Plain Words
Training Bulletin
issue 3

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Bryson’s Dictionary of Troublesome Words

Training Bulletin Issue 3

Welcome to the third issue of The Training Bulletin. In this issue we discuss how to cope with stress and how small improvements in how you work can reap big rewards.

Do you enjoy Bill Bryson’s books? Check out Editor recommends below.

Hankering after the Mediterranean way of life?

You know what I mean – sunshine, good food and wine and above all a relaxed approach to life. When we look at countries like France, Italy or Spain it’s no wonder that we envy their attitude to work and play. Take the siesta. The medical profession tells us that eating a substantial, healthy meal at lunch time followed by a power nap fits perfectly with the way humans are designed to function. We British, on the other hand, grab a sandwich at our desks and then wonder why we have no energy by three o’clock.

But the good news is that you can improve your quality of life without emigrating! Training in how to deal with the stressful situations that all of us face at some time in our home life or work life is a good start. Take an in-depth look at the lifestyle choices you make that affect your wellbeing and, using a combination of mental and physical techniques, learn how to reduce the potentially harmful effects of long-term stress.

We can’t change the British winter but learning how to cope with stress can put a spring in your step.

A stitch in time saves nine (a Word™ to the wise)

This old proverb rings true in most areas of life and none more so than in the business environment. We all know that if you don’t deal with a problem in a timely fashion it has a habit of getting worse not better. But sometimes it’s not that easy to foresee that something you are doing now or omitting to do now, will have consequences in the future.

Take using Word for Windows™ for example. Most of us tend to launch straight in to writing our document, completely ignoring the features that are designed to make life easier for us, because we think it’s quicker. But the truth is that we are storing up problems for ourselves. Long documents created in this way take longer to write in the first place and are harder to modify later because you inevitably introduce problems. If you don’t learn the techniques, you’ll find that strange things start happening: page breaks can disappear – or appear – seemingly at random or inserted graphics can stay put even if you move the block of text that surrounds them. How frustrating is that when you’re rushing to complete a document to a tight deadline!

In fact, the longer the document the more scrolling and searching you have to do and the more your Word skills will count. Learning how to format text and create navigation aids with a single click or key press improves the look, quality and usability of your document as well as saving time, both now and in the long run.

Don’t forget your free £100 Amazon voucher with P3

P3 is the Plain Points Plan. Every time you attend a Plain Words course you gain 25 points. If you recommend a colleague you earn 15 points when he or she attends a course. Once you have accumulated 100 points you will receive an Amazon voucher worth £100!

When, where and how much

Our courses are held in Newbury, Wolverhampton and London. For dates and venues see the schedule page.

The price is £395 + VAT per person for a one-day intensive course and £770 + VAT for a two-day workshop.

We also offer private courses at your premises. Please call 01235 60 30 22 for details.

How do I book?

To book, call Abi on 01235 60 30 22 ext 28 or use the booking form.

Editor recommends

Bryson’s Dictionary of Troublesome Words: A Writer’s Guide to Getting It Right by Bill Bryson

Eats, Shoots and Leaves by Lynne Truss wasn’t the first witty book to be penned on punctuation and grammar. Bill Bryson, author of Notes from a Small Island, wrote Troublesome Words 20 years ago. He’s recently revised it and more than half of the material is new. The book is arranged alphabetically so it’s an ideal reference work to the meaning and derivation of words as well as grammar rules. Bryson’s common sense and witty approach that make his travel books so successful is in evidence here too, making this reference work an enjoyable read.