As a professor who teaches online, there is a lot of writing during these type of classes. If you’re not familiar, the online classroom is structured in that the way I get to know if a student is mastering the material is through their writing.
Typically, there are two discussion questions each week along with case study papers, an article review and a major research paper. While most students are okay with this format, there a also a handful who don’t see the value and do the minimum work or complain. They don’t see the point.
My response to them, and to anyone who is working now, that the writing skills you develop will take you far in your career and life. Writing is a critical skill in the workplace – writing reports, proposals, and even emails. I have students – working adults – who have reported back to me great results from their writing experience, one who was able to secure her company a $2 million dollar contract.
If you are taking coursework towards a degree, then I urge you to really put your heart and effort into the assignments you are given; look at the material from an employer’s standpoint: be an analyzer and a problem-solver. Think: “How does this concept apply to my work and what can I do about it?” This helps to think more critically, which is a value-add on, while making the writing easier as you put your analysis on paper.
If you’re not in school, look at free classes through your employer, adult education classes or online. There are a plethora of books you can find at the library or book store to get you started. The more you write, the better you become, but it does take the mindset of looking at the benefits versus any negative thoughts. Keep the end-user/reader in mind as this also keeps the motivation and the words flowing. Want to convey your value to an employer? Then write on!
If you’d like help in managing your career, contact us today to get started: http://www.cyscoaching.com
Its Friday – TGIF! The end of the week is not only the time we look forward to having two days off (traditionally) but it’s a great time to review and prepare for the next, which sets you up for success. How do you end you work-week?
If you want to set yourself up for success, using the end of the week to review and plan is the best time to do so. Has there ever been a time when you feel like the week has whizzed by and thinking “I got nothing done,” only to lead to feeling dread for Monday when you have to get stuff done you didn’t? How do you know you didn’t if you never review activities your accomplished?
My suggestions would be to use Friday to use as a review and planning day:
- Go back over each day and list tasks you accomplished, no matter how big or small. I like to rate tasks on a scale of 1-10 as to how important they are (or how fearful) so I can see that I was able to push past and get them done. This is a great time to also analyze what didn’t get done – did I not schedule enough time, did I not plan for resources needed, did technology get in the way, etc. Knowing exactly what you did -and did not – accomplish gives a much-needed boost to self-esteem, as it shows us we are doing and being, while also leading into the next step….
- Plan and schedule your next week by taking the tasks you didn’t get done and put them in the calendar first off; then, you can add any new tasks in your calendar so you know exactly how your days will be spent. Think of being able to enjoy the weekend more and feel accomplished for the next. No more Sunday night blues – how liberating is that!
I’m spending this day doing my review and planning (I’m in planning mode for 2016 – that’s another post) so I’m encouraging you to do the same. If you make this a weekly habit, you will see your productivity soar while being less-stressed. I’d love to hear how you end your work-week – comment and share below.
It is becoming more frequent these days in hearing the frustrations of job seekers: they are doing everything ‘right’ in their job search, they’re getting calls and interviews, but just not hearing the magic words “You’re Hired!” If this has been your situation, here are some reasons that may help you to deal and continue on:
- they really don’t have an open position but are going through the motions due to regulatory issues
- they decided to take an internal candidate versus one on the outside
- they found someone less ‘expensive’ than you
- they found someone with a skill-set that matched better
- they don’t believe you’re going to stay
The important thing to remember in these times of frustrations that it is (most likely) not you, it’s about them. The world of work is a confusing place right now and the old ways of hiring are no longer. It might seem hard not to take it personally but that is exactly what you have to do; look at it from a business perspective and not from yours. Studies show that it can take a month for every $10,000 you want to make and it’s a numbers game for some professions: the more money you want to make, the longer it will take so you need to apply to a variety of organizations. Don’t be afraid to send your resume and cover letter to a hiring manager; don’t be afraid to pick up the phone and reach out, preferably to a hiring manger. Focus on your skills and worth, practice stress-relief tactics and immurge yourself in professional activities to keep your business mind and skills up. And don’t be afraid to seek out help, like that of a career coach. These are the times that strengthen resolve so keep on – I believe in you!
How many times do you say “I want” when you have desires you want to achieve? I’m sure it’s often, if you’re anything like the majority of people in the world. When you say “I want,” how often does it make you want to take action to get what that is? I would suspect not often. A want is a desire but the words themselves are actually demotivating and gives you an excuse, so to speak, when you don’t go after it. Often times this is due to a fear of thinking big – either because of not feeling deserving or failing, or feeling overwhelmed by what it would take to complete the tasks.
In order to get what you desire, I believe we need to start small to relieve the fear center in our brain from working over-time; this allows the brain to accept small actions which can be repeated over and over. When the fear center is calm, great things can get accomplished. While this may sound simple, it is not always easy to override the fears mainly because those are habits that have been developed over time; it didn’t take a second for those to get imprinted so it will take some time to unlearn them. This will then open the door for new, positive thoughts to become the habit.
If you’ve ever heard the story of the magic lamp, then you know that when it is rubbed a Magic Genie appears to grant a wish to the holder of the lamp. This can be a very powerful exercise to help you to overcome the fears and ‘see’ the possibilities that lie in your mind (unconscious); this will bring them to the forefront (conscious) so now you can take action towards getting whatever it is you desire.
So if you found the magic lamp (this is a picture of mine), what would you ask for? In order to get what it is you desire, it will take engaging your visual sense, which is very powerful. Imagine yourself finding the magic lamp; you know you only have one wish to make so it needs to be one that you really want: as you hold the lamp (or visualize holding the lamp), allow you brain to be open to the pictures that come up. What do you see? What are your plans for the day – are you going to a job, to your own business? What kind of clothes do you put on for the day? How far do you travel to get there and how (BMW, Mercedes, etc.)? What does the building or location look like (an office building, an established corporation, your own home, etc.)? Who are the people you are interacting with? What type of activities are you performing in your day? What time to do you leave to get home? What is your money goal – are you meeting it and from what sources? What does your lifestyle look like because of this goal?
The point of this exercise is to engage one of your most powerful tools so you can “see-think-feel-believe-act” and have all that you desire. So when it comes to wanting something, use your god-given abilities to go after them. Doing this exercise once will shift your thoughts to more positive ones; when you feel stuck all you need to do is visualize the lamp and you will feel calmer and confident to go after all that you desire.
If you would liked help in getting ‘unstuck’ so you can do and achieve more in your life or your career, contact us at http://www.cyscoaching.com
Have you been watching the Olympic? I have been sort-of addicted to watching them; I love seeing the competitions and the personal stories of the athletes themselves. One event I was really waiting for was the snowboarding event to see Shaun White win another gold. Unfortunately, he didn’t make it. However, his attitude in moving on after really earned more of my respect as he lost like a champion – he didn’t make excuses and he didn’t hide from his defeat. He took responsibility for whatever shortcoming he had and he held his head high with that infectious smile; he even was out watching the events and mingling with the crowd.
I think we all have had days or important situations that didn’t go as planned; how easy is it to make an excuse or place blame elsewhere for the shortfall. How many times did you beat yourself up after these failed events. I know I have. But we all can follow Shaun White and lose like a champion: prepare as best you know how, come into the situation feeling liked a winner, take responsibility for any setback, and let it go. It sounds easier said than done, as they say, but I think it’s critical to move on and focus on making the next ‘big thing’ the best. These athletes are proof of that.
Yesterday I spoke of Olympic Athletes and today, on Superbowl Sunday, I am addressing these athletes; as I think of the game I also think about the mental preparation they have to make to go into this (c -0-l-d) game. There is so much riding on it and the stakes are high – this is the game- of- all- games and what they’ve worked for since the preseason. I think about how each player needs to prepare themselves to play this game and in front of millions. They are visualizing, listening to motivational music and tapes, and lifting each other up.
The level of preparation they set for themselves should be a lesson for all to take notice of and model after. As we are facing a new work-week, and a new month, this is the time to begin your own mental preparation and for what you want to accomplish this month. Preparing mentally can help you to move past any challenges and go after your desires. This can include:
- listing exactly what you believe you need to/want to get done
- setting specific and well-defined goals, with manageable and actionable steps to take
- visualizing the outcome you want to occur
- keeping your goals(s) in front of you, either written or on tape (ipod, cell feature)
- affirming a positive outcome daily
I am not invested in either team but I will watch mainly for the commercials, the half-time show, and to see whose mental preparation pays off. What types of mental preparation tactics do you use? Would love to hear so leave a comment below.
A lesson for today is to worry less about what other people think about you and more about what you think of yourself. I sometimes see others who want/need so much validation from others that it leads them to overstepping their own boundaries and depletes them. They go over and above in all areas of their life and begins to affect them emotionally, such as feeling tired, sad or angry. They aren’t really sure where these emotions come from but, after self-reflection and thought, they come to realize that they actually feel a resentment towards others.
This phenomenon is actually loosening one’s personal boundaries, which is usually tied to a need to gain others approval or affection. I see this over and over in the workplace – staying late to please the boss, taking on an assignment to help out a coworker, or working at top-speed to “show” that you are an exemplary employee. While there is nothing wrong with doing this extra work, it becomes problematic when it begins to breed resentment.
Begin to be more aware of your ill feelings; are you saying “yes” when you actually want to say “no?”; what do you fear will happen if you were to say no? I find that people will actually respect these boundaries more than you believe and you will feel more in control of your situation. Worrying more about your needs and resulting feelings is more important than what other people think about you.