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Dr. Brandie Nemchenko Epic Career Tales

Dr. Brandie and her husband, Arthur, graduated top of their class. They had every reason to believe their chiropractic practice would thrive. Today they are, and Dr. Brandie has even launched her first book, What You Don’t Expect When You’re Expecting. However, there was a time when they thought they’d lose it all. Learn how Dr. Brandie kept faith when others lost it, and how she went from nearly losing one office to growing to two with plans in progress toward five.

Making 2018 Better Than 2017

Part 4 of 4

Destinations by Bruce Fingerhood on Flickr

2018 is finally here. If the holidays hardly felt like reflective down time, then the resolution that best serves you as a top priority is to make time (not “find” it) to get clear about what you want this year, what it will take to get it, and how you are going to make it happen.

Think of 2018 as an adventure you are about to navigate. Figure out the destinations first. (You can always add stops along the way.) Consider carefully why these destinations appeal to you. Research them thoroughly. Understand the potential challenges and highlights. Learn what there is to learn.

If you were physically going to go somewhere, you would probably try to understand the culture of that place, for instance, how to say basic things in the native language or what that culture considers polite and impolite, or even illegal. You would check yelp and other rating sites, and read some blogs on these places. You would make sure you knew if there were areas you should avoid or landmarks you need to include.

The first step is getting clear. Then, it’s making a habit of consistently carving out time, no matter how little, to plan out your micro-movements and taking action.

  1. Emotional Life

One of my teachers has said that if you master this area of your life, you master life. When I thought about that, moments came to mind in which I did not respond thoughtfully to people, but instead reacted out of emotion, and it’s those moments that weigh heavily on me. They suck my energy and cause me to spend time in guilt instead of positive action or creation. This has negatively impacted my health and relationships.

I have heard many teachers say that most of the time we are making decisions from the emotional mind of the 8-year-old version of ourselves, UNLESS we intentionally develop the higher-thinking parts of our mind and create new automatic responses through diligence and practice, just as though your emotions are muscles.

As with most areas of improvement, it starts with awareness. A big, big part of accelerating development in this area, I have learned and continue to practice, is forgiveness. It is so powerful! It’s not just forgiveness of others (even when they are not sorry), but even more importantly for yourself. The worse you make yourself feel, the more you inhibit your emotional development. It’s okay to have negative emotions. Honor them; they are a part of you, and a part of the human experience. The goal is to spend less and less time in a state of upset and be able to gradually improve at being responsive instead of reactive.

These were my emotional goals, anyway. You may have different ones.

Make a list of the positive emotions you want more of and the negative emotions you want less of, leaving several spaces in between for the things in your life that induce those emotions. This makes it easy to understand what to add to your life (or add more of) and what to avoid whenever possible.

Meditating is a practice that can help you remain in a state of calm more often, and further assist you in using the higher parts of your brain for stress stimuli instead of limiting your responses to those of your 8-year-old self.

  1. Spiritual Life

Most people I know do believe that there is more to this world than just matter. However, I do have agnostics and atheists in my life. I accept that not everyone acknowledges a spiritual component to life. If this is you, I encourage you to dedicate this category to evaluating meaning in your life. Both, spirituality and meaning in life, have been proven to benefit outlook, health, longevity and stave off depression.

Otherwise, you do not have to practice any particular religion or even be clear about what you believe in order to make your spiritual life a bigger influence to the rest of your life.

The most significant transformations that I have seen in my clients was when we had built enough rapport to delve into this area of their lives. It has been the most satisfying part of coaching in the past year, as I developed greater courage to address this area with some clients.

In one such instance, it was the simple acknowledgement that this client once was able to feel the unconditional love of God that he had forgotten with all of the other pressures of life. Once he started remembering and allowing, his striving and stress were relieved. Even his physical symptoms diminished. He made completely different decisions about his career. He landed happily where he never would have expected to land. He achieved a peace of mind he hadn’t had since he was a child.

This didn’t take a lot of time, as it was more about letting go.  We tend to pack on layers of protection to guard our most vulnerable parts. In doing so, we create blockages to the flow of giving and receiving.

My challenge to you is to take 30 seconds every day to tune into feelings of gratitude for what is good in your life and to allow yourself to feel love that is not earned by doing or having, just being.

As a level-up challenge, start to affirm that there are forces conspiring to help you, and that you are powerful.

To go even further, you can develop practices, such as Xi Gong, that help you increase your fortitude, which will make problems seem small in the face of your power.

FUN FACT:  scientists are half as likely as the general population to believe in a higher power, while doctors are more likely than the general population to believe in a higher power.

  1. Your Life Vision

Yes, this is kind of like the culmination of all of the categories that we have discussed over the past 4 weeks, but it is also how you re-inspire yourself to maintain good habits, which is necessary for positive momentum toward any of the goals you set.

The practice of imagining the ideal is called visualization. It is scientifically linked to achievement of goals because of its impact on motivation.

The best times to do this are when you first wake up and as you go to sleep. One reason might be obvious – a better start to the day and a better night’s rest. But the other reason is that brain waves are optimal for subconscious learning during these times.

Essentially, you will develop a better outlook on your life, which will make taking action a common sense thing to do.

Which of the 12 areas covered in the last 4 weeks feel the hardest to master?

Which do you want to dive into first, and which one do you want to avoid?

 

Bring on everything you want in 2018!

India Arie – There’s Hope (Video Clip)

Video Cip da música There’s Hope, do álbum Testimony: Vol. 1, Life & Relationship 2006. Site Oficial: www.indiaarie.com

Is Your Social Media Presence Hindering Your Job Prospects?

Photo courtesy of Sean MacEntee on Flickr creative commons. ("social media" - http://bit.ly/1CtSBKH.)

Photo courtesy of Sean MacEntee on Flickr creative commons. (“social media” – http://bit.ly/1CtSBKH.)

Job seekers may not realize how heavily their social media profiles can weigh on their job prospects. A social media presence that complements a professional image is just as important as having a great résumé and interview skills. An unprofessional and inappropriate social media presence can easily close the door to career advancement. A 2014 Jobvite survey revealed 93% of companies and recruiters use social media to find candidates. A good number of job seekers aren’t searching for work in the same places job recruiters are looking for candidates, despite both parties leveraging the power of social media. By simply going where recruiters are looking for talent, smart job seekers can overcome the social media mismatch. Job seekers can also take their search a step further by making sure their social media presence enhances their job search efforts.

Going Where the Recruiters Are

In March 2013 I wrote about how less than half of unemployed job seekers have LinkedIn profiles. Even fewer employed job seekers are on LinkedIn. Nearly two years later, the data hasn’t changed at all. A 2014 Jobvite survey revealed 86% job seekers who leverage social media use Facebook as their platform of choice. Of those surveyed 76% stated they found their current position through Facebook. The survey also showed 40% of job seekers used Twitter, another 37% used Google+, while LinkedIn came in dead last at 36%. When it comes to looking for and landing a job, Facebook is clearly the winner among the majority of job seekers.

When it comes to recruiters searching for job candidates, the Jobvite survey paints a very different picture. A whopping 94% of respondents used LinkedIn to find and hire potential employees. Facebook is a close second at 65%, Twitter is third at 55%, and poor Google+ has been left in the dust with only 18% of recruiters using this social media platform. LinkedIn is the social network of choice among job recruiters, and it is underutilized by the majority of job seekers. The fact that LinkedIn is so heavily ignored by the bulk of job seekers means there is plenty of opportunity for those willing to use the platform.

Your Social Media Presence Can Help or Hinder You

First and foremost, it is important to maintain all of your social networking profiles. If you’re actively searching for a job, a recruiter will check out your social media profiles at some point during the hiring process. A Reppler survey broke down the phases where hiring managers use social networking sites to screen candidates. About 47% of hiring mangers checked social media profiles after receiving an application. 27% of hiring managers checked social media after an initial conversation with the prospective employee. Another 15% checked after a detailed conversation with a job seeker, 7% of hiring managers did not use social media to screen candidates, and the remaining 4% checked profiles right before making an offer. According to a Staff.com infographic, about three out of every four hiring managers and recruiters check a candidate’s social profile. What they see could have a major positive or negative impact on your job search.

Think about it. What’s better? To have a potential employer see how actively engaged you are in your field, or to discover your online profile doesn’t match your résumé? Or worse, you have a highly unprofessional social media presence. Not to belittle Facebook (or even Twitter), but a poorly-maintained profile littered with inappropriate posts or photos, along with disparaging remarks about a current employer can take a candidate out of the running for a position, just as easily as a well-maintained profile can help someone get a job offer. The pictures of you consuming a little too much alcohol during happy hour may be funny to you and your friends, but they are a major turn off to prospective employers. Likewise, if you constantly paint your current company in a bad light on social media, a recruiter may pass over you in favor of a more positive candidate.

A survey of 300 hiring managers at Reppler showed how social media is being used to screen job applicants, and why it is important to keep a well-maintained online presence. Facebook and Twitter are primarily used to form a personal view on candidates, in a way that is not always possible with LinkedIn. 76% of respondents used Facebook to screen candidates, while 53% used Twitter and the remaining 48% used LinkedIn. 69% of recruiters rejected a job candidate because of what they saw on their social media profiles. On the positive side, 68% hired a candidate because of their profiles. The candidates’ social media profiles gave recruiters a positive impression for three major reasons: their personality was an organizational fit for the company, their profile supported their professional qualifications, and their profile showcased their creativity.

How does that translate into an online social media presence that would be a good match between job seekers and employers? LinkedIn is a great place to showcase your professional experience and your specific hard skills. Hard skills are what help you get your foot in the door in the interview process. It is important to fully complete your LinkedIn profile to capture the attention of recruiters who may be researching you. If you need an example, Brynne Tillman and I have profiles that have been completely filled out. Additionally, the social network can be used to network with professionals and recruiters in your field via industry groups.

Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ can also be used to highlight your professional experience, create industry-related posts, and show off your soft skills. Soft skills such as effective communication, team work, leadership and problem solving are important in helping recruiters to decide if you’ll be a good cultural fit for their company. Beyond.com surveyed more than 4,000 HR professionals and job seekers, and they revealed that hard skills earn the interview, but soft skills and a cultural match garner the job offer.  Going back to social media usage, if you had the solution to a difficult problem at work there’s no harm in posting your achievement on social networks to demonstrate your soft and hard skills. Listing membership in an industry specific organization, or your volunteer work, can also bring about more excitement and interest in you as a candidate. An optimized social media profile can get you called first for an interview, and can generate greater demand for you. The opportunities will come to you and you’ll have the luxury of choice between competing offers, and the confidence to negotiate a salary for the job of choice. In short, optimizing your social media presence to accentuate professional image in conjunction with LinkedIn is a great way to standout among the many job seekers using social media.

How do you view your social media presence? Are you utilizing your various social networks to their fullest potential? Or are you part of the 64% of job seekers who don’t have a LinkedIn profile?  The savviest of job seekers are hunting for opportunity on LinkedIn, and taking full advantage of recruiters’ overwhelming preference for the platform. If you’re already on LinkedIn, is your profile fully optimized and visible to recruiters who are looking for you right now? If you’re not using all of LinkedIn’s features to your advantage, you could be losing out on your next major job opportunity. Changing your default headline and polishing your profile are two major ways to stand out from the crowd. You can take your job search to the next level, and unveil your brilliance by leveraging all four social networks to make yourself an appealing candidate to job recruiters.

Survivor – The Search Is Over

Music video by Survivor performing The Search Is Over. (C) 1985 Sony Music Entertainment

Want to shorten your commute?

Repeating Patters by Luton from Flickr

Repeating Patters by Luton from Flickr

My brother used to commute from Conshohocken, PA to NYC when he was first married. It was twice as long a the hour commute he used to make from Schaumburg, IL to downtown Chicago after he graduated from college. Eventually, the trains proved to be too unreliable and he wound up staying with my cousin in Long Island during the week and living with his wife on the weekend. He’s a jet-setter, though, and it comes with the territory of working in aviation.

There were a lot of high-paid consultants I used to recruit who would live in completely different cities from their spouses. That’s not for me! I’m a homebody. I like to be planted with my family. Moving from one market to the next to find the next best radio job was something I was not willing to do to get where I thought I wanted to go in radio. That was a good thing to recognize early in my career.

In my suburb there are a lot of business parks (which enables the property owners in my town to enjoy very low taxes!). Some you wouldn’t even notice unless you were looking for them. A few are very large and are home to some pretty big companies. I’ve lived four different places in my town and there was always a business park a bike-ride away, but not until I actually started riding my bike through the business park near me did I realize what a gold mine of intelligence you can gain by paying attention to what is actually IN them.

For instance, not only did I take note of several small biopharmaceutical companies that I either never knew existed or had no idea were located so close to me, but I also found a huge building with no signage except for trespassing warnings and high-tech gates and cameras. I thought of two clients right away, one of which has top secret security clearance. On another day I had a different local client in mind and set out to find a potential target company for him and came back home with five different companies to look up.

Don’t think for a minute that walking into a company is a dead job searching method. It still works ALL THE TIME. At age 55, my uncle proudly earned his HVAC certification. He was not encouraged by the results of applying online;  he was sure his age was always going to be an obstacle, until he tried walking right in with his résumé. He’s been the Facilities Manager there for four years now and never knew he could love a job so much! His wife-to-be even turned down a tremendous opportunity that would have required relocation because my uncle was certain he would’t find another job he could love as much.

I recommend this over ANY method if you are looking for a job in your neighborhood. Companies love to hire people who can walk to work if need be. It is a very low risk hire because people who work close to home rarely ever leave for a better opportunity (unless they are like my brother.)

You can tell a lot about a company by seeing their location in person, too. You can deduce what kind of people work there and imply how well paid they are by the cars in the lot. You may be able to tell how old a company is by the age and appearance of the building.  If you see that the company has a recycling dumpster in their lot and solar panels on their roof, they are most likely committed to being green. There’s nothing like not having to drive to work if you are committed to reducing your own carbon footprint. If the grounds have picnic tables outside, come back some time at lunch time and see if there are actually groups of employees having lunch together.

These business parks sometimes have daycare centers within them, and some may also have a health club.

 

I know some parents who treasure their commute, actually; it is their “me” time. They are the exception, I find. Most of my clients don’t feel that they have enough time to do the things they need to do, let alone the things that they want to do, and they resent spending so much time getting to and from work. If this is you, grab your bike or your walking shoes and a notepad or smartphone. Do some local reconnaissance. As with all other job searching best practices, before you approach any of these companies about employment, find out what they are all about. Check LinkedIn; you probably know someone who works there. Find out how you can be of value to them as an employee and identify other reasons why you would want to work there so you can prepare a strong pitch. Practice your pitch until you are confident.

 

It takes a lot of guts, grit and gumption to take this approach, but the results can be EPIC – in your career and your life!

 

Oops, they did it again! Are the job numbers that bad?

We are actually BACK up to June 2005 employment levels and 162K jobs is a GREAT increase in jobs over the

sadlady

summer months, but a biased “journalist” would have you believe that the economy is getting better about as fast as my daughter’s diaper rash. (You can see from her expression that it’s not getting better at all.)

This really burns me up.

It’s why I chose NOT to pursue a career in journalism, which was my initial career choice when I went to college. However, I learned how moguls use their influence, power, and chain of command to spin news and numbers into byte-sized nuggets intended to sway an audience to adopt their paradigms.

I know that’s hypocritical, considering I blog to convince people to choose my way of careering, but that’s completely justifiable because Epic Careering is clearly the best careering.

But seriously, there seems to be no justifiable reason for a professional journalist to leverage their visibility to needlessly prevent people from getting excited about good news, even if it is not as good as it could or should be. The true data is not as this particular journalist portrays it. That’s  just irresponsible.

First of all, if you look at the historic data available on the BLS.gov site, you will see that there are not many great jumps in jobs added during the “better” years, or from 2003 to 2008. September is traditionally the 2nd busiest hiring month and summer is traditionally slower. I know in a recovering economy, we would all hope for a bigger surge, but there ain’t no cure for the summertime blues. You may even see an even LOWER addition of jobs over August, and it still doesn’t mean anything, because if this September is anything like almost every other September, those numbers will jump back.

The journalist ALSO attributes the lower unemployment rates to people leaving the workforce again. We’ve seen the AP do this before INACCURATELY!  This made me so upset last September, I started blogging, so perhaps I should thank them?

Call them what you want – Doomsdayers, party crashers, downers – they echo the same detrimental sentiments that slow down progress – “the news is okay, but don’t celebrate yet, because it’s not as great as it would be if ‘we’ were in charge. Since we’re not, we’re just going to find something to complain about. Come and join our pity party, because we love being right and we don’t know how to be happy if ‘we’ aren’t in charge.”

My questions – who “promised” that the unemployment rate would be much lower than 7.4% by now and who projected that the net added jobs should have been higher than 162K for July?

I think it has already been established that no one, well, at least Obama, did not make any promises about what the unemployment rate would be.  I couldn’t find any projections on jobs added for July 2013, and I contacted the BLS myself to find out.

As for how much of a decrease in unemployment is actually attributed to discouraged workers leaving the workforce, here are the ACTUAL numbers:

On a table published August 2, 2013 on BLS.gov, it states that from July 2013 to July 2013, 136,000 people have left the workforce due to discouragement (“people who did not actively look for work in the prior 4 weeks for reasons such as thinks that there is no work available, could not find work, lacks schooling or training, employer thinks too young or old, and other types of discrimination”).

So in one year, 136,000 people abandoned the workforce due to discouragement. In that year, 906,000 people left the workforce in total, but many of the reasons stated have more to do with personal situations and “marginal attachment,” meaning they weren’t looking all that hard.  So that means only 15% of the total unemployed people left because they were discouraged.

How many of them saw the media report on slanted data and just thought, “I give up! The economy isn’t getting better fast enough to create enough jobs, and so I won’t be able to find one.” Do you see how this type of reporting is making the problem worse?

Additionally, as you can see from this chart, employment, hours and earning have stabilized.

I mean, I see people getting jobs all the time, some of them in spite of impressive challenges, like long-term unemployment. From my vantage point I can see that very few unemployed professionals have the skills and tools necessary to optimize and accelerate their transitions, and that is much more the reason for long-term unemployment than the economy. And it’s also why we are here.  How foolish we would be to be here if everyone was really just giving up.

DON’T GIVE UP and don’t buy the negative hype. You may be experiencing some discouraging results in your job transition, but don’t make it mean that Epic Careering success isn’t possible for you, because IT IS!  If you can come up with the “why,” we can help you with the “how.” And here’s a vlog for you, discouraged job seekers to help you diagnose why your career might be in it’s own all-too-slow recovery.

 

Slay your demons and be the hero! www.epiccareering.com

Hello world!

Though we have had seasonal newsletters for 6 years and recently started a vlog on YouTube, we thought it would behoove us to put the, uh, pen to paper? and reach out to people with the good ole “written” word. We do like words here at Epic Careering, go figure. We certainly hope you enjoy, but more importantly, that you benefit from our posts.