Career Tips

So you’re working your way up the corporate ladder, when you realize…….your boss – a fairly new member of the “old boys club” – isn’t pulling his weight? What do you do? What can you do about it? How can you get him to pull up his socks?

So you are working your way up the corporate ladder when you realize that your boss – a relatively new member of the “old boys club” – isn’t pulling his weight? What do you do? What can you do about it? How can you get him to pull up his socks?

You consult!

However, truthfully, there may be nothing that you can do unless you already have influence with your boss. Given the predicament, to move forward, accept this potentially real limitation as a fact, then consider a leadership perspective. Ask yourself, not how can I get my boss to change? Rather, ask yourself, how can I handle myself in this situation, to show off my best attributes?

Tip # 1 – Do not complain or attempt to manipulate the situation. Take this as an opportunity to demonstrate how you best handle yourself in a challenging situation. Other people are watching. To show off your best attributes, you need to know what they are, and the answer is not technical ability. The strengths that compare, in this situation, are interpersonal in nature. Leadership skills. If these were simple characteristics or behaviors to implement, you’d already be doing so, but they are often shrouded in narrowly focused overconfidence. Either consult with your Psychologist or find a seasoned business coach that will work with you during this exacting moment of truth. Hint: your process may begin with “leading by example.”

Tip # 2 – At the core of all great leadership skills, lies safe, healthy functioning relationships. Have them and thrive. Die without them. Alliances – usually the type that has depth and meaning to them – provide a platform to all long-lasting success stories. Infuse strong leadership skills into your relationships. Hint: empathy can go along way in developing these types of alliances. Share your healthy vision of the future, one that benefits all those concerned, not just the fortunate few at the top. Your efforts often impel a desire to be supportive and helpful from those around you, once you have shared vision for the greater good. Your boss may just pick up on the vibe that they, too, better make some changes of their own.

Tip # 3 – Once you have cultivated strong affiliations, your communication needs to be focused and purposeful. Utilize impeccable timing, strategic direction, and an intention to improve authentic business relationships. Taking things just a step further, you can and should create your personal agenda, with a focus to target certain people to get to know better or influence. Don’t be superficial in your attempts to capitalize on any and all opportunities, rather demonstrate your allegiance to your underlying values for yourself and others.

Chiefly, my point regarding this dilemma is that you will likely be more efficient, more influential because you have taken the time to nurture and cultivate mutually respectful relationships with others, including your boss. Leadership is not about controlling others, using force or manipulation to make them bend to your will. It is an opportunity to breathe life into the type of person you want to become. Cultivate and nurture your character, your relationships, then simply observe and appreciate the power that others start to bequeath to you.

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The Power of Introversion

Reflecting on a critical decision? Doing it alone? Don’t even think about it. Consider a leadership position for yourself and consult with your Psychologist or coach.

Reflecting on a critical decision? Doing it alone? Don’t even think about it. Life is complex. Consider taking a leadership perspective for yourself and consult with your Psychologist or coach.

Engaging your Psychologist in a relevant dialogue can put an incredibly fine point on your outcome. It’s quite possible, for example, that you bring something powerfully pleasing with you whenever you express yourself well. Did you realize this? So set your example, build your reputation by making only great decisions and get noticed as someone who has a successful touch.

Athletes and coaches, entertainers and professionals, know the value of positive “self-talk” – those silent pep talks in the head that keep spirits up and encourage peak performance. Top performers get good at screening out messages that could interfere with their internal pep talk. They concentrate on the task at hand and shut their ears, literally and mentally, to anything else. Rosabeth Moss Kanter

The best way to “shut your ears” to extraneous stimuli and to successfully focus has a great deal to do with self-care. What does self-care imply to you? Personally, an important component for self-care is my ability to calm my body and my mind. I find that practicing daily meditations is critical for sharpening “calm” and for ensuring I remain “innovative.”

To my point about not doing it alone. Meditation is just not something that many of us can see ourselves doing, without thinking that we are wasting valuable time. Self-care may be more meaningful and a way to relieve some of the mental chatter that you have, by setting up that dialogue that I’m talking about. Visit in person, or better yet, make an appointment, sit back and wait to be called. Chatting over the phone is easy and anonymous. Consider. Calm your mind by calming your conversation. And yet another perspective.

“…I also believe that introversion is my greatest strength. I have such a strong inner life that I’m never bored and only occasionally lonely. No matter what mayhem is happening around me, I know I can always turn inward.”
Susan Cain

“Turning inward” can be an incredible advantage to be sure. But ensure that when you do so, you have done your due diligence, consulted a professional, and put yourself in touch with a creative source that deals with emotional concerns every day. Remember that turning inward may assist you to come up with fresh new ingenious ideas, but innovation requires that you find a way to put them into action in your life.

Just think about it

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Please Remember

What’s really important to you at this time of year?

Remember a memory of a time you felt loved. I know that you’ll have so many to choose from, but just select the one for now. Please take your time.

Although you’re incredibly busy at this time of year, remember that you have people waiting for you who love, admire, and adore you. Remember these people. Think about them until you smile.

This experience and these very people are what this season is about.

Happy Holidays,

from all of us at Anton Counseling & Health Psychology

New Perspective on Gratitude

Practice & Develop a Strong Healthy Habit of Gratitude

I’m not a billionaire.  I’m certainly not the financial equivalent of a Tiger Woods or a Bill Gates. Despite this fact, establishing a regular practice of being, thinking, and then feeling grateful for those things that life does give up, is well, critical.

I know that we all, or most of us anyway, believe that we go out and get things, bring them home, and then we own them, however, it may be more precise that life actually gives things to us (even though we still have to put out effort in order to receive them).  You know, “all in.”  It may still be an important distinction to remember.

Ultimately we’re talking about “energy” and how to cultivate it. Consider the type or quality of energy we are aligning with and perpetuating by “hunting” and compare it to the gentler, more appreciative energy of feeling grateful for those things that life does give up.  Again, it’s rather critical to the quality of our own experience.

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My Personal Journey

My personal journey involves, among other things, acceptance of self, others and situations.  Self-acceptance of where I’m at, and where I’m not.  Accepting that where I’m at is a limitation, but also a point or opportunity from which to grow.  This may seem like an unusual way of thinking, but I don’t seem to be able to cultivate significant life changes without accepting the reality of my situation.  Then again, just as soon as I do, things almost instantaneously begin to change – perhaps, due to my perspective.  At least that’s how it feels.

New perspectives, attitudes or paradigms seem to bring new opportunities that I didn’t previously see.  Opportunities seem to multiply as I become more honest and vulnerable with myself about myself and my life.  One important aspect of my present reality is that my business is not contributing financially as much as I’d like, and as a result, dreams of mine and those of my wife are less than fulfilled.

My business, I must remember, is a reflection of my reality, not a creator of my reality – meaning that at times like these, I must garner strength and confidence elsewhere.  My business is not less than optimally successful for any reason other than I have not yet evolved personally, to a place and level of responsibility that is sufficient to reflect the level of financial contribution that we are looking for.  Therefore, I must continue to learn and allow myself to grow, until I am sufficiently capable of having my business earn at a level commensurate with my family’s desires, goals, and objectives.

This is not to say that I am presently irresponsible, but that the type of business that I’m involved in, requires more from me than I’ve been able to contribute thus far.  It requires, not only great technical and business skills, but also a commitment to forging greater connections with individual clients as well as the business community and community at large – activities that I know how to do, but which are outside of my comfort range, as an extreme introvert.

My personal journey, at least for the time being, seems to be about stretching myself once again, beyond my comfort zone in order to live up to certain personal values that I’ve not yet sufficiently established.  These values will be represented by a stronger commitment to forging relationships, both personally and professionally.

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Strategy

We all need a strategy for life.  A plan, method, or series of maneuvers or stratagems for obtaining a specific goal or result: a strategy for getting ahead in the world. What we get in life or how we feel day in and day out, reflects our activities – our daily habits. We presume our activities will get us what we want and where we want to go because we figure our desires point us in the right direction. Right?

We both know that what we want, our urges, are not the same as our goals, things that we put careful thought to. Most of us learned about delayed gratification in our families or in grade school, college or university. Oh ya, remember? Delayed gratification is still actively robust in my life, almost daily. I’m one of those guys that just can’t have too many shirts. But what if I’m hoping to buy a new Lexus in the spring? Or I’m looking forward to a romantic vacation with my spouse on the Mexican Riviera this March. Well maybe I can have them all and maybe I can’t.

One thing is for sure, that whatever you want from life, if you don’t stop to plan and reflect upon your more long-term goals, you’re more likely to end up pushing them further away, substituting them with short-term immediate gratification. Living life spontaneously, responding to the day to day pressures of life, we don’t stop to plan, days come and go, and we wonder why life is the way it is. I may have a closet full of shirts but I’m driving a 10-year-old Civic.

The fact is, we all strategize, even if at a subconscious level. Perhaps we should be more careful of how unconscious decisions are affecting our lives. Maybe even give “time for reflection” a modicum of respect. I’d like to remind us all to consider creating regular opportunities to discuss and reflect. If we’re not slowing down, actively gaining control over or deliberately instituting positive goals, beliefs, and expectations into our psyche, maybe we’re really living a life of unconsidered habits, evolving in a way directed by our short-term urges, and not our well thought out plans. Be cautious, for one day your future may come calling and you may not like what it has to say.

So is there any good reason why we don’t devote some regularly scheduled time and effort to increasing our level of conscious awareness of our individual strategies?

Let’s get things going in our favor. Let’s make things happen. Let’s change the direction of life so that it’s unfolding in our direction. Let’s experience more joy, better connections, let’s explore, feel proud of our lives, what we’re creating and what we’re contributing. Because we cannot, not contribute.

What if we both had all the time we needed to talk and reflect upon our own personal strategies?

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