A Personal Mission Statement: 5 Steps to Making Your Own

Why a mission statement?  It’s simple: it helps keep you in your lane.

Have you been to a bowling alley lately?  Have you seen the bumpers they put on the lanes to stop your ball from landing in the gutter when you’re way off center?  A mission statement is like putting bumpers on the bowling lane of your life — it keeps you on course and in your lane, especially when you begin to veer off.

gutter bumpersHere’s a practical example:  assume you know your mission statement and you’re happy in your job; you enjoy what you do, and you’re doing valuable work that is aligned with your mission. Then a recruiter reaches out with a very enticing offer. Now what? If your mission is clear, you’ll know right away if the new offer is worth pursuing or not.  Maybe that company is offering free lunches and better health benefits, but maybe those perks aren’t so important to you because you don’t like the company’s values.  Or maybe that company has been on your “top ten” list for a long time, and you should definitely follow up, even though the timing isn’t right. Your mission statement provides a vision of the bowling pins AND the bumpers, so two things happen: 1. you know where you’re aiming, and 2. you don’t waste time in the gutter. Continue reading “A Personal Mission Statement: 5 Steps to Making Your Own”

Leveling Up with One Big Step: the altMBA

How do you level up?

Set your goals? Identify the gaps? Get some training? Find a support group?

All of the above?

up stairs

I just completed Seth Godin’s altMBA course. It’s a month long program for people wanting to “level up.”

What does that mean? Good question — it’s a tough program to describe. Let’s look at it from a few different angles.

Continue reading “Leveling Up with One Big Step: the altMBA”

Single-tasking is the New Black … I Hope

distraction image

Imagine going out for dinner with friends, and no one pulls out their phone; or trying to remember that name of Robert Downey Jr.’s most recent film without checking Google (Captain America: Civil War); or sitting on a bus and not having your neighbor talking loudly to his mother. Don’t get me wrong — I’m all for using cellphones, google-ing, and calling your mother. But research shows that there is a significant cost of both multi-tasking and being distracted by the phone — cost to brain development, creativity, and happiness.

“Wait, what?” you say. “My brain? My creativity? My happiness? But I can’t get my job done unless I multitask!” It’s time to re-think this.

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Choosing Your Next Career

windyroadCareer advice is easy to get — maybe too easy because there is too much information and too many people who think they know what’s best for you.  So, how do you wade through it all? My straight-forward advice is to pace yourself and complete a thorough process such as these five steps:

  1. Understand yourself
  2. Be practical (and budget minded)
  3. Explore your options
  4. Be inspired
  5. Be brave and take a leap

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