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President's Message

NAIFA-West Virginia President
If someone asked if you were happy, how would you respond? Have the issues of this year been too challenging for you?  Are you feeling that regardless of what you try to say or do, that things are just not going your way?  Perhaps it is time for you to get your joy back!
Life is meant for us to enjoy and be happy.  Life is not meant to cause us pain or put us into a negative mindset.  We control our happiness and joy.  No one can take it away unless we decide to give it up. Therefore, we must learn to be happy and share that happiness wherever we go.
So, are you happy?  If you have challenges about your work, think about this:  what if you lost your current job?  How would you feel?  What if you could not find another job for several months; and, then were able to get your old job back.  How would that make you feel?  What if you lost all your money?  Nothing to buy food or pay your bills, how would you feel?  What if 90 days later, your funds were restored; how would you feel then?  You see, happiness and joy are purposeful and demand the proper perspective from our point of view.
Joy and happiness begin the very moment that we awake in the morning and realize that we indeed have the privilege of facing another day. From that very moment, we must gather a positive mindset; smile; and, be happy where we are.  We must make the choice of happiness and the benefit of being positive.  Choices not circumstances really rule our life.  Whether we smile or frown is based upon a choice we make. Therefore, we must choose wisely.
A man walks into a restaurant and asks a waitress, "Do you serve crabs here?" The waitress responds, "Mister, we serve all kinds here.  Just take a seat and I will be with you shortly."  A lady is asked, "Do you ever wake up grumpy?"  "The lady responds, "No, I just let him sleep." Two brick layers were approached and asked what they were doing.  One responded that he was laying brick while the other responded that he was building one of the most beautiful structures the world has ever seen.  How we mentally view life and how that view is contained on our face and in our actions determines how we will be viewed by others every day.  We must learn to be happy here and now.  If we cannot do that; then, we must act happy until such time we can manufacture happiness for ourselves.
Think about this:  we do not "have" to go to work; we "get" to go to work because we have the privilege of having a job.  We do not "have" to pay taxes; we "get" to pay taxes because we have the privilege of earning an income.  We do not "have" to paint our house; we "get" to paint our house because we have the privilege of having a place of residence to call our own.  We do not "have" to take our kids to school; we "get" to take our kids to school because we have been blessed to be parents.  We do not "have" to sell life insurance; we "get" to sell life insurance because we have within our grasp the product that can guarantee dreams can come true.  You see, it is all in the perspective of our situations.  That is why we need to celebrate each day and choose to be happy.
Enthusiasm; positive mindset; smiling; being happy; and, making a difference to others by our actions, all these choices matter.  We cannot afford to waste time not being happy.  We must celebrate each day and insure that our joy has us focus on what is right in the world not what is wrong.  Enthusiasm must fill our minds and bodies just like it does with a baby:  just listen to the enthusiasm of a crying baby.  Each is bellowing its excitement of the moment to the top of its lungs.  Thus, we must program our minds properly to get the joy we need to make life complete.
NAIFA-West VirginiaSo, are you happy?  Do you get up in the morning with the joy you need to gain the most that day can offer?  Are you wearing a frown on your face so infectious that others are turned to stone from a simple glance in your direction?  The choice is yours and yours alone.  You can choose to be happy and look upon each and every interaction in a positive and joyful attitude or you can choose to a master manufacturer of unhappiness and sell your product to the world around you.  It is a choice and it is time to get your joy back! 
Do not waste another moment!
NAIFA-Charleston Membership Luncheon & CE

Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Edgewood Country Club  

Two Hour Morning CE Opportunity:
NAIFA-Charleston 9:30 - 10:30 am
"Using Trusts as IRA Beneficiary" - # 100396 (1 hour)
10:30 - 11:30 am
"Life is Just Cash Flow" - # 100397 (1 hour) 

Membership Luncheon Meeting, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
Featuring entertainment from the South Charleston High School Choir
The choir will begin their performance promptly at 11:30 am.
NAIFA-Charleston Members: No Charge!
NAIFA-West Virginia Members: $20.00
Non-Members: $40.00
Includes lunch and CE filing fees!
RSVP REQUIRED! To register or for more information, call or e-mail Executive Director John E. Pauley, CLU, ChFC, CLTC at (304) 345-4343 or
Executive Director's Report

John E. Pauley, CLU, ChFC, CLTCJohn E. Pauley, CLU, ChFC, CLTC
NAIFA-West Virginia Executive Director

Would you like to be the best?  The top people in our industry have certain common characteristics.  They walk, talk, think, and act differently.  Everything happens for a reason.  If you think and do what the very best people think and do, you will get the same results that the very best people get.  Brian Tracy has identified 10 key strategies essential for success:
1. GET SERIOUS:  Quit fooling around.  Successful people have had what Brian refers to "a significant motivational experience," something that got inside them that made them just decide that "I'm going to be the best, there are no barriers, I shall turn the course."
2. LEAD THE ACTION:  Act as if everyone is watching you.  If it is to be, it is up to me.  Have high standards and great expectations.  This will energize you.
3. IDENTIFY LIMITATIONS:  Everyone has some type of chokepoint that is setting their speed.  Missing just one skill will hold you back.  This will be the factor that limits you.  Your associates will probably be aware of this limitation and can help you identify it.
4. GET AROUND THE RIGHT PEOPLE:  Associate with the best.  Look for happy, positive people who are going the same places you want to go.
5. BE PHYSICALLY FIT:  If you are fresh and alert, you will feel good and be good.  Have a healthy lifestyle.
6. GROW EVERYDAY:  Dedicate yourself to learn (did you know that 80% of American households didn't buy a single book last year?).  Listen to positive mental attitude audios, read positive mental attitude books, and take training courses.
7. POSITIVE VISUALIZATION:  Picture yourself as successful in all situations.  To gain a desirable attribute, act as if you already have that quality.
8. SELF-TALK:  Successful people have an optimistic inner dialogue.  They talk to themselves in the form of positive affirmations.  Be your own cheerleader.
Be The Best!9. POSITIVE EXPECTATIONS:  Always look for the good. 
What am I doing right?
10. POSITIVE ACTION:  Get going.  Get busy.  Work.  Go see people.  Move quickly (there are no successful slow people).  Persist.  Never, never give up!
Now that you know the secret,

Thom StevensHi, I'm Thom Stevens, Editor of Health Care Highlights.
This marks the 24th anniversary of our unique health care publication.
Our newsletter reaches more than 2,500 health professionals
and health policy makers.
Health Care Highlights is your best
source for West Virginia legislative and governmental health

For more information, please call 304-344-8466 or email
West Virginia Exchange Status Update

NAIFA-West VirginiaSubmitted by Geoffrey Christian, MBA
NAIFA-WV Health Chair

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin's Administration announced that it was awaiting further guidance from the Obama Administration before it would finalize a decision on a health benefit exchange in West Virginia.
The federal government's health reform law provides states with three options: a state-based exchange; a state partnership exchange; and a full federally operated exchange.
Based on analysis already completed, state officials have tentative plans to proceed with a state partnership exchange so West Virginia can retain the ability to assist consumers and industry while evading the financial liability that a state-based exchange would create in future years.
"Based on everything we know, we are likely to head in the direction of a partnership," said Rob Alsop, chief of staff to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.  West Virginia's approach is to protect consumers and the private marketplace to the greatest degree allowed under federal health reform, while continuing the fiscally responsible policies heralded by Governor Tomblin for over 25 years, Alsop added.
Before a decision can be finalized, State officials are requiring additional information.  According to Jeremiah Samples, an administrator with the Insurance Commission, the burden, at this point, is on the federal government to provide guidance to states so an informed decision can be made.  The impacts of these decisions are too great for guesswork.  Due to delays in the release of guidance, federal officials postponed the date by which states have to make a determination on a state based exchange until December 14, 2012, and for a state partnership exchange until February 15, 2013.
The Need to Use Caution in Annuity Sales to Seniors
Members are reminded that they should take particular care when making annuity sales to seniors in order to protect themselves from ending up in a similar situation as Glenn Neasham, the California producer who was convicted of theft for selling an annuity to a senior client who was later found to have dementia.
According to a recent series of articles in LifeHealthPro, an online product of the National Underwriter, there are numerous steps advisers can take to lessen the odds of their becoming involved in litigation as a result of selling annuities to seniors.  These measures include: 1) taking a second look as to whether an annuity is actually the most appropriate investment at that point in the client's life; 2) making an audio or (better yet) video record (with the client's knowledge and approval) of your discussions about annuities with your clients; 3) asking the client to have a family member or friend present when annuity sales are discussed; and 4) avoiding annuity sales to senior clients, or holding off on such sales at least until state regulators or the NAIC develop specific, detailed guidelines on how producers can safely make such sales and be protected from litigation down the road.
Links to the two LifeHealthPro articles are HERE and HERE.
Please contact me if you have any questions.
Gary A. Sanders
Vice President - Securities and State Government Relations
National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA) 
New Year's Resolutions Don't Work...

Bob DaviesHow to Make Them Stick!
Submitted by Bob Davies
It's that time of year again!
I love the phrase from Ralph Waldo Emerson, "What you do speaks so loudly I can't hear what you say!"
Almost half of American adults make one or more new year's resolutions every year and fail. That's probably the reason that the other half of the population doesn't even bother. If you keep reading I'll show you why new year's resolutions fail and I'll give you a strategy to ensure that they stick!
The most common resolutions are about weight loss, exercise and smoking. I see this first hand in all of my speaking engagements. When I give the audience a chance to make commitments almost always the commitments that they make are for their health.
I can remember speaking at an elite top producer's insurance conference, Forum 400. These were the top of the field for insurance sales. They had an opportunity to share commitments for actions that they needed to take to reach their goals. So I'm expecting to hear about putting on seminars, prospecting for strategic alliances, meeting for financial reviews with their high net worth clients, gift tax and trust opportunities or succession issues.
Instead what do I hear?
"I'm committed to losing weight."
Now I have an opportunity to coach this person in front of the entire room. So I say,  "What does that mean?" This allows me to introduce a concept that will dramatically impact your final outcome, "be specific." I then teach the audience the concept of "precision probing."
One reason that commitments don't turn into long-term habits and actions is because the commitment is not specific enough.  The precision probing model will solve this. It's simple, who, what, when, where and then add the word specifically.
So back to "I'm committed to losing weight." I ask myself, what don't I know about this statement and I ask the client in the format of blank specifically.
"How much specifically?"
The client says, "I want to lose forty pounds".
This is still a vague statement so I ask, "By when specifically?" The client gives me an answer, "Let's say by the end of the year."
This brings up another problem with new year's resolutions. "It's the starting that stops most people."  The end of the year is too far out. It's got to be very short term and a small step. So I ask, "What does this mean for this week?"
The client replies that they would like to lose one pound. This seems reasonable so I ask, "How are you going to do this?"
The client responds with another vague response, "I'll eat less and exercise more."
I say, what the heck does that mean? Any time you hear the words less or more, qualifiers, challenge them with the precision probing model of blank specifically. So I focus on one thing, exercise. "What specifically will you do for exercise this week?"
The client says, "I'll work out five times this week."
Now as a coach I could go several directions on this one. What don't I know? What does the client mean by work out? Again, not being specific. However, to save time I go a different route. I check for reality. "How many times did you exercise last week?"
The most common response I get back is 0. "How about the week before that?" Again, another 0, and before that 0 etc.
This is a third major reason that new year's resolutions fall flat on their faces, unrealistic commitments. I explain to the group that you can't commit to workout five times when your history is 0 followed by 0 followed by 0! Then I ask "would it be good if you worked out four times this week?" Most of the time the client says "Yes!" Then I ask if working out three times would be good and again I hear yes!
This client is making an unrealistic commitment and has just about a zero chance of succeeding. You can almost guarantee that there will be circumstances, obstacles, unscheduled priorities, interruptions, that all get in the way preventing this person from doing what they said they would do.
Yes there is hope. So, let's say that the client agrees to a minimum level commitment of working out two days this week. They'd like to work out four times but are only committing to and being held accountable to two. They can go ahead and reset their baseline by working out four or five times and then commit higher next week but they only have the behavioral credibility to commit to the lower level of two times.
Now this brings up another key component for successful new year's resolutions, take small, realistic steps.
However, this too is doomed for failure unless...
There needs to be an intervention to compensate for human nature. We are all genetically coded to avoid the highest level of perceived pain and seek comfort. We are genetically coded to see threats, to be negative. We are not coded to look in a meadow and appreciate the beauty. We are coded instead to look in a meadow and see the lion that is barely visible. We are coded for survival. We are coded to be fat, not thin because of the scarcity of food for caveman we are coded to binge, to eat well beyond our nutritional needs and to store the excess as fat.
Human evolution does this by delaying the appestat area of the brain from signaling the fat cells that we have had enough caloric intake and therefore suppress hunger. This delay favors survival enabling caveman to eat more because he may not have a protein source like this captured deer for another week.
This is not appropriate for us today but we still have the primate instinct. In fact, all of our evolutionary instincts are to recognize what can hurt us and to compel avoidance. This is not based on the truth, it's simply based on this no long appropriate human survival instinct.
For example, the flight-or-fight mechanism will save your life if you see a bear. Your breathing will increase, you will get a shot of adrenalin, cortisol, your blood circulation rises, blood leaves the extremities for the major muscle groups so if you're clawed you won't bleed to death. Digestion stops, endorphins are released so you won't feel pain. You are instinctively put into a state where you can run as fast as possible or stay and fight as strong as possible.
This automatic response even occurs precognitive. In other words, before you are even aware that you are looking at a dangerous and hungry bear you are already running away. This instinct favors survival so you live to pass it on.
However, the problem is that these protective instincts occur regardless of the truth and validity of the threat. For example, you are driving and someone cuts you off in traffic. You get the exact fight-or-flight response physiologically but it's not a true threat. You are sitting in your car. Your life is not being threatened but you respond as if it was. The key is to recognize what the real competitor is to your reaching your goals, human nature. You are genetically coded to recognize the highest level of pain and avoid it for comfort. You are an avoidance machine!
Once you recognize this you can work with it and stop fighting it. Here's what this means for your commitment to exercise two times this week.
You make the commitment, exercise two times. (And you're specific about what exercise means.)
So this meeting the first issue, it is specific. You also meet the second consideration, it's a short term commitment, the next seven days, and it is a small step with specific actions.
You also pass the third test, it's realistic.
So why won't you do it consistently?
Because this is only half of a commitment. You haven't acknowledged the failure reason number four, recognizing the true competition, human nature and having an intervention.
Human nature states that all human performance is the avoidance of pain or the seeking of comfort. Your brain is designed to search like a computer to find any links of your commitment to pain, and it will find it.  Here are a few:
1. Exercise hurts.
2. You're tired.
3. You have aches and pains.
4. You don't have enough time.
5. It's inconvenient.
Your brain instantly links your commitment to exercise to life threatening pain. This triggers the survival mechanism and you are compelled to avoid. This then impacts your perceptions. You don't see opportunities to exercise, instead you focus how you have been genetically coded to focus on the perceived threat and you avoid it. The brain doesn't say that you're not really tired, it just holds it as if it is a life threatening event and compels you to avoid. When you avoid you will then justify the avoidance with rationalization and never think that you're avoiding. Unless...
You implement an intervention.
One more example before the intervention.
I was sitting in a real estate office many years ago and this is what I saw. A new lender walks into the office carrying her rate sheets. She was trained to go into real estate offices and meet with the realtors who can give her their buyers. She was trained on how to approach them, what to say, and what to point out on the rate sheets, etc. She was trained on everything except on how to handle what came next.
The owner of the company saw her walk into the office. He came storming out of his office grabbed her business card, tore it up and threw it at her shouting this is how much I want to see you in my office, now get out! This poor woman left the office in tears.
Here is what happened mentally and physiologically for this lender. The activity of prospecting was linked to pain. The area of the brain that fires upon real physical pain, the anterior cingulate, also fires upon mental pain, in this case the tremendous rejection. Next the hypothalamus forms a memory and releases stress hormone between the outer cortex, the executive thinking part of the brain, the intentions area, and the amygdale, a part of the arousal, fear based limbic system buried deep in the brain. A cortical limbic loop is created and strengthens with the stress hormones. Now the next time this woman even thinks about calling on a real estate office this memory will be triggered and it will lead to the same physiological state that the woman was in when this first happened. This is called learned helplessness. This lender will not prospect again but will rationalize and justify why she is just too busy to call on this office.
Here it is, the intervention. It's called behavioral contracting. Behavioral contracting is making a specific declaration (exercise two times, or call on this real estate office) plus accountability. Accountability has two parts. The first part is the check in. Someone outside of yourself checks in with you and verifies that you did what you said you would do. The second part is the consequence for non performance.
There must be a painful consequence if you don't do what you said you would do. This consequence must be more painful than the pain of the activity. Now you are tapping into human natures' genetic coding of avoiding the highest level of perceived pain for the comfort. If the highest level of pain is the consequence then you will be compelled to avoid. How do you avoid, by doing the activity you said you would do.
Try it yourself. If this realtor would put $1000 as a fine if she didn't go into that office this week I promise you that the pain of losing the $1000 would far outweigh the perceived pain of the activity of going into the office. The bottom line, she will still be an avoidance machine, but she will be avoiding the penalty by doing the action.
Here is a summary of what stops new year's resolutions from working. No, let me turn it around. Here is a summary of what ensures new year's resolutions are kept:
1. Goals are specific.
2. Short term focus with small steps and specific activities.
3. Commitments are realistic and based on previously established behavior.
4. You recognize the true competitor, human nature and you have an intervention.
5. You use behavioral contracting-specific declaration plus accountability. Accountability equals the check in with an enforceable consequence (painful) for non performance.
Try this with just one new year's resolution for one week at a time and you will be very happy with the result. Send me an email and I'll hold you accountable, and $100 if you don't perform.
Bob Davies will be a keynote speaker at NAIFA-West Virginia's 2013 State Convention! For more information about High Performance Training, Inc., please visit


IFAPAC - Career Protection Insurance
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IFAPAC Contribution Form in PDF format.
"Don't tax you! Don't tax me! Tax the fellow behind the tree!"
- Sen. Russell B. Long
NAIFA Congressional Conference: April 8-9, 2013 in Washington, DC  
Don't be that fellow behind the tree!
NAIFA Congressional Conference:
APRIL 8-9, 2013 in WASHINGTON, DC!
Visit more information.
Please review the 2012 Advocacy Brief by clicking HERE!

NAIFA 2012-2013 Tax Challenges Video Link  
For a special video on NAIFA's
2012-2013 Tax Challenges, click HERE!

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For more information about the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors - West Virginia, contact John Pauley, CLU, ChFC, CLTC at (304) 345-4343 or e-mail
NAIFA-West VirginiaVisit NAIFA-West Virginia's website at