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I always want my clients to explore the possibilities. Often I hear; how can I? Well you can and Vocation Vacation is giving NY’ers a chance to experience Vocation Vacations for free. They are having a contest, launching a national Vocationing Club and New York City is where they will be kicking things off.

They will provide the five NYC-area Vocation Vacations listed below to five, to 5 lucky New York-area individuals as a gift for being part of their inaugural Vocationing Club. I really want to encourage all to enter this contest by writing a 250 word essay sent in the email text or in a separate, attached word document with a note that states which of the five Vocation Vacations you are most interested in and why. You must also include:

  • Your name
  • Address
  • Email
  • phone numbers
  • and a brief title and/or description of what you currently do for a living today.

To Submissions will be accepted through December 31, 2007 and and/or forward this blog to friends. You must fit a certain criteria to qualify and be selected to become an inaugural member of Vocation Vacation. Please click here to find out what they are and find out what you will also receive if you are selected.
The five free Vocation Vacations available are:

Vocationing Club inaugural members, will meet for breakfast once a week for eight weeks, starting Tuesday, January 21st in a midtown diner at 7 AM and team-up with four other Vocationing Club members and together, you will experience the eight steps of the Vocationing process as laid out in Brian Kurth’s new book, TEST-DRIVE YOUR DREAM JOB (Hachette Group USA, January 2008.

Vocation Vacation is offering a wonderful opportunity for all individuals in NYC to discover a new vocation in a safe supportive environment. To find out more information on the contest and how to enter click here.

It’s starting to get to that time of year where I recommend to all of my clients to get reconnect. This is especially important, when we are working on goals. I recommend reaching out to individuals who can support you in your journey and also it is important for your mental health. But before you do this via email, review your email and where it comes from.

Often I notice that many of my clients use their current work email as their contact email. Why is this a problem? When connecting with personal friends, topics may come up that you may not want your employer to know about. Remember that all email correspondence is technically property of your employer. The other issue I’ve noticed, cutesy emails. What’s cutesy: sexybabydoll, momat21, hotlover, etc. Why is this a problem? Would you want a prospective employer to see you as a hotlover? Would you feel comfortable having an email being referred to a decision maker from hotlover?So, take the time out, to get an email that is professional. Use your initials, birthday, etc. It’s not only about connecting; but it’s also about, being taken seriously.

Other Links:

After Labor Day this year, I was watching a news story that stated Labor Day was the beginning of the New Year.  It discussed how many consider Labor Day the beginning of their year.  I also agree.  Why?  Summer ends, schools starts and the 4th quarter begins.  Also, this is when many companies start evaluating what they’ve accomplished this year and start developing their new business strategies.  Why shouldn’t you? 

October is an excellent time for you to be proactive and evaluate your life and career.  How do you do this?  Ask yourself these 10 questions:

  • Do you like what, you’re doing? 
  • What are the things you have accomplished personally, professionally and spiritually? 
  • Have you reach the goals you set for yourself last year? 
  • Have you reached the goals your organization set for you? Spiritual home suggest? Or you made in your business? 
  • How have you contributed to your business, spiritual home or the organization you worked for? 
  • How has your life changed this year? 
  • Do you feel as if you are a valued personally or professionally?  
  • Do you feel you are beginning compensated adequately, rewarded or feel fulfilled personally, professionally, and spiritually? 
  • Is your career path on track?  

Is your life path on track?Why am I asking you to ask yourself these questions?  If you work for an organization, it could be doing the same thing right now.  If you run your own business you should definitely be asking yourself these questions.  Why?  It’s the 4 quarter and companies are preparing for bonuses, promotions or lay-offs.  Business strategies are being set in organizations, businesses and even spiritual houses based on these factors.

Finally, if you don’t know your own value, you may be out of step with how people see you both personally and professionally.  Because of this, take a good look at your life and set 10 goals you want to accomplish, personally, professionally and spiritually. What you will realize once you start managing your life effectively and realizing you play a role in what works and doesn’t work in your life, you will become a success.   

Interesting Links


It’s Never to Late … Ask Sabra

The reality dance contest “So You Think You Can Dance, Season 3” crowned a new winner on Thursday night, Sabra Johnson.  She’s a 20 year old dancer from Utah.  So what does that have to do with women in life transition?  Quite a bit, Sabra didn’t start dancing until 4 years ago.  She discovered her passion later in life when most people would have said hang it up. It’s too late to consider this a career choice.  Occasionally men come to the world of dance late; but, it is very challenging for women.  However, she persevered and now she has won the competition against much more seasoned dancers.  Why?  She tried.  She chose to develop her passion, focused on her strengths and learned from her weakness and understood that there may be sacrifices.  She was also open to the feedback when it was given and now she on top of the world. 

Granted this is a lot like a Cinderella story; but, what she did was go after her dream when most would feel it’s too late to try.  Why?  It was important to her. 
So what should you learn from Sabra?  Nigel Lythgoe, executive producer and judge of SYTYCD, said it best “Sabra…you dance with your heart…”  To me that means, if you discover a talent that is your passion go after it.  You may just discover the seeds that you planted late in the season bloom and bear fruit.

What passion have you been afraid to pursue?  It may not be too late to try.

Congratulations Sabra!!!

As a coach, being present and being honest with yourself about you goals and dreams is important to being prosperous both personally and professionally.  I was reminded of this while reading the articles in eweek, “Works Rarely Jump Ship Over Pay Alone” and”IT Execs Bail Early.”  It was interesting to see companies thought employees left because of money; the truth was personal growth, values and culture. 

I know this it IT but this is important regardless of the opportunity you are working in or the passion you have. It’s also important to note this, whether you are looking at a life and career change.  Also, it doesn’t matter if it is in traditional or non traditional work environment; but, take a look at these articles and learn from them.  Why?  Because you need to be truthful with yourself, why don’t you like your current career or position? 

Really look at your values and prioritize what’s important to you.  Understand that you do have a mission and a vision of the life you want.  There are goals that you have that will help you achieve the life you desire.  But if you are not honest and make it about money and not about the things that are important to you in a few months you may find yourself frustrated in your life or career. 

Whose fault is it that you didn’t learn from you last experience?  Why are you so unhappy with the situation you are in?  Why does every opportunity look the same?  Ask yourself these questions. It’s time to listen to yourself and own your dreams. 

What we can learn from Paris Hilton.  When you have to do something you can do it.  But is that always the best way?  On Larry King she discussed she had claustrophobia and when she realized she had to stay in jail she dealt with it.  …and that’s the lesson. 

Why is it that when we have to deal with a challenge, look for a new job, dump the boyfriend, husband, etc, or lose a few pounds, we come up with every excuse instead of dealing with the challenge and what’s wrong. The reason is our excuses are a coping mechanism. 
How do you get started if you want to deal with your challenge before a crisis? 
Acknowledge what’s wrong.  That’s sometimes the hardest thing.
Be honest, you have a part in what’s happening. Also ask your self how you have added value to your current position, relationship or situation.  That could be a real eye opener.  What it means is you might be a part of the problem. 
Now get to know yourself.  Go back and ask yourself you strengths and weakness and where you need to develop.  What are the things you want, need and the deal breakers you have in life.  A good example, why go on a diet that you have to eat shrimp 5 times a week and you are allergic.  That doesn’t work.  It’s about learning not to sabotage yourself. 

Understand the challenge. It’s about not trying to make a fit where it doesn’t work.  It doesn’t work with clothing and it doesn’t work with people with either.  You can date someone or marry someone who seems to not have anything in common with you; but, in reality it works because you have similar values and/or they compliment one another. 

Now learn from your mistakes because sometimes the reasons things don’t work are justifiable.  Fore instance, the hours at your job don’t work for you because you’re a single parent, or you are back in school.  The commute may be taking its toll because you are not connecting personally or professionally.  You could be a pastry chef and it wreaks havoc on your waistline.  Or; the culture or an organization is working an 18 hour day and that’s never been you.  All of these are just a few examples. But, learn from them.  It will help you find your next opportunity or mate and manage your partner, job or food intake better. 

The point is you should look at all of your challenges in life to help conquer them.   The reason, it’s easier to take charge of your life now before you are forced to.  It makes change easier to accept, more permanent and less traumatic because you have a choice. 


Things don’t change; we change.
~~Henry David Thoreau~~

I was reading a blog today about the “The Laws of Attraction and a Clean, Clutter Free Home” by Lisa Q.  It stated “… ones home is also responsible for manifesting one’s dreams.”  But I want to take it a step further, your mind can make your goals happen or stop them like a brick wall, too. 

Most coaching takes place over the phone. I seldom know the clutter my clients have in their homes or offices; but, I do hear the clutter in their minds.  Since most of my clients are women the minds are littered with broken relationships, empty arms longing for infants and the career of a lifetime lost because of a lack of confidence.
Is the clutter a symptom of physical clutter or is it vice versa?  It’s not clear.  But, what is clear is that clutter, must be eliminated, to make space for the positive energy needed to achieve the dreams you long for. 

Don’t let old baggage hold you back; i.e., the memories that the clutter and build a physical obstacle from your dreams so it near impossible to realizing them.  Throw it out, the clutter, not just symbolically; but, physically.  Clean out that inbox, donate or sell clothes in your closet that you never wear or accept that the man you’ve been dating for 5 years doesn’t want to get married and make room for your dreams. 


The Flying Trapeze … The Right Risk

I flew on the flying trapeze, Monday.  As a coach I always encourage my clients to take risk; but, I also have to ask a coach.  I have challenges, too.  Recently, I took a chance to fly on the flying trapeze.  My excuse for try to fly on the trapeze was it would be a great learning and teambuilding exercise for my clients.  Because many things we value and goals we want are not safe.  But, was this really the reason I was doing it?  Was this really true for me?  Well I found out. 

I went to the Trapeze School of NY on Pier 40; many of you have seen it on “Sex and the City.”  I learned a lot in this exercise and I’d like to share it.  The trapeze represents a risk or thrill reminds you that you are alive and living in the moment.  It also tells you that you need to listen to yourself and the people that are important to you or can help you get what you want.  You discover you have to trust yourself and support others especially when they are like minded and support you.  Finally, it the exercise yells, “Don’t hesitate!!!”  If you stutter step you might miss and opportunity.  Can you believe I learned all of this at 23 feet in the air?  Yes, I did. 

Being one the trapeze reminded me, many of us say we are going to do something; but, we never do it.  I even remembered why I was drawn to this exercise; 10 years ago I wanted to go to circus school at Club Med.  Well, I went to Club Med but I didn’t go to circus school.  The reason I remember it was I was in the Bahamas when Lady Diana died.  She was so alive for that moment.  But, then she was gone in an instant.  Is there something that you have wanted to do, as Nike says?  Just do it!!!  You will be so glad afterwards; because you will remember you are alive.  Also, the trapeze is a metaphor for the risk you need to take to achieve your goals.  I hope you try it or at least live in the moment and stop putting off your dreams. 


Personal Values are Priceless

In my last blog, I spoke on professional value. I asked do you know your value. I also committed to discuss personal value. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

I want to ask you, what are your personal values? If you have an answer, great!!! However, when I ask many women about their personal ideals, I start hearing the story of their life, losses, successes, etc., or silence. If I ask them, would they sell the handbag they are holding, I would get a quick answer “Yes” or “No.” Why is this? Is it because they know the worth of their purse? Why is it difficult to define personal ideals? Consider these questions:

  • Does what you want in life defines your personal standards?
  • Do the people who are closest to you define your values?
  • Do the things you don’t do also describe your personal ethics, too?

The answer to the above questions? Yes.

Now, I’d like you to define your values. Remember, these are the things that are most important to you? Your values are not other’s opinions of what’s important to you. Just make a list. It may start with a lot of things at first; but, prioritize them and try to have only five. Just knowing what’s important to you will help you make better decisions. Why?

Suppose your list of priorities looks like this:

  1. Family
  2. Achievement
  3. Professional Development
  4. Ambition
  5. Friends

What if today you had the opportunity to hang out late at a friend’s birthday party; but, it’s the night before you are going to a conference with a SVP in your department. What will you do? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is the conference an opportunity that might be important to your career?
  • Will it help you get that promotion or raise you are looking for?
  • Will your friends understand if you stopped by and have one drink and/or maybe a bite of cake?
  • Now what will you do? Does your answer change? Often decisions are emotional, not looking at what could make the situation support your priorities and choices. Always consider your priorities. If your friends are a priority you can make the situation win-win by just showing up. But even if you don’t go, are you wrong? Remember, what’s important to you is important to you. Your values are your values. My point, if you don’t value your life, choices and dreams, no one else will. Finally, values don’t have to have a dollar amount to mean something to you and others, they are priceless.

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