Why Online Job Searches Don’t Work Anymore and What Works Instead

Why Online Job Searches Don’t Work Anymore and What Works Instead

If you are currently submitting your resume over and over again online, it’s probably not working too well for you right now…am I right? I thought so. The truth is that online job searches just don’t work anymore. Here’s why:

First, click here to download the worksheet that goes along with the post.

Reason #1: The Hidden Job Market

Did you know that up to 80% of vacant jobs are filled without ever being advertised?  While you are spending your time looking at Monster.com at millions of job listings, people are getting hired all around you. Many of them in jobs you would have been able to do.  Instead, step away from your computer and do some research on the companies instead.  Then, find someone who works there and start networking with them.

There are a billion ways to start networking. My favorite is just to use a google search or social media to find someone who has the job you want or works in the industry that you want to work in.  Other ideas are going to networking events and collecting business cards during the event.  Then, when you are done you can ask them after the event for an informational interview.  You can also reach out to people who you already know. When you are done with the meeting ALWAYS ask if there is anyone else they know that you can speak to.  This will DOUBLE your networking opportunities!

You can also create a networking challenge for yourself like I did so that you can start networking like crazy. My networking challenge consisted of meeting with 4 people I didn’t know and 4 people I did know every single month.  If that seems too much for you, try meeting with 2 people you know and 2 people you don’t know every month.  You really have nothing to lose by sending out a simple email to someone you may or may not know.  Most people do want to help you out so don’t be afraid to ask!  No one can help you if you don’t ask!

Reason #2: You apply to jobs you don’t really want

The second issue with online job searches is that you have a tendency to apply to any old job and not one that you specifically know that you want.  By applying to any old job, it makes it FEEL like you are taking action and moving forward. But unfortunately it is a great way to get stuck in another job that you hate.  You will just be unhappy if you move into another job that is just like the one you hate now.  It’s a repetitive cycle and you will always hate your job unless you do something about it now.

Instead, you need to have a plan and a goal.  You need to find the what that perfect job is for you BEFORE you start looking at opportunities.  And that is what networking is all about.  You can ask all the questions you want and determine if something is right for you BEFORE you start!  You have to narrow it down from any old job and have a specific kind of work that you would like.

Reason #3: You must spend a LOT of time perfecting your resume for each job

The third issue with applying online is that it only works if your resume totally rocks.  How much time have you spent on yours?  Would you even pick you if you saw your resume? Is it just a list of all jobs you have had?  Do you even brag about yourself and show how much you rock?  Most resumes get 5 seconds before a reader decides if it’s going into the no pile.  Your resume really has to market yourself and make you stand out.

By networking instead, you don’t have to trust that the person looking at your resume is going to see how awesome you are. Instead, you make the great impression yourself, in person.  Then, hand them your resume after!

Reason #4: Competition: Everyone else is also applying online

Fourth..I really don’t have to tell you this one but thousands of other people are applying to the same job. There are 92 million Americans that are not working right now.  Recruiters know when someone is just applying to get any job to tie them over until they are truly passionate about.  If a Senior Financial analyst is applying or an Adminstrator position, they just want a job for now.  No hiring manager wants to replace you in a few months because it costs lots of time and money!

Because there is so much competition online, it is more important than ever to stand out in person and that is why networking is the clear winner AGAIN!  You can show your passion and excitement for the job in person much better than on a piece of paper.  And that passion and excitement is what is going to make you stand out from your competition.

Reason #5: No human being may ever review your resume

Fifth, no human being may ever review your resume. Have you ever applied to a job and got a rejection letter in like 5 minutes?  Yeah, that means that the computer ruled you out, not a real person.  Wouldn’t you rather speak to a real person while networking and make that face to face introduction?  That way if you get rejected, you can always follow up later to get feedback or at least keep them in your network for the future?

This is only the beginning of what I want to share with you.  In August I am doing a special series on how to find a career you love so you are in the right place if you are ready to get your career unstuck.  Before I go, click here to download the worksheet that goes along with the post.

What has been your experience with online job searches? Have they worked for you?

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Is It Time For a Career Change? Take My Career Satisfaction Quiz

Is It Time For a Career Change? Take My Career Satisfaction Quiz

One of my biggest regrets is staying far too long in a job that just didn’t fit me.  I tried really, really hard to make it work and get ahead.  It wasn’t until I realized that if you are actually in a job you love, it’s not tough and you don’t have to work so hard to succeed. You will be more successful when you are in a career that fits you and makes you happy. You don’t have to push and push and push. When you find the right career it just fits and is so rewarding and fulfilling.

So I want to encourage you not to stay any longer in a job that isn’t the right fit for you. Don’t keep going to a job everyday that is not challenging without taking a little bit of action everyday to make a change.

But, maybe you aren’t sure if it is time to make a career change.  I know at many times in my career I thought I was on the right path but I just wasn’t sure.  So is it time for you to make a career change? Make sure you scroll down to the bottom of this post to download my brand new Career Satisfaction Quiz!

Here are a five FOR SURE signs that it is time to step up and make a career change:

1) You are not valued, rewarded or appreciated.  

If you feel like you are working your butt off and no one is noticing, it might be time for a career change. Maybe you have asked for a raise multiple times and you are continually shot down. No one realizes how much work you do even though you try to promote yourself and share all of your accomplishments.

2) You are not challenged anymore.

If there is no opportunity for growth in your current job, then it might be time for a career change. If you feel stagnant and you don’t have motivation to learn more, it’s time to move on. Maybe you are doing the same thing everyday and you aren’t learning anything new. This is a huge sign you need a change because you don’t want to be stuck doing the same boring thing everyday. Eventually, you will become an expert at it and you won’t be challenging yourself to learn more and grow. You want to be continually growing and challenging yourself to learn something new in your career.

3) You don’t trust your company.

If your company is doing something sneaky and you don’t like what you see or hear, it might be time for a change. Maybe behind the scenes there are some rumors going around about your company. These rumors are big red flags that it might be time to start looking for a new career. You want to be ahead of the curve if something fishy is going on.

4) You have lost your excitement and passion for you job.

You should be enjoying what you do. Your job will get boring very quickly if you don’t have any excitement or passion for your job. Life is too short to not be excited about what you get to do everyday.  You want to be excited when you wake up every morning instead of dreading the day. It truly is possible to have work that really excites you.

5) You just know in your gut.

The fact that you are reading this post is actually another sign it is time for a career change!  Trust your gut!

So I also have something fun for you today. It is a quiz I put together for you to really tell if you are satisfied with your current career or if it is time to make a career change.

Want my Career Satisfaction Quiz that goes along with this post?  Click here to download my Career Satisfaction Quiz.

Have you made a big career change?  How did you know it was the right time to change?

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5 Money Mindsets You Need For Career Success

5 Money Mindsets You Need For Career Success

If you want to be successful in your career, I have a little known secret for you. It’s not what you do to get ahead, it’s how you think.  Through my years of helping women find careers they love and succeed, I have seen many clients really close to getting their careers unstuck BUT they all have one thing holding them back, their mindset. You can’t get your career unstuck if you are not in the right mindset to get your career unstuck. If you take all the actions but don’t work on your mindset, you will not get the success you want.

A few weeks ago, I shared 3 mindsets you need to attract the job you want.  Today, I want to share with you the five money mindsets you need for career success.  You may not realize it but your career success and how you think about money are very closely intertwined.  Once I was able to get my money under control, I had so much more flexibility to be able to pursue a career I loved.  I truly believe that your financial decisions and priorities directly affect your career. These mindsets are crucial so start thinking them today!

Mindset #1: You Are Self-employed (Even If You Aren’t….)

“To take control of your career is to view yourself as self-employed.  See yourself as CEO of a company with one employee: yourself.  See yourself as 100% responsible for your life and for everything that happens to you. –Brian Tracy

When you put yourself as the CEO of your own career, you don’t count on anyone else but yourself to get ahead. This is crucial. You can’t count on your manager to create your personal development plan. You can’t count on HR to make sure you get the salary you deserve or to make sure that you are continuously learning and growing in your field.  To earn more, you must learn more.  You are in charge of your career success and career growth.  You can’t rely on anyone else to manage your career for you.

Mindset #2: You Are Worth Your Dream Salary

What is your dream salary? Pick a number. The sky is the limit. If you don’t have a number in your mind of how much you want to earn, you will just continue to get small raises.  Think about what you want before you think about whether it is even a reality.  In the long run, you determine how much you get paid and everything that happens to you. Don’t doubt yourself.

After you figure out what you want to make, find out what the people earning the money you want are doing differently than you right now.  How can you increase the value of the service you bring to a company?

Get clear and focused on what you want to attract. Thoughts attract things. The more clear you are, the quicker it appears. Imagine your dream salary being put into your checking account each pay period. Put things in writing. Write down what it is and look at your goals everyday. Put yourself in the moment of feeling what it would be like when you receive that dream salary. How great does that feel?

Mindset #3: Debt Is Your Enemy

Pay off your debt now so you can have control of your career. Without debt controlling your life, you can make life and career decisions that really make you happy.   You have nothing hanging over your head nor do you have student loan, credit card and car loan bills piling up to pay.  You have savings available for emergencies and you aren’t living paycheck-to-paycheck wondering if you will ever have the life and career you dreamed of.  Not having to worry about debt allows your mind to open up so that you can really think about what makes you happy and what you really want to do with your life.  That is exactly what happened to me.

My husband and I got out of debt in April-12.  I un-trapped myself from my debt and other options came flooding into my life that I could take because I was no longer drowning in debt.  If you need to pay bills and students loans, you may continue working at a job that you may not enjoy just because you have to pay those bills.  Which is fine! But, set a goal to pay off your debt in the next year or two and then move on to something that makes you happier! Get yourself out of the debt that is clouding your professional future and instead find areas that you will succeed at even more because you are passionate about them.  There are so many things you can do if you aren’t worried about paying off your debt.  You could travel, start a business, or take a 50% pay cut to explore and evaluate your professional future like I did. You aren’t trapped.  Plan your work around your life, not your life around your work.

Mindset #4: You Love Giving

I tithe 10% of my income to the people, places or institutions who have fed me spiritually. They’ve inspired me and helped me to remember who I am. Keep your focus on giving. Don’t give with the expectation of getting. Enjoy how good it feels to focus on what inspires you. Give and let go!

Mindset #5: Everything is Negotiable

A person who accepts a $40,000 starting offer for an entry-level job isn’t just making $7,000 less than a colleague who negotiated a $47,000 starting salary. The person who negotiated stands to make hundreds of thousands of dollars more during her lifetime—and that’s before retirement is taken into account.

Whether it is a raise, a promotion or a discount on a training course or business proposal, always try to negotiate because you never know what you might get!

Readers, what do you think? How do you make sure you have the right mindset for career and money success?

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Update from Anna…I am excited to announce that….

Update from Anna…I am excited to announce that….

Hello friends! So I have a very good reason for being a little distracted from blogging lately.  I am excited to announce that Baby Girl Runyan joined our family three weeks ago!

I have such a new respect for all moms as I am finally coming out of my three week fog of being a mom (especially working mamas that pump…holy moley!) I am so very excited for this new phase of my life and can’t wait to get back to being a working/blogging mom after I enjoy this much needed break with my new daughter. So stay tuned for new posts on the blog in the near future and thanks all for your sweet words and comments!

Mila 3 weeks

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5 Ways To Conquer Overwhelm in Your Job Search

5 Ways To Conquer Overwhelm in Your Job Search

Overwhelm is the most common battle that job searchers face. Where do you even start? Do you update your resume, sign up for a networking event or search for jobs online? You surely can’t do everything at once, especially if you are job searching while still working a full-time job.

I know what it is like because I have been there before.  I was often overwhelmed by all of the job search sites, networking events and people that I wanted to meet and I barely had any free time on my hands to devote to job searching.

If you are overwhelmed or scared to fail, here are some suggestions to help you out. And make sure you download the worksheet that goes along with this post at the bottom!

1) Pace yourself

Take your job search step-by-step. A lot of stress comes down to setting realistic goals and incorporating them into your daily routine.  Assuming that you already have a to-do list, pick out the one item you most dread doing… that’s your first priority for the day.  Once you’ve finished the activity that you most dread, the rest of your goals for that day will be a little easier to achieve.

You can only do one thing at a time and, eventually, everything worthwhile will get done. I often ask myself, “What is the most important thing I can do right now?”  Do you need to be doing everything or can you focus only on the most important things in your life and career and say no to everything else. I once had a client that was volunteering for everything she could. Yes, it will look great on her resume but if her goal is to make a career transition in the next 3 months, she needs to focus on doing that first.

Also, don’t forget what can be accomplished if you simply wake up a bit earlier. Have some quiet time and drink your coffee. The worst thing for overwhelm is to spend your day rushing from one thing to the next. You’re not a superhero and you can’t do everything all at once, no matter how hard you try.

2) Learn to say no

No one will hate you. It’s ok to say no.  I have a client whose boss keeps having her do his work for him.  Before she could actually have the time to job search and get her career unstuck, she needed to clear the tasks on her plate and stop doing his work. I know it is sometimes hard to say no because we want others to like us. But, you have to practice it and think about how important your time really is. You need to set boundaries for yourself.

When you do turn down the request, keep your no short; something along the lines of “I’d really love to, but I can’t.” The more wiggle room you give, the more ammo the other person has to attempt to change your mind. Never apologize and don’t dwell on it or feel guilty.  This will get easier with time I promise! Once you see how much more control you now have over your life, saying no will become second nature.

Other tips for saying no are to tell your boss that you can help him later when things calm down.  Or ask him to prioritize your tasks for you.  Let your boss know that you already have too much on your plate and you want to do things well so you need his help.

3) Be OK with your path

No one is perfect and each of us has our own unique journey to finding our ideal career path.  For me it was over a 4 year journey. Don’t judge yourself. We are often our worst critics. Don’t think you have to be like everyone else’s path. Your path is unique and will be different. There is no “perfect timeline.” You are on the RIGHT PATH! Even if you feel like it is taking way too long.

I spoke to a client last week who was worried because her search was taking too long. She had gone through my get unstuck coaching system and was close to finishing. She had targeted a career field and then realized that the career she thought she wanted to go into wasn’t the right fit for her.  She was feeling really frustrated by it but I told her that it was actually a GOOD thing!  She was right on track because she was narrowing career fields down and wouldn’t end up in a career field that wasn’t a good fit for her.

Everyone’s journey is different. You can’t compare yourself to anyone else.

5-Ways-To-Conquer-Overwhelm-in-Your-Job-Search

4) Don’t talk about your job search with everyone

Remember, you don’t have to talk to everyone about your job search plans. Another one of my clients recently told me that after a big blowout with her dad who didn’t agree with her career choices, she said she realized that she should only talk to her career coach about her career.

Some people will build us up and some people will bring us down.  You don’t have to share everything with everyone. Surround yourself with people that are positive and bring out the best in you. Find people to add to your network that inspire you and believe in your career goals and dreams.

5) Re-connect with the present moment

When I am overwhelmed, I just focus on my breathing and being mindful for two minutes. Just the in and out breath and nothing else. By bringing your awareness back to the present moment, you realize that you’re doing the best you can under the current circumstances. Close your eyes and breath or try yoga or meditating.

Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.” – Buddha

Most of us live in either the past or in the future. We regret what we’ve done (or not done), or we worry about what’s to come. There are no problems in the present. You are okay right now. You have a roof over your head, you have food in the fridge, and you feel fine. Stop living in the future. Your stress and blood pressure build as you think about everything you need to accomplish. Too much to do and too little time. This is what happens when you’re living in the future.  You think and stress about all the things that need to be done in the future. Fears of not being able to get the job you want, reaching your career goals and disappointing others haunts you.

Let it go. You are on the right path.

I created a worksheet to go along with this post that I think will help you. I really encourage you to spend at least 5 minutes completing the worksheet.  Just enter your name and email below and I will send it to you ASAP.


Readers, what do you think? How do you battle the overwhelm that comes with job searching and managing your future career success?

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10 Simple Ways to Elevate Your Career This Year (Plus Free Ebook)

10 Simple Ways to Elevate Your Career This Year (Plus Free Ebook)

After blogging for over 4 years, I have shared a lot of career advice on this blog. But, unless you want to read through 947 blog posts (holy cow!!) it’s hard to find the best advice in one spot.  So since I just celebrated my birthday, I thought I would give you a gift as well to celebrate four years of blogging and you being so awesome! Make sure you scroll to the bottom where you can download a brand new ebook I just put together called 100 Ways to Elevate Your Career For Ambitious Professional Women.

In today’s blog post, I am sharing with you the top 10 ways that you can elevate your career this year:

1) Do what you want to do instead of what you feel like you should do.

It’s so easy to just go along that path of what you should do. You can save yourself so much time and trouble if you just start with what you want to do. The career you started in doesn’t necessarily have to be the career you ended with. There is freedom in your career and you don’t have to stick with one career. You can be so many things.

2) You need to promote yourself.

You are going to have great bosses and bosses you don’t love but the only person that will speak up for yourself, your goals and your expectations is you yourself. Don’t say I am pretty good. Say I am great at it and I am an expert. Give yourself credit for knowing what you know.

3) It’s OK to ask for help.

One of the best and easiest ways to gain experience is by asking others. Most people are happy to help but they can’t help you if they don’t know what you need.

4) You absolutely must ask for the money.

You have to ask, ask, ask! Otherwise no one will not give it to you.

5) Share your opinion and speak up more.

It is so much less important that you have the exact right answer and much more important that you have the confidence to put some ideas on the table. Try to speak at least once in every meeting.

6) Say “no” a lot.

Once you say no to the things in your life that are holding you back and free up room for awesome things to come your way, doors will start opening. “No” is a complete sentence. Only say yes to the things that really matter.

7) Be comfortable being uncomfortable.

The best opportunities come when you are a little scared. Do what you fear and go where you’re scared to go.

8) Surround yourself with people that are positive and bring out the best of you.

Find people to add to your network that inspire you.  Challenge yourself to meet new people inside and outside your current company. We all need a tribe  because a tribe will teach us new things and help us reach our full potential.

9) Understand the importance of saving money and getting out of debt.

Having money is not about wanting money, it’s about having 100-ways-ebook-3d-706x1024-3freedom and new choices in your career.

10) Do one small task daily that helps you get closer to your big goal.

If you do something daily on your way to your big goal, totally amazing things will start happening. And don’t forget that the best investment you can make is always in yourself. Take a course or find a coach. It’s always worth it.

If you enjoyed this post, make sure you download my brand new ebook I just put together called 100 Ways to Elevate Your Career For Ambitious Professional Women. Enter your name and email below to get access to it right now.

 

Readers, what are your best tips to elevate your career success?

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13 Free Tools I Use to Improve My Productivity

13 Free Tools I Use to Improve My Productivity

Recently in my 90-Day Get Your Career Unstuck Bootcamp, my clients have been asking a lot of questions about how to manage their time. Most of them are working full-time while still searching for a job on the side. It can be very stressful and overwhelming to do it all! I know I have been there.  Even if you are in a career you love, you still need to be as productive as possible so that you can focus on the most important items that will get you that next raise or promotion.

Here are the 13 MUST HAVE tools I use daily to improve my productivity:

A To-Do List

**Note, I have tried a ton of online to-do lists but still go back to my pen and paper everyday. If you want to see a copy of the to-do list that I use daily, click here.

1) Wunderlist: Simply create and share your to-do list online with other people.

2) Remember the Milk: An online to-do list that syncs with Evernote too!

3) Oh, don’t forget: Schedule free text message reminders exactly when you need them.

A Calendar

4) Google Calendar: You can’t go wrong with Google calendar.  It really sets the bar for staying on track with your time. And you can share it with the people you work with so that you are all on the same schedule. This helps my assistant know when she can schedule my coaching calls and handle interview requests.

5) Time Trade: If you schedule calls or meeting with other people, you definitely need to check out Time Trade. If you have ever scheduled a complimentary career strategy session with me, you know how easy this system is to use! It’s like my personal meeting scheduler and I don’t have to do a thing. It syncs with my google calendar and let’s other people book appointments for me only when my calendar is open in the spots I have designated for those calls and then sends each person a calendar announcement. Easy!

Free Tools to Stay Productive

A Timer

6) Egg Timer: A simple, easy-to-use online countdown timer, or egg timer. Just set a timer and start. I batch my similar activities into certain days and times to get more done. For instance, today I am only writing my blog, newsletter and social media posts for the week. So I give myself a certain amount of time to do these activities and am NOT allowed to check social media during that time. It’s tough but necessary! :)

7) Pomodoro Technique: According to this technique, 20 minutes is the optimal focus time. Taking short, scheduled breaks while working eliminates the “running on fumes” feeling you get when you’ve pushed yourself too hard.

Music to Focus

8) Focus@Will: This app lets you listen to music and times you so you get a reminder of when you need to take a break! You can choose the music and the free version is just set to a 60 minute countdown. But, you can pay a small fee for a variety of music and countdowns to fit your work and personal productivity schedule. I use this everyday!

A Way to Clear Distractions

9) Rescue Time: With so many distractions and possibilities in your digital life, it’s easy to get scattered. RescueTime helps you understand your daily habits so you can focus and be more productive. This app helped me see where I was spending too much time on unproductive work and helps me set productivity goals so I can improve each week.

A Way to Capture Ideas

10) Evernote: Not sure what I do without Evernote. I set up notebooks that help me focus on what is really important. I also save all of my files and emails that I don’t necessarily need on a daily basis in Evernote as well. It’s so easy to search for things you need. So glad I started using this a few years ago!  Evernote is also where I host all of my training PDFs that I download from various websites as well and it’s a great place to save articles that you might not have time to read but can go back to later with the Evernote Clipper.

11) Dropbox: Cloud storage for all your files that you can access on every computer. Dropbox has made sharing files and videos with my assistant so easy! Another thing I don’t know what I would do without!

A Way to Manage Projects and Teams

12) Asana: My assistant and I have tried to use a lot of different tools to manage our projects and we have jumped to five different ones in the past few years. But, I think we have definitely found the best one now and it is free to use as well! Asana is very clear and organized and we know exactly what each other is working on. The best part about it is that it has a calendar so I can see if I have given her way too many tasks due in one day:)  This helps me spread it out so I don’t overload her!

A Way to Manage Your Contacts

13) Insightly: I just discovered this tool to keep all of your contacts in one place. It’s a contact management system that is free as well. Previously, I didn’t have a very good follow-up system for clients and potential clients that I needed to stay in touch with. This system is helping me stay organized and remember to follow-up which we all know is the key to networking success, right!?

Want the PDF Stay Productive Cheat Sheet that goes along with this post?  Enter your name and email below and I will send it right to you now.

Readers, would love to hear from you! What tools help you stay productive and organized at work?

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3 Ways To Attract the Job You Want

3 Ways To Attract the Job You Want

Through my years of helping women find careers they love, I have seen many clients really close to getting their careers unstuck BUT they have one thing holding them back, their mindset. Many of my clients have been negative, worried, overwhelmed, scared and doubtful about their ability to find their future dream careers.

You can’t get your career unstuck if you are not in the right mindset to get your career unstuck.  If you take all the job search actions but don’t work on your mindset, you will not get the success you want.

Here are three things to remember when you want to attract your dream job:

1) Focus On the Job You Want, Not the Job You Hate

You may have heard of the law of attraction. It got a lot of publicity with the book and movie, The Secret. The law of attraction says that everything coming in your life, you are attracting. You have to make it clear in your mind what you want because you attract what you think about most. Thoughts become things. If you focus on what you want, you’ll get more of it. If you focus on what you don’t want, you’ll get more of it.

How does this apply to your job search?  If you focus on the job you hate, you will never get unstuck. If you focus on how terrible you are at interviews and how unlucky you are, you will never get unstuck.

Instead, focus on getting the job you WANT and stay positive.

2) Create a Vision Journal or Vision Board

Things come true on the vision board. When you have this vision front and center, your mind will be more open to opportunities that will help you get what you want. Create a vision journal or a vision board.  Put things in writing. Write down your goals on index cards and keep them near your bed. The most successful people write their goals down and review them on a daily basis.

When you create your vision board,put yourself fin the moment of feeling “What would your life be like if you found your dream job?”

Click here to read my post about how to make a vision board.

3-Ways-To-Attract-the-Job-You-Want

3) Be Grateful

When you aren’t grateful, you won’t receive more in return. Gratitude is all about giving thanks. Ungratefulness is taking the things in your life for granted.  You are taking instead of giving if you are ungrateful.

 

“Thank you is the bridge from where you are now to the life of your dreams. Your life will change by practicing gratitude and saying thank you.” –Rhonda Byrne, author of The Secret and Magic

Don’t focus on hating your job. Be grateful for it. I know it’s hard but it is for some use (money to pay your bills, house over your head, ability to work while job searching or ability to learn). If you are unemployed, be grateful for your unemployment because you can focus on job searching full time!

If you’re grateful for the job you have, even if its not your dream job, things will begin to change so you enjoy your job more and opportunities for you will suddenly appear. This is what happened to me when I was terribly stuck in a job but I was still thankful for that paycheck, an opportunity to become an Adjunct Professor at my company opened up. I got to teach a course about how to navigate your career which I LOVED.  I still had to keep my day job but I was SO THANKFUL for a few hours in my day when I got to do something I was really excited about.  And what happened? More teaching and training opportunities continued to come to me effortlessly.

“When you get clear about the things you want, you are you are giving a definite direction to the way you want gratitude to change your life.” –Rhonda Byrne, author of The Secret and Magic

Another way to show gratitude in your life is to count your blessings. When you’re grateful for the things you have, no matter how small they may be, you will see those things instantly increase. You will be happier when you count your blessings. The more gratitude you feel, the happier you will be. Studies show people who practice gratitude have closer relationships, are more connected to family and friends and have people look upon them more favorably.  Even being thankful for your boss will give you more patience, understanding, compassion and kindness. You will forget about the things you use to complain about them if you are thankful for them. I once had a very tough client who was not nice to me AT ALL, but I was and still am SO THANKFUL to her for showing me how to handle difficult clients and situations with class.

This is exactly why I make it a habit in my morning routine to write down three things I am grateful for each day. It just makes me happier and gives me a better outlook for the day.

Would love to hear from you in the comments below! Imagine yourself with the job you want. What do you see?

 

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The Mentoring Secret That Women Leaders Need to Know

The Mentoring Secret That Women Leaders Need to Know

Currently in the Female Leadership Academy, we have been discussing how to assemble your tribe for career success.  Today’s topic is the difference between a sponsor and a mentor. They are both so very valuable but women don’t often realize that they need to have both in their networks to have successful careers.  Here’s why:

A Mentor: The most successful women have a network of mentors, both inside and outside their company. Your mentor provides guidance and you can go to them with a challenging situation. A mentor is someone other than your boss to bounce ideas off of and they can identify new opportunities for you at the senior level.

A Sponsor: A sponsor advocates for you and promotes your visibility within the company.

Women are often less likely than men to have high sponsors. Why? Because we work our butts off in our offices and forget to promote ourselves and our accomplishments. We are humble and sometimes is is hard to advocate for ourselves.  Many times we feel we should be promoted just for our hard work alone, not on who we know.  This is unfortunately not true though.

We have to learn to overcome the reluctance to advocate for ourselves and find sponsors to advocate for us as well.  The more sponsors you have the better. You need male AND female sponsors. You can’t get to the top alone.

Don’t be reluctant to ask for advice.  No one can read your mind. If you don’t ask, no one can help you!

Other things you can do to have a successful mentoring or sponsorship relationship:
  • Be really clear about your goals when you ask a sponsor or mentor to help you.
  • Make sure they know about your accomplishments.
  • Help your mentor by looking for ways you can give back to your mentors and take something of his or her plate.
  • Be selective with who you choose to be your mentor.
  • The most effective way to identify a mentor is to determine who can help you reach your career goals and then approach them yourself.  It doesn’t have to be a formal mentoring relationship where you sign a sheet of paper, etc.

I want to hear from you. Do you have a mentor?  Have they helped you reached your career goals? 

Click here and post your comment on my Facebook page. I will read and respond to every single response.

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3 Ways Networking Eliminated My Career Anxiety

3 Ways Networking Eliminated My Career Anxiety

If you aren’t satisfied with your career and you feel anxiety, stress and overwhelm, I have the answer for you. It’s so simple it might sound crazy but it worked like magic for me. By challenging myself to expand and strengthen my network, I got out of my career rut, eliminated my stress and overwhelm and transitioned into a career that I now love.

If you aren’t networking, you are neglecting the opportunity to learn and grow which will actually make you happier. If you don’t know the direction you should be headed, talking to other people in different career fields will help you narrow it down and give you clarity.  My favorite discussions with my clients are when they get over their networking fears and realize networking is decreasing their stress and they are now much more focused. There is major relief, excitement and motivation. There is a light at the end of the tunnel!

If your career is taking control of your life, take a step back for a minute and focus on YOU.  Are you where you want to be?  Are you running yourself crazy trying to meet all of your manager’s requirements and last minute requests?  Is it taking a toll on your health and happiness?  Then, get out your contact list and start making your network a priority. This is your golden opportunity to bring back some happiness to your career so you can finally reach YOUR goals, not your manager’s goals.

P.S. If you think you don’t have time, remember that YOU are in charge of your calendar. Your calendar is not in charge of you. We all have the same 24 hours a day. What are you going to spend your time doing?

Here are three ways networking changed my life and career:

1) I Finally Found Clear Direction and Clarity

By talking with others in different fields about my future goals and dreams, my career path became crystal clear and I learned exactly the steps I needed to take to get to where I wanted to go.  In 2011, I starting a 4X4 Networking Challenge where each month I would meet with four people I did know but would like to get to know better and four people I did not know.  At the beginning of the challenge, I thought I wanted to continue going down a different career field. I did a ton of informational interviews and that is when I realized that I wanted to take another direction for my career instead.

The same thing happened when I used networking to find clarity while in college. Networking helped me realize that I didn’t want to be a lawyer. I did an informational interview with a lawyer and realized that day that I could throw away my LSAT study books.  Without networking, I would have ended up like many lawyers today who have their law degrees and a ton of student loans but don’t want to be lawyers.

I talk with many women who instead of figuring out the best career fit for them, they just go back and get their masters. Then, they end up in the same position after they graduate. Stuck. Do some networking first to get clear direction so you are 100% positive you are headed in the right direction. This will reduce so much stress, anxiety and unhappiness in your future!

2) I Gained Some Major Confidence

I am an introvert so introducing myself to strangers has often been difficult as well as attending networking events with ZERO people that I know. I was always labeled “The Shy Girl” in high school and college. When you are called shy over and over, it makes it even harder to build your confidence. But the more you  get out there and talk to people, the easier it gets.

In the beginning of the networking challenge, I had to write out all the questions I wanted to ask. I rehearsed my elevator speech five times before each call.  As I continued to speak with people and get more comfortable, my confidence grew and I was immediately ready to go when people called me or when I met someone at an event.

It’s so important to have a ton of confidence in an interview. If you have been networking, you will bring that confidence with you to an interview because you have been practicing talking about yourself and what you are looking for already. Don’t wait until the interview to practice being confident.  Get out there now!

3) I Built a Great Support Network

One of my favorite quotes by Jim Rohn is “You are the average of the five people that you spend the most time with.”You are the average quote photo

When I first heard that quote, it really made me think. I did not want to end up like some of my co-workers who I was spending most of my time with.  So, I knew my environment needed to change to become the person that I wanted to be.

I am now part of a mastermind group and have my own coach.  I regularly attend networking events with people who have the same goals and drive as I do. It’s not easy or cheap. I have invested in myself to get the coaching and surround myself with the people I need to but it’s so worth it. These people have changed my life and help me be more authentic and true to who I am.

It’s also amazing how having people you can count on can eliminate your stress and anxiety.  Another area of support that is so important to me is my church family.  When my husband and I were without a church family a few years ago, we didn’t ask for help when we needed it. It was crazy. My husband and I realized that we needed to invest in some personal relationships that would be there if we needed it and vice versa.

That is the community you want and need. A support network that builds you up, believes in you and makes you a better person.

These are three ways networking has completely changed my life and reduced my career stress and anxiety. If you are ready to eliminate your30 day networking challenge online course career anxiety with networking, I am walking a group of ambitious professional women through the 30-Day Networking Challenge step-by-step in my brand new online course. Click here to learn more about the course.

Classy Career Girl readers, how has networking changed your career? What are some reasons that you don’t network now? Please leave a comment and let us know!

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