The Journey To Overcome Fear

As the recent months have shown. Life isn’t with some amount of uncertainty. While any sort of natural disaster, such as the recent fires in Northern California, or the devastating hurricane in Puerto Rico, can cause fear. So does a life-threatening accident, be it a car accident, nearly suffocating in a house fire, or even falling through the rotted plank of an unsafe floor. Each of these moments can be a debilitating experience both in the present as well as over time. Such events can have a ripple effect on the lives of their survivors. These “ripples” can include crippling fear whenever placed within anything related to the accident, fleeting moments of frozen terror, nausea, nightmares involving the accident, disgust, or obsessions with all things pertinent to the accident. Other emotions like denial, depression, hallucinations and even paranoid delusions can manifest with PTSD after an accident. While any of these conditions would be difficult to incorporate into daily life, the good news is, there are many ways a person can work through their personal fears and disturbances individually and as part of a group experience. Knowing how to overcome these feelings of trauma can be both empowering and uplifting towards helping you move on.

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Psychotherapy

While this is the most obvious method to recovery, and a common process used to overcome fear, it is still worth mentioning. A psychologist is a professional listener who can work you through your anxieties through talking and exercises. A psychiatrist is someone familiar with the works involved in psychology, but who can also prescribe medications to aid those suffering from more dramatic problems. Professionals in this field are growing and emerging with new techniques including the ability to see patients online and while mobile.

It is important to understand you aren’t alone. A fact I picked up on the website for the American Psychological Association (APA).  “According to the National Institute of Mental Health, more than a quarter of American adults experience depression, anxiety or another mental disorder in any given year.”

Cognitive Behavior Therapy

“CBT” is a series of exercises used to rewrite a person’s reaction to, particularly stressful or unpleasant behavior.

The definition from the Mayo Clinic is another way to understand how CBT works; “Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a common type of talk therapy (psychotherapy). You work with a mental health counselor (psychotherapist or therapist) in a structured way, attending a limited number of sessions. CBT helps you become aware of inaccurate or negative thinking so you can view challenging situations more clearly and respond to them in a more effective way. “

For example, a person who survives an accident involving a semi-truck might reflexively begin to scratch at the parts of his body that were injured from the collision whenever a similar truck is within sight. Using CBT, a victim might be told to remain mindful of triggers and to actively do something else with their hands whenever triggered. After enough time and practice, the individual’s constant awareness erodes the reflexive fear, resulting in a minimization or removal of the fear.

Exposure Therapy

This subsection of CBT involves steadily increasing the patient’s familiarity, proximity, and duration of exposure to the source of debilitating fears. By slowly and methodically upping the period of exposure, a person begins to see the trigger as less threatening and more mundane. It takes a lot of time, but exposure therapy can be effective, especially when walked through it professionally. In 2016, the Atlantic did an interesting article worth reading on State Of Art Exposure Therapy.

 

Exercise

Physical exertion, such as a one-mile jog, or a game of basketball, has been shown to improve a person’s mental well-being by distracting the person from his fears and also serving as a means of bolstering self-esteem. This is a great way to work through restless energy and adrenaline that can come with fear, and help to make your experience in recovery shorter. But remember the exercise doesn’t have to mean you go from zero to ten. if you aren’t someone who does it regularly start slow. Walks alone or with a friend. Consider borrowing a friends dog if you haven’t one and volunteer to take that 4-legged stress reducer for an always welcomed outing.

 

Next Steps & Resources

While everyone is afraid of something, not everyone shows fear the same way. In cases where a person develops intense fears after a traumatic or other frightening experience, it’s heartening to know there are multiple routes that can be used when restoring a calm state of mind.

I have listed more resources that can help you with a journey to overcome fear on the MentorSF Links page.

For those considering mental and emotions health support, two recommendations here in the Bay Area that I am especially impressed with include EMERGE, the Adams-Tynan Clinical Foundation (ATCF) is a nonprofit therapeutic organization founded by Luke Adams and Chad Tynan and led by trained, intuitive, Somatic, Environmental, and Transpersonal healers (full disclosure here, I was so impressed with them, I recently agreed to sit on the Advisory Board) and Steven Tierney of the  Tierney Psychotherapy Group. For those of you on the East Coast, I recommend you check out Psychotherapist, Sex Therapist, and Educator, David Ortman.

For other locations, you can call your local or state psychological association, which may have a list of practicing psychologists organized by geographic area or specialty. Or use the online directory, at the APA’s Psychologist Locator Service.

 

Narrative Resources:

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Retirement isn’t the end

Posted November 13, 2017 By Frank Strona

It seems to say the words ” retirement ” is to equate itself with  of “being of no more value

  • I could make a snarky generalization and say that it comes from an over-eager, self-indulgent, up and coming generation who thinks they have all the answers and anyone older than 50 is outdated.
  • I could say it comes from a youth-obsessed tech world which values high-energy and creative ignorance over focus, commitment, and expereince
  • I could even say it comes from inexperienced leaders who struggle daily with having to manage people older and more experienced  then they are with different work ethics

I could.. but that wouldn’t really fix anything.

Retirement or bust

Like everyone today, unless you are in the top 10% income bracket – you are struggling to get ahead and stay relevant after retirement. So when you find yourself in a place where, after having your “paid your dues” and you have put your time in, ready to enjoy a new role in life – you end up realizing that, the hoped-for stability is no longer a viable option. Don’t give up. There are a number of senior professionals and retirees out there struggling financially, which is prompting many to think outside the box. To consider launching the business that they have dreamed about on the back burner for so long. Do not think you are the only retiree out there starting a business.

There are a number of senior professionals and retirees out there struggling to find a new path, which is prompting many to think outside the box. Consider launching a part-time business that you have dreamed about, but placed on the back burner while putting children through school or being the “good” employee. Maybe it is time to take stock of your assets including yourself and see what you have to offer. Yes, I will admit that “being white, male, attractive-looking, and living in a place like Boston or San Francisco” does tend to be the recent trend of who gets funded. But that shouldn’t stop you. More and more I see opportunities for seniors to launch new ways to make money. Building on years of experience and observations, the key is how to harness what you know into a profitable path

Much of my work with seniors include helping them to find a new path, to help them find a way to find a voice in business today. From becoming a consultant (in some cases back to the very places they retired from – but on new terms), to launching online and mobile administrative and service-oriented opportunities and more. In fact, the Storytelling Boot Camp started because I was approached to create a new way of learning for seniors who wanted to use social media more proficeintly that learning from “the grandchildren”. What I see happeneing now is retirees are rethinking a future for themseleves.

If you need some inspiration, here’s a few success stories to get you going.

Ray Kroc

One of the most famous stories of a successful retiree making it big is Raymond (Ray) Kroc. The man was over 50 and pursued the idea of making a business into a successful enterprise. He was not successful for some time, but he finally found success when he met the McDonald’s brothers. He partnered with them and helped the brothers turned their idea into one of the most successful franchises the world had ever seen.

Harland David Sanders

Colonel Harland David Sanders was above a certain age, and he was also interested in forming a successful business. At first, his dream centered around providing delicious food to patrons, but it did not take long before the idea turned into a franchise. His restaurant became what most people know as KFC, and it took the world by storm, cementing that it is never too late to start a business.

Yuval Zaliouk

Yuval Zaliouk is another person worth mentioning, especially if you are considering starting your own business. Zaliouk was a retired symphony conductor but saw that his wife was very interested in selling her cookies. The couple decided to invest into their cookie-making business, which they called Almondina. The company has done very well since it launched and is featured in major chains, such as Trader Joe’s. It definitely proves why taking a risk and investing in your concept might be the right move. Sure, getting enough capital might seem hard, but you can do something as easy as selling your life insurance policy to start your business.

Frankie Locallo

Frankie Locallo’s story tells you that you can do what you love, and it is not too late to start doing so, even though you are retired. Locallo was hungry to start a business and decided that whatever business she started needed to couple with her love for dogs. It was at this point that she thought of Puppy Love. At first, she was just providing puppies for children’s birthday parties so that the kids could play with them, but her business has grown beyond that. Adult parties, corporate parties, and many other types of events are falling in love with her little business.


These are just some of the businesses that were started by retired people. It goes to show that retirees starting a business later in life is not too strange. In fact, it can be thought of as common. Go forth, and believe in yourself and the idea you have tucked in your heart. It’s never too late!

Additional Resources

http://money.cnn.com/2014/10/09/retirement/retirement-income-gap/index.html

https://becolife.com/financialadvisor/

https://www.inc.com/leigh-buchanan/next-act-the-real-reasons-so-many-baby-boomers-are-starting-businesses.html

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Taking the time to QandA group lists

Posted November 8, 2017 By Frank Strona

QandA – Question and answer advice to grow on; the practicality of updating your business plan

From Real World MBA / S.F. group’s classes train people to run businesses article – Chronicle 1998/Brant Ward

This week on Alignable, a locally focused business networking site I recently became part of one of the other members posted to the QandA or question and answer section: What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever gotten?

At first, I wasn’t going to bother posting on this one – I figured I wouldnt have anything unique or memorable to share. Then I remembered my old friend and colleague, Hal Heller, whose support, friendship and insight was crucial to me when I first started working for myself. Hal was a graduate and often served as a student mentor at the Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center here in San Francisco. He was also the owner of Bay Area Motorcycle Training until his death. He had a love of seeing small and creative entrepreneurs take control and rise to success. Always encouraging people to see opportunities as a chance to explore and find new ways to rise to them. We both shared the belief that life wasn’t about geting stuck and staying in a rut. Rather life life offered each of us multiple opportunites to get unstuck if we stayed ready for them. So my answer, which I posted reflects his message told to me and others so often…

When asked on a QandA “What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever gotten?”

My answer would be:

The best advice I was ever told (and is often the one even I can forget to consider) is when making decisions such as developing and implementing a new strategy or direction in my business, to always “go back to your business plan, update it the plan to reflect your new activity and add the budget changes to the financial pages”. By taking the time and energy todo this routinely, with dedicated time and focus on spent on updating the business plan – serves as a perfect way to  clarify if a new action fits with your goals and mission. It will also remind you to take the emotional excitement of a “new opportunity” and put it on hold for a moment while you do a deep dive into the ‘nuts and bolts” of practicality.

The yield is usually a better understanding of how the change meets your brand; helps to make your concept tighter and in most cases actually may shed light on other changes in your plan that need to be reflected.

Not updating our business plans seems to be a major action that many business owners forget once they get busy in the day to day running of the project.  By going back in and revising that business plan, not only do you refresh your thinking, you ultimately, as you add update the story and numbers, get a better picture of how that change it will affect your bottom line in the both the short and long term.

 

FYI -Anyone can join Alignable. if you are looking to expand your local professional network. Use this link https://www.alignable.com/join/hxcabnimxncev4imoogkeg 

Note: I am not affiiated with it in any way other than a member.

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Pay attention to what data is out there when considering which platform to use

Several weeks ago I did a  “Post-it where?” blog entry that looked at the thinking behind which social media platform and how to determine the best thinking and fit towards your goal. This week a new version looks at the concept of ” Pay Attention to the data” content was released by Social Media Today’s blog and I thought it worth a mention and encouragement for you to check it out.

This weeks post “The Advertiser’s Guide to Social Media Demographics” written by Taylor Schaller, does a nice job simplifying the various social media platforms and include short infographics to drive the points home. Below is a few examples. Take the 10 min to review the post and keep it handy for sharing with others.

 

Facebook

Instagram

Twitter

 

 

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5 Wild Ways Your Bad Habits Affect Your Life

Posted November 2, 2017 By Frank Strona

Bad Habit.. Who Me?

Everyone has a bad habit or two (maybe more). Maybe it’s a mundane bad habit like nail-biting, pen clicking, hogging the remote, or foot tapping. Or maybe it’s a bad habit that affects your life a little more, like non-stop snacking, hogging personal space or talking space in meetings,  procrastinating, or overspending. Some bad habits cause short-term harm to people’s health and relationships. Other habits can cause long-lasting pain and suffering in ways that most people who do them have never imagined possible. Some can even get you fired, or worse, not even get you hired in the first place. Take a few minutes to look at 5 of the more common ones many of us share and some thoughts on how to “break” them.

Repetitive Gum Chewing

  • Chewing gum every now and then is perfectly fine, but for those who chew gum daily or even multiple times a day, it can cause problems for their health. Chewing gum too frequently can force teeth out of a healthy position, tighten and strain chewing muscles, and dislodge fillings. It can lead to nighttime teeth grinding and jaw clenching. Over time, all of these can wear out your jaw joints, which puts pressure on your nerves and causes joint and ear pain.
  • Beyond your dental health, chewing gum may affect your diet, causing you to eat more junk food and less fruit. It can also lead to gastrointestinal problems like irritable bowel syndrome. All of these can impact your life detrimentally. Not only will you probably irritate your coworkers because you’re constantly chewing gum, but jaw pain and gastrointestinal issues can affect your productivity.
  • Gum chewing in the workplace is also a common “top 10 pet peeves” among people who share offices or work in cubes.

My Hint: Chew less or at least chew smaller pieces. Over time you may find that splitting that stick into thirds, will fill the urge to chew, but isn’t such a mouthful.

Constant Daydreaming

  • Fantasizing is a normal human behavior. Pretty much everyone does it occasionally. However, habitual daydreaming (also known as maladaptive daydreaming) can disrupt every part of your life. Many people who daydream like this do it to escape the pain of real-world troubles like extreme debt, job loss, suicidal feelings and debilitation from medical conditions.
  • Fantasy worlds can take over your life so much that you lose track of time, stop cultivating relationships, decrease positive personal care habits like bathing and eating and pace uncontrollably. If can even cause mental and physical exhaustion as well as joint and muscle pain. The more these fantasy worlds invade your thoughts, the less you focus on the real world, which can lead to lost friendships and, even worse, lost jobs. Employers don’t like employees who can’t focus or constantly arrive late.
  • Seems that for some this is just a “mental break” taken to get through the day, but for others, it is a condition that can be explored with understanding how you sleep and or therapy.

My Hint: If you aren’t feeling challenged or feel your workplace is lacking in some creative time in your career – speak with your leads to explore ways to spark your creative process. Otherwise – take control and do it on your own. Sign up for a class, a book club or some other activity that may ignite your brain into a more creative mood.

Ignoring Medication Warnings

  • Many people ignore label warnings on prescription and over-the-counter medications (Yup, I will own that – I am bad that way).
  • Even many common drugs can cause horrifying side effects when used improperly. For example, if you take too much acetaminophen, you can black out or experience severe liver inflammation and/or damage. The same can happen if you drink too much alcohol or come down with infectious mononucleosis while taking acetaminophen. Other drugs can increase the risk of sunburns or heat exhaustion, or cause rashes and even strokes in high temperatures and with direct sunlight exposures. Even just getting drowsy at work can be problematic; imagine blacking out because you didn’t know the side effects of your medication. You should never just pop pills. Always read the labels.

My Hint: Ask your Pharmacist; they often can tell you right in the moment if what you are taking can be a problem with other medications or if it has known warnings.

Distracted & Drunk Driving

  • Maybe you’ve got a habit of texting while driving because you just have to be in-the-know at all times. Did you know that texting while driving makes you as impaired as you’d be if you’d drunk four beers and gotten behind the wheel? Texting while driving can be even more dangerous than drunk driving. No matter which one you have a habit of—texting while driving or drunk driving—any type of distraction while driving could destroy your life. Not only can it ruin friendships, but you could also find it much harder to get a job if you have a criminal record.
  • All it takes is looking away from the road for a second for a child to run out in the street or to swerve into an oncoming lane of traffic. If you accidentally injure or even kill someone, you’ll end up facing criminal charges, and even if you don’t end up in jail or prison, you could still end up with community service, fines, or a lawsuit for punitive damages.

My Hint: Just stop. You aren’t better than everyone else at multitasking while driving. This is one of those “you know it’s going to get you in trouble eventually – so what not correct it now before you or someone you love gets hurt.”

Smoking Around Non-Smokers

  • It’s well-known that smoking is unhealthy, but that doesn’t stop millions of people from doing it. The problem comes when those smokers don’t think about how their habit affects those around them. It’s not just your own health you’re damaging. Breathing in the smoke secondhand can damage the health of non-smokers as well. Tobacco smoke contains thousands of chemicals that can cause health problems from heart disease to cancer. Smoking even just once in a non-smoker’s home can potentially harm their health immediately via the smoke or over time through ash dust.
  • Even if you respect your non-smoking acquaintances and only smoke in designated smoking areas, smoke still travels and it stays on your clothes. The people around you can still breathe in those chemicals just from being near you after you’ve smoked. The more you smoke, the more you risk negatively affecting your relationships with non-smokers, because they won’t want their health compromised from your bad habit.
  • Lots of alternatives exist these days to move towards being smoke-free. They should; the “stop smoking” industry is almost as well funded as the tobacco companies themselves. So look towards your local healthcare provider, social service organizations, your health insurance company website or visit SmokeFree.gov for other ideas.

 

Having one or more of these habits could have a strong affect in your life in ways you might not even register until they become a problem. It’s time to consider which is the best way to dump or at least minimize them. Improve your life and the lives of those you interact with daily. Remember, January is right around the corner – wouldn’t it be cool to move into the new year with some healthy resolutions already practiced and in place?

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Talking about Mentoring LGBTs in Tech at TechInclusion

Posted October 30, 2017 By Frank Strona

Talking about Mentoring LGBTs in Tech at TechInclusion

As I posted earlier this week on my latest post of my food blog BiteTheRoad.com, I had a super busy few weeks. One of the highlights was surely the 10 min “TED” style talk on Mentoring LGBTs that incorporated storytelling as a way to share about the importance of mentorships and mentors for the LGBT person in Tech. It was a great afternoon with so many very cool people present. I had forgotten how I enjoy the process of planning using the storytelling technique and coaching through humour. The best part for me personally was the moment I reminded myself – that this was what I loved doing. Showing and modeling how the power and importance that comes with taking to a platform or stage and storytelling, not only the “wins”. Those are often the easy parts, but also sharing about the hard stuff, the almost and most definately the big “fails” we all go through. After the talk, several folks took the time to let me know how they appreciated my candor and honesty, about the power that ignoring an opportunity becasue of fear, labels or difference of beliefs or race can raise. So TechInclusion was a personal win for me!

It was also fun to be back in the San Francisco Armory in this other role, even if I always enjoyed it from my other one. As a venue – they do a great job with hosting programs. one of the folks snapped a picture of me in motion and I dressed it up a bit and shared about my social media hubs as well. Below is the slide set – but video to soon be posted!

 

 

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Holiday campaign planning – done your 2018 plan yet?

Posted October 25, 2017 By Frank Strona

From David Fowler’s ’Tis The Season: 11 Email Best Practices For Holiday Campaigns List

Holiday campaigns, really? already?

Now really – I know, it barely October and at least here in San Francisco, I can tell the New Year is months away, because, on October 1st, they already start slowly sliding in the holiday drama so that by the 15th, its a full out reminder that the winter holidays will be on us soon.

Many of you are already thinking, that means a “todo list” of performance plans to complete, vacation and the resulting scheduling of staff and more importantly the planning a holiday campaign. For non-profits and those seeking to bring in funds that capitalize on the end of year funds, donations and other key revenue streams having an end of the year or holiday campaign is crucial. Stuck wor ideas – this is a good time to check the blogs as many of your favorites will start publishing “best pick” types ones. On the Hubspot blog, in Lindsay Kolowich’s “12-minute read” recent post 15 Brilliant Examples of Holiday Marketing Campaigns offers some good ideas as a starting place to get your thinking going. Last year I posted about “promoting your content” and you can find that here.

David Fowler recently shared this post; Tis The Season: 11 Email Best Practices For Holiday Campaigns which suggest 11 of his “best practices” for your holiday campaign. It’s a good read for those of you thinking or who haven’t started thinking of your end of year promotion/campaign. From his list 5 of them stand out for me as the ones that always seem to catch people by surprise

My 5-holiday takeaways from Fowler’s “11 Email Best Practices For Holiday Campaigns” list:

  • Email list hygiene – This means that quarterly email lists (and snail mail address list) you keep meaning to do a review of – it really needs to get done. Doing in October with a planned completion of October 31 will leave this task prepped for the holiday campaign and bring you into the strategic planning for the next year with demographics that may shape your outreach.
  • Review current levels of engagement – This goes hand in hand with getting your list cleaned up. Now is the time to be brainstorming and networking to determine how you want your engagement to look next year. Take a critical, but kindly, look at what yours looked like this year. Include the wide landscape of your reach; Internal, external, influencers, missed opportunities and dig into that file of “maybe I shoulds”.
  • Link email campaigns with other digital marketing activities: This is my reminder to also expand your thinking about partnerships and storytelling as a way to expand your reach, brand and develop new opportunities both digitally and in real time. By linking and cross promoting other peoples efforts, you build cross-over demand and inspire new followers. I know this is the perfect time to start thinking about interviews, podcasts, and other marketing tools that encourage interactivity and reach. Or develop a “free” digital “something” and offer it to key select partners to offer via the platforms that promote as a holiday extra and negotiate the tracking and sharing of the downloads.
  • Ensure networks can handle increases in email traffic: Yeah – this not the time to get skimpy with your tech needs. Not a good time to roll out any new functionality that is temperamental. Do some forecasting with your tech team. If you are the “teach team”don’t use this time to make significant changes without backup. But at the same time – it’s a perfect time to check with your hosting services and other supplemental tools to ensure you can handle an increase in traffic or web hits. Oh and this also includes and subscription renewals you have pending – get them taken care of early. Also, try to get some forward reading in now on how to prepare or prevent your traffic gridlock.
  • Set realistic expectations and goals – much of the above all play into this one. Its good to aim hight for your goals – but maintaining your own “reality check” as to what is realistic is also important. When I work with small businesses and/or the individual business owner, this is the time I encourage them to take a three-prong new year planning approach and introduce time to brainstorm and journal the follow considerations; a) How will staying the same affect us,  b) what would big growth mean and c) what happens if we stumble.

For the full read of Fowler’s article, visit this post on the CMO.com opinions page

 

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A few “good reads” From my Monday list

Posted October 24, 2017 By Frank Strona

A recap listing of what I read on Monday

  • LinkedIn has been the social network geared to professionals for years—but it’s growing in popularity due to its people-centric approach.

    ’Tis The Season: 11 Email Best Practices For Holiday Campaigns Because email lists and the infrastructure to process digital campaigns are the backbones of successful digital holiday campaigns, think of your No. 1 priority as checking email lists, and checking them twice. Here are some tips for things you can start doing today to help assure success this holiday season. [NOTE: I am posting about this later in the week]

  • 3 simple ways to stop a Twitter catastrophe In today’s world, customer service starts on Twitter. Instead of waiting on hold for 30 minutes, fighting with an automatic answering service and praying to speak to an actual person, millennials are turning to social media to air their grievances. It’s more efficient, but your brand is vulnerable. When you receive negative customer complaints on Twitter, your organization is pushed into the spotlight. How you respond can make all the difference.
  • Facebook Live adds its own screen-sharing feature When you want to share your screen to Facebook Live, you hit the button on the Live interface that says “Share Screen,” and you’ll be prompted to allow the extension to be installed to your browser. It worked with Chrome, but the option wasn’t available in Firefox. [Note: This makes me wonder how this will impact bandwidth in the workplace]
  • Why LinkedIn is a hot spot for communicators [See the Infographic on the right] LinkedIn has been the social network geared to professionals for years—but it’s growing in popularity due to its people-centric approach. A growing focus on personal branding, networking online and content sharing are just a few reasons that more users than ever (roughly 500 million) are using it. [Note: I am still not convinced about LinkedIn; I remain on the fence as to its usefulness and authenticity.. that is not to say I am not on it either. I just am not sure how much real networking ROI it adds to me professionally]
  • KFC Quietly Followed 11 Herbs and Spices on Twitter, Then Waited to See If Anyone Would Notice “We planted this on Twitter over a month ago,” said Freddie Powell, creative director at Wieden+Kennedy. “Frankly, we weren’t sure if anybody was going to find it. Sometimes you just have to put stuff out into the universe and cross your fingers that the internet will work its magic.” [Note: This was clever, I have to say — even I noticed this getting air-time and watching it happen]
  • An addict’s tale: My week without social media By Monday I’d deleted Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook, Pinterest and LinkedIn applications off my phone and logged out of all accounts on my laptop: it had begun. Hi, my name is Inés and I’m a social media addict. But this week, I decided to go through digital detox by turning off all of my major distractions. [Note: I do this periodically and even used to assign a “weekend” version to students having them write by hand no less, an essay in class following the weekend]

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7 Daily Investments to Help Relieve Stress

Posted October 23, 2017 By Frank Strona

People who are successful at managing stress have a method. If you’re sweating the small stuff in daily life, it’s important to learn ways to reduce stress before it transforms into a health issue or mood disorder down the road. Here are 5 stress soothers that you can incorporate every day:

 

Investments 1: Walking On Sunshine

A simple walk is easy to work into your day. You don’t need fancy equipment, it’s free, and it starts the minute you walk out the front door. According to Help Guide, a brisk walk for 20 minutes daily boosts the feel-good endorphins in your body, naturally improving mood and self-esteem while reducing stress and calming the nerves. You don’t need to pound the pavement – studies show that even a short, low-intensity stroll is effective. For added stress-reduction during your walk, practice a simple meditation technique with each step. Focus your attention on each footstep while counting “one, two, one, two” and visualize the number in your mind as you step. If you notice your thoughts drifting to something else, gently bring your mind back to counting your footsteps.

 

Investments 2: Hit the Pause Button

If you are feeling agitated, do not go any further. Take a break and continue working later. Reacting to a situation when you are already tightly wound only makes it worse. Take time for yourself before proceeding with other tasks. When you are feeling refreshed and clear headed again, go back to the issue at hand.

 

Investments 3: Breathe from Your Belly

There are many meditation techniques that you can work into your daily routine. One extremely pleasurable method is diaphragmatic breathing. Place one hand on your chest and the other on your belly. Breathe deeply while concentrating only on your breath and feel your belly expand. The hand on your chest will not move if done correctly. doTERRA recommends using frankincense oil to enhance your meditation routine. This type of breathing activates your parasympathetic nervous system.

 

Investments 4: Write a Journal or Blog

Banish any lingering thoughts from your mind by writing them down. It can be as simple as taking a page each day and writing down three positive things you are grateful for. Or, channel your creative voice into a blog with pictures to tell the world your story.  Our Storytelling Technology Bootcamp focuses specifically on the benefits of this practice and how the storytelling has become a movement. Putting down your thoughts and emotions gets it out of your system and often helps you find a solution. Sharing your ideas with others through a blog gives others new perspective as well.

 

Investments 5: Have a Good Night’s Sleep

Choose a predictable and calming sleep routine that you look forward to. Meditate, take a soothing bath, read, sip chamomile tea, or listen to soft music. Whatever it is, allow yourself the time to enjoy and move towards sleep. Adding to the quality of your sleep will add to your productivity during the day.

 

Investments 6: Make Time for Relationships

Cultural postmodernism has wreaked havoc on our ability and desire to participate in romance, but emotional intimacy remains a central pillar of the human experience, nonetheless. Research shows that pursuing and prioritizing relationships reduces stress, lengthens lifespan, increases happiness, and may even reduce the risk factors of addiction. A vigorous sex life has also been shown to reduce stress and improve emotional intimacy.

 

Investments 7: Invest in Yourself

One of the most common stressors occurs when we are spread between too many competing priorities. When we feel pulled in different directions, one of the first things to get cut from the routine is our self-care and personal improvement. It takes a lot of discipline, but try to carve out some time to invest in your own growth. Take a class, listen to a podcast, read a book. Sharpen yourself mentally, physically, and spiritually. More than anything else, this type of investment will trickle down into other areas of your life – increasing performance at work, strengthening your relationships, and producing emotional resilience necessary to tackle life’s many challenges and trials.

 

Stress is a part of daily life, but the good news is that you are in control. You should strive for an optimal level of stress – enough to coax you into growth behaviors, but not so much that it becomes crippling. In determining what an optimal and practical level of stress is, get a mentor who can help coach you through it. By incorporating these seven useful investments in yourself, you can reduce stress and experience new freedom and vitality. Have more to share? let us know! or tweet them and use the hashtag #MentorSFCA

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Is Hard Work Enough to Land Your Dream Job?

Posted October 16, 2017 By GuestSpot

The Dream Job Recipe

They say that if you do something you love, you will never work a day in your life. When you are lucky enough to have your dream job, this statement is most certainly true. However, for many, finding your dream job can be a difficult task, especially if your dream job is competitive or difficult to attain. If you are one of those people searching for your dream job in your dream career, I have a few tips to help you land that dream job. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you search and apply for that dream job. Remember – if you dont see the one you want – make it create it!

Dream Job Ingriedient 1: Know What You Want

Before you can start looking for your dream job, you need to know exactly what you want in your dream job. Many people who aren’t sure when they first graduate high school might work for a while before pursuing an online degree in business or even an online nursing degree later in life. In this way, they know what they want, and this is how they are pursuing it. The first step is to know exactly what your dream job is and how you can pursue it.

Dream Job Ingriedient 2: Flexibility Matters

When you are pursuing your dream job, you need to remember that flexibility is important. It’s not always easy to secure the exact job of your dreams. For example, a writer might need to be flexible with their dream job. If they want to be a novelist, they might need to be flexible to work as a journalist for a time. Either way, flexibility in the job force is a key to getting and securing a great career. It might not seem ideal at first, but many employers enjoy seeing someone who is willing to be flexible with their job.

Dream Job Ingriedient 3: Be Unique

Being unique is another important key to securing your dream job. Your unique skills, talents, and features are one of the reasons why employers are quick to hire you. If you have skills and talents that are unique to the job you are seeking, your potential employer will be more likely to hire you for the things you can bring to the table. Your resume should also be unique to show your potential employers how qualified you are for this job.

Dream Job Ingriedient 3: Be Authentic

Understanding who you are in the work place is as important to success as is fitting in. The best way to do both is try not to push it, don’t fake what you aren’t and use the power of “neutral stance” before jumping into any office dialogues or positional strategies.

Dream Job Ingriedient 4: Be Ready to Work Hard, it isn’t going to be handed to you

Finally, the best way to secure the job of your dreams is to work hard. In this day and age, many people seem to struggle with this. However, there is nothing better than hard work, especially when you are trying to secure a job. Employers will see the hard work you are putting into the job, and they will be excited to hire you for a position. If you are qualified and you work hard, your chances of getting a position in your dream career are high. Remember to be flexible with your work while also working hard to better your chances at that dream job.

Dream Job Ingriedient 5: Stay Motivated

Like it or not, in addtional to hard work, time plays a key factor. True success and gain comes with perseverance, time and sustainably moving towards your goal. Gone are the days of timeline to retirement – now it is about being the best, learning from the fails and knowing how you value yourself at the end of the day.

Conclusion

Working at a job you love is not like working at all. In fact, these jobs can often be fun and keep your days happy. You might even enjoy going to work every day if you have a job that you love. Dream jobs are a great way to enjoy the work you do and earn money while doing what you love. If you are attempting to secure a position at your dream job, you should remember to be flexible, be unique, know what you want, and work hard to obtain your dream career. By following these tips, you could be well on your way to getting the job you love and the job you have been dreaming about, no matter what that job may be. What’s your dream job?

 

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