Posts tagged ‘work’

January 8, 2013

How to Stay Motivated: Don’t Get Glad. Get Mad

Don't Get Glad. Get Mad.

Don’t Get Glad. Get Mad.

I know this blog typically talks about getting success and being happy so the advice I’m about to give you will probably be a bit shocking. But I ask that you bare with me….

Getting to success usually takes a lot of hard work, determination and motivation. Now if you are like most people, you usually feel the most inspired and motivated to make a change after something negative happens. For example, you feel motivated to work out more after you realize you can no longer fit in to those size 10 pants. You feel motivated to ask for a raise after your boss decides to  add another duty to your already heavy workload. Or you feel motivated to get your finances in order when you get that last phone call from Sallie Mae about your student loans. In each scenario, the motivation was triggered by one thing. Anger or some other unpleasant feeling. You hated how it felt realizing that you put on weight, or in major debt, or not making what you are worth so much that you vowed to do something about it. So you buckle down for a few weeks and do everything in your power to make sure you never experience that again.

But then you start to feel content with your life. That’s when you begin falling off the wagon. You stop getting up for the morning workout. You stop entering purchases in to your spending journal and you stop drafting a way to better position yourself for that raise. You’ve lost that angry feeling, become content with your life choices, and basically settled. Most importantly, you lost your motivation. Of course, you’re gonna stop taking steps to make that change. You have become complacent with your life.

Don’t feel bad. You are not alone. It’s a trap that many people find themselves in way too often. Even I am guilty of it every now and then.  Luckily, there is a simple way to fix this and regain that motivation. (This is where the shocking advice comes in.) Allow yourself to get mad. Yes, you read that right. Stop getting content and allow yourself to stay mad. Once you lose all the unpleasantries and bad feelings associated  with a certain life aspect, you no longer feel the need to change it. Why would you? If you are content with it, you don’t have  a reason to fix it. I challenge you to regain that motivation to get back on track.

So how do you do that? Allow yourself to relive the moment that first motivated you to change. No, I don’t want you to harp on the past, But give yourself that constant reminder on why you are altering your lifestyle or habit in the first place. Every so often, revisit the day you realized you could not fit into size 10 jeans as you stood alone in the dressing room feeling defeated. Or save that  unappreciative voicemail from your boss and replay it every time you need a kick in your pants to keep striving for your goals. Do whatever you can to keep that fire within you burning. Once the fire goes out, motivation and all hope is lost. Luckily, it can always be reignited. Get mad again and I guarantee that passion and motivation will make it’s way back to you in no time.

Whatever you do, ignore the Gladware slogan. Instead, Don’t get Glad. Get Mad.

What do you usually do to stay motivated? Has revisiting anger helped in rekindling motivation?

TERRIfic Quip: If you blame lack of motivation as your reason for not taking action – you’ll be stuck forever. (Courtesy of Miss Donna)

November 13, 2012

5 Life Lessons I Learned from Sharing an Office with a Recent College Grad

“I just graduated in May.” They’re the last words you want to hear upon learning your new business quarters consists of sharing Five Life lessons I learned from sharing an office with a recent college gradan office; especially when you consider yourself a well-respected mid-level professional years out of college. I thought “Is this what I’ve been reduced to?” Bumping heads with the clueless but quirky college grad eager to dive head first into the business world with no idea of how to do it wasn’t exactly in my life plan. But somehow, it was the situation I fell into and had no choice but to deal with. Much to my surprise I learned more than the newest flavor of beers and the latest dance craze to break out at frat parties. I learned a few life lessons as well. Here are six facts of life I managed to stumble upon while maintaining my sanity in office space shared with the recent grad.

1. Have a support system

I never knew how awesome it was to have a support system within the office. Whenever I was unsure of something, facing computer issues, etc. there was no need to bother the higher-ups. She was right there to offer some help if needed. And the same applied to her. We had each others back whether we were running late, made a slight mistake or just plain confused. It made the work environment so much more pleasurable and less stressful. It turns out having a support system in all facets of life including the professional world is much needed but much less appreciated by most.

2. Live a little

While sitting opposite of this young and fiery person, I had the pleasure of vicariously living through her. I heard stories of musings with homeless people, parties during homecoming and alumni weekend, and spontaneous but whimsical dates with her equally young and entertaining boyfriend. While I sat there in awe of every intriguing detail of her care free life I couldn’t help but feel a bit jealous that I couldn’t live a life as exciting and spontaneous as hers. After all, I was no longer a “recent” college graduate. I was a young woman well into the business world trying to make a name for herself. Then I realized she was in the process of building her name as well. Why should she be able to have a life while I slaved away for the sake of making a living and carrying myself as a professional? There was no reason why I couldn’t continue to live a life worth getting excited about while maintaining a professional edge. After all, I was still young and living in the moment is what life is all about.

3. Worry only about yourself

In an economy such as this you always hear about all the competition out there, how your career isn’t secure and a million people want your job. Well, sharing an office with a young and vibrant recent grad made me well aware of that job insecurity and competition. I was in awe of her quick mindedness and ability to teach herself tasks in a matter of minutes. And of course, sharing an office with her made my shortcomings even more apparent. It was like I was in high school all over again vying for the coveted seat at the popular table with all the cool girls who batted their eyelashes at the football players better than me. Then I remembered those girls in high school didn’t care and that bright eyed recent grad sitting across the desk didn’t care about me either. As long as I completed my work in a timely manner and exceeded expectation there was no problem. Competition will always be there, but the only competition that mattered at the moment was the one within myself. I could only be better than I was yesterday. There was no reason for me to try to beat out her.

4. Dress the part of you

I admit it. I was a little too afraid to be myself in fear of not fitting in to the cookie cutter mold of the professional world. So instead I was overly nervous about my big afro-like hair taking over the work space and toned down my personality when picking out my wardrobe. But every morning when I saw my carefree office mate roll into  work with her funky, artsy but office appropriate work attire I realized I was worried for nothing. Sure I couldn’t roll out of bed and head out in my pajamas anymore like the college days. But I still had the option to be me, and let me personality shine whether it be through my wardrobe, hairstyle or demeanor. As long as it was office appropriate I was in the clear.

5. Have a little sense of entitlement

For some reason, when leaving college, those young grads have this idea that the world is owed to them because they’re equipped with a new and freshly embossed degree. Never mind the other millions of people who also have a degree and more experience. A shiny new office space, with an amazing salary and two months paid vacation should just be handed to them because they’re equipped with newfound knowledge from an accredited institution. *You may roll your eyes here*   It seems as though they forget about working their way up and gaining experience. As annoying as this way of thinking is, (when being around it all the time it does get annoying) that sense of entitlement isn’t always a bad thing. You may be young. You may be less experienced, but that doesn’t mean you can forget about your worth. This poor economy has scared many people into settling for less. However, I had the pleasure of re-learning from my less-experienced office mate that the job climate does not take away from your knowledge and accomplishments. It does not diminish your value. Nor does it mean you hide all that makes you awesome. If anything, she reaffirmed the need to continue have big goals and an even bigger will to succeed and get what you deserve. Make your credentials known and expect to be recognized for it.

Who knew the beer pong champion, 5 star excuse maker, and expert drunk dialer could be so insightful…
What valuable life lessons have you taken from the office?
TERRIfic Quip: If you judge people you have no time to love them.
July 3, 2012

If You Can List it, You Can Do It

There are two types of people in the world: those who thrive off lists and those who don’t. I happen to fall into the first category.  I make lists for everything! Grocery lists,

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

bucket lists, travel lists, channel lists, blogging lists, networking lists, summer trip lists, wedding lists…. You name it; I’ve probably made a list for it. One might even say I’m addicted to lists. I think it’s something I picked up from my mom. Now I picked up a lot of good things from my mom, but I don’t know if my addiction to lists is one of them. My problem is that I’m never satisfied with my list. I make them to help me stay organized and be productive… or so I thought. But whenever I review them I feel as though I either don’t have enough on them, have too much, or just feel the need to add something new every time I complete something. So I never feel like I accomplish anything. Of course, that only makes me even less productive and like a loser prompting me to just dive into more work.

That’s when I noticed I was approaching lists all wrong. Instead of using it as a tool to increase my productivity, I was using it to prove my productivity to myself. It made me feel like I wasn’t doing enough. So my  lists became unnecessarily long and lacked focus and direction. When you have no direction, you don’t know where you are going. Naturally, the lists never got done. On top of that, expecting myself to finish so many items in a short time period was only setting myself up for failure. It was an unattainable goal but I was too blinded to see that.So I decided to make a change. I wanted my lists to make me feel like I was accomplished and getting things done.

Instead of loading my lists with as many things as I could possibly think of, I decided to limit the items on my list. Now my lists don’t exceed five to seven items per day. And it feels good! Making shorter lists allowed me to stay focused and finish each item to the best of my ability. When I kept packing my lists, I never finished anything and did everything half way just so I can get to the next item quickly. Obviously, that didn’t work out too well. Now, checking off one item on my lists make me feel accomplished.  I don’t feel the need to add another item just as a quickly as I checked one just to prove something to myself. I allowed myself to accept that my best is enough. Once I treated my lists as way to stay organized and not a way to prove my worth and accomplishments I actually felt accomplished! Turns out there is an art to doing check lists and it only took my a few years to figure it out. Now, I can check “write blog post” off my list and feel proud.

How do you organize your lists? Do they make you feel better or worse about your productivity? Am the only one who wrote lists that makes you feel like a loser?

TERRIfic Quip: I am a enough. I have enough. I do enough.