Brauns Law January 2018


The Value of an Impossible Goal Why It Pays to Shoot for the Stars

When I first opened my firm, I sat at my desk and wrote down how many people I wanted to help that year. I remember staring at the number and thinking, “There’s no way I’ll ever be able to reach this.” Instead of lowering the number, I decided to shoot for the stars anyway. We worked hard all year, and in the end, not only did we reach that impossible number, we surpassed it. That year, I realized the secret to setting successful goals: Set goals that match your potential, not your ability. The best goals will challenge you to become better in some way. If you write down a goal and think, “This will be easy to achieve,” then how much will you really have to improve in order to reach your goal? When I first write down a goal, I look at it and say, “I can do better than that.” Whatever goal you set out for yourself,

multiply it by 10. This might sound insane, but it works. When you strive for a difficult goal, even if you ultimately don’t succeed, the effort you have put in will help you reach a far better place than if you settled for an easy goal.

“I realized the secret to setting successful goals: Set goals that match your potential, not your ability.”

password at work. Every time I walk away from my desk for 15 minutes, I have to type my current big goal in order to unlock my computer when I return. Several times a day, I am thinking about my goal. I can reevaluate where I am, the progress I’ve made, and what I need to do to keep moving forward. In 2018, our goal as a firm is to help more people than we ever have before. Yes, this means taking on new clients, but we believe it is our duty to provide the best service to as many people as possible. Not every firm has their client’s best interests at heart, and I hate to see people in need go to a firm that isn’t going to have their back. It is our moral obligation to help everyone we can. No matter how impossible your goal seems right now, just start by taking action. A single step will put you in the right direction, and as you keep working toward your goal, you’ll find that progress snowballs. Each day is a new opportunity to bring yourself that much closer to achieving your goal. -David Brauns

Following a strategy of aiming for massive goals is how I have

achieved success in my personal life and at the firm. Of course, there is a difference between a challenging goal and an impossible one. Deciding to run a 5K next month after not working out in a decade will likely end with serious injury if you try to force your body back into shape. But running a 5K this spring? That’s far more doable. In fact, that’s a goal you should multiple, and aim for a half marathon. Even if you aren’t able to finish the race, after training hard, you can still take pride in knowing you accomplished more by aiming for the half marathon than limiting yourself with the 5K. It’s not enough to just have a goal, mind you. Actually achieving a goal demands writing it down and thinking about it every day. To help me keep goals top of mind, I make the goal my desktop


Every parent wants to see their child do well in school, and there’s one fun activity that benefits students of all ages: reading. In a world with so much stimulation, however, it can be difficult to motivate kids to put down a screen and pick up a book. New Year’s resolutions are the perfect opportunity to make reading a priority. Here are a few tips to make 2018 the year your kids become bookworms. Make It a Family Resolution There’s no better motivator than solidarity! Plus, we’re guessing everyone in your household could stand to read a little more. You don’t have to read the same books or set identical goals, but it’s a lot more fun when everyone participates. Schedule weekly reading discussions so everyone can share the cool stories they’ve read. Stack your completed books in your house somewhere as a monument to all the knowledge your family has gained. Set Reward Milestones Positive reinforcement will propel your kids to keep reading long after the calendars have turned. For a certain number of books completed or hours spent reading, offer them a prize. You can even create a big end goal to really cement those reading habits. Better yet, set a combined goal that the entire family can work toward. Don’t be afraid to pull out all the stops. If your kids know that reading one book per week through June means an extra- special summer vacation, their enthusiasm won’t wane come spring. WANT TO SEE BETTER Report Cards in 2018?

Use Reading Apps Goodreads is a social network for bibliophiles. You can find recommendations, share ratings, and create lists of both completed and to-be-read books. Users also create reading lists based on topic, genre, decade, and more. With over 2 billion books added, you’ll never run out of inspiration. Biblionasium offers the same services, but it’s designed specifically for children. Talk to other parents and create a network of friends and classmates. After all, nothing is cooler to a kid than what their friends are doing. Avid readers tend to do better academically from kindergarten through college. In fact, a study from the Journal of Education and Practice found that reading comprehension predicted success in other subjects more than any other factor. If you want to see improved report cards, make a reading resolution for your entire household.



“I was involved in a not-at-fault head-on collision in October 2016, and I nearly lost my life. My entire life flipped upside down, and out of all the difficult situations I was facing (rehabilitation, job loss, the legalities, and insurance communications), it was

“Outstanding firm, from beginning to end. The office personnel were very professional. All questions and emails were responded to in a very timely manner. David even worked to reduce case expenses (i.e., medical bills). To that level, he (David) even reduced his fee so that I would come away with a better settlement.” –Michael P. “The staff at Brauns Law helped me get through a very trying time following my accident. They followed up with me after appointments and called to see how I was doing. I appreciate David Braun and his staff’s work on my behalf.” –Brenda

not the least bit stressful thanks to my hiring Mr. David Brauns to represent me. From the first call to the last handshake, he was a blessing from above. He’s very professional, and he understood that I had a lot of healing to do. As I write this review, I am tearing up at how important his firm made me feel. Thank you, David. You are the best!” –Amy F.

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A Homeowner’s Guide to Fireplace Safety

Burn Only Dry, Seasoned Wood When burned, wet wood produces more smoke and can cause creosote to rapidly accumulate inside your chimney. It’s best to stick with manufactured logs or seasoned wood, which is cut lengthwise and left to dry for 6 months. If you want to stockpile wood, be sure to store it somewhere dry, where it will remain untouched by rain or snow. Never toss paper, cardboard, or other materials into the fire. These can cause the flames to burn too high and release potentially toxic smoke and particles into the air. Install Carbon Monoxide Detectors Burning wood produces carbon monoxide, a deadly, colorless, odorless, tasteless gas. If your chimney is properly maintained, the dangers of carbon monoxide are low. However, you should still install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors close to your fireplace and in all bedrooms to alert your family to carbon monoxide in your home.

As the new year rolls in with an icy breeze, people across Atlanta are eager to toss some wood into their fireplace and enjoy the natural warmth. However, the roaring fire can also pose a huge danger to you and your family. The Chimney Safety Institute of America reports more home fires are caused by mismanaged fireplaces than any other item in your home, including ovens! Before you strike a match, here are some valuable fireplace safety steps you need to follow. Call a Chimney Sweep The National Fire Protection Association found 28 percent of heating fires are caused by unclean equipment. Over time, creosote, a flammable material released when wood burns, can build up in your chimney. Debris, like leaves or animal nests, can block airflow and lead to a carbon monoxide buildup. For this reason, you need to call a chimney sweep and have your chimney professionally cleaned and inspected every year before you use it. To find a certified chimney sweep close to your home, visit the Chimney Safety Institute of America at

Fires can be dangerous, but if you’re smart and take necessary precautions, you can enjoy a safe fireplace all winter long.


Leftover Turkey RAMEN

Directions 1. Remove most of the meat from the turkey carcass, shred, and set aside. Put carcass in a large stockpot, along with 3 scallions, ginger, mushrooms, and water. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 3 hours. 2. Place eggs in a small saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then immediately remove pot from heat and let sit for 4 minutes. Transfer eggs to an ice bath to cool. Ingredients • 1 leftover turkey carcass • 6 scallions, divided • 8 slices ginger • 6 dried shiitake mushrooms • 16 cups water

3. Cook bacon until crisp. Drain, chop, and set aside. Chop remaining scallions. 4. Once the broth is done simmering, prepare the fresh noodles according to package directions. Divide noodles among 4 bowls and cover with broth. Add shredded turkey, chopped scallions, chopped bacon, and an egg to each bowl. • 4 eggs • 4 ounces bacon • 4 portions fresh, not instant, ramen noodles • 2 cups leftover turkey, shredded



(Recipe inspired by




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What’s Your New Year’s Resolution?

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The Resolution That Leads to Better Grades

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Client Testimonials

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Ready to Use Your Fireplace? Read This First!

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Revive That Leftover Turkey!

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Reinvent Your Out-of-Town Workouts With These Apps

HIT ‘DOWNLOAD’ AND UNLOCK YOUR FITNESS POTENTIAL Do all your early morning workout plans blast out of the jet engine when you travel? New time zones and ill-equipped hotel gyms may make you want to put off training. But now, with the internet just a tap away, there’s no excuse to miss a workout. Being away from home doesn’t mean you have to abandon your fitness goals. Check out these apps (most of them are available for free from iTunes or Google Play) and work out wherever your travels take you. For the Marathon Trainer If you forget your Fitbit and need to track your miles, Moves has your back. With automatic tracking capabilities and features that tell you how far you’ve walked, cycled, or run, this app will help you stick to your training schedule. It also recognizes and maps routes you’ve run before.

For the Meditation Newbie Wanderlust’s guiding mantra is “Find your true north.” During yoga, meditation, and Pilates classes, Wanderlust instructors can help you focus your energy and restore your physical and mental well-being. Download this app or visit Wanderlust’s website for free classes, like the 21-day yoga challenge, which can keep you disciplined and motivated. Additional workshops and events are available for a small subscription fee. For the Frequent Flyer Don’t miss your workout just because you’re away from your home gym. Use Rise Today to locate a class near you. Use filters to search for the type of class you want, from CrossFit to barre workouts. Once you’ve selected a class, you can secure a spot with the in-app reservation feature. There’s no need to fall behind in your Bodypump class. For Those Who Aren’t Morning People An app that lets you finish your morning workout in bed? Yes, please! Yoga Wakeup does exactly what the name suggests: It wakes you up with a short yoga or meditation routine. From “Reach and Root Wakeup” to “Spirit Wakeup,” you can select each morning routine’s intensity. Choose a wakeup, set your wakeup time, and let the gentle voice of your instructor clear away the morning’s inevitable grogginess. Forget breakfast in bed; you’ll feel so much better waking up this way.

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