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Change You Can Handle

Don’t you just love those articles that promise to change your life if you abide by some number of lofty, abstract commandments, like “let go of the negative” or “have faith” or “stop competing”? Oh wait… you hate those articles!? That makes two of us.

For those of you who don’t know how to begin making such monumental, transcendental change in your life (or aren’t ready to), here’s some advice that is slightly more digestible.

Work life

1. It’s okay if you don’t love your job. If you have a paying job and are getting macbook-336704_640decent experience, take a moment to applaud yourself. I’m not saying throw in the dream-career towel just yet, I’m merely saying don’t quit because it’s not perfect or doesn’t fit what you imagined for yourself. Figure out a way to make incremental progress towards where you want to be, but in the meantime make the most of your life outside of work. And I’m not just talking the weekend. Whether it’s movie Monday or taco Tuesday, do something to make your weekdays matter (and if possible, try to make it alliterative).

2. If you’re brand new to a job, and the client asks you how long you’ve been with the company, say “I’m in my first year.” It’s an honest way to mask your newness.

3. Use the follow up feature in Microsoft Outlook like it’s going out of style. It’s right there begging to be used, and it will help you stay on top of your email game.

4. Don’t start emails with the word “just” (e.g. “I just wanted to follow up….”). It’s a weak word and you are not weak.

Product Endorsements

1. The Skimm
This is one of the few email subscriptions I do not regret. It provides a daily news roll-up with brevity and simplicity at its core. It’s relevant, it’s easy to understand, and it’s witty.

2. EZPass
If you are not registered, register immediately (like this moment, I’ll wait). Getting an EZPass is so simple, and it will make you feel like a legit adult. Not to mention the satisfaction that comes with entering the exclusive “EZPass Only” lanes and looking over at your behind-the-times EZPass-less co-drivers.

3. Turbotax
Disclaimer: this may not be the best tool for those of you so unfortunate to have numerous investment holdings (i.e. you wealthy folk!), but for the rest of you, I full-heartedly recommend Turbotax. It saves your information each year, and has a fun UI. And I have now used the words “full-heartedly” and “fun” in regards to tax filing software, so I will move on.

4. Trader Joe’s Cowboy Bark 
Game Changer.

So that’s my summary. Now if you have any good (actionable) tips for me, please share, because I’ll take all the help I can get!

Thoughts on “Change You Can Handle

    Read books. Books about work, books about adventure, humor, whatever. Keep learning. A few I like for new employees:

    1. Choice Theory, William Glasser. If you think you can control others (and most of us think we can, at times), this will set you straight, and frankly free your mental energy to do what you can in various facets of your life.
    2. Getting Things Done, David Allen. It’s the Seven Habits for today’s workforce.
    3. Leadership is an Art, Max DePree. DePree ran Herman Miller furniture for years, fantastic read and very accessible.

    There are many others. These make a good start.

    Thanks for the post, Mary.

    Best,
    Chris

    Reply

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