4 Times Self-Doubt Can Actually Be Good for Your Career

image.jpg

Here’s a fact about self-doubt: Everyone has it.

Even some of the most famous people have suffered from self-doubt. Lady Gaga revealed in her documentary that she “sometimes feels like a loser kid in high school.” Arianna Huffington calls the negative self-talk in her head her obnoxious roommate. And like the supreme athlete she is, Serena Williams manages to pull through physically to overcome a negative mental state.

There’s plenty of great advice on ways to conquer it. But—bear with me here—it actually has some benefits if you learn how to think about it the right way.

So before you swat that “negative” feeling away and let it cripple your confidence, remind yourself of these four things:

1. Self-Doubt Motivates You to Keep Learning and Growing

Doubting yourself every once in a while makes you want to continue to better yourself—for example, questioning a skill you have and deciding to take a class on it or being unsure about a strategy and asking your co-worker for advice. Without it, your skills and knowledge would stagnate. There’s nothing like a little self-doubt to spur you to put in more effort, try harder, or pick up some extra training to stay fresh.

This ultimately makes you feel confident, sets you up to move forward in your career, and, better yet, opens doors that can lead to the discovery of a new field you might enjoy.

2. Self-Doubt Keeps You Humble

You’re human, which means that you’re aware that you’re going to make mistakes and not know certain things. And that self-awareness and honesty makes you someone people can trust, count on, and feel comfortable working with. After all, no one wants to hire a narcissist—imagine the poor team skills!

Self-doubt also encourages you to see all sides of a situation—you’re willing to consider options outside your expertise and thus able to make smarter decisions. Think about it: When’s the last time you ran an idea by your boss or colleague just to be sure it was a good one? Did that conversation help you to refine and perfect your idea? Chances are it did—or at least forced you to ask yourself more questions and try different paths.

3. Self-Doubt Can Highlight Red Flags That Spur Action to Something Better

If you find yourself feeling really insecure about something, it’s possible that you’re working on something you’re not qualified to do or you’re in the wrong role or at the wrong company.

Knowing this encourages you to take actions to actually fix it. You might decide to move on to work that brings you more satisfaction. Or, you might decide to talk to your boss about your concerns. Either way, you wouldn’t improve your situation without a little self-doubt.

4. Self-Doubt Can Create More Honest and Transparent Conversations

If you’re doubting yourself, this can spur a much-needed conversation with your boss about your career trajectory, your workload, or your current assignment. Perhaps she’s given you a stretch assignment that’s caused you to feel anxious or said something in a meeting that put you off. An open and honest discussion might prompt her faith in your ability to overcome your fear and be the insight and boost you need to move forward.

Count the number of times you pursued something, anything—a course, a new hobby, a new job. Did you go into it with 100% certainty that you could do it?

Of course you didn’t. But that bit of self-doubt made the experience that much more enlightening and challenging.

It’s OK to have self-doubt sometimes, and accepting that will put you in a healthier position to assess your career goals and refresh how they align with your strengths. Remember that everyone and everything is a work in progress, so the next time you feel a bit of self-doubt creep in, don’t let it overwhelm you—use it to your advantage.

 

https://www.themuse.com/advice/self-doubt-good-for-your-career

 

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707  or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at  connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

 

 

Refer a Friend:

Refer a friend to Superian Sources for employment opportunities.

Once they are hired through our service, you receive a $100 gift card.

Refer a business and receive a $200 gift card for the first hire.  Call or email Superian for details.

 

 

Advertisements

A Few Tips for Introverts Trying to Make Friends at Work (According to Fellow Introverts)

image

You’re about to start a new role. It’s exciting because yay, fresh start, but it’s also incredibly intimidating.

You’re not anti-social or shy, but you are an introvert and it takes you a little bit longer to become friends with people. But you want friends at your new workplace! So, you’re probably feeling a little anxious about the fact you’re about to be surrounded by a whole lot of unfamiliar faces.

Well, you’re certainly not alone in this fear. In fact, we talked to five introverts on how they managed to build relationships with their co-workers when starting a new job.

Here’s what they suggest:

Take the First Few Days to Just Observe

A different environment with different people, responsibilities, and schedules is a lot for introverts to take in.

So, when it comes to making friends, don’t feel obligated to jump right in.

“Spend the first few days observing and listening to conversations in breakrooms and around the water cooler. Keep a low profile and just watch and listen, then decide who you would like to get to know more,” says Mychelle Fernandez, social influencer, blogger, and self-identified introvert.

Alisha Powell, PhD, LCSW, agrees: “I’m a travel social worker, so I have a new set of colleagues in a new office every few months. One thing I’ve found helpful is to observe the office dynamic.”

And, she says, “Observing people doesn’t have to be super creepy. It just means that you do what you need to do but you also pay attention to what is around you. You listen to conversations without feeling the need to interject your point. Learning through observation is a great idea if you’re shy and not sure where to start.”

Think of this timeframe like your planning period (and introverts love planning)—you’re getting a lay of the land, which will help you better understand who you’ll mesh well with and the best ways to approach certain people.

Start Small

From there, you can begin to take baby steps. Powell and Fernandez suggest starting with small talk, then moving this to a one-on-one meal or coffee.

“By asking for recommendations on places to eat [for example], he or she may end up inviting you to join him or her,” says Fernandez.

“It’s not in an introvert’s nature to talk to a lot of people at once, so that’s why I suggest to talk to one person at a time. Make an effort to talk to one new person a day, even if it’s just introducing yourself,” adds Lauren Crain, Digital Marketer at Health Labs.

Seek Out Groups That Interest You

This is great advice for anyone in a new job, but especially for introverts who struggle to come up with ways to insert themselves into cliques.

“Many offices offer clubs or after-work activities. Choose ones that are interesting to you and dive in by asking about others’ days, jobs, and personal lives. At Fundera, I joined the running club—which is restricted to a Slack channel for the time-being—where runners share advice on products, races, and general tips. For me, it provided familiarity with new co-workers and a topic to bring up when I bumped into another runner,” says Nicolas Straut, Content Marketing Associate at Fundera.

Be Your Kind and Wonderful Self

Finally, remember that you’re a smart, nice, and awesome person that people will like because they have zero reason not to.

“Be yourself—unapologetically. Let your co-workers know what you like! I, for example, love contemporary art, so I took a fellow intern to a few galleries last summer; on another occasion, a co-worker (whom I’d never met) and I celebrated and critiqued our favorite writers and filmmakers for hours after she noticed one of my laptop stickers, a tribute to my favorite movie. We talked for so long that our dumplings had gone cold,” says Melissa Ho, a marketing team member at Fueled.

“Three months ago, I joined my current company and made it my mission to make new friends despite my introversion. My top tip for fellow introverts in this situation is to remember that your new co-workers want to meet someone who is cool and friendly. Once you start, make a good impression by smiling often and being warm when others engage you. My first week, I accidentally grabbed someone else’s coffee mug and when they asked where it was in a general Slack channel, I was quick to apologize and introduce myself in a friendly manner when I gave it back. The mug’s owner and I are now good friends despite my mistake,” adds Straut.

Did you try these and find that you’re still not having luck? One thing to remind yourself is that making friends in a new job is hard—for everyone. So cut yourself some slack if you’re not hitting it off with people right away. You’ll get there.

 

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707  or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at  connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

 

 

Refer a Friend:

Refer a friend to Superian Sources for employment opportunities.

Once they are hired through our service, you receive a $100 gift card.

Refer a business and receive a $200 gift card for the first hire.  Call or email Superian for details.

The Recap Shelf: How a Growth Mindset Can Transform Your Career (and Life)

image

Carol Dweck preaches “the power of yet.”

If students don’t pass a test, it’s not because they’re inherently stupid, but because they don’t understand the material well enough—yet. If employees didn’t negotiate the best deal, it doesn’t mean all future deals are doomed. It means they haven’t honed their negotiating skills enough—yet.

Dweck, a psychology professor now at Stanford University, is known for decades of work on “mindsets,” or people’s beliefs about human qualities such as intelligence and talent, both their own and others’. She developed terms you might’ve heard before: the “fixed mindset” and “growth mindset.”

“My research has shown that the view you adopt for yourself profoundly affects the way you lead your life,” Dweck writes in Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, the 2006 book that pulls together years of psychology research for the general reader. “It can determine whether you become the person you want to be and whether you accomplish the things you value.”

Well, that sounds serious. Here’s what you need to know. Well, at least the basics.

The Ultimate Takeaway

People have drastically different ways of thinking about their own abilities, intelligence, and talent. Those with a fixed mindset believe those traits are, well, fixed. “Believing that your qualities are carved in stone… creates an urgency to prove them over and over,” Dweck writes in her book, and to perform rather than develop them. People with a fixed mindset “believe that talent alone creates success—without effort,” Dweck’s Mindset site says. But “they’re wrong.”

The alternative, a growth mindset, “is based on the belief that your basic qualities are things you can cultivate through your efforts, your strategies, and help from others,” Dweck explains in her book. And that means you can work hard and develop your intelligence, talent, and more. Dweck believes “this view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment.”

There are two other crucial and related points Dweck emphasizes repeatedly. The first is that she frequently speaks about people as though they belong to one of two distinct groups, for the sake of clarity. But we all have some mix of these mindsets in various areas of our lives.

The second is that people’s mindsets can change. You can learn a growth mindset. In fact, Dweck says she spent much of her early life with a fixed mindset, and still sometimes catches herself thinking that way, but her research has helped her strive toward a growth mindset.

The Anecdotes

Like Dale Carnegie in his classic book How to Win Friends and Influence People (shameless plug—it was our first pick for The Recap Shelf), Dweck makes the research about mindsets come to life with a slew of anecdotes.

She shares stories from her own life and work and marriage as well as stories about teachers working in inner-city classrooms and children she and her colleagues have met in the course of their research. She looks at the mindsets of famous people in various industries, including John McEnroe, Michael Jordan, Hillary Clinton, Charles Darwin, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and revisits infamous moments in history like the botched Bay of Pigs invasion and the Enron scandal to consider how mindsets played a part.

The Mindsets in the Workplace

As you can imagine, mindsets are hugely influential in every facet of work—from leadership to management to culture to the performance and trajectories of individual employees.

Dweck describes a study in which teams of business school students were given fixed or growth mindsets and then assigned a difficult management task. The groups with the growth mindset “looked directly at their mistakes, used the feedback, and altered their strategies accordingly,” Dweck writes. “They became better and better at understanding how to deploy and motivate their workers,” ending up way more productive than their fixed-mindset counterparts.

She gives examples of CEOs whose fixed mindsets harmed their companies in the long run (despite short-term successes), such as Lee Iacocca of Chrysler, Steve Case of AOL and Jerry Levin of Time Warner at the time of the merge of those two companies, and, of course, Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling of Enron.

Many fixed-mindset leaders are also cruel bosses who “were outright contemptuous of those beneath them on the corporate ladder,” always wanting to feel superior (because if talent is fixed, anyone below who does well threatens their own sense of self).

She counters those with examples of growth mindset CEOs, such as Jack Welch at GE, Lou Gerstner at IBM, and Anne Mulcahy at Xerox, all of whom she says created “a culture of growth and teamwork.” Growth-mindset leaders tend to nurture their employees, face problems honestly, find ways to solve them and learn for the future, boost morale, and foster mentorship and hard work.

Likewise, growth mindset managers “give a great deal more developmental coaching, they notice improvement in employees’ performance, and they welcome critiques from their employees.” And groups with the growth mindset tend to have more productive discussions rather than falling into the trap of groupthink, which can “lead to catastrophic decisions,” like the Bay of Pigs invasion.

The Wrong Kind of Praise

Well-meaning praise can be dangerous. “Every word and action can send a message,” Dweck writes, one that can push children, athletes, or employees toward either a fixed or growth mindset.

Some praise can backfire. Dweck gives examples that send fixed-mindset messages:

  • “You learned that so quickly! You’re so smart!”
  • “You’re so brilliant, you got an A without even studying!”

In contrast, growth-mindset messages might sound like this:

  • “You really studied for your test and your improvement shows it. You read the material over several times, you outlined it, and you tested yourself. It really worked!”
  • “I know school used to be easy for you and you used to feel like the smart kid all the time. But the truth is that you weren’t using your brain to the fullest. I’m really excited about how you’re stretching yourself and working to learn hard things.”

The False Growth Mindset

In the updated version of her book, Dweck digs into what she calls the “false growth mindset,” or the ways the research has been misunderstood and misapplied.

For example, fostering a growth mindset doesn’t just mean praising effort. The effort has to actually be there. And it has to be combined with strategy, perseverance, and progress. “In all of our research on praise, we indeed praise the process, but we tie it to the outcome, that is, to children’s learning, progress, or achievements,” Dweck writes. “Children need to understand that engaging in that process helped them learn.” The same applies to adults.

The Way to Change Mindsets

One of the key takeaways from Dweck’s book is the meta-idea that you can grow a growth mindset. Through research, she’s shown how lectures, workshops, and even an animated “Brainology” program have helped teach the growth mindset.

“Just learning about the growth mindset can cause a big shift in the way people think about themselves and their lives,” Dweck writes. But that’s not the end of it. It takes work to change and more work to maintain change.

Dweck offers a few important steps for those who want to embark on a “journey to a (true) growth mindset,” even if they don’t have access to a workshop. They include:

  • “Embrace your fixed mindset,” she writes. “It’s not a shameful admission. It’s more like, welcome to the human race.”
  • Figure out what your “fixed-mindset triggers” are.
  • Name your fixed-mindset persona, the one that emerges as a result of those triggers.
  • Educate that fixed-mindset persona when it appears.

The Thing You Should Say if You’re Trying to Reference It

“Let’s try to cultivate a growth mindset on our team. Jack’s reports aren’t where they need to be, yet, but we should focus on the strategies that might help him get there instead of writing him off for future projects. The goal is always to get better!”

Carol Dweck has devoted her career to studying the fixed and growth mindsets and how they affect every aspect of life, including education, careers, business, sports, relationships (romantic and otherwise), and even the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“My work has been about growth, and it has helped foster my own growth,” she writes in the introduction to the revised book. “It is my wish that it will do the same for you.”

 

https://www.themuse.com/advice/recap-shelf-mindset-carol-dweck

 

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707  or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at  connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

 

 

Refer a Friend:

Refer a friend to Superian Sources for employment opportunities.

Once they are hired through our service, you receive a $100 gift card.

Refer a business and receive a $200 gift card for the first hire.  Call or email Superian for details.

The Average Person Donates $561 to Their Employer Every Year (So Yes, That Could Include You If You Don’t Use Your Vacation Times)

image

We’ve all used every excuse in the book for not taking vacation (or not unplugging while on vacation).

“My co-workers won’t survive without me.” “Something major will happen while I’m gone and then I’ll be fired because I wasn’t there.” “Taking a vacation would make me more stressed right now.”

And while they’re all baloney, we’ve still managed to convince ourselves that we don’t need to take breaks.

So I’m going to give you one reason today why you should get offline and go away: Because when you don’t use your vacation days, you’re essentially paying your employer.

Yup. According to a recent article on CNN titled, “Your Boss Wants You to Take a Vacation” (how’s that for a headline?), American employees forfeited 212 million vacation days in 2017, otherwise sacrificing $62 billion in lost benefits.

“In other words, the average employee actually donated $561 in ‘free’ work to their employer by not using their vacation time,” says the article author Katie Denis, citing a study done by Project: Time Off.

Let me break that down for you. Companies set aside a certain number of days off for each employee, expecting that they will be paying some money for their employees not to be working. While some organizations offer rollover days—allowing employees to accrue and use any leftover vacation days from the previous year—many don’t, which means if you don’t use them, you lose them. This means that rather than get that extra money without having to work, you’re giving that money back in unnecessary labor.

The point? Take your vacation days—all of them.

And not just because it’s costing you much-undeserved stress and energy. According to career coaches, taking breaks makes you more motivated and productive in the long run, puts your career into perspective, and even helps you get promoted. Want hard numbers next to those facts? The CNN articles goes on to say that “those who travel with all or most of their time are 28% happier with their companies and 24% happier with their jobs than those that travel with little to none of their vacation days.”

Convinced? Good. Now time to ask your boss for time off and start planningfor your next adventure!

https://www.themuse.com/advice/average-person-donates-money-not-taking-vacation-days

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707  or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at  connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

 

 

Refer a Friend:

Refer a friend to Superian Sources for employment opportunities.

Once they are hired through our service, you receive a $100 gift card.

Refer a business and receive a $200 gift card for the first hire.  Call or email Superian for details.

5 Digital Nomad Habits Anyone Can Adopt to Make Their Days More Inspiring

image

I’m going to guess that almost everyone out there has spent at least one afternoon staring at their inbox in a daze or sitting in a seemingly endless meeting, daydreaming about becoming a digital nomad. It sounds ideal: working from inspiring locations, being in charge of your time, skipping the small talk.

After nomading for the past year, I can tell you some things about the experience that really are dreamy. Not everyone can pop over to the monkey forest on their coffee break or take meetings against the backdrop of a glittering sea.

But you don’t necessarily have to pick up and move halfway across the globe to enjoy some of the benefits of this lifestyle. In fact, there are plenty of habits that anyone can adopt to make their days more inspiring.

1. Shake Up Your Scenery

One of the most obvious benefits (and the one we eye enviously on Instagram) is getting to work from beautiful locations, whether it’s a hip cafe in Berlin or a beach in Bali.

“I love being able to switch up my environment on a daily basis,” says Nisha Garigarn, who has been nomading for the past three years while co-founding Croissant. “I can find myself working from a classy hotel lobby one day, and from a sunny outdoor terrace with a beer on another day. I love the idea of injecting small doses of inspiration in your daily life by working from different spots.”

Even if you can’t get to quite such exotic locations from your cubicle, you’re still surrounded by places that are not your office. Is there a coffee shop around the corner or a hotel lobby you particularly love? Talk to your boss to see if you can negotiate one day (or even a couple hours) every week to go work from there, or organize a “retreat” for your whole team to get offsite and get some work done (here’s an email template to help you make that ask). If that’s not an option, try taking some of your meetings out of the office.

At the very least, see what moving from your desk to another corner of the office can do. “I think office workers will benefit from a change of pace or scenery to reignite creativity and problem-solving skills,” shares Krista Gray, nomad and founder of GoldSquare. “Creating this sense might be as simple as working from a new desk to avoid getting stuck in a routine or operating on autopilot.”

Krista Gray, digital nomad and founder of GoldSquare

Courtesy of Krista Gray

2. Take Advantage of Your Surroundings

Digital nomads love being able to explore exciting places and get to know interesting people—and you don’t have to go far to do the same!

I’m willing to bet that, wherever you’re living and working, there are plenty of things you’ve been wanting to do but haven’t. Finally seeing that new museum exhibit, trying a restaurant everyone raves about, or checking out a beautiful walking path could be the perfect way to inject some adventure into your routine.

“When you’re a digital nomad, you’re more likely to take advantage of your surroundings,” says Lynze Ballay, who’s living in Buenos Aires while working on her onboarding consulting business and She Works Abroad. “You know that you probably won’t be in this same place forever.”

Push yourself to do the same and be a tourist where you live now. If you have a real lunch break, use it to explore a new spot. Take advantage of the amazing people surrounding you at work and grab coffee with a colleague you haven’t gotten to know before. And if all else fails, sneak in a little time researching for an evening activity or a day trip you can take on the weekend.

3. Let Your Schedule Follow Your Energy

Many digital nomads love the freedom from a strict 9-to-5 office routine, instead opting to let their schedules change based on their energy or sightseeing plans.

“The ability to tailor my schedule to the individual day has changed my productivity levels immensely,” says travel and lifestyle journalist Jillian Dara. “I am very productive in the early hours of the morning and tend to have brainstorming sessions late at night.”

travel and lifestyle journalist Jillian Dara

Courtesy of Jillian Dara

The most obvious way to bring this digital nomad benefit home would be to try to negotiate a schedule that works best for you. “Do you love working early and hate the afternoons? Consider adjusting your work schedule to be 7 AM to 4 PM if that suits you better. Your boss might be fine with it,” shares Megan Berry, VP of Product at remote-friendly Octane AI—and, I’ll add, that you won’t know if that’s the case unless you ask.

Barring that, work within regular office hours to create a schedule as close to ideal as possible. For example, block out your most productive hours on your calendar so you can focus on work without being distracted by meetings.

Or, if your energy rhythms are always changing, try staying ahead of deadlines so that you can switch gears if something isn’t inspiring you and come back to it another day.

4. Get Away From the Screen

Digital nomads have lots of opportunities to step away from their computers—and often find they have the best ideas when they do.

“I have an entire day to enjoy myself and not sit in front of a computer,” shares business coach Harper Spero, who uses her flexibility to work elsewhere during the New York winter.

“I go to the beach, read a book, meet friends for lunch, stroll around the city,” Spero says. “It’s not that I don’t think about my business during this time—I actually feel like I have more space to brainstorm and ideate, to embrace this time without feeling like I should be responding to emails.”

It can be easy to feel like you have to stay tuned into your computer every second you’re at work, but try taking some time away from the screen and see what happens. Go for a walk when you’re stuck on a problem. Grab a notebook and sit in a remote corner of the office when prepping for your next meeting. Schedule time every week to brainstorm on a whiteboard in the conference room. You might be surprised how much it clears your head.

Alissa Lentz, a digital nomad who traveled while starting her backpack company HERO NEW YORK

Courtesy of Alissa Lentz

5. Take Control of What You Can

What most digital nomads love more than any other aspect of their work and travel setup is the feeling of being fully in control of their own lives. “I feel 100% in control of my destiny, a perspective that keeps me learning and growing,” says Alissa Lentz, who’s been nomading for several years while starting her backpack company HERO NEW YORK.

Even if you’re reporting to a boss every day, it’s important to remember that—ultimately—you’re in control of your career. If you’re feeling uninspired at work, start taking small steps to understand why and see what you can do to fix it. Check in with yourself about what excites you about your job—and what doesn’t. Lentz, for example, makes it a daily practice to reflect on and journal about what went well and what didn’t—so that she can learn and improve.

Dara agrees that “fostering self-motivation is a life-lesson for anyone.” It’s important “to be able to ask yourself, why am I doing this? Do I want to be doing this?”

And if through this process of self-reflection you realize this job really isn’t working for you, start making a plan for your own escape—to a new job or to a new corner of the planet.

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707  or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at  connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

 

 

Refer a Friend:

Refer a friend to Superian Sources for employment opportunities.

Once they are hired through our service, you receive a $100 gift card.

Refer a business and receive a $200 gift card for the first hire.  Call or email Superian for details.

35 Things to Do for Your Career by 35

image

We’re all for flexibility. Going your own way. Paving your own path. Doing what works for you (and not doing what doesn’t).

We’re also big fans of not putting a timeline on things. We’ve even said that there are plenty of things you don’t have to have by 30 (or 40, or 50, or ever…).

But when it comes to your career, there are some things that we do recommend getting started on sooner rather than later. Not because some all-knowing career god out there says you have to, but because you’ll make your professional future—not to mention day-to-day work life—a whole lot easier.

So, do you need to check every box off this list by the time you’re 35? Definitely not. But, consider it a list of suggestions that, if taken, can have a really big impact on your career.

1. Really Refine Your Elevator Pitch

While it will obviously change from time to time, you should never have a hard time answering, “What do you do?” In fact, you should be so good at it that people will never forget.

So, really spend some time figuring out what message you want to get across when people ask about your career. Communication expert Alexandra Franzen has an exercise to help.

2. Know Your Superpower

Or, in other words, know the one thing that you’re truly amazing at.

Serial entrepreneur Tina Roth Eisenberg says that all the most successful people she’s met know exactly what they’re best at: John Maeda, who led the MIT Media Lab and Rhode Island School of Design, responded with “curiosity.” Maria Popova, who curates the popular Brain Pickings blog, said “doggedness.” Eisenberg’s own superpower is enthusiasm. See how to find your own super power, here.

3. Know Your Weakness

On the other end of the spectrum, it’s key to know what you’re not so great at. Not to make you feel bad—not in the least!—but to help you know who you should hire and work with to complement your skill set and what tasks you should delegate (so you can spend more time on what you’re great at).

On that note:

4. Learn How to Delegate

No one can do it all, and especially as you climb the career ladder, you’re going to need to know the difference between the things you should be spending your time on and the things you shouldn’t.

And, perhaps more importantly, be able to effectively and comfortably delegate to others—interns, staff members, your partner, your childcare provider, you get the picture. These 10 rules of successful delegation will help you do it right.

5. Know Your Career Non-Negotiables

You’re going to have a lot of opportunities come your way in life, and you don’t want to waste energy agreeing to things that really don’t line up with what you want to be doing.

So, really be honest about what you want and need out of your career, and then come up with a list of non-negotiables that you can use as a guide next time you’re making a career decision. Writer Andrea Shields Nunez has some tips on creating them—and then actually enforcing them.

6. Do Something You’re Really, Really Proud Of

Whether or not it’s something you’ll be known for forever, something you get paid for doing, or even something you really want to do with your life, make sure you have something on your resume that, deep down, you’re really proud of.

7. Learn From Something You’re Not So Proud Of

We were going to add “fail at something” to this list, but that’s silly. Because, let’s face it, we’ve all failed miserably at one point or another.

What’s more important? Learning from that blunder and taking that lesson with you productively into the next stage of your career.

8. Stretch Your Limits

You know you can manage a 30-person meeting, but a 100-person multi-day travel conference? That might be stretching the limits of your skills.

Actually—this is exactly the type of stuff that you should try once in a while. After all, you’ll never really know how good you are until you step a bit outside of what you know.

9. Do Something That Really Scares You

This takes stretching your limits a bit further—we’re talking going way out of your comfort zone here.

Whether it’s speaking at a conference, going for a (big) promotion, or finally writing that memoir, why not try something that terrifies you at least once in the early stages of your career? As they say, big risks can lead to big-time rewards.

10. Get Comfortable With Getting Feedback

Hillary Clinton once said that her biggest piece of advice to young professionals is: “It’s important to take criticism seriously—not personally.” Meaning: Knowing where you’re not meeting expectations is the only way you’ll learn and grow as a professional, but taking every harsh word to heart is a fast way to make your confidence crumble.

So, take it from Hillz, and start taking feedback like a pro. Here are a few tips that’ll help.

11. Get Comfortable With Giving Feedback

Whether it’s telling your boss that his hourly drop-bys are really killing the team’s mojo or letting your direct report know that arriving to meetings on time is, in fact, required, giving feedback is a necessary part of getting what you need and being a happy professional.

Learn how to give it well, ideally sooner rather than later. Here are some pointers.

12. Get Comfortable With Saying “No”

For just being two measly letters long, “no” seems to be one of the hardest words in the English language for many of us to say. But it’s actually incredibly important for our careers (and our sanity!) that we learn to use it and stand behind it.

Here’s how to say it to your boss, a friend, and everyone else.

13. Have a Broad Network of People You Can Trust

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again (probably at least twice a week for as long as we’re in business), the greatest asset you have in your career is your network.

And building relationships takes time, so start now. Here’s how.

14. Have a Couple of Specific Career Advisors

We’re not saying mentor here—because finding the right mentor shouldn’t have a timeline on it and because there are plenty of ways to succeed without one—but having a couple of people in your corner who can advise you on everything from a terrible boss to a career 180 is incredibly valuable.

And yes, this group of people can include your mom.

15. Scrub Your Online Presence

Increasingly, what shows up in Google and on your social media profiles is the first impression someone has of you. So, take some time to clean ’em up!

Change the privacy on any old or questionable photos. Delete any Facebook or Twitter posts that could be incriminating. Game your Google results to make sure the things you want showing up at the top do.

16. Perfect Your LinkedIn Profile

Speaking of those things you want showing up at the top, your LinkedIn profile is perhaps your most prime piece of online real estate. When a client, future employer, vendor, or professional contact is looking for you, guess where he or she will turn?

Yup, LinkedIn. So make sure your profile tells the story you want it to tell (our complete guide to a perfect LinkedIn profile walks you through the process).

17. Have a Portfolio of Your Best Work

Whether it’s a printed collection of articles, marketing campaigns, or annual reports you’ve worked on or a personal website showcasing your skills, having a portfolio ready to go will make it easy for you to show your boss (or future boss) what you’ve got.

Here’s more on why you need one, plus some easy ways to get started today.

18. Know How to Sell (Yourself or Something Else)

Yes, even if you never envision a career in cold calling. The truth is, whether you’re pitching an idea to your boss or writing a cover letter about why you’re the perfect candidate, you’re going to be selling something to someone at some point.

Get started on your own personal sales education with these tips.

19. Know How to Negotiate

Because, in most cases, it’s the only way you’re going to get what you want and deserve.

If you’ve never done it before, we recommend starting small (asking your boss to, say, pay for a pricey upcoming conference), and checking out these articles that are jam-packed with actionable advice (and motivation).

20. Know How to Manage Up

It’s a common misconception that you have to grin and bear it through a superior’s assignments, working style, or way of doing things, paying no regard to whether his or her demands are reasonable.

In fact, being able to manage up—or, communicate with your boss and advocate for what you need to do your job best—is a crucial job skill. Molly Donovan offers some tips for doing it well.

21. Know How to Send a Killer Email

You should never send an email that you’re not proud of (or wouldn’t be proud of if your boss saw) again.

So make sure you’re really putting care into the professional messages you send! Erin Greenawald has some tips from an editor’s perspective on how to write ones that are flawless. It may sound like a lot of effort, but we promise it’s worth it (and will get easier the more you do it).

22. Master Your Handshake

This sounds small, but a handshake is the quickest way to make (or break) an impression. (Fact: A Fortune 500 CEO once said that when he had to choose between two candidates with similar qualifications, he gave the position to the candidate with the better handshake.)

Learn how to do it right from an expert.

23. Find a To-Do List System That Works for You

Whether you need your list synced across all of your devices or you’re more of a pen-and-paper kind of guy or gal, commit to finding a to-do list that helps you manage your workflow in the best way possible.

Yes, you might change methods as you switch jobs or new apps are launched over time, but knowing what works, what doesn’t, and what you like and don’t like will make sure that you always have what you need to be your most productive self.

24. Know Your Energy Levels—and Use Them

There’s nothing worse (or less productive) than trying to work when you’re not at your best. You shouldn’t spend any more time wasting your peak mental hours—or forcing yourself to work when you’re in an energy slump.

So, really understand and accept when you work best, and then use productivity expert Alex Cavoulacos’ advice to map out your ideal day.

25. Know How Much Sleep You Need—and Commit to Getting It

We hope you learned this lesson in college, but if not: Sleep is important. Whether you need seven or nine hours, know your number, and get it regularly. Your health and career depend on it.

26. Know How to Manage Stress

Stress can really rule and ruin your life, something you don’t want to let it do for long.

If stress is an issue for you, nip it in the bud as early as possible. Career coach Lea McLeod has some advice for how to start mitigating your stress, but if it’s really becoming overwhelming, consider talking to a professional who can give you strategies.

27. Stop Over-Apologizing

You may think you’re being polite or strengthening your reputation, but apologizing too much, especially for small things or things out of your control, could inadvertently instill doubt in your abilities and undercut your professionalism.

Make sure you’re saving your apologies for when you really messed up—not when your co-worker asks you to go back a slide in your presentation. Check out Lily Herman’s tips for making sure you’re saying what you really mean.

28. Get Over Impostor Syndrome

Whether you’re just getting started in a new field or you’ve been climbing the promotion ladder at your company since graduation, impostor syndrome can plague any professional.

But the truth is, it’s hurting your career (not to mention your self-esteem). Here’s why—and here are a few ways to get over feeling like a fraud and start feeling like the badass you are.

29. Have a Career Emergency Plan

What would you do if you got laid off tomorrow? If you don’t have an answer (or your answer is “Freak out! Panic!”), it’s time to come up with a career emergency plan.

A crisis, like being let go or having your company go under, isn’t something you ever want to think about, but if it happened, wouldn’t you rather have a ready-to-go action plan than be running around like a crazy person trying to get anyone to hire you? Here’s how to get yours started ASAP.

30. Pick Up a Side Project

Ever wondered how you’d do at consulting? Thought about opening up an Etsy store or restoring and selling old cars? Try it out. At best, you’ll find a new career or source of income, and at the very least you’ll have some variety in your day to day. Here’s how to make time for a side gig.

31. Invest in Your Retirement

We know: In the early stages of your career, it can be hard to fork over any of that precious paycheck. But savings compounds over time, so starting early means you’ll have exponentially more in your later years (to, you know, live it up on a boat sipping mai tais all day).

Here’s everything you need to know to get started.

32. Invest in Yourself

Today’s working world is changing faster than ever, and to stay on top of your professional game, it’s important to continue to grow your skills.

Oh, and this doesn’t have to mean going to grad school. Here are 45 free online classes you can take to add some professional development into your routine.

33. Invest in the World

Whether it’s volunteering your skills to a nonprofit in need or mentoring a junior employee, little feels better than giving back to the world. Here are a few ideas you may not have considered.

34. Know What You Don’t Want

You don’t have to know what you want to be when you grow up by 35 (or, hey, 95).

But, assuming you want to have a job and career you love, it’s important to at least keep thinking about it—if not actively chasing it.

And, often, the first step to knowing what you do want is ruling out what you don’t want. Don’t want a dictator for a boss? A sales role? A management position? Great. Whittle away some options, and you’re at least getting closer.

35. Give Yourself Permission to Go After What You Do

Oh, and if you do know what you want? Start taking steps to go after it. Yes, careers are long, but why spend one more day than you have to not doing what you want? You have our permission. We hope you have yours, too.

 

https://www.themuse.com/advice/35-things-to-do-for-your-career-by-35

 

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707  or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at  connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

 

 

Refer a Friend:

Refer a friend to Superian Sources for employment opportunities.

Once they are hired through our service, you receive a $100 gift card.

Refer a business and receive a $200 gift card for the first hire.  Call or email Superian for details.

 

How to Make Your Brain Get Down to Business When It’s Being Wildly Unproductive

image.jpg

The assignment you need to complete has been pulled up on your computer screen since the moment you walked into the office, yet it still looks exactly the same as it did when you opened it. Or, worse, it’s completely blank, save for the cursor mocking you each time it blinks (rude).

It’s happened to all of us, and it’s a really frustrating feeling. Especially when you’ve dedicated specific time to work on this project, and it is quickly ticking away. It’s even more nerve-wracking—and slightly panic-inducing—if you have a hard and fast deadline inching closer and closer by the minute.

But continuing to stare at your monitor while cursing yourself for being incompetent (which you aren’t) won’t magically finish the job. It’s unlikely you’ll suddenly become productive.

So, next time you run into this infuriating situation, take action, and try doing the following.

Revisit Your Original Goal and How to Get There

When you first started working on this project, you may have thought you’d chosen the best approach. But now, you’re not sure how to move forward, and you seem to be stuck in the same thought process.

Sometimes, the work you’ve already done is actually what is preventing you from completing the next steps. The trick may be to rewind a little bit, or to start from scratch all together.

Ask yourself: What is the purpose of the project I am working on? What exactly do I need to accomplish? And then, when you determine that, outline what you are going to do in order to produce the desired result.

As Muse writer Natalie Jesionka says when explaining how to reach your career goals, “Envision what the path to your goal might look like and write it out in an outline, draw a map, or even develop a storyboard that defines your goals and desired outcomes.” This advice can apply to a much smaller scale, too, such as the project you’re stuck on.

Take a Walk

According to a Stanford University study, just the simple act of taking a walk may help you to think in a different way than you were before.

“Walking opens up the free flow of ideas, and it is a simple and robust solution to the goals of increasing creativity and increasing physical activity,” authors Marily Oppezzo and Daniel L. Schwartz explain. Therefore, “when there is a premium on generating new ideas in the workday, it should be beneficial to incorporate walks.”

So get your butt out of your chair and get some steps in. When you get back to your desk, the assignment may seem a whole lot easier. Plus, that extra activity may help you win the office Fitbit competition.

And if it’s cold outside or simply not ideal to be walking around outside, that’s OK. While being outdoors does have its own benefits, the researchers found that walking around indoors was just as helpful as taking a few laps around the block.

Talk it Out

When I’m trying to get something done and just can’t seem to get anywhere, I often turn to one of my teammates and chat about it with her. Many times, working through my thoughts and ideas out loud helps me come to my own conclusions, and my co-worker is just sitting there nodding by the end (enthusiastically, of course).

Trying to explain to her what I needed to do forced me to get out of my own head and find a way to make it make sense. If you try this, let your co-worker chime in if she has something to say. Her valuable input may be just what you need to get the wheels turning. Plus, requesting a colleague’s input may make even make you more likable.

This tactic of brainstorming out loud can work when you’re alone, too. Several times while writing an article, I’ve found myself stumped. The idea seemed good when I started writing, but after a few sentences I can’t remember what I really wanted to say about the topic.

So, I step away from my laptop and I pretend I’m giving a speech to an auditorium full of people. If I had to talk about this project or product to someone, what would I say? How would I show it? Basically, I pretend I’m giving a (really good) TED talk.

Turn Off All Other Distractions

When you’ve figured out what your next steps are and are ready to return to the task at hand, turn off all other distractions. If you’re using a computer, for instance, close any web pages you don’t need. Either exit your email completely, or set it up so there are no sounds or pop-ups associated with a new email or chat.

In an interview with Daniel McGinn, Senior Editor of The Harvard Business Review, Tony Schwartz, CEO of The Energy Project and author of Be Excellent at Anything: The Four Keys to Transforming the Way We Work and Live and The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working: The Four Forgotten Needs That Energize Great Performance, says “You hear that little Pavlovian beep, and you cannot resist it. So you turn to the email and lose track of the initial task, and it takes you time to reconnect to it afterward. Researchers have found that over time and with practice, people get better at task shifting, but they never get remotely as good as they’d be if they did one thing at a time.”

Imagine you’re watching a movie with a group of friends, and you have to keep pausing it because you can’t hear over the side conversations. That two-hour movie all of a sudden becomes four hours. Or, you just stop watching it all together.

You can’t control your friends in person, but you can control your email notifications and how many times you end up scrolling through Facebook. Eliminating the possibility for interruptions will help you devote all your attention to what needs to get done.

Last of all, have confidence in yourself that you will get it done. Because you can, and you will. Sometimes you just have to hit the reset button or ask for help, and there’s no shame in either of those things.

 

https://www.themuse.com/advice/how-to-make-your-brain-get-down-to-business-when-its-being-wildly-unproductive

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707  or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at  connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

 

 

Refer a Friend:

Refer a friend to Superian Sources for employment opportunities.

Once they are hired through our service, you receive a $100 gift card.

Refer a business and receive a $200 gift card for the first hire.  Call or email Superian for details.