Tuesday, October 28, 2014

What is stopping your success?

Originally posted on LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/article/20141014193759-76982850-what-is-stopping-your-success

As we pursue our professional life and seek success, a few things may hold us back. While skill set and ability may be a hindrance for some, it is not always the reason for lack of success. The biggest reason that people do not succeed is fear.

What can fear do?

Fear can stop the professional from stepping up and doing presentations.

Many can relate this to stage fright and just assume that the anxiety that is produced while being in front of peers and authority is not worth the stress. The issue at hand is, how will your peers or supervisors know what you are capable of if you do not choose to step up to the plate every once and a while.

Fear can stop the professional from talking to a supervisor and sharing their opinion.
Supervisors, managers, and directors are not all knowing. They get ideas from those they work with, including the person that sorts the mail in the mailroom. If you have an idea or opinion about the way things are handled in the work environment, communicate with the supervisor. The conversation can begin with an email and then proceed from there.

Fear can cause self-negativity in the professional.
Not only can fear cause an individual to freeze at inopportune times, fear can also create detrimental self-sabotage. Those thoughts that ask should I. Or the thoughts that question ability, I can't do that, I don't have the skills, I am stupid, nobody will like me.

Fear can cause procrastination.
Procrastination is fear's brother. I will do the task, but later.

How is fear stopped?

Action inhibits fear.
Do not let those thoughts grab a hold. Press on anyway and push through. Instead of waiting until next week to talk to the boss or to develop a presentation, do it now.

Choice can dispel fear.
We have the power of choice and should use it. Choose to succeed. Choose to call that customer. Choose to talk to the supervisor. Choose to do the presentation. Choose to go to the interview. Choose to connect with others. Choose to succeed.

This is fine, but how does one go about getting the strength to conquer the fears? Slay your dragons. Why do you have these fears? It will take some time at first to get to the root of the fear; but if your desire is to succeed, it must be done.

Make a list of your fears
Be honest with yourself. Why are you afraid to do things? Do not ignore even the smallest concern that is in the back of your mind. Write all your fears down.

Counter the fear
After making the list of fears, go through and make a list of your successes. You have made it this far, your abilities exist. Once that is done, match up the successes you have to the fears.

Attack the fear
One by one, conquer the fear. You may need a friend to help you and that is okay. Take all the fears that remain and choose to conquer them. Do you have stage fright? Do small presentations. Start with a one on one presentation. Or, jump in and try stand-up comedy. Do you have the fear of rejection? To overcome this one, the ability to be rejected has to be available. Go on job interviews, but take a class with a career services organization on how to interview. Invite people over and watch movies. Get comfortable with people. The fear of failure? The difference between success and failure is that the successful persevere. Every time you succeed at something, make a note of it. If getting places on time is an issue, strive to fix it and make note, it is a success.

Success is not just for the gifted. Anybody that can overcome fear will succeed on some level. What I see as success may not be what you see as success. However, we can all succeed.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Branding You

Originally posted on LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/article/20140924192729-76982850-branding-you

As everyone is getting into social networking, they are creating a personal brand.

There are several important things to remember about a brand:

  1. Identity
  2. Reputation
  3. Exposure
  4. Accessibility
  5. Relatability

Each of these characteristics are vital in their own way. While one may be more visible, it does not mean the characteristic is more important.


Identity is visual recognition. This includes profile pictures, descriptions, and interests. If the individual networking across platforms is looking for continuity, then he or she must show consistency. Profile pictures, descriptions, and interests should be the same across the board on various social networks.


How an individual is perceived online holds a lot of weight in the physical world. Is the message being presented truthful? Is the message consistent? The way an individual updates statuses on their social media account matters to the connections. Are all the updates scheduled? Is there interaction or just posts? This plays into reputation because if the person behind the username is not available, then it will mar the reputation.


This one can be tricky. The brand does not want too much exposure. For a personal brand that includes not constantly posting about family issues and not posting about work problems. Online you become what you post on your statuses. On the same note, everything should not be business. Just limit your personal and private life.


Being accessible is vital. Social networks are networking. Being accessible allows networking to work. Accessibility also allows others to get to know the personal brand. In order to get to know some one, there has to be communication. In order for communication to happen, there has to be availability.


In order for people to like your personal brand, people have to be able to relate to you. Not every person that is online will like an individual or brand, and that is okay. Create your niche and connect with those that are most relatable. In time, your brand will gain more exposure.

How do you determine your identity online?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Identity, more valuable than gold

originally posted on LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/article/20140911184435-76982850-identity-more-valuable-than-gold

As individuals open up various social media accounts, they are stretching their network and making connections. In a professional networking website, the identity portrayed on the profile can lead to amazing connections if people know who you are.

Connecting with those that were introduced in the job place, conventions, businesses, etc... is beneficial on many levels. However, if the profile is not completed there can be great difficulty finding the right person.

The question can then be, what is required on a profile?

If you are on a social network attempting to grow your network your profile HAS to have key information.

  • Professional style head shot, not a photo from a night out on the town
  • Professional name, not a cutesy username
  • Brief description of industry involved in
  • Past workplace information if you are on a website such as LinkedIn

These are just a few tips that many individuals on social networking websites can use. Emphasizing the professional style head shot, there are many people that will not connect unless there is a photo.

What do you deem as mandatory on social networking websites for a profile?

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Do What You Love, right?

originally posted on LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/article/20140807163954-76982850-do-what-you-love-right

It was a dark and stormy night, oh wait.. that belongs to Charles Schulz.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, opps... that one belongs to Charles Dickens.

An old anthem that I have held on to for the majority of my adult life has been to find a job doing what you love and everything else will fall into place.

Imagine my shock when I discovered that the old anthem I have held on to is not always true.

I love to write. Writing is a creative outlet for me and can be quite therapeutic. I am able to write in several different style and enjoy writing. I have discovered however, that my career should not be focused solely on writing.

Successful people have a hobby. They have something they enjoy doing that is not a requirement of life. That is not to say that your hobby can not supplement your career.

That said, I find it interesting with a few people I know that have hobbies closely related to their career. An accounting supervisor that relaxes with Sudoku, she still adds up those numbers. A graphic designer that does landscape photography as a hobby.

This gist of doing what you love is to have an element that you can enjoy without it being a requirement. A person may love photography and enjoy taking pictures, but once that is their career it is very possible to get burned out doing it.

Everything in life is moderation. If you want to do what you love, look for a company that will provide the career you desire and has the benefits that you need while possessing a positive work environment.