Category: Inspirational/Motivational


How to Deal With the Fear That Wreaks Havoc on Your Career

When most of my clients first come to me, they express a lot of fear about their career. The fears shared include fear of…

  • Being rejected by hiring managers
  • Not finding the right job
  • Making the wrong decision on multiple job offers
  • Failing at a new career endeavor
  • Not making enough money to provide for their family
  • Staying stuck in the wrong job

A lot of these concerns boil down to deeper fears, such as fear of…

  • Losing control
  • Losing approval or influence
  • Change
  • Being wrong

You’ve probably experienced at least one (if not more) of these fears in your own career.

Steps to dealing with your fear

The first step in dealing with these emotions is to acknowledge them as normal, common, expected, and sometimes healthy. But letting them take control of you or paralyze your decision-making is when they become unhealthy.

By acknowledging your fears instead of ignoring them or denying them, you can make a conscious decision to take the next steps in dealing with your fears.

For some people, baby steps work best. One baby step you might take is to consider the worst-case scenario, and then ask yourself what the likelihood is of it ever happening, especially given your strengths and problem-solving skills.

Maybe you haven’t ever really taken an inventory of your strengths and skills. If this is the case, then you might want to take this baby step.

Perhaps getting help from a career coach is the best way for you to deal with your fears. An example of a baby step would be to set up an initial consultation just to gather more information on how the career coaching process works.

Other baby steps would be to start first with an online tutorial, or by following the tips in these two blog posts:

1. How to Overcome Your Fear of Risk and Improve Your Life

How to Overcome Your Fear of Risk and Improve Your Life

In this post, I share seven ways to gain control over your fear and improve your career.

2. Five Common Fears (and Myths) of Quitting a Job You Hate

5 Common Fears (and Myths) of Quitting a Job You Hate (Re-post)

This post is for those who may find themselves in a place where they can’t continue to stay in their current work situation, because it’s negatively affecting their health. There are times when some people may have to quit their job without another job lined up. This isn’t the answer for everyone, but if you find yourself in this situation, there are some tips in this post you can implement to survive the period in between employment.

Also in this post, I’ve provided some ways to challenge your fears and assumptions to help you be more realistic about your career. These tips are also and especially helpful for those who don’t have the option to leave their current job yet.

Start today

One thing to keep in mind is the fears you’re feeling will likely never go away. You’ll always experience them to some degree. The goal is to reduce the degree of your fear by doing those small things you have control over.

Taking small action steps will add up over time, therefore subtracting the amount of fear you feel.

What’s one step you can take, or one tip from the referenced posts you can implement today, to begin dealing with your fears?

How Your Grit Can Help You Negotiate a Better Salary

My grandmother was the hardest working person I’ve ever known (not just woman, but PERSON). She had grit. And she knew how to value her hard work. In honor of Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day, allow me to share her story.

My Grandmother’s Grit

My grandmother worked in a textile mill for a total of 54 years, well beyond the age when most people retire. At the same time, she worked her and my grandfather’s farm until age 91. Because my grandfather couldn’t walk very well, my grandmother did much of the leg-work of running the farm. She also had a side-hustle doing alterations, and raised two children while doing all of this.

My grandmother could pick 100 gallons of strawberries in 90 degree heat at record speed. She was three times faster than people half her age. She was such a hard worker that when her shoe fell off while stooped over picking green beans, she never even stopped to put it back on. A few weeks later her sister noticed the shoe tangled up in some vines. She asked whose shoe it was. My grandmother responded casually, “Oh, it’s mine. I walked out of it and just kept going.”

My grandmother was such a hard worker that on the morning she had a major stroke and was paralyzed on one side of her body, she wouldn’t let my grandfather call 911. Instead she made him hold her up while she fixed breakfast for him with one arm. He had to sneak and call 911.

Know Your Worth

My grandmother was the hardest working person I ever knew, but there was one thing she wouldn’t do. She would never work a job that didn’t pay her fairly. In fact, when she had to enter a nursing home at age 91, she still wanted to work. So, she asked the nursing home director for a job. The director told her she could help deliver mail to the rooms, but they wouldn’t be able to pay her. She responded with, “No thank you.”

Don’t get me wrong. My grandmother was a very giving and generous person. She’d make sure everyone else had food in their stomachs and shirts on their backs long before herself. She denied herself a lot of things so others could have more. But she also understood her value, and never cheapened her skills.

My grandmother’s grit serves as an example to me, and hopefully to other women, that our skills and abilities are valuable in the workplace. We should not settle for a compensation not commensurate with our experience or the services we’re providing. Instead, we should stand up for what we’re worth, or be willing to walk away.

If you know you’re a hard worker and you’re good at your job, get the confidence to ask for what’s fair. Know your worth and negotiate that new job offer or that contract with a new client. Ask for your long over-due raise or promotion. Don’t demand this kind of respect, but instead, command it. And teach your daughters and granddaughters to do the same.

Need help improving your salary negotiation skills? paNASH can help! Email me to get started.

How to Answer, “What Do You Do?” When Unemployed

It’s the question we all get when first meeting someone. “So, what do you do?” Although it’s not specified in the question, we know the person’s asking what we do for a living. But how do we answer this when unemployed, and without feeling like a failure?

A lot of people are currently unemployed due to the pandemic. They dread this question. Maybe you also dread it, even if you’re not unemployed.

Being unemployed doesn’t define you

First, we have to let go of the false idea that our worth is based in our work. Our careers and jobs don’t define us.

And while our worth also doesn’t come from our skills and talents, we can better answer this question by looking back to see which God-given skills are the common thread in our past experience, including paid work, volunteer work, and what I call “fun work.”

A personal example of “fun work” is when I filled in at the local paddle board shop when they were short-staffed. This job was fun because I got to be on my paddle board, and I got to be outside on the water. Plus, it was a nice way to add some variety to my regular career coaching schedule. But it was also fun because I got to use my gifts of teaching and encouragement when training new paddlers.

These God-given talents in encouraging and teaching others have been a common thread throughout my experience. Not only do I currently use them in my career coaching, I’ve used them in my past work in higher education while advising college students, and when working with aspiring recording artists in the Nashville music industry. I’ve also used them when volunteering in organizations like Project Connect. I’ve even seen how these talents have been used in my personal relationships to help friends and family.

I love encouraging others. It’s a natural, God-given gift and talent I can use whether I’m employed or not.

A new answer

After looking back and realizing this, I now answer the question “What do you do?” differently from my previous usual answer of, “I do career coaching.” Instead, I now say, “I encourage others.” This response  leads to more meaningful conversations.

What about you? What natural gift or talent have you used throughout your past experience and other areas of your life? You can use this to answer the question, “What do you do?”, both when your employed and unemployed.

If you need encouragement, or if you’d like to discover new and creative ways to use your own talents in helping others, let’s talk. I’d be happy to schedule a complimentary initial consultation with you. Click here to get started.

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Warning! Pursuing Your Passion Is Not for the Faint of Heart

I have a friend from my church small group who is an epidemiologist. No one becomes an epidemiologist without having at least some passion for the study of disease outbreaks.

About this time last year, he took a new job as the chief medical officer for the Tennessee Department of Health, right before the pandemic hit the United States. As you can probably imagine, my friend’s job has been extremely busy and stressful this past year. It’s definitely not for the faint of heart.

But it’s my friend’s God-given passion for his specialty and for helping people that keeps him going. God-given passion is what helps him push through the stress he’s dealing with and the overtime he’s putting in.

And when he gets a little time off, it’s his God-given passions outside of work which help restore and rejuvenate him, like spending time with family, hiking, and kayaking.

Your passion is meant to serve others

My mission is to help people discover ways to pursue their God-given passions in their careers. But pursuing a passion is not to be confused with finding the perfect job, because no such thing exists.

Also, it’s not to be confused with just finding what’s going to make you happy. You have not been given passions and skills to only serve yourself. They’ve been given to you to serve others, either directly or indirectly.

You don’t have to be an epidemiologist to make a difference in the world. Instead, you only have to learn how your own gifts and desires can be used in noble ways.

You do this by asking yourself what problem your own passions and skills help solve. Next, you determine who experiences this problem and is in need of your solution.

Once you discover who your passions and skills best serve, you’ll have to make some decisions that line up with your personal values and your family’s values. Clarifying those values is what will help you determine which sacrifices you’re willing to make when necessary, and therefore which opportunities to say yes to.

Knowing your values will also help you to persevere when the work gets difficult or stressful. Because make no mistake, it will get stressful at times.

Are you ready to pursue your passion?

No matter what your passions or skills are, you have them for a reason: to help serve others. One of the most God-honoring things you can do is to work in those skills and passions. Yes, there will be times when it becomes difficult. And when it does, it becomes a living sacrifice.

But it should not be difficult because you’re trying to do something you have no desire for, or haven’t been equipped to do. This only leads to a quick burnout.

If you need help figuring out how your passions and skills best serve others, or if you feel like you’ve been neglecting them and want to use them to make a difference, let’s talk. I’d be happy to schedule a complimentary initial consultation with you. Click here to take this brave step in your career.

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How to Find Joy in Your Work Right Now

When I do presentations on the importance of personal branding, I often ask the question, “Why is it important for us to know our weaknesses, limitations, and failures?” Most people respond with, “So we can get better at them.”

While I’m all for personal and professional development and improvement, this is not why we need to know our weaknesses. We need to know our weaknesses so we can know what to say no to (instead of saying yes to everything), and therefore free up our time for the work that positively impacts the people in need of our strengths.

Making the shift in your work

If we constantly go against the grain, trying to improve our God-given weaknesses just so we can give the appearance of being good at everything, we have no time or energy to use our God-given talents.

But, when we make a shift and focus on giving the talents we have, instead of trying to get the talents we don’t have, we discover something truly beautiful and amazing: our weaknesses become part of our assets.

The lessons we learn from our weaknesses, along with the adaptations we make for them, become our strengths. This is a true example of beauty from ashes. And this is what uniquely equips us to carry out our calling in a way that makes our work fulfilling instead of soul-sucking.

Don’t believe me? Watch this TED Talk from comedian Michael Jr., and you’ll get it.

Know your set up and deliver your punchline

Your gifts will make room for you in the place you’re supposed to be. If you don’t yet know your strengths or your calling, paNASH can help you.

We can help you weed out the things you don’t need to waste your time and energy on. And, we can help you discover not only your talents, but also who you’re called to deliver them to.

Work that’s fulfilling and purposeful

To learn more about how we do this, you can schedule a free initial consultation by filling out our intake form. The result is the fulfillment and purpose you’ve longed for in your work.

What are you waiting for? Get in the game today!

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