Make The Best Cup

Make The Best Cup

Whether you’re at the very bottom rung on the ladder to your goals or near the top, there is a single thing you need to do everyday, and that is your absolute best.

Doing your best inspires you to respect and believe in the person you are. It changes the way others look at you, it makes them more inclined to trust you with more responsibility or more money.

It spares you from regret about days past and self-recriminating thoughts. It moves you forward and keeps your thoughts about yourself and what you’re doing positive.

At the beginning of the day you are the one you need to answer to about how you’re going to spend the precious upcoming hours. At the end of the day it’s back to you. Yes there are people you report to, people how have power to promote or demote you, people who will like or dislike you and what you do, but ultimately the most important opinion is the one you have of yourself, because that’s the cue others are going to follow.

Playing people as diverse as anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko, to human rights activist Malcolm X to boxer, to a drunk airline pilot, and just about everything in between, Denzel Washington has made a career of doing his best while following his own internal compass. Three Golden Globes, two Academy Awards and a Tony award later, it’s obvious others agree, when Denzel makes a cup, it’s the best cup he can possibly make.

Doing your best inspires you to respect and believe in the person you are. It changes the way others look at you, it makes them more inclined to trust you with more responsibility or more money.

It spares you from regret about days past and self-recriminating thoughts. It moves you forward and keeps your thoughts about yourself and what you’re doing positive.

At the beginning of the day you are the one you need to answer to about how you’re going to spend the precious upcoming hours. At the end of the day it’s back to you. Yes there are people you report to, people how have power to promote or demote you, people who will like or dislike you and what you do, but ultimately the most important opinion is the one you have of yourself, because that’s the cue others are going to follow.

Playing people as diverse as anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko, to human rights activist Malcolm X to boxer, to a drunk airline pilot, and just about everything in between, Denzel Washington has made a career of doing his best while following his own internal compass. Three Golden Globes, two Academy Awards and a Tony award later, it’s obvious others agree, when Denzel makes a cup, it’s the best cup he can possibly make.

I’m Ready!

i'm ready

You’ve got your job. You’ve got your family and your social life. Maybe you’ve also got big goals on the backburner, things you dream about doing.

How do you approach those different aspects of your life? Are you more excited about new projects than the ones you do everyday. Do you put things off? Do you get the things you like best off your plate first?

You might be more enthusiastic about some things than others, but chances are you don’t stray too far from your median level of enthusiasm. Imagine how much you could accomplish, how enthusiastic you would be about just about everything, if you approached life like SpongeBob!

Things you normally dread: “I’m ready, I’m ready, I’m ready.”

Things you’ve done a thousand times before: “I’m ready, I’m ready, I’m ready.”

People you’ve been meaning to get in contact with: “I’m ready, I’m ready, I’m ready.”

Projects you’ve always wanted to get a handle on: “I’m ready, I’m ready, I’m ready.”

If you’re ready, ready, ready for everything then you get the things you’re not thrilled with out of the way. You make mental and physical space for the things you really do want to do in your life. You create the relationships you want.

Ready?

How to Write a Great Cover Letter

How to Write a Great Cover Letter

For most people writing a cover letter is one of the most difficult parts of the job search. You have to sell yourself, but be modest. You have to be professional, but you also want your personality to come out. Learning to write a great cover letter can be hard. We’re here to make it a little easier.

How Much Happiness Can You Buy?

How Much Happiness Can You Buy?

Happiness

Obviously if you’re worried about keeping a roof over your head and food on your plate, those are your first priorities towards being happy.  Assuming the basics are covered, now we can ask the question – Is happiness something you can buy?

To buy or not to buy

Let’s see. Your phone is already three years old. It can’t do a quarter of the things your sister’s phone can do and it’s ten times slower than everyone else’s phone. You really, really, really want a new phone. You have the money. If you buy it, you know you’ll be ten times happier than you are now. Easy math:

10 X better phone = 10 X happier person.

So you buy that new phone. And you’re right you are happy! But you’re not quite ten times happier then you were before. And the happiness factor doesn’t stick around either, because before you know it, your new phone is just your phone and worse, everyday that you have it, it’s getting to be an old phone compared to all the new phones being pulled out of the pockets and purses of all your friends.

That’s the thing about things. You think the purchase of them will make you happy. You certainly feel happy in anticipation of the purchase and the second you get your hands on the thing, but that happiness is fleeting. Like the happiness you feel when eating your favorite dish. Once you’ve swallowed the final spoonful of that delicious chocolate sundae the happiness melts away. It’s a happiness of the moment. No staying power.

To do or not to do

However an experience can achieve much longer lasting happiness. Think of it as happiness created by what you do rather than what you buy. It’s the kind of happiness that can accumulate interest – interest being the happiness gained through memories of the event.  Then there’s compound interest – doing something for someone else where you get a double helping of feel-good, both in the moment of doing and during the time of revisiting.

Anticipation of a goal

Whether you’re anticipating buying something or doing something that pre-happiness time is some of the happiest time of all.  Future happiness keeps us engaged longer than the actual event.

Ultimately it seems happiness is an illusive emotion that comes and goes. Things you buy eventually lose their luster, even the best experience fades away into the past. Since anticipation seems to be a mood improver maybe that’s where we should focus our attention. Continually working towards new goals, new experiences, always having something to look forward to. That way you have the satisfaction of the goal once achieved (fleeting or long lived as that is) and always following up with another goal to keep things fresh.

Navigation Tools For Negotiations

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If you’re applying to a minimum wage job then how much you’re paid isn’t really an issue, but if it’s a salaried job then there’s an opportunity for negotiation.

When to negotiate

You need to have salary expectations in mind going into the interview but the time to negotiate isn’t around: Hi my name is Jim and I’m expecting to make $50K does that work for you?

 

The first interview probably isn’t the time for salary negotiations to start. They should wait until it’s clear that you are a choice candidate. If the company likes you and has chosen to make you an offer then they are likely prepared to negotiate. That negotiation is actually part of the hiring process.

 

Know your number

Salary negotiation isn’t something you start thinking about when you’re in the interview or discussing the job offer. It’s something you’ve prepared for well in advance. You’ve already done your homework and have a salary range in mind before you came into the interview. http://thejobwindow.com/?p=1519

 

That doesn’t necessarily mean a specific number, I expect to be making $52,342 a year. Better to have a range, I’m expecting to make in the $50 – $55K range.

 

If you don’t have an answer for the salary question, then that can actually drop you in the ranks if not discount you from the race altogether. It indicates to potential employers that you either don’t value yourself, know your worth, or have done your research. If you couldn’t even prepare yourself for an inevitable job-related question what kind of drive and motivation do you have?

 

Don’t forget about the benefits – they’re part of the negotiation. Holidays, insurance, pension are all topics that need to be addressed. Job perks can make a significant contribution to your salary. So, like you did your homework on salary expectations, you should know what you’re looking for in terms of medical, dental etc. The other thing you should remember to ask about is the company’s policy on future raises.

 

Don’t act like a thirsty wanderer in the desert

If you go in with the attitude of a thirsty wanderer in the desert of the job market willing to take whatever drops are offered you, you will probably end up with only a few drops. A confident attitude, surety in yourself and an ability to stand up for yourself speaks volumes about what you will bring to the job.

 

Don’t be greedy

If however you’ve been offered what you were expecting or more, then that’s not the time to start asking for more. Asking for more than you’re worth simply demonstrates a lack of judgment.

 

 

Do back up your expectations

Have reasons for your expectations. Why are you worth what you say you’re worth? Be prepared with examples from your resume and your personal experiences. Just because experiences didn’t come out of a job environment, doesn’t mean they aren’t part of the package you are presenting.

 

Thanks but no thanks

Be willing to walk away. If the job isn’t right for you don’t just take it out of desperation. You’ll end up looking again sooner rather than later. Better to get the right job with the right salary in the first place.

 

Take time to be sure

Don’t feel like you have to make your decision on the spot. It’s perfectly okay to take a day to consider your options.

 

Negotiations can be hard. The employer is going to try and get the best deal for the company while you’re trying to get the best deal for yourself. That doesn’t mean negotiations are negative. They’re an opportunity for you to showcase your value. How you handle yourself during negotiations is indicative of how you handle yourself in general.

Biting Into The Apple

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Success? By the time Steve Jobs was 30 he’d turned Apple, a company he’d started in his garage with his friend Steve Wozniak into a $2 billion enterprise with 4,000 employees.

 

Failure? The board of directors fired Steve Jobs from his own company.

 

How do you come back from that? If you’re Steve Jobs you start Pixar (now the most successful animation studio in the world) get invited back to Apple and completely revolutionize modern technology with the introduction of iPods, iPhones, iPads, iDon’tknowwhatelse.

 

How does a guy who quit college after six months keep ending up the razor’s blade of the cutting edge?

 

You can listen to Steve Jobs explain it himself here in How To Live Before You Die. http://www.ted.com/talks/steve_jobs_how_to_live_before_you_die

 

These are the main points:

 

Follow Curiosity and Intuition

 

After quitting school Steve didn’t immediately leave the college, he hung around and started taking courses he was interested in, rather than the ones he needed to fulfill his requirements. One of those was calligraphy. He took it because he loved it, not because it would lead him anywhere specific. He learned about typefaces, what made typography great. Ten years later he was figuring out what he wanted to include in his new computer, and suddenly those typography classes seemed very useful indeed. All of us have all those cool font options because of the calligraphy class Steve Jobs took because he found typefaces fascinating.

 

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.”

 

Figure out what you love to do

 

Initially getting fired as CEO of Apple must have seemed like the worst possible thing that could have happened, but in retrospect, Steve Jobs says it was the best thing that ever happened to him. It freed him to enter one of the most creative periods of his life.

 

He started Pixar and a new hardware company called neXT because he still loved the computer business. Apple bought neXT and now that technology is at the heart of Apple.

 

And Pixar? Over to you Buzz: “To infinity and beyond!”

 

Sometimes life will hit you on the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith. Find what you love to do. Do what you believe is great work. Keep looking. Don’t settle. You’ll know when you find it.

 

Live each day as if it’s your last one

 

Each day ask yourself, if today was the last day of your life, would you want to do what you’re doing? If the answer is no too many days in a row then something needs to change. Thinking about the last day of your life helps you distinguish what’s really important. Helps you stop thinking you’ve to something to lose. Your time is limited so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t let the noise of others drown out your inner voice. Your own intuition knows what you want to be – so listen to yourself!