Archive for the ‘Career’ Category

What Is Your Life’s Purpose?

We all exist, but do you ever wonder why?  Do you ever wonder about your purpose in life?  Lately, I’ve felt a strong pull to help people.  This desire is nothing new, but it’s stronger than it’s ever been.  Sure, my corporate job allows me to help people with issues of marginal importance; however, I feel a tug to go out into the world and have face-to-face encounters with people and learn how best I can serve their needs.  But I don’t just want to help anyone; I want to help people who have broken faith, finances, relationships, and spirits. 

My experiences testimonies have shaped me into a different person than I was in the past.  I’m still changing and  I’m still learning, but God has shaped me into someone that I never imagined I’d be.  His grace has changed me. 

I believe with all my heart that I can make a positive difference in the lives of others.  I’ve always helped people informally, but I now feel as if I can replace what I do for a living with something that will help other people build or rebuild their lives.  I feel compassion toward others.  Significant compassion.  Webster’s defines compassion as “a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering”.  A recent Bible study message touched on this very topic.  Was it a sign?  I’m not sure.  I just feel like my purpose is not to sit on the sidelines when there are people in the world who want and need the kind of help that I long to give.  I want to do more than pray for others.  I want to be the hands and feet of God; doing for others what they can’t do for themselves.  For now, I am praying for discernment and for God’s guidance, because above all else, I want to do His will.

Has God revealed your purpose in life?  If so, did you follow what he was telling you to do?

Let’s chat!

Can Social Media Rants Become a Workplace Issue?

We’ve all enjoyed ranting on occasion, but how is your career affected when that ranting is posted for all to see?  Well, if you’ve “friended” your boss or failed to protect your online account, workplace rants can spell trouble – even unemployment.

One group is hoping that will change.  Erik Hayden of the Atlantic Wire writes that “In the near future, whining about your boss on Facebook may be a protected activity.  At least if the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) gets their way”.  The NLRB filed a complaint against a company after that company suspended and later fired an employee for ranting about a workplace concern on a social networking site.  Lafe Solomon, the Board’s acting general counsel, believes that the judge may side with the complainant.  Stay tuned to see what the judge presiding over the case has to say when he hears arguments on January 25, 2010.

While we wait to see if your social media posts will become protected under the law, limiting access to your posts by choosing appropriate privacy options could save you a bit of embarassment.  The following tips are Facebook-specific privacy settings:

  • Change your photo and video “tag” features, so that no one will be able to tag you in a photo.  (You don’t want that embarassing weekend photo or video being viewed by everyone at work.)  
  • Choose “Friends Only” for your posts, including pictures.  In this voyeuristic society, we love to snoop on other people by browsing their social media posts and pictures and we often feel as if we owe them the same access to our personal information.  Protect your privacy above all else, because at the end of the day, we don’t owe anyone access to our personal thoughts.
  • Don’t “friend” people from work.  Instead, politely decline their invites and tell them that you wish to keep your work relationships professional.
  • Remove your name from Facebook’s public search option.  Also, check Facebook’s privacy settings to ensure that your profile doesn’t show up during a Google search.  (Note that the Google search will continue to show your name in search results until the search engine captures another snapshot, which could be weeks or months later.)

So before post about your latest workplace frustrations on Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Twitter, and other social media sites, make sure you’ve taken appropriate action to protect your privacy.  Better yet, write it in the old-fashioned way (paper and pen), read it, and toss it (but not in a trash bin at work).

Let’s chat!  If you have advice or stories to share about embarassing social media faux pas, post them here.

Love to all!

CC

Are Day Jobs a Thing of the Past?

So much for working 9-5 each day.  Advances in technology make it easier than ever to work outside of the office.  But is that a good thing?

My corporate job comes with many great perks, such as the ability to work from home.  However, along with the perk of being able to work at home comes the expectation that I am available to work days, evenings, weekends, vacations, and holidays.  Sadly, I don’t feel singled out, because these same expectations hold true for those who commute to the office each day.

Since when is it OK for companies to expect  workers to be available around the clock 365 days of the year?  Sure, my company offers paid time off (PTO), holidays, and other kinds of paid leave, but what about their policy regarding allowing employees to take uninterrupted time off work to refresh our minds, souls, and bodies?  Not much relaxation and rejuvination can happen when someone shoots off an email at an ungodly hour and expects an expedient response.

What about “leave” is so hard to understand?  Children get the concept, but unfortunately for them, that trend is going away, thus their definition of time off will inevitably evolve.  Christmas and spring breaks bring about required reading and packets of seemingly endless homework.  In addition, school districts are begining to allow teachers to conduct class remotely when schools are closed.  So much for good ol’ snow days filled with enjoying movies and cocoa, shoveling, sledding, snowball fights, making snow angels and snowmen.  Children are learning that time off for relaxation and rejuvination is a bad thing, a lazy thing.  And that, to me, is a bad idea.

How’s your job?  Is there an expectation that you’ll to respond to messages late at night, thumb through text messages on your cell phone, and type reports as soon as you get home from your office while juggling kids homework and making dinner?

Is work-life balance even possible?  Susan Davis, author of five books, about health, well-being, education, and business doesn’t believe it is.  In her article, The Myth of Work-Life Balance, she writes, “researchers have found, American workers are spending more and more time on work, and less and less time on life — to an understandably detrimental effect”. 

Susan offers the following “Takeaway Tips” that help her strive for balance.

Figure out the foundation: In order to be inspired and productive in my work life, as well as clear and kind with my family, I need good exercise, deep sleep, and time for reflection. Other people might need massages, time with friends, six meals a day, protein drinks, regular knitting sessions, weekly poker games, or afternoon naps. What do you need to feel balanced, energized and productive?

Fine-tune the details: On some days I can’t get off first base without hearing Bill Withers’ version of Use Me. (Not a healthy emotional theme, I know, but the rhythm moves me.) Other days I can’t hit my stride unless I spend a few minutes outside, watching the clouds and listening to the hens. And there’s many a day when I can’t gather my thoughts without a cup of very strong, very hot coffee—in a the grey earthenware mug that was made by a potter in my hometown. The point? Identify what you need in the moment and try to provide it for yourself.

Go for what you need: I know some of you are reading this and thinking, “I have no time.” I have no time either — unless I understand that taking care of myself (that’s my body, my mind, and my spirit, by the way) allows me to work better, live better, and feel better. In other words, self care doesn’t take away from our work and life; it enhances it.

Do you have any self-care routines that help you survive the nearly seamless divide between work and life?  Let’s talk!

Love to all!

CC