The other day, I joined Instagram (SaraTheCareerCoach). I've been avoiding joining because I knew that it would be a more personal way to connect with people. My confidence (and my INFJness) was getting in my way. So I began this practice which has helped me so much! Join me over on the 'gram where I go more Behind the Scenes while also still sharing motivational content.
Our lives aren’t a straight line always going up. Instead, the line is super squiggly with lots of ups and lots of downs.
So why should our job search or career changes be any different? Things can’t always feel easy, go smoothly or be full of wins. There will be weeks where nothing seems to be going right, with little to no calls for interviews. Where you are stuck in a serious drought and feel like giving up.
This holds true for our careers as well. Weeks of being on top of the world followed by weeks of drudgery and mistakes.
All of this takes a serious toll on our confidence. And if we aren’t careful, our self-esteem can continue to plummet making it difficult to recreate those seemingly perfect weeks.
When a client is faced with this, I immediately get them to do some self-appreciation exercises.
This is a consistent practice of sitting with yourself every day and asking yourself a few questions. You can sit in reflection, jot notes in your phone or on a piece of paper.
The main goal of this practice is to remind yourself just how amazing you are and to shift any cynical feelings into ones more optimistic. By doing it daily we are giving your brain “good things” to say to yourself which also means when you say these things to others (in a resume, networking meeting or interview) they will resonate more deeply because YOU will believe them.
But it also acts as a kind of meditation since you are sitting in reflection. This will allow yourself to be more mindful of your thoughts so that you can catch yourself when you go down a negative “I suck” spiral.
Do you want to institute your own daily Self-Appreciation? Just ask yourself these questions:
What are you proud of yourself for?
What did you work hard to achieve? This could be today, this week or even this year. Think through what YOU did to accomplish this.
This reminds you about what you have been able to do and motivate you to be able to do it again.
It can be as simple as, I’m proud of this awesome cover letter I wrote or as complicated as I’m proud of that major event I pulled off.
What about yourself are you thankful for?
A simple question that feels impossible to answer some days. In the beginning stages of this practice it is common to need some help with this. I encourage you to look into your superpower through some assessments, check out some performance reviews, and/or ask a family member, friend or trusted colleague.
This reminds you the specifics of what makes you so incredible and amazing. I love this list because whenever you are feeling especially negative you can return to it and pump yourself back up!
What are you celebrating today?
List at least 1 thing that has gone well today. It can be anything, meaning it doesn’t have to be specific to your career, job or job search. Maybe your coffee was excellent or you are having an exceptionally great hair day.
I want you to remember that even if one area isn’t going great it doesn’t mean your whole life sucks. Try and take some of the positive from other areas of your life to keep you moving forward on achieving your goals.
What are you looking forward to?
What are some things that you are excited about? I want these to be specific to your career change or job search. List them down and be detailed – why are you looking forward to these things.
I want you to get excited about your future and remind yourself why this is important to you.
Do this practice every day during your transition or reinvention. Even when everything is going peachy because when things aren’t you can reference those great days and use it to help inspire you.
If your confidence is at a rock bottom and you need help climbing out, consider a coach a lot of the work we do is in this arena. To see if I'm a good fit for you, feel free to schedule a free call.
The Holidays are stressful.
This week I'm busy with work trying to get everything done before the holidays. I'm busy with life, every weekend has holiday events, and don't get me wrong they are so much fun but as an introvert they are also draining.
Plus, my Christmas to do list is just a little out of control.
But I refuse to let this turn into a day that sucks.
I'm following ALL OF THESE today by:
1. Running Outside🏃
2. Eating lunch with my husband 🍽️
3. Taking some much needed "3 breath breaks" 🙂
4. Enjoying some delicious Christmas baking 🍪
5. Getting my 8 hours of sleep tonight 🛌
What are you going to do?
or How a Sunday Routine Sets You Up For Success
I have a dream Sunday. What I call a Super Sunday, a day filled with joy, family and prep so that I can start the week rested, excited and all set for success.
For me it looks like this:
I wake up around 7ish (I do have 2 young kids!) and have a leisurely morning of coffee followed by breakfast.
Around 9ish we are getting ready to head outdoors to hit the trails with a family hike. We have a nice lunch together and a little siesta time (watch TV, or read a book).
Then I move into Action Mode. I do some meal prep, put away laundry and look at my schedule for the week. 2-3 hours of all of us getting the house and ourselves ready for the week.
We have a nice family dinner, a relaxing evening and an early bedtime to make sure we are each getting the amount of sleep we need.
Not every Sunday looks like this though. And I can tell. Those weeks when I don’t have my Super Sunday, I’m a little bit more stressed and a little less rested. Which means it takes me longer to do things and I often feel like I’m a chicken with my head cut off!
But those weeks after a Super Sunday, I’m in a groove. I get into my flow and life and work and all the in between feels easy. I’m much happier, more creative and more likely to hit my goals.
I’m sure if you create a Super Sunday routine that it will make your next week go smoothly and you will see amazing results. You never know it could even change your life.
But your Sunday may not look like my Sunday, so here are some ideas that you can combine to create your own Super Sunday.
We all need to eat right? Eating a healthy diet filled with whole foods is actually a key part of being successful. But it isn’t easy to make happen, so here are some ideas of what you can incorporate into your Sunday to make it a breeze.
1. Make a Meal Plan
What are you going to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner? Plan only for the work week and double up! Eat the same breakfast every day, and make enough at dinner for lunch the next day. That makes it less overwhelming.
2. Go Grocery Shopping
Get this done on Sundays (or Saturdays) when you aren’t tired or stressed. That ensures you shop for your meal plan.
3. Meal Prep
You don’t have to premake meals, although you can if that works for you. I mostly prep my vegetables and some components of meals and snacks to make throwing everything together much easier.
4. Eat with Friends or Family
During hectic weeks we may eat more meals alone or in a rushed state. Try and eat your meals on Sunday with family or friends and rejoice in your time spent together.
When the spaces we live in are a mess, we tend to feel like we are a mess. Taking some time, 15 minutes is better than nothing, to organize our lives will leave us feeling more relaxed.
1. Clean Up
Do a quick clean around your space. Putting things away, maybe dusting and vacuuming, just getting that outer order so that your inner calm comes out.
Organize something, like a closet or a drawer. It will make you feel AMAZING that you accomplished this and that feeling will roll right into the rest of your week!
3. Do Laundry
Make that morning rush easier by doing your laundry AND putting it away (always the hardest part, right!?). Maybe even pick out your outfits for the week. That leaves you more time in the morning to relax or sleep in!
A plan makes sure that what needs to get done gets done while also ensuring that we are going after our goals.
1. Check In
Revisit your goals. Look at your vision board (or post-it note) to remind yourself of why you are going after this goal. Look at where you are in accomplishing it so you can pat yourself on the back and see what needs to get done next.
2. Create a To Do List
Start off with what you need to do next week to get closer to achieving your goal by setting some mini-goals and creating a To Do List. Also take a look at what else you need to do and add those to the list.
3. Check Your In-Box
Whenever we look at our emails we immediately enter “urgency mode” and we only focus on the tasks and things to do associated with our emails. Prevent starting the week off in urgency mode by checking your emails on Sunday, that way you can begin your week focusing on what moves you closer to achieving those goals.
4. Plan your Week
You know what you need to do, but WHEN are you actually going to do those things? Look at your week ahead and slot your mini-goals and other items on your to do list into openings.
Relaxing is just as important (if not more so) then everything else and Sunday is the PERFECT day to get some good relaxation and self-care in.
1. Read a Book
Not a business one, but one that you WANT to read. A good juicy fiction, a thrilling crime novel or an intriguing Non-Fiction book. Carve out 30 minutes and enjoy losing yourself with a book. For me, I read 30 minutes every morning with my coffee and then 30 minutes every night before I go to bed.
2. Enjoy Nature
Movement is amazing in how it can propel us forward, but especially movement outdoors in nature. Nature is restorative, there is science to back that up. So doing something outside is a great Super Sunday activity.
Enjoy the day relaxing the way YOU want to relax, whether it is a nice long bubble bath, bingeing Netflix or shopping with friends. Enjoy the day off.
4. Go to Bed Early
As adults, we need 7-9 hours of sleep a night. I’ve written before about how important a good sleep routine is for your success and there is no better way to start your week and to end your Super Sunday by going to bed 7.5-9.5 hours before you need to wake up on Monday.
Here is a sneak peak into my recent #supersunday:
Sara Curto, Career Management Specialist. Working with you towards Career and Job Search Success.
Dream Career Planner
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