Tag Archives: Career Building-Career Development- Skill Assesment

“Roll with It” – Tips for Embracing Life’s Ups and Downs

   At the risk of sounding cliché, “Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans”

 I used to spend a lot of time and energy trying to reach equilibrium in life and chasing the status quo.  I have now learned to live in a world of uncertainty and embrace “peaceful connected moments” as they arise.

 What is a “peaceful connected moment” you ask?

 When I first got remarried my husband did not understand what I was talking about when I kept referring to “peaceful connected moments“.  That was before he moved in with my teenagers and we both entered the world of management.

Peaceful connected moments at work are the days you actually finish a project instead putting out fires. You catch up on your e-mails, instead of running from meeting to meeting, or you actually stop to eat lunch, instead of running down the hall while sipping soup out of a mug!

running with soup

 Peaceful connected moments at home are weeks in between college and job interviews for your young adults. Nights you go home after work instead of running to sports events, back to school nights or concerts.  Months where you are not moving into or out of dorm rooms or apartments, your kids come home at a decent hour, and no one smashes the car!  

 They also consist of weekends when you have no scheduled plans and you can just lie on the couch in your pajamas reading and catch up on your favorite programs.

 Let’s face it, if you are anything like me these “peaceful connected moments” described above are few and far between, and I only just brushed the surface! 

 So how can one cope with the frantic pace of a busy live?  I suggest you “roll with it.”

 Here are some of my favorite tips for coping with life’s crazy pace:

 1. Embrace it – Life goes by so quickly; what I would not do now to go after work to watch my son run track or go to my daughters art show!

 2. Learn something– often when work is  most challenging  I learn the most.  Maybe you will need to take a stretch assignment, a new system will need to be created and put into place, or an important lesson needs to be learned for the future.

 3.  Reach Out– Find someone who has walked this path before and contact them. We all like to believe we are terminally unique, but chances are if you are feeling stressed out or overwhelmed others are feeling the same way.  I always keep my personal network close at hand during these times to give me personal or professional advice, or talk me off the ledge if necessary!

 4. Take a breath– I am a hugely into meditating.  Now I know that this is not for everyone, but surely you can close your eyes and take a couple of breaths to re-center.  Keep in mind that if you practice traditional meditation in a public setting or at the office people may think you are strange.  (Take it from me and just breathe till you get home.)

Yoga at work

 5.  Look your best   My Aunt Phyllis always used to say, “If you can’t play tennis, then get a great outfit and learn how to jump over the net.”  Put your best self on display.  Only you need to know that you feel overwhelmed.  My sister in law always used to say to me, “You look great, what’s wrong?”

woman jumping over the net

 6.  Exercise- this is the best method for keeping stress at bay. My assistant always takes a walk around the block at lunch before we start a new project.

 7.  Eat well   Although chocolate and potato chips (in that order) offer the perfect diet solution for most of what ails us, you will then be dealing with two issues. Better to eat well and look and feel your best, (see # 5).   I highly recommend the running with soup diet. (See #6)

 Woman running with soup

 8.  Read a book– I was raised to believe that this is the solution for everything; in this case it offers a great diversion.  Audiobooks work too if you are too stressed to concentrate.

 10. Sleep   nothing helps you cope better with stress than getting a good night’s sleep.  Naps are also a great way to regroup and gather the energy you needed to go on. (Do not do this at work, it will be seen as counterproductive)

woman sleeping at her desk

 11.  Have Fun– we never laugh harder at work than when we are stressed out! At home I always make sure to have something fun planned on the weekend, especially at the end of a particularly hard week.

 12.  Have Faith– this too shall pass, IT ALWAYS DOES!

   So the next time work and life have got you stressed, grab this list and “Roll with it”!   Whether you decide to take a breath, exercise, call a friend or read a book, it won’t be long before you are creating your own “peaceful connected moments“.

 This to shall pass

 

If you were a superhero who would you be, and why?

Superheroes

These are the questions I posed to my team in preparation for our recent annual planning meeting.

Why superheroes you ask?

When we think about superheroes we think of their strengthens; however, superheroes are so much more multifaceted. Each superhero has a special power or strength as well as a major flaw or weakness. Isn’t it the same for you and me? 

 As we develop throughout our career it is important to continually assess our skills.  What are our core competencies? Where do we excel? What makes each of us stand out from the crowd? 

 On the flip side we must remember to evaluate our weaknesses. What do we still need to learn? What is our Achilles heel? What is standing in the way of getting that next great job or promotion?

 Superheroes spend much of their days developing their skills. They gather new tools for their tool belts, create force fields to fight off the competition and stand up to opposing points of view. Above all,   they create coping mechanisms to combat their weaknesses.  Couldn’t we all learn a thing or two from them?

superhero

 When superheroes first discover they have superpowers they are always shocked, amazed and have no idea what to do. In each case they find a guide (or mentor) to help them understand and develop their skills, manage the pitfalls, and grow into the best they can be.  Behavior I would recommend to anyone wanting to excel.

 Superheroes main purpose in life is to fight off villains, save the world and build a better tomorrow. Well that sounds a lot like what we do on a daily basis. We fight off the competition, put out fires, and build a better organization for ourselves and the people who will come after us.

 Show me a great superhero and I will show you a great sidekick.  Where would Batman be without Robin? We are all as good as the people we surround ourselves with.  I for one would want my Sales Support Manager Lisa at my side if I was stuck in a burning building.  Or I would turn to our Marketing Director, JoAnn if I wanted to figure out how to fight off our latest opponent. 

 Superheroes can teach us a lot about team building.  Look at the Avengers!  I always tell my team that they are better together then they are apart. Each of them is superstars and has skills and strengths that they share with each other.  We may have our weakness, but as a team we are unstoppable!

 Superheroes also teach us about focus.  They know why they are here, what needs to get done, and they go for it, no questions asked.

 In the end, they always wind up showing their vulnerability. That is what makes them believable, why we follow them, and ultimately trust them with our fate. They almost always fall in love and often have to make difficult work life balance choices.  Look at Spider-Man; he had to choose between the woman he loved and saving the world.

 In retrospect, the superheroes theme was the perfect choice.  After all as I demonstrated, they are a lot like you and I. We have all learned a thing or two from examining their work ethic. 

 So again I ask, if you were a superhero who would you be?   Reply and let me know.

superhero