If you have been following my blog you some time notice that I will post an article out of sequence and I ask that you please forgive me.

Here we go again, our last and final phase or stage that we all go through in life when we’re faced with a disturbing personal or professional challenge, loss of a job, accident, or divorce.

Some of us bounce back quickly and are more resilient than others however I am here to share with you that ” your life will return to to some type of normalcy but you must take that next step.

So let’s get started! Patience may be required as you embrace a new situation or a new identity. Take small steps as you learn the skills, habits, and behaviors associated with the new. Avoid the temptation to replicate the old. Look at opportunities with fresh eyes – a fresh spirit. Most people find that in retrospect, the change they feared and dreaded was indeed an opportunity for growth. And that is what thriving is all about.

Carl Brand sums it up nicely, “Though one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” That quote is important to digest. Your future depends on more than you surviving the latest (or the next) change in life. It depends on your thriving – even flourishing.

If you are having difficulty believing this right in this moment, then try this exercise:

Phone or e-mail at least 3 friends or relatives. Ask them to share with you a change they have experienced in their lives that literally transformed their life in a positive way. They will be glad you asked and you will grow to appreciate the changes you are experiencing even more.

Summary

Perhaps the following bullet points will help reinforce what you’ve already learned:

• Change is the normal process of life. Life is not possible without change.

• It is human nature to resist change. Most of us like what is familiar and predictable.

• As normal as change is, it is normal to resist it. You are not wrong, bad, or stubborn simply because you resist change.

• It is common to fear the unknown.

• Change can cause us to question our long held beliefs and values.

• Moving through change can be uncomfortable and feel awkward, and is the only way to move forward.

• Refusing to change does not mean that the world won’t change around you. Refusing to change means you’ll be left behind.

• As harsh as this may sound, some of us resist change because we are lazy. We simply don’t want to invest our energy and time – we don’t want to commit to a new way of being.

• And to end on a reassuring note, the ability to change, adapt and move forward often offers us new and wonderful opportunities beyond our imagination.
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Remember that phone call you got at the beginning of this report? Chances are, you will have – or have recently had similar experiences.

In the past, you may have slipped into your old habits and perhaps panicked, resisted the change, or stayed in denial. But now you are now equipped with new knowledge and new skills to help you not only accept the changes you experience, but to embrace them.

When life throws you a curve ball, take time to review your newly discovered knowledge about the stages of change. You will discover that you will not only survive during challenging times, but you will thrive.

I leave with you a favorite song of mine by the late Jazz Vocalist Sarah Vaughn “What A Difference A Day Makes” in which i heard her sing during her last performance at Blues Alley in Georgetown,Washington DC.

There is in the worst of fortune the best of chances for a happy ending.

~Euripides

Curt Canada provides Executive,Career,Leadership Development,and Life Coaching at FindingYourZenith in Washington DC.

We all know that there are gazillions of friends, strangers, and neighbors that for some known and unknown reasons are simply out of work. Many of them are diligently reworking their cover letters and resumes as we speak. To no avail most of the resumes will simply not make it past the proverbial wastebasket or trash file on some HR person’s data base.

Alarming I must say especially after a conversation I had with my friend (who’s one of the top persons in her profession) who had sent in her résumé to this company on the yes, fourth day. That’s already history if you ask me. Nevertheless, she managed to do some homework or networking which is paramount in being successful at finding your next job. They say that job hunting is a job in and of itself.

Anyway, she managed to find someone she knew within the firm to (it is a who you know world and don’t forget it) get  her mentioned in a conversation with the person that was in charge of hiring this particular candidate. Fortunately, he wrote a stellar letter of recommendation for her which got her in the door “so to speak”.

Well, put it this way, HR had already cutoff accepting resumes at the 50th person. I was told by my friend that even though they have narrowed the process for interviewing potential clients, they would pull her résumé and save it for other positions.

Let me tell you that you can send all the resumes and cover letters and re-write them until the cows come home, this will not get you a job. Do you hear me loud and clear!

Consider these action steps to increase your chances of getting in the door because you are not the only one with  an exceptional employment history, looks, and intelligence!

1 Google and use Linkedin and yes Facebook your butt off
find out something about this company and the person that’s directly associated with this particular job offer

2 Get your résumé and cover letter out there on the first day! Within the first hour!

3 Make sure it arrives at the destination

4 Six degrees of separation Who knows who that knows who etc. Focus on getting your résumé on that person’s desk!

5 Stay away from the Secretary or the Administrative Assistant…they have already been
informed to block such calls and inquiries

6 I am going to stop here because it is time I let you know that you ‘re up against resumes on top of resumes and persons with great track records… you must shine and stand out …be assertive and aggressive however don’t forget to be emotionally intelligent

7 So you didn’t get that job…don’t stop now.

8 Send a thank you note to this person via a message box at Facebook or on Linkedin. Stay away from the employer’s letter opener or virtual assistant

9 Take a deep breath in and out in and out …stop before you pass out and forget all these action steps that I think may help you land your next job!

10 Begin with step 1-9 all over again…believe in yourself…you will be successful.

* You might ask why I left out networking which I would list as the most important action step you can take. Well , This is exactly what I was referring to as a part of Action Step No.1  Find those persons that are directly associated with the place or department you’re seeking to get in the door.  You must never stop networking whether you’re seeking employment or if you’re presently gainfully employed!

I’m sure there are a thousand tips for finding your next job(career) and I may have left an important action step or tip from this article. Let me know your thoughts in my comments section. It’s competitive and you must find your uniqueness! Perhaps an investment in a career coach is your next step!

Curt Canada is an Executive, Career,and Leadership Development Coach at FindingYourZenith in Washingon DC.

Once we have moved through the ‘letting go’ process, we find ourselves in the second phase of change. This is the period of emptiness and uncertainty. This is also called the transitional time – the time between letting go of the old and fully embracing and adapting to the new. During this time you may feel like you are lost. You don’t know what to do. You don’t know what is expected of you. This is unfamiliar territory. Nothing feels the same. The old is gone, the new is unknown and you are in between.

Like a farmer, it is the time that the fields appear to lay barren, but in reality they are becoming nutrient rich for the next crop. This is your opportunity to become nutrient rich. As you review the following ideas, select one or two that you can commit to as you move through the transitional phase of change. If you do, you will be enriching your spirit, your mind, your future relationships, and your skills. And implementing these ideas will make this phase easier to undergo.

1.Do something that makes you feel in control. (And we’re not talking about holding the television remote!). Don’t sit around making excuses about why you can’t do something, just give it a try. Be sure that you choose a project that gently pushes your energy level – and more importantly, one that you can accomplish. Stick to it until you finish.

2.Take stock of your life and choose one or two areas to focus on that can greatly impact your future success. Take action. Take an on-line course, sign up for a language class. Or a dance class. Study other religions. Learn to type using all your fingers! Whatever you do, give it your best effort.

3.Think bigger and bolder. Daydream. Visualize yourself immensely successful. See yourself in a new light. Create a collage of your best self. Your aspirations. Your talents.

4.Do not confuse the present with the past. Remind yourself, in spite of past reactions to change, you are older, more mature, and wiser. You have the skills you need to not just survive, but to thrive during this newest change.
5.Accept that this is an awkward stage. Ask for patience and support from people who are in your corner. Ask them to be patient, but not to let you become complacent.

The transitional time of change is an opportunity to evaluate any previous decisions you might have made. What did you learn? What should you learn in order to prevent a similar experience from happening? What will youdo differently the next time you are in a related situation?

Curt Canada is a Career and Life Coach in Glover Park DC at FindingYourZenith.

As we approach mid-summer, we can re- create new plans and expectations for our lives. Here a few powerful tips on how to unleash all that you are capable of so that you can ensure happiness and success during these hot and steamy days whether you are changing careers or looking for a job, relocating, or entering or leaving a relationship.

1. Know and Honor Your Values

A fulfilling life is one in which the most important beliefs and values you have are honored each and every day of your life. Your values are already there inside of you. When your values are expressed, life feels more fulfilling. It’s important to recognize the connection between the values you possess and the choices you make in your life. Those choices are filled with positive potential for you when your values are honored.

2. Move Past Your Limiting Beliefs

Self-limiting beliefs are those things you believe about yourself that place limitations on your abilities. They may be conscious or unconscious. Limitations are actually a part of the mind. In reality we have no limitations. Determination always finds a way around obstacles. Henry Ford once said, “If you think you can, or if you think you can’t – you’re right!” It all depends on what you believe about yourself. Unless you begin recognizing your own limiting beliefs and choose not to accept them, they will cause you to fail. When you align the true core of who you are with your goals, you can tap into your fullest potential.

3. Take on Successful Strategies

Success leaves an abundance of clues in its wake. Identify someone who is successful in the same things you want then model what they are doing. What you want could be a great business, relationship or a fit body. Remember, they aren’t lucky; they just have strategies that work.

4. Intensify Your Will Power

Willpower is the ability to exert one’s will over one’s actions. Willpower manifests as inner firmness, decisiveness, determination, resolution and persistence. It’s inevitable that life will hit us with some sort of crushing blow. If you face it head on, it will give you the psychological strength. View it as a gift and find a way to use it.

5. Give to Get

The meaning of our lives is shaped by what we give, not what we get. Many people want to get before they give. Over the long haul, this outlook never works. Instead, focus on creating value for others because when you do this, you will get a return that far exceeds your investment.

Curt Canada is an Executive ,Leadership, Career,and Life Coach at FindingYourZenith in Washington DC.

You know that you will survive change. We’ve all lost someone via an accident, a family member through a death, a marital separation, a loss of a prosperous career, or a home in an environmental disaster. You’ve had plenty of practice in life making small and large adjustments. You are equipped with all the skills you need. You just may need to hone some of those skills. Knowing the three stages of change can help you understand what you have gone through during previous changes in your life. I assure you it will take some time but you must begin somewhere. Keep also in mind that each and every individual that encounters change responds so differently!

‘Letting Go’ Stage of Change

The first step of change can sometimes be the most painful. In order to move through the change process you will have to let go of something. Something must come to an end. This could be the end of a relationship, end of a job, end of security, or the end of an unfulfilled dream. We must at some point let go of the past to be able to accept and prepare for change.

It is hard on our human nature to let go of what is familiar – even when the old might not serve us well. During the letting go process we usually go through a grieving process. The more attached we are to the old, the more we will grieve.

Most grief professionals and coaches agree that the grieving process consists of five stages:

•Denial – Believing that this is “just a dream” or “just a phase”. It’s really not happening.
•Bargaining – Believing that we can negotiate our way back to how things used to be.
•Anger – Feeling intensely about how “unfair” the situation is. We may even experience anger toward other people, believing, it’s their fault.
•Sadness – Feeling lost, alone, or vulnerable. Sometimes this can deepen into depression and requires professional help.
•Acceptance – Realizing that things will not go back to the way they were. You are now ready to move forward.

The order of the stages may shift and you may vacillate from one to the other and back (from anger to sadness and back to anger). The important lesson for you is that you understand that these feelings are normal and are necessary to complete the grieving process. If you find yourself stuck in the grieving process at any step of the way, engage the services of a professional counselor, clergy, or coach to give you guidance.

TBContinued in the next post!

Curt Canada coaches clients around life and work related challenges at FindingYourZenith in Washington DC. Schedule a consultation today..email Curt at coachingconsultant@comcast.net