How to Win Friends and Influence People

A strange thing happened recently…

Having lived on our street for 2 years and met no-one, we suddenly made friends with three of our near neighbours in a week.

We were invited to a house party, and the street Christmas get-together, almost out of the blue.

How did we get so popular?

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Could 2011 be your Best Year Yet?

Whoa – what happened to 2010?

Suddenly there’s a chill in the air, snow on the ground, logs on the fire and Christmas lurking stealthily around the corner.

The old year is on it’s last legs and the new one champing at the bit.

Years can fly by, and if we’re not careful not much changes.

How was 2010 for you?

A new chapter

As 2011 limbers up, I know that a new year can mean a new start.

For that reason, I’m determined to try something different to help make 2011 the Best Year Yet.

If you’re thinking it’s time to get to grips with life and start being really extraordinary, I know what you mean.

If it’s finally time to overhaul your career, start that business you’ve always meant to, and find a life that brings happiness, this could be for you.

I’m planning to partner with 3 or 4 individuals who are looking to change their lives for the better, for the whole of 2011.

This is for people who are ready to make a serious and concerted commitment to themselves.

The idea is to set some ambitious goals personally and professionally and then work together to make those goals a reality.

If you’re excited by the idea, or know someone who might be, I’m ready to talk and see if it is the right fit for both of us.  Please send me a message to set up a call and find out more.

Photo credit : rkramer62 (Flickr Creative Commons)

Five steps to your Career Escape Plan

Do you believe that life is too short to do work that isn’t exciting?

Have you been stuck doing work that feels meaningless for too long?

Are you ready to find a career path that provides challenge, excitement and passion?

I’m hugely excited to announce that Less Ordinary Living is now partnering with the amazing team at Escape the City, to help talented people “Do Something Different”.

We’ll be helping you to find work that makes you tick and that feels fulfilling.  We offer two programmes to support your change:

The Great Escape Program provides you with personalized one-on-one support to identify your ideal work and start making that a reality.

The Escape Committee will put you in a motivated group of like-minded professionals and walk you through a step-by-step process to make your Escape and find work you love.

I made my own Escape from the corporate world to running Less Ordinary Living over the last five years.

Whatever you are hoping to do, I wanted to share five key steps to creating your own Career Escape Plan:

1. Get your head straight

Making a fresh start, a complete career change or setting up your own business will take courage and a positive attitude.

My family and friends thought I was nuts to give up a “secure” and established career path to train as a coach and I needed to be strong to stick to my guns.

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Where are you driving your career bus?

Have you ever felt stuck in your job?  Frustrated at work?  Paralyzed by indecision?  Walls closing in, nowhere to run?  Every path look like a dead-end?career coaching, career change

It drives me crazy when I can’t see the way forward.  It feels impossible to see the wood from the trees.

I felt trapped in my old job because I didn’t have any idea of what I wanted to do next.  Without options I was stuck on the back seat of the career bus.

Now the Good News

The good news – all of us get stuck from time to time in our careers

The even better news – there are plenty of things that we can do to get unstuck and stay in a creative space.

Over the last few years, here are three things I’ve done to help me get out of my rut and start driving my career bus:

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25 Surefire Ways to Get More from Work

career coaching, career change, find work you love, be remarkable

Make work more fun

Whether you want be more successful, more productive or just happier at work, these 25 powerful suggestions will help put some sparkle into your day.  Click here to get regular ideas on career success from Less Ordinary Living.

  1. Start something new – variety is the spice of life.  Start a new project and bring one of your ideas to life
  2. Really listen to everyone you meet – it’s easy to get wrapped up in your own world at work.  Concentrate on listening properly to everyone you meet today.
  3. Take someone for coffee – build a relationship at work by taking someone out for coffee (your boss, your peer, your team member, your client, your customer).  You might even make a new friend.
  4. Take a real lunchbreak – get out of the office, take a walk, get some fresh air and re-energize yourself.   It’s called a lunch break for a reason.
  5. Delegate something – learning to delegate will make you more effective and help others to develop.  Take something off your plate and give someone else a chance.
  6. Read DilbertScott Adam’s cartoon dog puts work into perspective.  Learn to beat the pointy-haired boss.
  7. Re-evaluate your to-do list – take 15 minutes to prioritize.  Focus on what is most important rather than urgent and to those things first.
  8. Do something that will make your workplace better– think ahead about what can make your job better and more enjoyable in the longer term.  Start making that happen today.
  9. Say no – learning to say no to things that don’t fit with your goals and values can be tough – but it is invaluable.  Say no to something today.
  10. Thank an unsung hero – every workplace has it’s share of silent champions who keep everything going.  Take a minute to say thank you and recognize their contribution.
  11. Be brave – if something is not working well in your team, have the courage to raise the issue.  It will never get resolved unless someone takes the initiative.
  12. Offer to help – is someone looking out of their depth.? Get involved and help them learn to be great.  One day you might be the one needing help.
  13. Leave on time – set yourself some clear targets and if you hit them, give yourself permission to leave on time (or even early if you can) and go enjoy the rest of the day.  Because you’re worth it.
  14. Create a power hour – a great way to be super productive – click here to find out how.
  15. Cancel a pointless meeting – sometimes work cultures create an endless stream of pointless meetings that suck up time.  If you have one today, cancel it or excuse yourself.   Use the time for something constructive.
  16. Change your attitude – how are you approaching work?  If you’re seeing it as a negative, feeling disengaged and not enjoying it, you’ve lost before you even begin.  Try changing your attitude for one day and see what happens.
  17. Apologize – if you have a feud or some simmering resentment with a colleague, isn’t it time to bury the hatchet (not in their head).  Be the bigger person and find a way to apologize sincerely.
  18. Learn a new skill – what skill would you love to develop?  Put together an action plan for how to do that.  Here’s a guide for how to ask your boss for training.
  19. Start a tradition – what new ritual can you start to make your workplace better?  A tea-round?  Birthday cakes?  Happy hour on Friday?
  20. Set your visionpurpose is so important to satisfaction at work.  Take 15 minutes to think about why you are work and what you’d like to get from your career.
  21. Drink more water – most offices and workplaces are drier than the Sahara, so stay hydrated to keep sharp.
  22. Listen to your biorhythms – plan your day to take advantage of your natural daily energy cycles – click here to find out more.
  23. Give something back – find out if your company has a community involvement or volunteer program.  Get involved or if it doesn’t exist, start one.
  24. Play to your strengths – we are at our best at work when we use our natural attributes.  Take the VIA strengths test here to find yours.
  25. Write your CV – a great way to feel in control of your career and not feel stuck in a rut.  Dig out that dusty relic and give it a polish.  Writing your CV helps you to feel more confident about your experience and skills.

Over to you

  • What things do you do to enjoy work more?
  • How do you make the most of your working life?
  • Which of these ideas did you try, and what happened?

Photo credit: RubensLP (From Flickr Creative Commons)