Savor the Moment

In May we see third graders making their First Communion; students graduating from college; colleagues retiring from work; and a trainer publishing her first book!  

So what do all of these things have in common?Accomplishment! Life is made up of little moments of success that shape who we are and what we become. However, when we have these moments of achievement, many times we do not take the time to reflect on the journey and what was learned along the way. 

We have spent so much energy getting to this goal that we sometimes forget the most important part - savoring the moment. We quickly move on to our next challenge not taking the time to reflect on what we just experienced. All of our achievements, no matter how big or small, come with valuable lessons. The good and poor choices we've made along the way that provided the perspective and even inspiration to keep us moving forward. 

Think about what you have accomplished this month, it can be anything you are proud of. Take a moment to reflect by asking yourself these questions: 

  • What was the biggest lesson I learned through the process?

  • What were some of the mistakes/failures I incurred along the way?

  • What positive choices did I make that helped me get here?

  • Who helped and supported me along the way?

  • What will this achievement allow me to do in the future? 

Take the time to celebrate the event, you deserve it! But don't forget to evaluate. By pausing to digest the experience, who knows what greater ones will lie in your future. 

School's In

September signals the end of summer with school halls filled with bustling kids, roads packed with busses, and families juggling the demands of academia, working, and recreational activities.  Once a kindergartner boards that bus for the first time, he/she will be taking that educational journey for the majority of childhood into adolescence and then into adulthood.

Why do we spend so much of our early life in school?  To learn.  Why do we learn? To help us become contributing members of our communities.  How do we contribute? By finding a career that takes advantage of our natural talents, skills, abilities, and interests.  Unfortunately, many individuals after leaving primary education go onto high school and then to college without a clearly defined career path.

"Based on a job satisfaction survey conducted by Glassroom.com, 40 percent of employees are satisfied at work, while 27 percent say their jobs are "OK" and 33 percent are dissatisfied at work." [Forbes.com, "Why People Stay Mired in their Careers", April 2012].

In what percentage group do you find yourself?  Whether you are satisfied in your career but want a promotion, unsatisfied and looking to make a career change, or a victim of our economy and simply looking for a new job, the following model may help you find a fulfilling career path.

Self-reflect.  Take a moment to think about why you are currently at this place. Reflect on childhood memories both positive and negative that influenced your life choices and who were the individuals that encouraged a specific career path. 

Self-awareness.  Invest in learning about your natural talents. Two helpful assessments include the DiSC behavioral profile and StrengthsFinder 2.0 to help uncover your personality traits and performance strengths.

Self-exploration.  Read current job descriptions and interview professionals currently working in the career areas you are interested in. [U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook]. 

Self-Selection.  Upon completion of the above, select positions that are the best fit for you and aligned with your core values. 

Few of us were blessed enough to know what we wanted to do with our lives when our kindergarten teacher asked us"what do you want to be when you grow up?"  But with the wisdom we have acquired through continuous learning we can make the right career decisions today to make an impact on the world tomorrow.

Team Positive

Teamwork, defined as the "the process of working collaboratively with a group of people in order to achieve a goal," is often a crucial part of business.   Every person on a team has the ability to positively or negatively effect the team's ultimate goal. 

With the upcoming Summer Olympics, athletes will pursue medals in both individual and team events.   Michael Phelps qualified in the same eight events that he swam in Beijing in 2008. However, he later dropped the 200-meter freestyle to instead focus on the 4×100-meter freestyle relay.  Phelps along with his coach, Bob Bowman, understands the importance of his positive contributions on the relay team - - - his contributions of speed and leadership for the team could be the difference between winning or not winning a medal.

Also in headline news, we can see the effect of one individual's ability to negatively impact a team.  The recent conviction of Jerry Sandusky in the Penn State child sex abuse scandal has resulted in sanctions against the college and Joe Paterno no longer holding the record as the winningest college football coach due to the vacated victories from 1998 to 2011.  Whatever talents Sandusky brought to achieve those wins were irreversibly negated by his unethical and immoral actions that were never addressed when the incidents actually occurred.

In the business world, teams inevitably get better results than individuals working within the constraints of their job.  Collective skills, knowledge, and talents of a diverse group working together ultimately make better decisions and produce a higher output.

So go for the Gold by being a positive team member, understanding your organization's overall goals, contributing your time and talents daily, and doing more than what is expected.

 

 

Quote of the Month

"Some people dream of success while others wake up and work hard for it."

 

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