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.

Prevent Burnout

In the latest issue of my FREE e-newsletter, I share practical and timely tips for helping you prevent and overcome burnout.  You can read and subscribe here:  Success Tips for Super Busy Parents – Tip #4 (vol. 12) Prevent Burnout. Or, just visit my website and subscribe in the ‘post-it’ on the upper righthand corner of the header.

Got Guilt?

It’s amazing how quickly we can feel guilty, even for the most meaningless things in our lives. Many of my clients struggle with guilt but its purpose it simply to let us know when we’ve done something wrong, to help us develop a better sense of our behavior and how it affects ourselves and others.  Guilt prompts us to re-examine our behavior so that we don’t end up making the same mistake twice. This article in Treasure Coast Parenting magazine offers 10 tips for busting the guilt. Hope it helps! 

see page 48-49

Greeting Card Saga

Years ago when I became a mom for the first time it seemed everyone wanted to hear about the newest addition to our family and see pictures of him (so I thought!!!).  So, I began writing and sending an annual holiday newsletter with pictures, letters and photos that evolved over the years to include separate columns for every member of the family (with my kids eventually writing their own with much coaxing!).

Sending out these newsletters was on the top of the list of priorities for a dozen years that I could remember. The planning would begin months in advance. The list of recipients grew to include not only close friends and family but business colleagues, associates and clients. Most people expressed joy in receiving it and looked forward to getting their annual update and greetings from us. Several joked about how I must have had too much free time or that I falesly believed that people really cared about what my kids were doing, how they were doing at school and what my husband and I were doing in our careers and personal lives.

But after carefully crafting the newsletter for over a decade, I finally came to the difficult conclusion that it wasn’t a priority anymore. That year, I reluctantly sent out one of those picture cards of the family. The next year, another photo greeting card. The following year, a store-bought card with a hand-written note and a separate family photo. Then, last year, a card with no photo…just a signature!

This year, I wasn’t even going to send out cards! I reflected on how important cards (and newsletters) were to me over the years and how they lost their importance in the busyness of life. I chose a reactive method of sending out holiday greetings in response to those I received and didn’t send any out in addition.

So, as the saga continues, next year as my eldest  finishes high school and my youngest begins, I will again revisit the holiday greeting card ritual to evalutate the importance of the tradition, possible alternatives, and then decide what 2012 brings.

What holiday traditions are most important to you?

Have these holiday traditions held the same level of importance over the years? If not, how have they changed?

What new traditions have you put in place in recent years?

What traditions have you eliminated?

I’d love to hear your thoughts!!  Share your thoughts and answers to these questions in the comments section below. And…don’t be checking your mailbox for a holiday greeting card from me this year, unless you sent me one first! 

Happy Holidays to all and to all a healthy and successful New Year!

Happy Summer!

Today is officially the first day of summer.  For some, it may have felt that summer started weeks ago when your kids ended their school year or when the days were longer and hotter.  With temperatures peaking in the 90’s today and bright sunshine, it will definitely feel like summer here in NJ, although the kids don’t finish their school year until Wednesday!

As each new season comes and goes, many of my clients use it as a time for self-reflection and renewal. They check-in with their goals to see if they are on track. They commit to achieving new goals for the second half of the year.

  •  Are you on track with your goals?
  • What are your priorities this summer?
  • How will you be sure to stay focused on achieving what’s most important?
  • What obstacles may prevent you from achieving what you what you want to?
  • How can you plan on avoiding them?
  • What will you do to gain some enjoyment from this more relaxed time of the year?

As a professionally trained and internationally certified coach, I work with business leaders to help insure their personal and professional success.  I offer training, keynote presentations, and seminars to support each individual and the organization as a whole to achieve your goals. Contact me to discuss your needs!

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.

Maintain for Best Performance

Ongoing maintenance is key to keeping everything running at peak performance.

I took one of my cars in today for an oil change and some general maintenance work. Have my other car scheduled next week once the four new tires I ordered come in.

This reminded me about the importance of not only tending to our cars, but to other equipment, vehicles and appliances we rely on every day. In order to get a full life from our investments, we must properly care for them!

This is true, too, for our bodies and our families. Wellness visits and quick response to warning signs will help keep you running at tip-top shape.  Although in our car, warning lights ignite on the dashboard when something needs our immediate attention, many ignore similar warning signs in their own body. If you’re suddenly feeling tired all the time, coughing, have difficulty breathing, are experiencing aches and pains, or just realize theat something is off, don’t ignore these signs. Similar to the dashboard lights, these are a warning that something needs your attention.

For those responsible for others, whether they be young children or aging parents, the same warning signs are indications of possible illness or other health issues. Pay attention…don’t be too busy to perform regular check-ins and maintenance. You’ll be glad you did because it could save you from long hospital stays, extended bed rest, and a possible financial burden.

Stay Active

I conducted a workshop yesterday about Staying Active for employees of IEEE.  It reminded me of the importance to your health, well-being and positive energy. 

Physical activity is so important that it has been added to the US Department of Agriculture’s Food Pyramid.  Exercise not only helps you lose weight but it’s key to maintaining a healthy weight and minimizing risks of heart disease, controlling cholesterol levels, preventing bone loss, increasing strength and endurance, and supporting and strengthening your immune system.

If you’re one that either hates to exercise or doesn’t seem to have time, select any types of physical activities that you enjoy doing. Try combining activities into what you’re already doing…park your car in the parking lot at the store? Then, park further away and walk briskly (be sure you’re safe!). Work on the 10th floor in your building?….Take the stairs instead of the elevator!

For those who still say they don’t have time, read my article on “Fitting Fitness into Your Too Busy Schedule”.

Overcome those barriers to staying active by setting small reachable goals and brainstorming ways to better manage your time. If you still need help, contact me!!  If you exercise regularly, share your tips in the comments section so that others may learn and adapt what works for you!

Set Value-Based Goals

When working with successful clients, I’ve observed that those who experience the greatest levels of fulfillment and personal satisfaction as they achieve their goals, have aligned their goals with their personal values. If you follow good goal-setting practices in addition to aligning your goals with your values by writing specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and trackable (S-M-A-R-T Goals) action plans, you have a better chance of success and knowing what your true priorities are.  You spend the majority of your time on what matters most to you!

The first step in the values-based goal-setting process has to start with making an inventory of your values.  Goal-setting is important but unproductive unless it is set on a foundation of your values.

Your values are the intangible aspects of life that make you feel in alignment, complete, on track, and functioning at a high level. Values are the essence of who you are. They are at your core. Although they may change over time, a life that aligns with one’s core values will feel more satisfying, even in the most difficult and challenging times. Values are the things you do that you find very attractive, an emotional state that you feel is very important. As life changes, it is important to re-examine your values. What was important to you at 20 may not be the same thing as when you’re 43.

Some examples of values include adventure, fun, service, creativity, connection, etc. When we consciously design our life to align with our values, life gets immeasurably richer — and easier! Gaining clarity of your values and designing your life around them is a process.

To discover your values, ask yourself:

  • What is most important to you in your life?
  • Then ask, what is important to you about that? What does this give you?

For example, if you answered that family is most important to you. Dig further to discover the core underlying value by asking what does family provide for you; you may find that family gives you a sense of connection, belonging or community. As you see in this example, the underlying value extends beyond family. Focus on what the value gives you to be sure you’re uncovering the core value because this will help you set your goals around your values.

Once you identify you values, choose activities or goals that are aligned with them.  When you set goals to experience more of what you value most, life gets immensely richer – and easier!

Too Much On Her Plate Week: Prepare to Celebrate!

I was very surprised to see another professional specializing in helping busy women manage everything on their plate! I came across Melissa McCreery’s site quite by accident. Melissa is a psychologist and an internationally certified life coach who is passionate about providing high quality solutions to smart, busy women who are tired of struggling with food and weight.

Melissa created “Too Much on Her Plate Week” (which aptly runs the week of her birthday!) from October 19-23 so that women can learn to get stuff off their plate, both literally and figuratively.

Too Much on Her Plate Week calls attention to the more than 150 million professional women who are either employed by a business or as an independent professional in the United States. These women are often moms too, creating limited time and a lot of plate spinning (and juggling). The pressure to get it all done contributes further to many women’s struggles with weight and food.”

In celebration of Too Much on Her Plate Week, Melissa is encouraging women to:

1. Carve out some time for yourself. The biggest mistake busy women make is not taking some time for self-care. Most often, it’s not that a professional woman can’t have it. It’s that they aren’t choosing to take it. Prioritize yourself.

2. Have a plan for eating and exercise. We tend to be great planners for the most part. Apply those skills to yourself and plan your meals and time for exercise.

3. Pay attention. Emotional eating – especially stress eating, often sneaks up on women. Pay attention to those times when you want something to eat and ask why.

I plan on calling Melissa and introducing myself! I can’t imagine how many women we can help together!!

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