Viewing posts categorised under: Career-and-money
According to Meg, there are 50 million twentysomethings in the United States right now. That’s about 15 percent of the population, or 100 percent if you consider that no one’s getting through adulthood without going through their 20s first.
Meg specializes in twentysomethings because she believe that every single 50 million twentysomethings deserves to know what psychologists, sociologists, neurologists and fertility specialists already know: that claiming your 20s is one of the simplest, yet most transformative, things you can do for work, for love, for your happiness, maybe even for the world.
To view the entire Ted Talk:
“This is not my opinion. These are the facts. We know that 80 percent of life’s most defining moments take place by age 35. That means that eight out of 10 of the decisions and experiences and “Aha!” moments that make your life what it is will have happened by your mid-30s. People who are over 40, don’t panic. This crowd is going to be fine, I think. We know that the first 10 years of a career has an exponential impact on how much money you’re going to earn. We know that more than half of Americans are married or are living with or dating their future partner by 30. We know that the brain caps off its second and last growth spurt in your 20s as it rewires itself for adulthood, which means that whatever it is you want to change about yourself, now is the time to change it. We know that personality changes more during your 20s than at any other time in life, and we know that female fertility peaks at age 28, and things get tricky after age 35. So your 20s are the time to educate yourself about your body and your options.”
“Twentysomethings are like airplanes just leaving LAX, bound for somewhere west. Right after takeoff, a slight change in course is the difference between landing in Alaska or Fiji. Likewise, at 21 or 25 or even 29, one good conversation, one good break, one good TED Talk, can have an enormous effect across years and even generations to come. So here’s an idea worth spreading to every twentysomething you know…Thirty is not the new 20, so claim your adulthood, get some identity capital, use your weak ties, pick your family. Don’t be defined by what you didn’t know or didn’t do. You’re deciding your life right now.
Go ahead and hide money from yourself. Set up an automated savings account that sets aside money when you get paid. Think about – if you set aside $50 a month (even with no interest), you’ll have an extra $6,000. And who knows what life may bring 10 years down the road.
2. Set up a 401(k)
If you are young, look into a 401(k). It really isn’t that scary! Also, when you are younger, go ahead an max out your available contributions (with your employer matching them).
3. Record what you Spend
Documenting what you spend used to be difficult. You’d pull money out at the ATM, and then a week later it was gone. Now that we use our debit/credit cards on every purchase (even the $.99 ice cream cone), your bank will have a monthly statement of your purchases. According to VISA (and this was in 2007), men can lose over 3k a year in nominal purchases. Make sure you tally up your money. Small spending turns into big spending. At then end of a few months, add up the purchases you may not have needed. You’d be surprised what you could save.
4. Start to Get out of Debt
Getting out of debt is difficult, and our goal should not be to starve ourselves out of debt. We should make small, doable goals to get out of debt. For starters, just make sure that you are making the monthly minimums on your cards, avoid paying last fees, and try to pay the interest off. Repeat. Repeat. And Repeat. The debt will start to go away.
5. Finally, Get a Good Tax Rep
If you have had a major life change – getting out of college and doing your taxes for the first time, just got married, had a baby, had another baby, had yet another baby, a great financial planner can save you thousands – and the best part – financial planners normally do not cost too much because, well, they are financially minded.
- posted in Addiction, Blog, Career and Money, Counseling Blog, Depression, Happiness, Private Practice
“If it takes a village to raise a child”, a village (community) can help individuals when they are in the middle of divorce, struggling with addiction, working through relationship problems, or even struggling with depression.
If you have a question that you have been dying to ask, feel free to ask it on our community counseling forum. Or, if you have the ability to answer questions, feel free to respond to the community.
The basic ground rules for discussions on Thriveworks are simple: be polite. Our fellow community members will treat guests in these forums with courtesy and respect. The forum is a place for counselors and members alike to ask questions and receive help…
To start asking or answering, visit the community forums today.
Some of the forums already started:
- How to deal with depression?
- How do you overcome addiction?
- How have you forgiven someone that hurt you?
- When do you ask for financial management help?
- For Counselors: What are the best insurance panels to be on?
- For Counselors: Education is Expensive: Is it worth obtaining a Doctorate or a Ph. D degree in Marriage and Family Therapy?
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Example 1: You are a new graduate seeking your first full time job in the real world. You send out hundreds of resumes, and you finally get a call back from an employer. Things are going well, but then they ask you to take an employee assessment test (employment testing) and you agree too.
Example 2: You are in the middle of your career and you are completely bored with what you are doing. You thought this job would be filled with adventure, excitement, or at least good pay, and you haven’t gotten close to any of those. Your friends talk about how much they enjoy their jobs, and you want to feel that way, so you start looking for new jobs. You aren’t really sure what career path you should take. You seek out a career counselor to take an employee assessment test.
Example 3: You are in college, and majoring in Art is what you would love to do, but you are afraid that career choice will not sustain you down the road. You are unsure of what to do. All of you friends have a driven career path, but you are unsure of which way to go. You seek out employment testing.
In all three cases, these are great reasons to seek out employment testing. But what happens when you fill out the tests?
Don’t lie. This sounds so simple, but in reality, when you are taking the assessment test, it is extremely easy to lie. We tend to think that we have more skills than we do. When asked if we are great leaders, have organizational abilities, or can handle disputes well, generally, we rank ourselves high because we may have a) (leader) led our friends on a great excursion to Vegas, b) (organizational skills) organized our contacts on our iPhone, or c) (disputes) calmed a dispute between our younger siblings (and these are all great qualities!), but make sure you answer these questions as they relate to the work force.
For example, who wouldn’t know the “correct” way to answer test questions like, “How thorough are you?” or “Are you persistent, or do you give up easily?” Why would you ever admit to not being thorough in your work?.
The last thing you want to do is get a job that you thought you wanted and then not like it. If you answer the questions honestly, you may or may not get the job or career you “thought” you wanted, but you will get the career that fits you! And finding a job that you enjoy, can bring you more happiness than finding a job you thought you could enjoy.
Answering the test honestly will help you and your employer from making a terrible hiring decision. Just because you don’t get the job doesn’t mean you weren’t a great candidate – it just means that there is something that you are better equipped to do!
Don’t answer the questions based on the impression you receive from others. Sometimes we are easily influenced by our friends and family members. Your friends may tell you that you would make an excellent lawyer, doctor, or marketing professional, but if you do not want to do those, then don’t answer the questions like you are.
When asked a question on the employment assessments, it is easy to think, “Well, my friends tell me I could be great at that.” And then you answer accordingly. Only answer based on yourself. Years down the road – you will be in this career and your friends won’t. Answer the questions based on what will make you happy!
Finally, Don’t answer the questions based on who you want to be, but who you are now. Most professionals will change careers 5 times in their professional life. It’s hard to know what you want to do in 5 years, let alone what you want to eat for dinner tonight. When taking the employment test, answer the questions based on who you are now. It is easy to think, “Well, I could be good at that!” And you probably could! but answer the questions based on you now.
Now what? If you are looking for career counseling or employment testing, Thriveworks offers career counseling and employment testing to help you excel in your career. To schedule an appointment, or simply to acquire more information, call us anytime toll-free at 1-855-2-THRIVE (1-855-284-7483).
The American dream isn’t looking so dreamy these days. We’re looking at a volatile economy – not just in America, but in Europe. Unemployment. Worldwide political tensions. Overwhelming national debt.
Not exactly the best environment for financial success, is it? In today’s world, many of us are barely surviving, so the idea of financial increase may sound a bit ridiculous. But let’s face it: A few extra bucks in the bank would be great.
Is it even possible for the average Joe? The resounding answer is yes! While there isn’t any magic secret to growing your income, here’s a few practical financial coaching tips to get you started (note: not all these tips will apply to everyone):
Set goals. Dream big. It’s easy to get caught up in the drudgery of the daily grind and forget the big picture. But success doesn’t happen by chance. Set clear goals for yourself on a weekly, monthly, and yearly basis. And hold yourself accountable to them. Don’t just drift through life and expect to win big. Financial success requires hard work and diligence, so be very skeptical of “get rich quick” plans.
Value people. Find out what they want or need. Whatever your career field, your job is ultimately about people. Critically investigate your job field to find out what people want. What they need. What irks them. Brainstorm ways that your company can go and above expectations to meet that need. Use the “wow” factor, and you will create customer loyalty.
Do excellent work. Show integrity. Refuse to settle for shortcuts or half-decent work. Satisfied customers always pay off. Always. You will become known as an individual or company for your work…whether positively or negatively. People are generally willing to pay more if they have complete faith in your ability to do a quality job. Let your work push you to the competitive edge.
Surround yourself with entrepreneurs. In a free market society, the guy with the most creative idea gets the money. Challenge yourself with the people you spend time with. When you have an idea, write it down, bounce it off a few other people, and identify obstacles. Don’t settle for the norm. Continually brainstorm better ways to get the job done, working smarter, not harder.
Get a second job. In today’s changing economy, many people are supplementing their 9 to 5 career job with additional income, whether it be freelancing, consulting, a hands-on skill, or an hourly job. While you don’t want to overload yourself, consider ways to add to your income. Life coaches and economic experts predict that, if economic conditions continue, multiple jobs will likely become the norm. Multiple sources of income help guard bankruptcy…if one job falls through, there is another to fall back on.
Be smart with your money. It’s easy to feel entitled to elaborate vacations or expensive dinners, but the reality is that some of the most joyful people are those who choose to live simply. Just because you have the money to spend does not mean that you have to spend it. Don’t succumb to the lure of instant gratification. Rule your money, rather than letting it rule you.
Maybe you’re a bit surprised at the ordinariness of these tips, but let’s be honest: The secret to financial success is hard work. Creativity. Determination. A willingness to take risks, fail, and try again. I say it’s time we stop blaming the economy, and approach money differently.
Growing your income starts with you, not Uncle Sam. Your decisions matter. So what are you waiting for?
“Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey,” United States Department of Labor, March, 2013, http://www.bls.gov/cps/.
Results indicated the following top five strengths: 1) input 2) achiever 3) learner 4) intellection and 5) responsibility (Rath, 2007). Input refers to someone who is inquisitive and in my case, likes to collect information obtained from books, research articles and sermons.
Those with input strengths also enjoy variety and learning from as many sources as are available (Rath). For example, I love to travel and read because I enjoy acquiring new information which informs my experiences and provides me with knowledge that I can use for speaking, writing and networking with other people to find common interests.
As with many who have input strengths, I am not as concerned with using the information to give clarity to a theory. Instead, the purpose of obtaining such knowledge is that it may be useful at some point in my life. This strength bodes well for my current position in which I research, write and speak often, and must constantly be learning and integrating new material.
Achievers must always be achieving something every day, no matter how small the accomplishment. Achievers are motivated by an internal fire that moves them toward task completion and provides much reward when things are accomplished (Rath, 2007).
In my case, I am constantly driving to finish the next task, regardless of whether it is work related, around the home or an accomplishment in my personal life. I am never satisfied with the current status, and must always be working toward the next. As an achiever, I don’t burn out easily after long work hours as long as I feel I have accomplished something.
In my previous positions and now as the President of The Connextion Group, I oversee teams of people responsible for resource development, publications and conferences. As a team leader the strength of an achiever is helpful as I have the internal wherewithal to drive and propel my team to accomplish goals and meets deadlines.
Learners simply love to learn and they love the process of learning. The process of learning is more of the goal than the actual content (Rath, 2007). For myself, I always want to learn something new. Short project assignments that require learning new subject material in a short period of time provide significant motivation and excitement.
Although the fast pace of my work satisfies the achiever theme, I find the administrative tasks keep me from my learner theme. As a result, there are times I am feel unchallenged or tasks become monotonous. It makes sense now knowing that the learner theme is one of my major strengths and is something that needs to be satisfied in my work role.
People with intellection strengths like mental activity and stretching the mental capacities in different ways. The focus of mental activity requires time alone to allow for introspection and thinking. Those who are strong in introspection often find themselves discontent because they compare the current state of their life or career with all the ideas and thoughts in their head (Rath, 2007).
For me, my brain is constantly going, not allowing me to rest. I find time alone is necessary for me to engage in my best thinking and for me to feel grounded in life. Because of the fast pace of my work and the achiever theme in me, I tend to have to fight for the time to sit and think.
This can leave me in a state of anxiousness, feeling a strong need for time to think and process the deeper things in life, but not having the time to do so. I have learned that this desire to spend time in intellection is not to avoid relationships, but to enhance them.
Writing is one of the best ways I engage in intellection as it allows me to process my thoughts with written word. In my current role, I am writing on topics and issues that intrigue me. This wasn’t always the case. In past positions, I have had to be creative in my personal time to fulfill this theme.
Responsibility strengths propel a person to take charge of a task and follow it through to completion. Those with strengths in responsibility have a focus on doing things right, combined with solid sense of ethics, which results in an unrelenting sense of conscientiousness.
Often people who are responsible are depended on because others know the task will be completed which can lead to taking on more than one should (Rath, 2007). I have been in successful positions because of this dependable and consistent theme in completing tasks. I find it very difficult to let a task fall through the cracks and will do everything in my power to make sure tasks are completed by their deadline.
The challenge is that much of the workload in past positions was left on my plate as my colleagues and superiors recognized that by giving it to me, it would be done. I often did the work of others and was easily roped in to taking on new tasks. I still find it difficult to say no to a task when I know that if delegated to another person may not be completed well.
Overall, the Strengths-Finder 2.0 (Rath, 2007) was very accurate in its assessment of my strengths. I found that the strengths it isolated are indeed some of the key drivers of my work performance and my career choice. My input, learner, achiever, intellection and responsibility strengths are used daily in my current role.
When I am operating in tasks that utilize these strengths, I notice the work is more enjoyable and satisfying. I did notice, however, that in the past, the two predominant strengths of learning and intellection were not used as frequently as I would have liked. I realized that the administrative tasks I was required to do meant the learning requirement had decreased significantly.
I am now operating in a more balanced position where most of my top five strengths are being utilized. Intellection is one strength that is more difficult to engage in when the pace picks up, however, this is overcome by intentionally scheduling time to think and process. I also read more books outside of my field in my free time to help balance this strength. Overall, I recommend anybody to take this test for the intrinsic value and self analysis it provides both for career development and life satisfaction.
Joshua Straub, Ph.D. is a speaker, author, counselor and professor. He specializes in attachment and relationship research, the Millennial generation, crisis and trauma, marriage and family, and spiritual formation.
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- The Proactive Approach: In order to be highly effective, one must be extremely proactive and productive. When faced with a problem, one should act accordingly to the situation, rather than give up. Proactive individuals are realists in that they take the problem they are handed seriously and find a way to solve it.
- Begin with the End in Mind: Solving problems requires a lot more than just seeking the easy way out. Make sure to take all possible solutions into consideration before moving forward with one; your goal is to find the best one possible.
- Put First Things First: It is highly important that you know how to prioritize things throughout your day. Make sure you know what is important and what is unimportant. There is only a limited amount of time in the day to complete every task, so make sure to complete the important ones first.
- Think Win-Win: No matter what situation you are in, it is important that you search for “win-win” scenarios. You should strive to accomplish tasks that will not only benefit yourself, but others as well.
- Seek First to Understand: When conversing with someone else, one should try to empathize with that individual as much as possible. Consideration is essential to create strong, understanding relationships.
- Create Synergies: “Chance favors the Collected Mind.” Remember that working in teams always surpasses working alone, because the input from the collected mind carries far greater depth than that of an individual. Steve Jobs and Bill Gates couldn’t have started their companies without having had the proper teams to do so; the creativity and collaborative effort that can result from teamwork far outweighs that of the lone entrepreneur.
- Sharpen your Blade: Make sure to always learn from your experiences and from your mistakes. It is easy to succumb to low morale when dwelling on one’s mistakes, but remember – life is a learning process, and experience is the best teacher.
If you wish to live a highly effective life, then you might find incorporating these 7 habits into your life to be very helpful. Many overestimate the difficulty in doing so. Some of these habits are common sense, but are often forgotten, so strive to actively utilize them in any situation.
This article is provided by Thriveworks Richmond Counseling. Please visit us at http://www.richmondcounseling.org/ or give us a call at 1-804-554-0356 for further assistance.
Ben and Roz Zander believe that life is a story we tell; that we can personally invent our own story and tell it in any way we like. Ben Zander has been the conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra since 1979 and is renowned across the world for his talent in bringing out the best in musicians. His leadership strategies fly in the face of traditional leadership. Rather than have a “strong, authoritative general lead his troops to victory,” Zander instead believes in an inside-out approach when leading. He defines the leader’s job as one of possibility, believing that it is their duty to help make others powerful. Zander defines several main life coaching style points when discussing the role of a leader:
- A New Way of Being
Zander believes that leaders need to create a connection rather than division, call up passion rather than fear, and have unlimited vision. A leader exists to empower others. If leaders calls up passion and confidence in the people they lead, then the leaders themselves will be successful.
- Speak Possibility
Avoid the downward spiral of negative thinking and instead talk about the positive possibilities. We so often get caught up in talking about what’s wrong with our situations, rather than embracing the potential each situation brings. This sort of thinking should be avoided as much as possible; instead you should focus on the great heights you can reach. Positive thinking is contagious and uplifting. The power of the mind can make these possibilities a reality.
- Remember Rule #6
Zander tells the story about a leader who consistently reminded his staff to remember rule #6 whenever they came into the room flustered or upset. Every time he did so they became calm and left the room without a word. Rule #6 – Don’t take yourself too seriously! We all do it, but this can have a negative impact upon careers or personal lives.
- Enroll Each Voice in the Vision
Ben puts a blank piece of paper on the stand of every musician at every rehearsal and invites them to make any suggestions they would like. He empowers them by giving them a voice in the vision. He talks self-deprecatingly about being a conductor, stating that the blank pieces of paper reminds him that he is not the center of the universe.
- Look for Shining Eyes
Are the eyes of the people you lead “shining” or are they simply accepting what you have to say? You need to constantly ask yourself – is my presence enlivening people and making them passionate about being part of the spirit of possibility or are you shutting them down? A leader needs to be an inspirational force committed to the “aliveness” of people.
- Voice in the Head
Everyone knows that voice. The voice that tells us we can’t do something and that we’re not good enough. A leader needs to remind people that the voice can also speak to possibility in a positive way. We control the voice. The voice does not control us. Let the voice tell us that we can do it.
- Everyone Gets an “A”
Give your people a possibility to “live into,” rather than a standard they must “live up to.” On the first day of classes, Zander asks his students to imagine they got an “A” at the end of the year and write an essay about all the great things they did to get that “A.” He gives them that possibility to “live into.” He wanted the students to live in this passionate, positive world of possibility throughout the year.
The opportunities to be had within each situation virtually limitless. How one chooses to respond to them can change lives, for better or for worse. If one is striving towards leaving a positive mark in the lives of those around them, then it might be wise to take Zander’s views on leadership into account. None at the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra have been as beloved or respected as he, as a mentor, musician, or otherwise.
This article was provided by Thriveworks Counseling and Life Coaching. Contact us at 1-855-2-THRIVE.
What are some of the challenges older/more established individuals face today on the job market?
Older applicants face a number of challenges in today’s job market. First, they need to overcome unfair biases and prove that they have kept up with changes in their industry, and with technology. Second, older applicants must show potential employers that they’re nimble enough to learn new skills, and have the energy level required to succeed at their job. Finally, it’s not uncommon for older applicants to request higher compensation than their entry-level counterparts; this can create barriers in some job markets.
Older applicants possess some valuable assets in today’s job market, and they need to lead with these strengths. For instance, an older applicant is likely to possess a consistent work history, strong references, and a track record of vocational success. Younger applicants will struggle to bring this to the table. Also, older applicants may interview better than their green counterparts, because they’ve done it before–this won’t be their “first rodeo”, so to speak.
Do you know of any online resources they should consult prior to job hunting?
Monster.com is still the “800 lb gorilla” for finding job openings. However, Indeed.com and Craigslist.org are two websites that shouldn’t be overlooked. Also, Salary.com is a great resources to give job-seekers a realistic perspective of what persons in their field are currently earning.
Is there anything else you wish to add that you think job seekers should know?