What have you done this year to make you feel proud!

I hope you’ve all read that and sung it a la Heather Small or as Miranda and Stevie in the sitcom “Miranda”. For those who have no clue as to what that sentence means then please resource google and YouTube and feel free to have a giggle.

Seriously though it’s December, Christmas is around the corner, you are thinking “what on earth can I buy for Auntie Pauline?” , “how on earth did I devour that tin of quality street in the office?” And “I wonder if I’ll get lucky at the Christmas office party”. Alternatively you are probably far less superficial and are contemplating good deeds and pious acts. Either way this time of year is always a time of reflection. The act of looking back on the year gone by can be cathartic, troubling, empowering or frustrating or all of the above depending on the year that you’ve had..but it’s important to do it nonetheless. We get so wrapped up in the day to day that we are often unaware of how far we’ve come. We focus on the things that we don’t have or the things that we feel out of our reach rather than looking at what a journey this year has been. Even in the worst of times looking back you can think to yourself “how did I cope with that”, well you did and you are stronger for it.

The same applies to work, you are much further along than you were last year so be proud of yourself for that. Grab a pen and a journal and write down your ten biggest achievements in 2014. These are for you so don’t compare yourself to anyone else, these can be big or small things but things that have given you steps towards being a better you. You might have written 100 application forms, had 25 interviews and you may still be trying but I can guarantee that you’ve learned something from the process. Forget what your family and friends say what are you personally proud of, what’s affected you in a positive way.

Tell your friends and family why you are proud of them this year, it doesn’t have to be totally Oprah and there don’t need to be tears but a few kind words and acknowledgement can really help.

Looking back at the year, looking at the lessons and hurdles will ultimately set you up for 2015, so get your pen and paper out again and write your wish list.. What do I want to achieve? Don’t be so rigid that you have to stick to this so firmly but at the same point don’t be too flimsy that you disregard everything the next day. Look at the list and ask yourself, what can I do this week to start myself on that journey..? Remember it takes baby steps but you’ll get there.

Think honestly what’s made me happy this year (and I don’t mean liquor and one night stands) and what has made me feel less than myself. This simple task can help you see where your passions and help you to start living the life you want rather than the life you feel like you should live.

So grab a glass of mulled wine, get that NSync Christmas album on the iPod and remember a year gone by. Be honest but be kind to yourself,

Merry Christmas and thank you for reading my posts and making me proud this year!


Change your patterns and you might find yourself happier!

We get so used to do something a particular way that it almost feels natural, as if it’s automatic. That’s just the way we’ve always done it. It’s often the same in our relationships at work, we think because the boss has called us into a meeting that we are going to be in trouble, we sit and whinge about how awful our job is but then when someone does the same “oh she’s so negative”. We get bored so we get judgemental “she should not be wearing that!” Or gossipy ” she went home with Tim in accounts .. So slutty”. These behaviours become the norm of any office, and we feel like we need them to get through the day at times. We predict and react in a way that confirms our judgements, “oh I told you she was a bitch” “oh I can’t believe I have to work late”…

This happens in work places all over the world but what happens when we take ourselves out of this negative spiral, when we really begin to change it up! If we live our days just doing the best and being the best person we can at work then you will start to see those relationships change and that toxic environment that seemed so integral and important seems to melt away. People may continue to behave in the same way but all of a sudden it doesn’t really matter anymore. You start to see the behaviour more about them than yourself, bitching about Tracy from accounts might make you feel included, but how does Tracy feel? And how would you feel if these conversations were being had about you.

It’s great to have friends at work, close friends and you have that solidarity that helps you get through the day, nothing like a bit of banter and a laugh to get you through the day. There is nothing wrong with that, but open your eyes see who else is in the office, come into work in the morning and say hi to everyone and smile! Now some people might look at you strangely, might not respond, might think “what’s he after” but do it anyway. Those that back stab and plot and speak only to those who can further their career might get up the ranks quicker, but already they are being divisive in the office. Better to be remembered as someone who is decent. You,never know who you’ll be working with in the future so be nice to everyone. There will be people you like better than others that’s only natural and some people who really get on your nerves but being polite and professional will always see you through. Focus on the work and what you want to achieve and all will come good.

So when you find yourself getting into that negative spiral think to yourself “change it up” no I am not a victim, I choose to work here, I enjoy what I do and the people are great.. Or if it is awful in your head to work there then start putting out positive steps to change your career.. The worst thing you can do is fall into a work funk of negativity all you will then do is over analyse everything and turn situations into a drama. Believe me I’ve been there and whilst it can be fun and dramatic to do that, all you do is perpetuate your victim status.. Everyone is against me! You can find comfort in that but long term it keeps you right where you don’t want to be.

Changing it up can be hard as you are so used to your mind thinking a particular way. Some people practice positive affirmations, some like to break their day with exercise, some people just take a deep breath and think what would Oprah do? Whatever works for you. If this is not a job you enjoy think of this as part of your journey your to quote a Carrie Underwood song “your temporary home”. That can push you forward to think about your calls and to put steps out there to achieve them.. Don’t talk yourself out of this by thinking of every excuse which ultimately comes down to feelings of “not good enough” keep on keeping on and you’ll get there! Have faith in yourself!