Quitting Time

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You know it in your gut. Sometimes the head follows and then your entire body follows. It is tiring and feels like the energy is being sucked right out of you. You toy with the idea only to find yourself back in your comfort zone, once again complacent and dreading the day to day.

The decision to quit a job usually comes after several moments and thoughts of “There has got to be something else.” and “I can’t do this anymore!” It is scary to leave a comfort zone, but the brave know that it is also very rewarding.

Our gut will continue to plead with us to make decisions that seem uncomfortable. In the relentless pursuit for attention, the gut may become ill to the point where our only choice is to give in. There is relief and knowing when to trust your gut; your truth center.

Although quitting may seem like the answer, there are some questions you need to consider first…

  1. Is there a different approach to the way you are dealing with a certain situation or is it time to move on? Answering this question honestly can help you discover whether it is time to quit or learn new ways to deal or communicate in a certain situation.
  2. What are you willing to compromise in order to go after what you really want? Perhaps it is a few dinners out or maybe living a simpler lifestyle. If a sabbatical is on your horizon, it is important to think about budget and what you will be spending once income ceases.
  3. What is your time frame? Be honest. Decide how much more time you want to stay in your current position and when you would like to be in a new position
  4. Is it time to take a sabbatical or start applying for different positions? This is crucial when it comes to quitting your job. Determine whether this is a conscious break from working or a career pivot and where you begin looking for your next position.

Each of these scenarios will take a different type of focus and resources. Allowing yourself the space to process this transition will help zero in on the goal and purpose of the change. Talking it through with a non-biased party will help detach from and sort through feelings and emotions. This is where a coach or mentor can help. Friends and family are wonderful for advice, but at times, their advice can be biased based on their relationship with you.

Quitting is a bold move that can be quite rewarding. Taking the time to ask a few important questions can bring clarity and peace. Sometimes we must close the door to something that isn’t working in order to focus on which door to open next.

For more information on navigating a career change or sabbatical with clarity and focus, email me at emily@soulsadventures.com.

Confidence: Interviews, Negotiations & Communications

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One of the topics that consistently comes up in coaching is finding the confidence for a job interview, salary negotiation and in personal affairs. Asserting oneself can feel uneasy because we don’t want to rock the boat. We end up stepping aside for someone else to shine and get that job or risk not getting what we really want.

Confidence comes with clarity. When we can clearly define what we want, we can visualize the outcome and communicate with confidence. Clarity is the super power when it comes to negotiations and communication. A well thought out argument is more likely to be listened to. When we can paint a clear picture or scenario of what and why we want something, we can get the point across with ease.

I remember when I wanted to negotiate my salary and felt fear and doubt rising inside of me, thwarting my confidence and telling me several excuses as to why it would not happen. I chose to sit in that painful place for a moment, but knew that I was the only one that could be my own champion. I went back and forth on approaching my boss and after careful planning, I took the leap and approached him with my proposal.

I had numbers to back up my performance, customer reviews and a number in my head that I wanted. I had done my research on comparable salaries and wanted to feel valued and appreciated. In fact, after all my careful planning, I realized that the underlying reason for my request was because I wanted to feel valued.

This can be said in personal affairs as well. We all want to be seen and heard and most of all valued. Confidence in communication does not need to be paired with arrogance, it is better partnered up with clarity.

When we communicate with confidence, we can be seen as more vibrant, attractive, intelligent and calm.

So how to boost confidence? Here are a few steps to muster courage, grow your confidence quotient and harness your inner bravery:

  1. Make a list of what you want and why. (note: the why is very important)
  2. Ask 10 people what they believe your top 3 qualities/attributes are. Notice any commonalities. (trust me: we sell ourselves short and this is a way to learn how others view us and boost confidence)
  3. Back yourself up with examples, numbers, hard facts, etc… Show them you did your homework and know your stuff!
  4. Visualize and breathe: close your eyes and see yourself negotiating, discussing and receiving. Breathe into this feeling. Find your calm and replace the anxious thoughts with confident thoughts.
  5. Power pose. If you don’t know what I mean, watch Amy Cuddy’s TED talk which has helped many people muster up courage right before the big talks/performances/negotiations.

Whether you are going in for an interview, negotiating a salary or having a hard discussion with a loved one, taking the time to find clarity and confidence will help ease the discomfort. Replace anxiety with anticipatory excitement. You are your own champion and we all want our superheroes to stand tall with confidence. Find yours within and embrace the bravery that lies inside.

For more information on coaching and a free 15 minute consult to customize a coaching package, email me at emily@soulsadventures.com

Career Coaching with Soul

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One of the main questions I am asked is “How do I successfully change careers?”  I have navigated two career changes and have been able to take sabbaticals where I could recharge and refocus. The more I coach, the more people have come to me for help in their careers. I have had former colleagues tell me that this was what I should be doing as they considered me as a mentor while we worked together.

When I began the journey of coaching as a career, my vision was to help people tap into their souls and to live more intentionally. One of the most important areas of life is career. Coaching seems to always tap into career whether intentionally or not. There are times to move forward, times to step back and learn a new skill and times to just rest and recharge.

Helping people find fulfillment in what they do comes from a soul level. It is more than looking for a job and hitting apply. Career changes take thought, planning and bravery. Going after something new can be daunting. I want to help you sift through options, create a plan and harness your bravery.

Below is a list of current career coaching options:

  • Resume Review & Revision
  • Cover Letter Review & Revision
  • Job Search & Networking Strategy
  • LinkedIn Profile Review and Revision
  • Sales Process Optimization
  • Confidence Building & Overcoming Blocks
  • Mindfulness at Work

For more information, please email emily@soulsadventures.com or visit here.

The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.

-Steve Jobs

Navigating Career Changes

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There have been two times where I have quit my job without a plan in mind. The first time was after a particularly rough period working for a bank while the market was crashing. I just knew that I needed to get out. The stress continued to build and debilitating anxiety became a common occurrence. I believed that peace would be found on the other side of leaving the company.

I left the job for medical reasons and wanted to find a place where I could work with less stress. That search lasted 9 months. During that time, stress over money and direction created uneasiness, but I resolved to keep my mind open to whatever needed to be next.

During my sabbatical, I found that I had a passion for wine and started to look into the wine industry as an option. I decided to put myself at industry events, helped my friend’s dad in his tasting room and began learning as much as I could about wine.

One day, I found a job posting for a company looking for a courier. I figured this was a great way to get my foot in the door and learn. The first 8 months, I asked as many questions as possible, assuming the mindset of a student. I was persistent in my pursuit of growing in my career and asked for promotions often. Eventually, I grew within the company and had the opportunity to travel the world and manage accounts.

After 5 years with the company,  I knew that a new career of path helping others was on the horizon, but was not sure what the next steps were. I knew that if I stayed where I was, I would become complacent and not search for the next steps my soul was asking me to take.

That’s the thing about change, complacency and fear can keep you in place hindering forward movement.

I left the company and bought a 1 way ticket to Bali. While overseas, I wrote and did some soul searching, hoping my next steps would be revealed. It wasn’t until I was back home in a coffee shop when I received the direction I was searching for.

I was writing, and a man approached me, sat down and proceeded to tell me all about his current relationship struggles. I listened for quite some time and then gave him some advice. He responded “You’re such a great listener, you should be a life coach.” I asked if that was a real thing…sure enough, it is.

Within 2 months, I was enrolled in life coaching school and started working on my certification. The evolution of this career has been so natural and I feel like I am doing what I was meant to do. Being able to combine writing and helping others is what my soul was searching for.

I am still in awe with how the entire thing transpired. By staying open to all possibilities, I was able to navigate my career change. Even through the difficult moments where I felt anxious about my next steps, I kept my mind open to all possibilities.

I knew my core desire was to help others and kept that as my north star.

Here are some tips on how to navigate the uncertainty of a career change:

  1.  Find what your passionate about (make a list, create a vision board or talk it over with someone)
  2.  If you’re contemplating a change, save your money and create a budget
  3.  Look for ways to enter the industry, especially with little to no experience.
  4.  Network
  5.  Work hard and speak your intentions clearly
  6.  Be persistent with your will to grow and develop
  7.  Patience pays off
  8.  Stay open to possibilities

If you are contemplating a career change or find yourself in the middle of one, coaching is a great tool to stay focused and weed through options. Email me at emily@soulsadventures.com to begin your career change journey.

On Becoming

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“You are becoming” was the final line of a poem a friend wrote for me during a particularly rough time. I had been striving for something, not sure what, but I wasn’t getting where I wanted to be. I felt lost and aimless.

I tried very hard to be successful in the traditional sense. I was managing large volume accounts for my company and customers were happy. I presented budgets and projections with ease. I was good at driving results and creating plans for my market. However, there was a sense of emptiness and I wanted to figure out how to change that.

When asked what I wanted to do, I replied “help people, travel the world and write.” But, I didn’t know what that really meant or how to make that happen.

The struggle to pursue traditional success alongside soulful contentment was becoming stronger the more I resisted it.

What you resist persists

– Carl Jung

When I decided to ease into the process of letting go, the tension that I created for myself began to dissipate. Soon, my goals started to match my soul’s desires. The feeling of ease and contentment surpassed the need to be traditional and understood.

I wasn’t sure how everything was going to pan out, but whatever was happening felt right. This is what becoming must feel like. How can one know what the metamorphosis will deliver? All I knew was that resistance felt more excruciating than surrender.

And then, one day, a man walked into a coffee shop where I was writing. I was feeling upset that my trip around the world was cut short. He sat down next to me and just unloaded a very heavy story. I listened for what seemed like forever, asked a few questions and gave him some insight. He then replied “You should become a life coach.” Words that changed my life.

He got up and left. I sat there perplexed. Was that even a thing? Can one become a life coach? That was the day I started my journey to where I am now. I don’t think I will ever stop becoming something. However, this showed me that sometimes, in the most unexpected ways, messages are delivered.

“Help people, travel the world and write”. I am doing that in my own way. What’s next is unknown, but staying open is key.

What are you resisting that persists? Are you facing blocks or fears that are keeping you from taking the next steps? Let me help you tackle these objections and fears. What are you striving to become?

* email me emily@soulsadventures.com to begin your journey of becoming

Mindfulness at Work

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Its the beginning of the day and you open your calendar to see the tasks and appointments for the day. There is a sense of restriction within your throat as you think about the day unfolding. You think about all the possible distractions and interruptions that may occur, stress begins to well within your gut, your heart beat starts to race, the phone rings and it sets you off. You’ve only been at work for 10 minutes and you’re ready to go home.

This is common for many people, especially on Monday mornings. This was my story for years — I would stress myself out just anticipating stress. Then, I decided to change that part of me. I knew the trigger well. I allowed it to send me into a deep spiral. I was done spinning. Focus was what I craved. Results desired to be attained. The first step was to stop myself and just be where I was and not off in the “what ifs”.

“Do you know about living in the present?” is a question that I am frequently asked by clients. The answer is more than a simple “yes” or “no”. Living in the present takes practice because it requires mindfulness.

Mindfulness is the practice of being present and in the moment. I started learning to be mindful after a particularly rough breakdown. I was suffering from intense anxiety which gave way to an occasional panic attack. I talked to doctors and therapists and didn’t find the relief I knew was possible until I learned to be still and present.

I was a bulldozer/whirlwind/lightning bolt who did not like to be still. When I found myself sitting in silence at first, I was uncomfortable and tried to control the outcome.

Slowly, I let go. Slowly, I learned to be present. Slowly, my reactions faded from thunderous panic into deep cleansing breaths.

Here are a few things to do the next time you are at work and feel that stewing/panic/rage/annoyance bubble up. Try these steps for a month. Notice the changes you experience. Many of these can be done right at your desk or even before you enter work. With the intention of practicing mindfulness, you will find a new way to cope when work sends you reeling:

  • Breathe: Take 3-5 cleansing breaths in and out your nose. We can forget to breathe during stressful situations which can constrict breathing, thus creating a secondary stress.
  • Reframe your thought: When you find yourself in a negative thought pattern, recognize your thought and reframe it into something positive. Create a mantra or intention for the rest of the day.
  • Write it out: Taking a moment to write out the stress can give your brain the time to process the situation and thus take it off your mind.
  • Practice gratitude: Take a moment and offer gratitude for something.

By actively taking the steps to create a change in negative thought patterns a change is occurring inside the brain. Mindfulness practices can change the way we react to negative situations. As the practice becomes stronger, the reactions become weaker.

For more information on mindfulness and dealing with stress at work, please email me at emily@soulsadventures.com

A New Definition for Success

planeI silently sighed as I saw my impending situation for the next fourteen hours. I was going to be in the middle seat. My seat mates were discussing how one preferred the aisle over the window, and I just stood there while the seating arrangements were decided. Either way, I was going to be in the middle.

The flight was from San Francisco to Manila. The first layover en route to Bali. “This is an easy flight” the old man sitting next to me said as he adjusted his Bose earphones. He asked if I was headed to the Philippines and I let him know it was a layover.

For the next several hours, I had a lovely conversation with him. He trains teams in emergency response all over the world. He was flying to the Philippines to teach residents how to reclaim their water and drill new wells. He asked me where I was headed and my plans for the trip. I let him know that I had recently quit my job to travel and figure out my next step. He nodded and then went into a long explanation on how life is supposed to be lived now and to not wait for the future because it may never come.

His background was in the military as a paratrooper and said he never felt fear until he went on a ride at a fair with his daughter where he was scared for her safety. “I jumped out of planes into war zones and nothing compared to the fear I felt in possibly losing something I loved.” This was a turning point for him where he decided to live life fully.

The conversation was rich and we discussed gifts that each person has and I told him that I could tell his was service and encouragement. He told me that I had encouragement too because he was inspired by my story. This surprised me because I had been battling some doubt on whether or not I had made the right decision.

Then he said something to me that I will never forget, “Now you need to go from success to significance.” He explained that success is only a portion of happiness, what really matters is living a life full of significance…a legacy (even if you don’t have children). Forward thinking and how one acts after unexpected events is key. How we react shapes what happens next.

I was so grateful to sit next to this man. I think back to how I felt when I realized that I was going to sit in the middle for a long flight and how a negative thought turned into a memorable conversation. It was serendipitous to meet this man and have such a meaningful conversation about direction just a week after I quit my job. I didn’t know what was next. I knew I wanted to make a difference, but I was still in the mindset of success by any means. Changing my mindset to significance and making a difference by helping others completely transformed my life.

I began living my life with intention, striving to make a difference and using my gifts. I have had 2 career transitions in my life and this time, I feel like I am going after my true desires. Taking the time to listen to my intuition and striving for a life of significance is a new definition of success for me. The anxieties that I felt with my first career break are not present because my focus is on something greater.

Everyone has a special gift to share with the world. Seeing significance as success definitely requires a change of thought. When we are  living the life we are meant to be living, success is measured in non-tangible ways.  My gratitude is boundless to the universe for the middle seat and the wisdom I learned on that plane.

How can you add significance to you success story?

For more on living with intention, click here.

Sabbaticals and Career Breaks: Reflect and Reset

pathWhen you find yourself at the precipice of quitting your job to take a sabbatical or at an unexpected career break, a spark forms inside. There is a mixture of anxiety and freedom marking the start of a very important transition; the birth of something new.

Sabbaticals range in time but they all have a common theme. It is a time to look inside yourself to figure out what you really want to do next. This pause in work creates the space to evaluate, plan and listen to intuitive cues. The time is finally available to sit and think about direction.

This time is a gift and although there is some anxiety because the next step is unknown, embrace the ambiguity. Sit with the question. Allow the silence to be a guide.

I have experienced two sabbaticals in my life. The first one was after my career as an investment banker where I watched the downfall of the market and was plagued with anxiety. I was too young to feel that upset all the time. So, I cashed out everything, including my retirement account and moved away to figure out my next step. The time was spent in a new city, exploring a part of the US I had never seen and taking one big trip with the last of my money to visit a friend in Australia. When I returned, I found a job in an industry I had grown quite passionate about–wine.

I worked in the wine industry for five years working my way from a courier to an account manager where I consulted wine makers on their wine making processes. The job gave me the opportunity to travel all over the world and learn so much about wine. After a few years on the road constantly, I began to feel burnt out. I was home a few days a month and exhausted. My passion had waned and I wanted stability and community more than anything.

I resigned after a couple years of saving and planning my next steps. I was terrified when I handed in my resignation letter letting go of the financial security I had created and worked so hard for. But, my intuition told me this was a necessary move.

My plan was to travel the world and write a book. I had a one way plane ticket to Bali but something told me to keep my apartment. I would travel in spurts. While I was in Bali, all of my plans disintegrated and my true path revealed itself. I resisted and argued with the realization. Knowing that my wanderlust was being put on the back burner broke my heart. But it was clearly the right answer.

I returned home and settled in and signed up for school. I was going to write at home and study to become a life and spiritual coach. This last transition has had its share of doubt, anxiety and ambiguity. However, the biggest difference was the way I approached it.

The key was to trust my intuition and know that the universe was going to provide the path as long as I stayed open and listened for guidance.

During this time, I received coaching from a colleague and truly believe in the importance of a coach during transition. Not only can coaching provide guidance and accountability, it can also open your mind to the universal clues we can’t see when we shut down out of frustration.

If you are going through or thinking about a career transition and would like to discuss coaching, please email me at emily@soulsadventures.com. I offer effective tools to tap into your intuition, explore what it is your really want to do and provide planning tools.

Your profession is not what brings home your paycheck. Your profession is what you were put on Earth to do with such passion and such intensity that it becomes spiritual in calling. -Vincent Van Gogh