When you need to make a change, whether adjusting unwanted behaviors or carving a new path, having the right mindset can significantly affect your ability to succeed. A fixed mindset will be more resistant to change than a growth mindset. Being able to shift your mindset as needed is a skill that will provide you a distinct advantage in creating desired changes as well as increase your effectiveness in other areas of your life.
Repost - written on 9/11/10: On this anniversary of 9/11, instead of writing anything to do with careers, personal branding, success, or work-life balance, I want to share with you a list. This list was found on the computer of a college friend, five years after she perished in the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York.
Someone once described the conscious mind as 5% of our ability to create things in our lives, leaving the subconscious mind to take care of 95% of it.
Whether at work or in our personal lives, it is inevitable that we will deal with some conflict, at some point. Whether it is an irritable customer, a boss or colleague with whom you do not see eye to eye, a tension-filled meeting, or a disagreement with a family member, we all need skills to navigate these waters successfully.
So much of life and work feels like… work. Or at least what we’ve been taught work feels like. But I’ve found that by injecting a little levity into the situation, letting go of all the seriousness, and playing (or having fun) with an issue often helps us solve it faster. And now I have a better understanding of why this is so.
Leaders in the news -- often the stories are of leaders who have fallen from grace due to some questionable decisions and actions. So do we have leaders with integrity? Do we know? Why is it important?
When we’re busy, or overwhelmed, or simply engrossed in what we’re doing, time can fly by before we know it. Sometimes that means that we may not be fully engaging in all aspects of our lives if one area is taking up too much “bandwidth.” The problem is that we’re so busy taking care of the Urgent things in our lives, that we sometimes overlook the Important things.
What is personal power? The Emotional Intelligence profile we use defines it as “a sense of self-confidence and an inner knowing that you can meet life’s challenges and live the life you choose.” Having a strong sense of personal power allows you to deal with the bumps in life’s road and not get sidetracked or disillusioned easily.
Consider how we interact with the world, and how often we are willing to be “fierce” in our beliefs and our conversations with one another. What conversations have you been putting off or avoiding? What are you willing to be “fierce” about? What would your work or personal relationships look like if every conversation had passion, integrity, authenticity and collaboration? What would the world look like?
Do emotions belong at work? It depends to some degree on the emotion, of course, and how it is expressed. Some emotions (rage, for example) are never appropriate at work, but is that true of all emotions? Are there some that are not only appropriate, but beneficial?
I’m asked all the time whether work-life balance is really possible. My own view is: Yes! But it may not be “balance” as people sometimes define it.
When I’m talking to busy professionals with young families on work-life balance, one of the keys to developing a successful plan is determining the timeframe within which you will assess your work-life balance. If you’re looking for perfect balance within each day, every day, you’re probably going to get pretty frustrated with how it works out. There is an element of reality and a shift in perspective that allows the work-life balance models I’ve developed to actually work. There needs to be some flexibility in our thoughts and schedules, even when it comes to balance.
The video below is a short (10 minutes) video where Nigel Marsh shares his views on a workable life. He looks at balance in much the same way I do, and I love his humor and stories around it. I think you’ll enjoy it!
If you’d like to know more about Careerevolution Group’s models and methods for creating and maintaining better balance in your life (or the life of someone you care about), I’d love to talk to you.
LinkedIn used to have an Answers section where members could ask and answer each other’s questions on a wide variety of subjects. A couple of years ago, I decided to ask a question of my own, wanting to ask one that would not just make for interesting reading for me, but for anyone else reading it as well. So I asked “What is the best career advice you’ve received, and how has it impacted your career?”
I’d like to share a few of my favorites. (NOTE: these are paraphrased into advice without some of the longer stories to make this blog post easier to read.)
- Always ask yourself “why” you think a design aspect is needed or wanted [context: architecture]. You’ll always have an answer to why you did what you did.
- There never seems to be enough time to do it right, but there always seems to be time to do it over.
- Yes, there is a custodian but that doesn’t mean you don’t pick up your own trash. I.e. Respect all support staff. You will crumble without them. With their support, glitches get fixed and situations get defused.
- My job, no matter where I am, is to keep my boss’s boss off my boss’s back. This makes me think twice, from time to time, about the larger impact of tough decisions, and it often prompts me to ask a question or double-check something.
- Always have a resume. I have never had to scramble to redo my resume. It’s a simple thing but it has led to another advantage; I feel more in control when changes happen and, for that matter, more in control of when to make a change myself.
- Be careful of doing or pursing things simply because others think you should… because ultimately, you may need to defend those choices, alone. I ultimately chose the path less travelled. And, though my work evokes controversy, I can defend that work more quickly and sincerely.
- If you come to me with a problem, then also come to me with a solution. I think – by keeping that thought in mind – I’ve been able to be part of the solution, rather than the problem.
- Don’t chase money…chase greatness and the money will follow.
What’s the best career advice you’ve received, and how has it impacted you?
Whether you’re working hard, looking for work, or in business for yourself, the theme of the past few years has been that those who provide value thrive. I’ve seen many people get jobs, get promoted, and small businesses exceed their plans in a recession or challenging economies.
“Set a goal!” “Schedule your time.” “Work smarter, not harder.” “Get a system.” “You can sleep when you’re dead.” We’ve all heard it. Many of us espouse it, too. We all seem to want to make good use of our time, get ahead, make things happen. But what happens when it seems the universe is conspiring against us?
Emotional intelligence is a form of intelligence that drives our success in work and in life and in our relationships with others.
While it is easier to blame others and feel like circumstances are out of control, when we are honest with ourselves, accountable for our thoughts and actions, willing to choose a new path, and commit to doing so even if it takes time to change, we take control of our internal lives.
We’ve all heard the phrase “if you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got.” It sounds easy, doesn’t it? Just do something else. But it can be harder than it looks, require honesty from ourselves about how we contribute to the situation, and willingness to let go of some of our own filters in how we see the world.