in sugar and calories.

So, is frozen food a good or bad thing? In general, it is a good thing. It is healthy, convenient, and tasty. However, it is important to watch out for unhealthy options like desserts and dinners. Enjoying these type of meals in moderation is the key to staying healthy and happy, and who knows, once you put on a bib apron, and bring out those dishes, you could get a reputation as a culinary genius at home!

We Are All TV Presenters

At a recent TV Presenting Course that we ran in Dublin, Ireland, it became very clear to me why most ‘presentation skills’ type courses fall short of achieving the results they should be getting – those results being a more confident, persuasive and eloquent speaker. In fact most of them miss the point completely! They fail to acknowledge the most important area of presenting – the voice.

A Speaker needs a voice! The spoken words must be the result of the 3 ‘P’s – Planning, Preparation & Performing (or Putting into Practise, if the word ‘performing’ frightens you!) Each have equal importance, and with a bit of persistence you will be amazed at how little time is required when you give each section it’s own value.

You see, an audience is not concerned with the Planning and Preparation, they only see and hear the Performance. The small window of opportunity that exists for you to speak, is what will motivate, inspire or persuade the listener to trust and believe in you. In a television programme the Presenter is the link between the ‘energy’ of the programme and the audience. Our screens are littered with examples of nonsense television with good Presenters and great subject matter with poor Presenters. Rarely do we see the best of content combined with the best Presenter performance, and when we do we over-ride all logic, cynicism and doubt and allow ourselves to be wholeheartedly taken into the speaker’s (or programme’s) world.

I have seen large, medium and small corporations spend fortunes on brochures, board rooms, PR – in fact all the things that make up the ‘corporate image’, and then fall flat on their faces when the ‘corporate voice’ – the voice that the customer hears – does not deliver the professionalism of the product, ethos or track record of the organisation. It amazes me how little vocal training many sales teams are given to help them maximise the small window of opportunity they have when in front of customers. The way I see it is: no sales = no business. Why take the risk of not ensuring your sales teams’ voices are the very best they can be?

So when I read or hear about courses that do not include at least a third of voice work delivered by voice specialists in their ‘presentation skills’ training, I realise that these people have no idea about courses they run, and have no idea how much value customers, clients and colleagues give to the vocal sound when making decisions. Call these courses ‘effective use of PowerPoint’, ‘content structures that help people understand’, ‘relax and de-stress’ or ‘how to sharpen your pencil’ – whatever – but do not call them ‘Presentation Skills’ if no serious time is given to the mechanics, physiology, psychology and delivery practises of the voice and vocal impact. This is like calling a course ‘Formula 1 Motor Racing Skills’, showing people maps of some race tracks, explaining the importance of driver focus, demonstrating how to change the engine oil and then, bizarrely, not giving them a F1 car with a skilled Instructor to guide them through their newly acquired skills!

(By the way Videoing participants and gratuitously pointing out the blatantly obvious doesn’t count! We are more interested in the cause, not the symptoms and we purposely ban video cameras from the first few days of our trainings. This ensures we guarantee long lasting change where the person no longer displays vocal and physical ‘oddities’. When our participants understand and are comfortable with their natural delivery styles and they can successfully combine this with their expert information, only then do we bring out the cameras as a means to achieve maximum effectiveness of the desired message.)

We all know the philosophical question – “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around tohear it, does it make a sound?” It demonstrates the dictum of ‘Esse est percipi – ‘ Tobe is to be perceived. This can be very easily  transferred to a sales, motivation, education or coaching environment. How often has a presentation ‘fallen in the forest’, and no one has heard it, acts on it, or even cares about it?!

In our ‘Secrets of Confident & Effective Speakers’ courses we continuously make the point that a listener doesn’t really care about the Presenters ‘stuff’ (their slides, sore throats, traffic jams, faulty projector, deadlines). An audience cares about what the Presenter says, how they say it, and most importantly how this makes the audience feel. This is what convinces them to believe, to follow, to buy!

So the next time you watch a TV programme, and you see a TV Presenter, realise that this 30 / 60 minute slot is the section on which you will judge the show, and not on the unseen weeks planning and preparation that has preceded the performance. To be at your best you must give equal time to rehearsing (or putting into practise) the skills of delivery. Only this gives you the best possible chance to do maximum justice to your integrity, ethos or product. This brings you and your message into the listeners present, and activates their response receptors. Planning, Preparation AND Performing. Does Your Performing do justice to your Planning and Preparation? Whether we like it or not, we are all TV Presenters!

To Negotiate Successfully, Whose Ethical Compass Do You Follow?

When you negotiate, do you have problems with your ethical compass? Do you assess those with whom you negotiate to determine the direction in which their ethical compass points?

During negotiations, people get ‘caught up in the moment’. As a result, sometimes they say and/or do ‘things’ that are misleading, misaligned with their core values, and even downright fraudulent. Nevertheless, one’s ethical compass is a matter of perception.

Consider the following situations and in your own mind assess who’s right from an ethical point of view.

· As the result of a new state law (SB 1070 in a state in the U.S.), the local police have the right to stop anyone that does not ‘look’ a certain way. Some people are cheering, because they’ll get relief from local crimes that have occurred. Other people think the law will serve as a tool used to stop and possibly harass people that ‘look’ a certain way. Are there ethical misalignments at work in this situation, or a genuine concern for the public’s safety?

· You’re stuck in a plane, on the tarmac for hours. Airline authorities indicate they don’t want to let passengers deplane, because ‘conditions’ could change at a moment’s notice and they need to be in a position to ‘take off’ sooner versus later. Are they lying, or are they trying to avoid the hassle of going through the rigors of deplaning passengers?

· Your stockbroker suggests you buy a financial product, while telling others they should sell the same financial product. Some say financial reform is the answer. Others say, financial reform will be too restrictive. Is greed the factor that’s causing the ethical compass to be ‘off centered’ in this situation, or is it self-preservation. To what degree is the stockbroker’s ethical compass askew?

In the above situations, who is ethically right and what’s the ‘real’ source of motivation? Are the people advantaged in these situations duplicitous in their lack of ethics? Are they simply viewing situations from the perspective that the solution will solve a problem? It really depends upon the perspective from which you view each situation and the goals participants are striving to accomplish. In reality, people on either side of the continuum could be manipulating their ethical compasses for their financial and/or self-satisfying betterment.

In this negotiation tip, I’m not passing judgment on any negotiator, nor the practices he uses. To each I say, to thyself be true. Let your conscious be your guide.

When negotiating, determine ahead of time what you’re willing to do to obtain what you’re seeking. Assess the other negotiator’s capacity to ‘bend’ the truth in his efforts to get what he wants. In the balance will lie to what extent you and the other negotiator are willing to go to achieve the outcome being sought. To the degree that your assessment is accurate, you’ll have more control of the negotiation, from which you should be able to craft a more beneficial outcome… and everything will be right with the world.

The Negotiation Tips Are…

· When you negotiate, if you find yourself in a state of ‘wicked wittiness (lying)’, consider the consequences of your actions. You don’t want to win a battle, at the expense of losing the war.

· Where possible, never knowingly pressure the other negotiator into a position whereby he has to lie to sustain or embellish his point. Be cognizant of his body language to gain insight into his source of motivation.

· Seek to understand what may motivate someone to lie. In so doing, you can guard against that source and use it to your advantage if the situation is warranted.