Be the Change You Want to See In the World

Picking up on the current theme of panic and Ebola and on topic with our recent life coaching call-in-hour about feeling guilty about creating your ideal life when there is so much unhappiness in the world--I was delighted to read Seth Godin’s blog We Have Ebola discussing the hysteria and panic that seems to be fuelled by the media machine, creating an epidemic panic amongst us. As Ghandi said, we must, "be the change we want to see in the world.” If you are worried about Ebola, donate some money to the cause. Not too long ago the hysteria was focused on the Avian bird flu and before that AIDS, there will always be something that can scare us--if we allow it. Being the change you want to see can be as simple as you make it. My hero of the day is the philanthropic Taiwanese vegetable seller, Chen Shu-chu, who is doing exactly that, walking the walk and making huge changes by doing what she can, however small. Not only is she being the change, but by her actions, she is inspiring... Read More →

The 7 Sources of Career Dissatisfaction

After years of coaching many disgruntled, stuck and frustrated executives, I've come up with a list of the most common reasons why we are so unhappy in our jobs or careers: 1. Unmet personal requirements. If you have a need to be free and independent you will most certainly resent your micromanaging boss. If you have a need for peace, you will struggle to focus in an open-plan office. You must identify and satisfy your personal needs and requirements if you want to be happy at work. 2. Bad Boss/Office Politics. If you don't respect or like your boss, you probably will dread going to work. Or, if you've ignored office politics you may find you are suddenly side-lined at work by the more politically savvy. 3. Untapped Abilities. Most people think it is great to have a load of abilities and natural talents. What they don't realize is that if you have a strong ability you have to use it or will wind up feeling unfulfilled. We use the Career Change Kit to identify hidden talents that... Read More →

Life Coach Tip: Courting the Muse

So many times we wait to start something until inspiration strikes. And when that inspiration wanes, we stop. We are waiting for the time to be right, for that elusive day when we’ll have more time and more money and can start the thing we really want to do in life. It doesn’t matter if this is a health and fitness plan, a novel, or any other big endeavour. When Somerset Maugham was asked if he wrote on a schedule or when struck by inspiration he replied, “I write only when inspiration strikes. Fortunately it strikes every morning at nine o’clock sharp.” As Pressfield writes in his brilliant little book, The War of Art – “Maugham reckoned another, deeper truth: that by performing the mundane physical act of sitting down and starting to work, he set in motion a mysterious but infallible sequence of events that would produce inspiration, as surely as if the goddess had synchronized her watch with his. He knew if he built it, she would come.” Therein lies the key to success.... Read More →

Career Coach: Align Your Values and Vision

Often when I am coaching clients on their career path I ask them to tell me about their values. The key to having fulfilling work is to do something that is in alignment with your highest values. I'm not referring to values in the moral sense of right and wrong, but rather in the sense of doing what you truly love to do - that which is of intrinsic worth to you personally. When you are living in accordance with your values, you are most fully alive and most fully yourself. For example, you might value creativity and invention. You might value travel and adventure, or perhaps peace, or being spiritual. You might value risk, experimentation, or perhaps grace, beauty, or elegance. People value different things. When do you feel most alive? Take a moment to reflect on the peak moments in your life. Look back and see what the highlights of your life have been. One client realized that one of the highlights of his life was giving his high school graduation speech. He valued inspiring others.... Read More →

How to Network: 10 Tips for Mastering the Art of Networking

beach people

Networking is something we all do naturally and effortlessly without thinking about. If you move to a new town and need a dentist, you start asking neighbors and colleagues for a referral. Business networking can be just as natural and easy. However, if you've ever attended a networking event or business meeting to arrive back at the office with stacks of business cards you've collected and then can't remember who the vast majority of these people are, you will realize the importance of being memorable and making a lasting impression. After years of being a member of  a business networking club, of trying desperately to make an impression at large corporate functions, and of being a small business owner, I've learned just how important it is to find a way to network with ease or, let's face it, you simply won't do it. Here are few tips that I've picked up along the way... 1. Get Your Personal and Emotional Needs Met. Before you even bother attending any events or functions, first... Read More →

Stuck in a Rut: Changing Habits Made Easy

We are creatures of habit, which is neither good nor bad. We can easily get stuck in a bad rut, but as well we can use this same natural tendency to get stuck in a good rut. The trick to changing is not to make a whole bunch of changes at once, but rather to make one tiny, easy peasy change at a time. And it actually doesn't matter that much what you change. In one intriguing book, Do Something Different Diet, showed that dieters had successful results by simply changing one thing they did each day. You could wear red socks instead of blue or you could drive a different route to work or you could eat dinner for breakfast. It didn't matter if the habits were food-related or not. Excess fat, like excess clutter, is associated with stuck or stagnant energy. By simply doing something different every day, you shake things up and lose weight as a side benefit. Small changes lead to bigger changes without effort. So if thinking about changing your eating and exercise routines (or lack thereof!)... Read More →

What’s My USP? Use one of these 3 Templates for Creating Your Elevator Speech

If you have ever struggled to come up with a snappy elevator speech these templates will help you create one in a flash. First impressions are lasting and having a powerful short introduction about your services will make sure you maximise your personal or professional brand. [Article compliments of Margie Cherry of Lafayette College]. 1. Method #1 I help _______ by doing _______that______, _____and _____. Example: I help job seekers by writing resumes that open doors, generate interviews, and outperform the competition   2. Method #2 (Who am I?) ________ (adjective /Identifying Noun) ________ (pick one: eager to; driven to; with a passion for; with a strong interest in) _______ (what you do) verb-ing for the ________ (industry or population) through-by/____________(adjective/ noun.) Example: Energetic new Bio grad eager to create solutions for the Pharma industry through application of meticulous research and exceptional analytical skills. 3. Method #3 Ask these 3 questions... Read More →

3 Simple Tips to Make Healthy Eating Easy

September is a great time to change your habits -- even better than January. Our routines often break over the summer while we are taking a vacation, making September the ideal time to establish new routines when the kids go back to school. Now is the perfect time to stop drinking coffee, take a walk every morning or install some other healthy habits. Here are three simple tips to institute healthy eating habits, but feel free to choose your own:     1. Keep a Food Diary. This isn't a new idea, but it is amazing how few people actually do it even though studies have shown that writing down everything you eat is a better predictor of weight loss than exercise! All you have to do is get a portable notebook that you can carry with you at all time. The key is to write down EVERYTHING that passes those lips, yes, even that single piece of hard candy you slipped into your mouth without thinking while waiting at a reception desk. After one or two weeks of consistent recording,... Read More →

Communication Skills for Women in the Workplace

Why can't a woman be like a man? Why is it that women need a different strategy to be successful when working with men or in a male-dominated company or business? How come women can't just do what we feel comfortable with and break through the glass ceiling? There are three reasons just for starters: Men don't like questions. Women do. Men don't have high-pitched voices. Many women do. Cultural expectations are different for men and women. Women are raised to be nice. Men to be right, which is why many men don't like asking for directions and women can't figure out what the fuss is all about! So let's start with one simple technique that you can use right now today to improve your communication skills with men. Stop asking questions. Instead use statements or simply give instructions. You can practice right now with your husband, mate, or children. Instead of saying, "Hi honey, how was your day?" try this, "Hi honey, tell me about your day." Notice the subtle difference. You will... Read More →

Life Coach: Your Happiness Project

Studies have shown that people who feel more successful than their friends are happier than people who feel less successful. That made me laugh—maybe all you need for happiness is poorer friends! The Dalai Lama says most people base their happiness on comparisons to others. A study evaluated lottery winners and the impact winning had on their lives. The same researchers also studied another group—paraplegics. The study revealed that six months after winning the lottery or becoming a paraplegic, both groups had the same level of happiness. So winning the lottery will make you just about as happy as becoming a paraplegic. I stopped buying lottery tickets. Why buy a ticket if all you need to do is jump in front of a bus? (I’m not jumping in front of any buses either!) Here’s a much more useful tip: First, write down everything you would buy, do, have or be if you did win the lottery. What changes would you make in your life? What would you do differently? Then, make those changes... Read More →

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