Limit Your Leap Of Faith: Developing A Career Change When You’re Already In One

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In life, we are all looking for the next challenge. If you feel that your current job is not providing that fulfilment it once was, it’s now time to think about transitioning from one career to another. However, it’s not that easy, it’s something that takes time, effort, and the necessary qualifications. Time is the biggest factor, especially when you are working a full-time job. And while it’s foolish to give up your current job to take this leap of faith into a new career, especially when you don’t know what it’s going to be like, what can you do to develop a career change while you are already in one?

Understand The Commitments Of The New Career

Of course, a new beginning looks great on paper, but when you sign up for the relevant courses, it is at this point you might realize what you got yourself into. Nowadays, it’s easier than ever to gain a relevant qualification, because of online degrees, so if you were to complete an online BSW (Bachelor of Social Work) or an MBA (Masters in Business Administration), it’s vital for you to know how much of a commitment these courses are. Luckily, a lot of distance learning can be done part-time. This gives you a lot of breathing space as far as your current job is concerned.

Maintain A Work-Life Balance

And while courses can be done part-time, it’s still important for you to ensure you have a healthy work-life balance. You could be working from 9 to 5, and then coming home and doing coursework, and if you are someone with a family, you can feel the pressures. And while it’s easier said than done, it’s important for you to maintain a work-life balance by structuring everything to the finest point. Look at your duties in life, and plan a structure so you can complete your course, do your job, but also, still enjoy life.

Don’t Let Your Dream Career Interfere With Your Current One

While it’s exciting to jump ship from your current job, as you prepare your career transition, you don’t want to ignore your current responsibilities. Lots of people stop caring when they know they are about to leave. But you still need a good reference, especially if you’ve been with the company for a long time. It’s these people who will recommend to your future employer what you’re like to work with, and they know very well how you work because you’ve been with them for so long. And while it’s easy to mentally “check out”, don’t burn your bridges.

It’s an exciting transition in life, and when you’ve decided on your new career, taking the positive steps can feel like you are reclaiming your life. But developing a new career is something that is almost like developing a side hustle; you have to do a little bit, as much as you can, until your part-time endeavors get to the point where you can’t balance both anymore. And while it can be a challenge to maintain both, in this modern world it’s necessary for you to be practical while pursuing your dream job.

How Companies Can Offer Work Life Balance Perks

Work life balance is a desired state by most (excluding workaholics/those married to their career).

But talking about it versus providing it can be challenging.

As a company, how can you creatively offer this perk?

According to this Forbes article, Millennials crave healthcare benefits which fit under the category of: wellness.

Instead of looking at work life balance as separating your personal from professional life, picture it as one encompassing circle. If you do that offering wellness becomes simple.

Let me explain. Mental health has recently become a priority to workers because it’s preventative. Rather than offering gym membership reimbursements, offer Headspace or a Life Coach as an alternative. As long as it positively affects the company’s bottom line, what difference does it make what “means” helps achieve that goal?

Consider the paradigm shift from a recruitment standpoint. Companies should be looking at ways to enhance worker’s personal lives since that has the biggest impact on performance.

When I work as an external coach my goal is for each employee is for them to leave better than when they came in (to meet with me). That means doing whatever it takes to minimize distractions so workers can get focused. Usually their “issues” have nothing to do with work. If something’s wrong relationally outside of work, it’s brought into the office. That’s what I mean by one encompassing circle.

Most management philosophies emphasize getting workers focused, but in my opinion it’s just the opposite. Hone in on removing distractions and you’re freed up to do your best work.

This translates directly to work life balance because focusing on wellness tactics that actually work matter. Understanding the “why” behind people’s motivations is key to unlocking optimal productivity. Evaluating current programs, gathering employee feedback and ultimately measuring data will reveal the wellness solutions you’re searching for.

How to Manage Millennials: 8 Ways to Do It Right

A recruiter must never be tired to read and research about the millennials; the majority of your employees are a part of Generation Y. While some view them in a negative light, they can be pretty productive and over-achieving when handled right.

Millennials believe they are above their jobs. After working from 8-9 hours a day, they will focus on their hobbies and leisure once they step out your office. Allowing your Millennial employees to have a work-life balance will refuel their energy and recharge their productivity battery.

Millennials love to have multiple goals. They spend a lot of money on traveling to focus on themselves then spread that energy to the people around them.

Start by providing a flexible work environment. This means that you trust them enough to manage their time properly and deliver on their tasks with flying colors.

Infographic by Guthrie-Jensen.

What Is Behind A Healthy Work/Life Balance?

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When the modern workforce never stops claiming the right to a healthy work/life balance, too many companies continue to misinterpret their demands. Indeed, there is as much a need for healthy behaviour, as there is for a balanced home and work life. In other words, a healthy work/life balance is the combination of three elements that influence the wellbeing of an individual: health, home and work. The delimitation of each factor blurs into the next one so that it’s not uncommon for employees to blame their company for health or home-related issues. In other words, when dealing with the protection of this essential human balance, it’s crucial for companies to take steps that go beyond the realms of the workplace. Indeed, businesses that offer on-site health and relaxing services, or that provide their teams with discounted home offers – whether it’s about equipment, services or entertainment that can be relevant in the home environment – show a deeper level of understanding of their responsibility in the health and happiness of their employees.

The ability to relax

When it comes to your health, sleep is just as important as following a balanced diet. Indeed, when you rest, your body can maintain your immune system and ensure that your mind stays sharp and acute. But when you’re too stressed out to sleep, your mental health can rapidly degenerate. According to eh national College Health Assessment Survey, 15.8% of college students suffer from anxiety which keeps them awake at night. it’s likely that the percentage of anxious individuals is much more significant in the workplace. Employers need to consider new options to facilitate relaxation at work, such as meditation room or even noise-cancelling facilities. As stress is the number one health issue in modern companies, ignoring the situation can only cause more issues for your team.

The potential to build a home

While it isn’t your role, as an employer, to provide a home for your staff, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your employees have access to the essentials facilities to maintain their home. At a basic level, this means that you need to ensure fair pay on time and to limit overtime as much as possible. But you can also through perks support employee home life with discounts on appliances, and recommendations for an industrial waste management company like Instant Waste Management – which is helpful for anybody making home improvement works – or a professional financing advisor. If you make it easier for people to manage their home – whether they’re looking to buy, improve or simply refurbish – it means that they can be more focused on their work during the day, hence reducing overtime, stress and personal issues.

A satisfying job

Finally, the last element of the employee’s trinity is job satisfaction. Naturally, money is a key element of satisfaction, but it’s not the only one. The opportunity for growth through job crafting and improved internal relationships can make a great deal of difference. While your employees need to find meaning in their tasks, your role is to guide and help them to develop their skills.

In conclusion, there’s more than just a job behind the complaints about healthy work/life balance of Millennials. For employers, it means changing the way they think about work significantly.

Millennials Are Investing Physically

According to this article, Millennials are spending an insane amount to stay in shape.

Traditional gyms and fitness centers aren’t up in membership; instead there is a demand for more community-based, functional and wellness centered classes.

The definition of staying is shape has changed too. Reducing stress, being more productive at work and mental health are the main benefits.

Speciality classes are more expensive than working out by yourself at the gym, but it’s also more engaging, fun and keeps you accountable for progress.

There’s always been a huge push for professional development in your career, but investing in your body may outweigh anything you can learn from a book/online.

Take for instance young moms. Their ability to bounce back to pre-pregnancy form is exceptional. Groups like Stroller Strides, SoulCycle and CrossFit become even more attractive for lifestyle goals.

With more information comes better efficiency. Millennials are realizing taking care of your body early is the best prevention from illness/injury. Being proactive is a mindset that prepares you best for the future and Millennials are embracing it.

Like anything else trends come and go, so this fitness craze can change over time, but for now businesses should be aware of it and adapt to health, wellness and athleisure as a way of life.

What We Really Do In January

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January is a bit of a let down if we’re honest. There is so much hype surrounding December and even November, with the holidays and New Years. And when we reach that time where we cross over to a New Year, there are so many people saying New Year, New Me. Setting resolutions and promises to change and do new, positive things. Unfortunately, those well-meant promises aren’t easily kept. Changing habits or even making new ones takes a lot of willpower. But just because you don’t immediately accomplish every little thing within those first few weeks of the year doesn’t mean that you have failed and should stop trying. What we really do in January doesn’t mean that you won’t accomplish what you set out to do.

Money

Following the holiday’s everyone is scrambling trying to sort out their finances. So many people use their savings to pay for Christmas, and so when it comes to the New Year, their funds are low. Rather than trying to push those minimal finances to stretch to pay for all those new activities you wanted to get involved with, wait a month and give your savings account a chance to gain a little of what it has lost. Besides, most places put up their prices in January purely because so many people sign up this month. So when you get to the end of the month and realize that you haven’t started going to the gym, or haven’t had the money to start eating clean yet, don’t worry.

Normality

Throughout the holiday’s normality goes out of the window. Following Thanksgiving, the build-up to Christmas is a blur of shopping and visiting. Christmas day is all about eating rubbish from the moment you wake up, afternoon naps, and late bedtimes. Then you have the lead up to New Year’s Eve where no one really knows what day it is. So January is a shock to the system as you try and get back to normal. So when you look back at the month, if all you have achieved is getting your sleep pattern right and are eating at the proper times, then consider it an accomplishment.

Set Up

For many people, that first week of January is a ‘set up’ week. Where you call al the places, sign up to all the things, and buy in all the stuff you need to do the things. You come up with ideas and plan how to get them off the ground – if you want to read more on that, you can click here. And then it gets to the end of the month, and you realize you haven’t done much of anything. And that is because you are living through point number two with a budget of number one. Again, see this month as a stepping stone; you have accomplished part of what you have set out to do while getting back into a normal routine and trying not to overspend. That’s an accomplishment.

Why College Students Don’t Get Enough Sleep + Ways To Improve Sleep Habits

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The National Sleep Foundation recommends that college-aged students get between 7-9 hours of sleep every night. Yet, one in three college students report having trouble sleeping as well as not getting the recommended amount of sleep each night. Although it may be stressful balancing schoolwork, social lives and jobs, the amount of sleep we get each night should not suffer because of this.

Below are some common issues that many college students face that can disrupt our sleep patterns, along with ways to improve these conditions.

Anxiety

Mental health has become a critical issue on college campuses. In fact, a study revealed that anxiety is the leading mental health issue college students face. The National College Health Assessment Survey reported that 15.8 percent of college students have been diagnosed with or treated for anxiety. The same survey found that 21.9 percent of students claimed that anxiety had negatively affected their academic performance whether it was through getting a lower grade on an exam or project, receiving an incomplete, or dropping a course. A college student must balance many things all at once including midterms, friendships, relationships, and careers. For many young adults, this is the first time dealing with significant levels of stress and can be extremely overwhelming, bringing on anxiety.

Anxiety can cause sleep problems or make existing sleep problems worse. However, getting a good night’s rest, especially as a college student, needs to be a priority. In order to reduce your anxiety and get the sleep your body needs try meditating. Focus on your breathing and visualize a serene environment.

Busy Mind

Mental over activity is becoming a major issue for people, especially college students. We’ve all had those nights where it’s impossible to get our brains to slow down long enough for us to fall asleep. For busy college students these nights can happen more frequently. When you’re juggling so many different things at once, it can often feel like there is not enough time in the day to get everything done. This leads to many students working on schoolwork or participating in extracurricular activities up until bedtime. While this may not seem like a big deal, it’s actually a huge issue because sleep isn’t as simple as turning a switch off/on. Our bodies need time to unwind and dim our minds in order to prepare for sleep.

If you’re having trouble slowing your mind down at night, allow at least one hour before bed to wind down. This will not only help create closure for the day, but it also allows your brain to begin the process of shutting off. Developing a pre-bedtime ritual is a great way to help you and your mind wind down. Try reading, journaling, or even sketching and don’t forget to avoid electronics during your wind-down time.

Discomfort

College dorm rooms come with their own set of sleep destroyers. One of the many reasons that college students have trouble sleeping in their dorm rooms is that their beds often have many other uses besides sleeping — including studying, doing school assignments, watching TV, and even hanging out with friends. Remember that although dorm rooms may be small, your bed is not your living room. You want to associate your bed with sleep so that when you see it your body craves sleep. Try to study at your desk or in the library and hang out with your friends in common areas. Another issue in your dorm room that may be causing problems with your sleep patterns is your university-issued mattress. Most of these mattresses have been used for years and may be too hard or lumpy. A poor quality mattress can cause discomfort and even body pains that can be distracting and prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep.

While you may not be able to go out and buy a new mattress for your dorm room, a mattress pad, comfortable bedding, and good sleepwear may help make it more comfortable. A soft and supportive pillow will also help add some much needed comfort to your bed.

Noise

Living in close quarters can make for a lot of noise. Whether it’s your roommate watching their favorite TV show at a high volume or your neighbors talking loudly in the hallway, noise can be extremely distracting when it comes time for bed. Unfortunately, while most resident halls have designated “quiet hours”, not all residents respect them. If your roommate and neighbors are continuously loud, especially during quiet hours, ask them to quiet down. It may even be helpful to discuss each other’s schedules and set guidelines to make sure everyone can sleep, study, and enjoy their time in the dorms peacefully. If that doesn’t work, try earplugs or white noise to help cover-up noises. Fans and sleep sounds are both great ways to cancel out noise.

Unbalanced: When Your Work Life Is Taking Over

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We hear the term work-life balance a lot these days, but how many of us really achieve it? Probably not enough! In fact, there are still far too many folks that are drained and unmotivated from a life dominated by work efforts and worries. However, help is at hand, as you can follow the tactics below to achieve a better work-life balance. Read on to find out more.

Banish overtime

Staying at the office till 10pm regularly is not only unnecessary it’s dangerous. Do you want to know why? Well, it’s unnecessary because if you are having to put in working days longer than 9 hours on a regular basis, there is something wrong with the business. Maybe they need more staff, or someone else in the team isn’t pulling their weight, but this responsibility should not always be resting on you.

It’s dangerous because, how long do you think you can keep it for without becoming exhausted and demoralized? Even if it’s the most exciting job in the world, people need downtime, rest, and time to spend with their families and friends. Without this, you have a ticket to stress and medical problems that will do neither you nor your company any good in the long term. Leave on time at least 4 nights a week, no arguments!

Streamline processes

Next, a way that you can reduce the dominance of work over the rest of your life is to look at a way of streamlining processes. This streamlining applies to many different too, as you can improve the way things are done in production, in the office, and even on the road.

In particular, look at the way you are using IT within your company, and whether you can minimize the stages and time spent on performing functions in programs like Excel. To do this, you can speak to a from specializing in professional Excel consulting as they will be able to help you get the most from your data, without having to spend hours and hours pouring over it.

Also, take a look at the communion culture in your business as email and instant messages are areas that can often suck up a lot of time unnecessarily.

Use a no message policy if someone is in the same room or building as you. The reason being that it’s way clearer and less time consuming to have that person explain the issue face to face than send 10-20 messages back and forth to get one point clarified.

Have a personal goal to work to

Last, of all, something that can really help you get a good work-life balance is ensuring that you have something to focus on outside of work. A great way to do this is to set yourself a goal in your personal life.

You may pick something that relates to health and fitness, or you can choose to learn a new skill like sailing or speaking French. You may even choose to spend more time with friends and family as your goal. Something that will definitely contribute to a much better work-life balance moving forward.

Five Steps To Improve Your Work Life Balance Today

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For young people wanting to get a career started and to work their way up in a business, or even start a business of their own, then it can be pretty full on. Even if you never intended it to be that way; the work and life balance can be pretty elusive and hard to master. So if you feel like work seems to take over your life, then here are some ways to make sure that it doesn’t. Even if you like your job, having some time out can be just what you need to refresh and to be able to do your job better.

Schedule In Downtime

Being an entrepreneur can mean that you live, sleep, and breathe your business. So as silly as it sounds, you do need to schedule in downtime. Time to just do something that you enjoy, other than your business, so that you can relax a little. It doesn’t mean that your business is suddenly going to stop running because you decide to take a day off. But what it does mean is that you are going to be refreshed and ready to start again when you’re back to work.

Outsource Work

There are going to be some tasks that are necessary to be done. But the thing is, they don’t need to be done by you. Repetitive tasks like admin, emails, and payroll could all be outsourced to other people. Have you got an assistant or a virtual assistant that could do those kinds of thing for you? These tasks can sap your energy and will always be on the to-do list, so give them to someone else to do.

Create a Safe Work Environment

Nothing says ‘time off’ like having an accident at work. So in order to make sure that you’re not having to take off any unnecessary days off work, creating a safe and healthy place to work is important. From a well-ventilated space, to having the right equipment like PPE or even ladder safety gates are all part and parcel of keeping you safe at work. Your business and work life balance can get completely thrown out as the result of an injury or major illness.

Keep Yourself Healthy

Along the same lines, it is important to keep yourself healthy and looked after. If you feel stressed or weak, you’re much more likely to get ill and need time off. And it’s not even the good kind of time off when you’re sick in bed. So exercise, eat well, and keep hydrated. Make sure you’re getting the vitamins and minerals that you need to help you stay healthy and well.

Make Working Time More Productive

If you have two hours to get a task at work done, then you need to make sure that you’re making those two hours as productive as you can. Otherwise it will eat into your personal time. So focus. Turn off distractions like TV or cell phones. Being more productive in the time you have will make your work life balance much better.

What’s At The Core Of A Micromanager?

If you work under a micromanager (most do) it’s a matter of time before you leave your job.

But in order to cope and make the best of your current situation, it’s helpful to understand what makes a micromanager tick. To help lengthen your present tenure learning to manage your boss is key.

Micromanagers rarely ever change, but knowing how to deal with them provides some daily sanity.

Micromanagers have trust issues. Requesting autonomy from them as an employee is purely a nuisance. Micromanagers view freedom as a threat. Releasing power is a micromanager’s kryptonite. They want to know, communicate and oversee everything. Don’t expect praise, support or early information. Micromanagers view that as weak.

If you view micromanagers as bulldozers it’s because they are. Micromanagers see people as the vehicle to accomplish their tasks. If you’ve ever felt “talked-down to” or with a condescending tone that’s the voice of a micromanager. Remove them from formal conversations at work and their lack of social skills are evident. Position is said to be weakest form of leadership and in social situations micromanagers feel inadequate. Micromanagers overcompensate so heavily in the areas they feel competent in it’s glaring. Micromanagers will never be referred to as leaders, only as your boss.

Chances are your micromanager’s life is work. It’s their identity. They scoff at work-life balance because they see no need for it. Some will ask occasionally how you are doing, but they get uncomfortable talking about their own personal life since it’s basically non-existent. Who has time for hobbies, family, friends or fun when you’re working 80 hours a week? Usually micromanagers will hound you for staying on top of things, while they’re quite disorganized in their role. Do as I say, not as I do – that’s classic micromanager talk. It’s hard for micromanagers to show empathy because they don’t value it. Work comes first, second and third in terms of priorities.

Being under a micromanager feels like you’re walking on egg shells. Every time there’s an interaction, request or meeting you anticipate critical feedback (because it usually happens). Micromanagers have serious control issues. Don’t expect to grow or develop under their rule. Any hint of development is seen as a threat. Micromanagers are stingy with their praise because it signals a chance you might overtake their position. Micromanagers remind you frequently who’s in charge and crush your soul while they’re at it. Surround yourself with a strong support system to vent to or else you’ll go crazy.

At the core of micromanagers lie deep insecurities. Secure leaders don’t have to stomp on others to feel good about themselves. Even when something’s not your fault, they’ll still find a way to place the blame on you. One indicator of a true micromanager is the absence of apologies. They are quick to point fingers, but don’t take responsibility when they screw up. Leaders set their people up to succeed, micromanagers set their people up to fail. The unfortunate part of micromanagers is they are rarely equipped for the role. Most managers are vaulted into the position because of technical prowess or seniority. Little do they know what got you here won’t help you as a manager. Instead of trying to learn a different skill set, micromanagers choose the path of least resistance: do it my way or take the highway.

Micromanagement isn’t a disease, but a choice. And a choice you have to make is how long will you put up with it before leaving.