Redesign the Job you Hate

Being unhappy at work can be very de-motivating and depressing, but with our current economy, where good jobs can be hard to find, quitting is often not an option. Rather than throwing in the towel, you can change the way you think about your work to make it more meaningful. Even subtle change can lead to significant workplace transformations. Use these remedies for job dissatisfaction to make the situation more pleasant. If you want more detailed explanations, follow this link to my full blog at Experis/Manpower Group.

1. Take on a positive outlook.

2. Rethink your current job.

3. Plan your day differently.

4. Alter your work environment.

5. Build relationships.

6. Reward yourself.

7. Take a lunch break.

8. Know your motivation for staying.

9. Have goals, dreams and aspirations.

10. Tap into company resources.

11. Seek professional help.

12. Look into transferring departments or locations.

Consider the alternatives before you make a decision to leave. Finding a new job isn’t always easy. If you can find ways to improve your current situations, it’s usually worth pursuing it. When all else fails, prepare for other employment by setting goals, gaining clarity around what you want and don’t want in your next position, updating your resume, reviving and building your network, and polishing your skills. By setting goals you identify a finish line, and by meeting the goals on a daily, weekly and monthly basis you give yourself something to feel good about.

Getting Help

Been talking about the need to be able to ask for and accept help for years but now that I am reliant on others, I am truly experiencing the power of help in a new way!

It has been several days since I had surgery. Maybe I was in full denial, but I really believed I would bounce right back. I didn’t arrange for any help. I had coaching client sessions scheduled the remainder of the week because they were all scheduled to occur by phone.  I find that I wasn’t ready for the reality of not being able to do anything and feeling so crappy.  The pain was so bad that doctors/nurses had to keep increasing my pain medication. The effects of anasthesia, pain medications, discomfort left be quite immobilized and needing help even for some of the most basic things.

Although I had prepared my family and business by removing a lot from my plate, had done a thorough house-cleaning, cut back work appointments, bought a full week of groceries, planned a week of meals with my husband, etc. things seemed to unravel when my condition wasn’t quite as expected. My teenaged kids were not as helpful as I thought they’d be. My husband grew bored with sitting around and helping me. Even the dog pouted because he didn’t get his daily long walks with me. I hadn’t planned ahead or aligned the help I needed. I falsely believed that I would be able to handle things.

After having a bit of a meltdown and feeling sorry for myself, I was able to appreciate the help I already had. My sister-in-laws who coordinated visiting on separate days to help out, a friend who stopped in with the medications she picked up for me, the many phone calls I receiced, the help from my husband, my mother-in-law and the kids. This morning I took control and put out emails, texts and calls for help. As a result, I had lots of response!

The lesson learned is that when you act like ‘super-women’ , people expect you to be such but when you expose yourself to needing and accepting help, there’s a world of people ready, able and willing to help! I am grateful to those who have come to my aid with help, emotional support, flowers, meals, and more. Too bad it takes experiencing a situation first-hand to be able to experience the real power of the lessons!

Distractions at Work

Read about the top five offenders and some solutions you can incorporate into your own life:

Tips for Working from a Home-Based Office

The current issue of Treasure Coast Parenting features an article I wrote about the “Top 10 Tips for Working from a Home-Based Office” . Read this article on page 36-37 of the magazine to learn how you can be productive and effective when working at home.

On HIGH Alert

When we’re in new situations, most of us either consciously or subconsciously go into a high alert status. We’re more aware of our surroundings and cautious to protect ourselves.

As I walked my dog this morning, I chose a different path than ordinarily because I had a little more time and wanted to explore a bit further.  When I noticed a loose totally unsupervised German Shepherd dog just ahead several houses from where I was, I immediately took precaution and ducked down a nearby street before either dog saw each other.

Surprisingly, I found a paved path behind the homes with a nice wooded area to my left. Most of the homes had fenced in yards so this looked like a safe alternative. As I walked down that path, I was startled to see a group of seven white-tailed deer bedded down under a large tree. You’d think they would be on high-alert and run away but instead they watched me and my dog gracefully stroll by. Wow, what a beautiful sight! (Wish I had my cell phone or camera with me!)

I started becoming more alert to my surroundings, both to enjoy nature and to insure our safety. I noticed several other loose dogs, a large man walking towards us (I crossed the street to walk on the other side of the road!), a friend pass by in his car and wave, and I heard an approaching motorcycle and a speeding car coming towards us. It’s amazing how much more alert I was, when I was conscious of this action!

I wonder, how often any of us get so caught up in what we’re doing, go through the motions with routine tasks, or use music or conversations to enhance what we’re doing. What do we miss when we’re not alert to our surroundings?

Especially when you’re in a new situation—a new job, new work/project team, a new route, a networking event—you can raise your awareness and be more observant. Use your eyes to see what’s happening around you (and what’s not!); use your ears to listen to conversations, sounds, and the silence; watch body language and notice the aromas in the air. Use all of your senses to zone in to everything happening around you! Listen and observe at least twice as much as you talk!  Use your senses to monitor the situations around you so that you can more consciously choose the best way to respond.


While in Atlantic City, NJ with my daughter’s dance team this past week, our hotel and several other places in the area suffered from mechanical problems that effected the air conditioning. We were on the 26th floor with no air conditioning. Our room must have been over 90 degrees. It was awful!

The air died Wednesday night in the middle of the night. We woke up sweating profusely. After cold showers and an elevator ride downstairs to the lobby, we learned about the problem. However, the girls needed to be dressed with their makeup on ready for pictures and performances, so we adapted. Unfortunately, the hall where they were having the competition didn’t have air either. There was a nice breeze outside on the boardwalk coming off the ocean though.

The producers of the competition, STARBOUND, moved the final showcase to another hotel that had air conditioning. They had a fundraising banquet at yet a different hotel. They adapted to the situation and focused on helping the kids perform at their best while keeping the parents comfortable.

Yes, we were all hot and uncomfortable all day Thursday. It got so bad that our hotel closed on Friday and wasn’t planning on re-opening until Sunday. We checked out by noon on Friday and decided to drive home late Friday night after the final showcase. Again, we adapted! We negotiated with the hotel manager and the hotel comp’d us for both nights we stayed (not paying for our room, did make it somewhat better for what we endured!)

The dance team performed at their best. We won 1st place in large production, 2nd place in Junior groups and had several other noteworthy accomplishments with our soloists, duets and Senior groups. (I lost track of all the awards!!)  Although the girls got less sleep and had to tolerate no air on Thursday, they adapted, and did what they had to do. They brought so much energy, enthusiasm and passion to their performance!

My sincere congratulations goes out to all the dancers, the teachers, parents and our owner (Tom). They rocked the stage and we’re all very proud of their accomplishments in Atlantic City!

How many times in your life have you adapted? How has flexibility helped you? How were you able to negotiate so that you made the best out of a situation and felt better about the final outcome?

 How can you turn a negative experience around and make in positive?

Turn it OFF!

That’s right…turn off your cell phone, pager, PDA and other electronic communication devices for the next 60 minutes!  Don’t just put them on vibrate or silent mode but turn them off (as if the battery died). During this period, fully concentrate on whatever task you have at hand. Give yourself the opportunity to perform at your best! Although you may feel some anxiety (or withdrawal) see how it affects your productivity. Let me know the difference!!

How Confident are You?

Many ambitious high achieving professionals fear that they are not really as bright and capable as others tend to think they are. As they climb the career ladder they have apprehension and self-doubt.  Although they have accomplishments, they tend to attribute these achievements to luck.  All this weighs heavily on an already full plate.

Seemingly very successful business leaders at every level of the organization, entrepreneurs, rising stars worry that they’re not as great as others think they are. Although they’ve faced every challenge, received recognition and promotions, their customers’ think they’re a super star they fear that they will be found out!

The imposter syndrome can hold you back from pursuing dreams and goals. It prohibits you from feeling pride and a sense of accomplishment. It can cause you to work harder than anyone else to convince yourself that if you were really as smart and capable as everyone else believes, you wouldn’t have to work so hard.  The fear can be paralyzing and terrifying, if you allow it!

Don’t allow it!  Contact The Priority Pro for help stepping into your greatness!  Be as bright and capable as others already believe you are!

Reality Hits the Road

You may have had some sort of training along the way that helped lead you to your success, organizing, time management, goal-setting, right?

This isn’t about the basic time management skills or stress management 101.  Take those principles you’ve learned like, (Covey’s) four quadrants, (Morgenstern’s) categorizing using the A, B, C’s for your task priorities, (Allen’s) integrated system of stress-free productivity and put them to the reality test.

What happens?

Unfortunately, many of these outstanding systems don’t work. Not because they’re not effective systems, but because people don’t fully implement them. Then, they give us and resort to their old ways, sometimes thinking that their situation is hopeless.

For instance, you start your day with a list or framework of what you are going to accomplish. You know what’s most important, you know what decisions need to be made but then, unfortunately, reality hits the road—

…the phone rings endlessly, the system goes down, your boss has a crisis that needs your immediate attention, you have some irate customers, a colleague plants themselves in the corner chair in your office to talk about her personal issues, you get an urgent message from the school that one of your kids has gotten hurt, etc.

The problem isn’t about managing time; it’s about managing all these interruptions. These distract you from accomplishing what you set out to do each day and if you don’t re-prioritize on a dime, ask questions to clarify importance and timeline, focus on what’s most important, delegate, be flexible (to a point), block out distractions, and say “no” when appropriate you may increase your stress, decrease your productivity and feel dissatisfied in what you’re able to accomplish on any given day.

It’s not JUST ABOUT Work-Life Balance

I have studied work-life balance for well over a decade and conclude that the key reason why there’s still a gap for employers, business owners, and employees despite millions being spent in programs is because these opportunities are mostly all externally-focused. Thus, work-life balance as we’ve known for years has been primarily focused on programs, services, benefits, and the like while neglecting that true balance is internally-driven. The symptoms often associated with unbalance include overwhelm, burnout, stress and other mental, physiological and emotional issues. Yet the programs, although helpful, don’t fully address the problem.

Balance is derived from a sense of harmony, peace and alignment. One who works 90 hours a week could actually be more balanced than someone who doesn’t even work at all. Balance is about knowing what you’re doing and why you’re doing it and feeling that sense of control over your life. When you’ve usurped power of your life to someone or something, it’s that powerlessness that causes feeling of imbalance.

Some of the more popular programs including childcare, elder care, concierge services, health and wellness benefits, flextime, telecommuting, and job share help ease the burden of working long hours while managing a life outside work. They also allow for working longer hours. Yet true work-life balance is about being aligned, making the right choices for you.

My studies have revealed that it’s not just about work-life balance, time management, stress management, or increasing productivity but all these things combined to help each individual overcome what I call Obsessive Distraction Disorder (or O.D.D. for short!). Distractions increase when you’re not aligned with what’s most important to you! By targeting what matters most, decisions are based on top priorities—what’s most important to you!

The typical work-life program offerings help create more time and sanity. However, time spent unwisely is still time lost; time that can never be recaptured! Unlike other resources, time is not a renewable resource. Therefore, it’s highly important to recognize what’s most important in all aspects of your life and realign around those things. Be crystal clear about your values, integrity, needs, purpose and priorities.

Remember the old adage…it’s not about working harder, but working smarter. In this case, think more broadly, work is a part of your life that serves a specific purpose, so LIVE SMARTER, not harder! Make wise choices aligned with what matters most to you!

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