pain and pleasure - change grow

Are you stuck?   Do you want something badly at work (e.g., promotion, work life balance, better boss, challenging assignment) but somehow can’t seem to take any action toward making it happen?  You are not alone.  Inertia, the inability to do something different from our routine, happens to all of us.  How do you do

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Lei's new year aspirations

I started this tradition last year and really liked how it influenced my decisions and actions the rest of the year.  I am doing it again this year to define my new year aspirations 1. Define ways to build new habits instead of setting goals.  I found this is helping me evolve into a better human being. 2. Post my new

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hot chocolate 15K 2017

Happy New Year!  Sunday was my annual Hot Chocolate 15K race.   My friend Agnes got me into it 3 years ago.  It’s a great way to start off the year – a long run (9.4 miles) followed by a nice cup of hot chocolate and an amazing natural high all day. Well, I didn’t

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career advancement

Mastering soft skills is critical to your career advancement.   Louis Johnston, one of our executive authors, agrees.  He shared in this interview how mastering certain soft skills helped him skyrocket his career and quadruple his compensation. Louis started as an Online Marketing Associate, 10 years ago.  He has since been promoted to Manager, Director, Senior Director, and

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frozen-elsa-anna

Lei:  I am excited to introduce a new Executive Author to our Soft Skills Gym – Cindy Wong-Zarahn.  I only met Cindy last year but feel like we have been old friends for years.  She has close to 20 years of experience in the corporate world with plenty of battle scars as well as very sage advice.

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A friend shared this Youtube video with me and I literally cried.  It talks about one stereotype that we all know about and how it affects us.  It’s amazing how stereotypes are so common in our society. Sometimes people use it intentionally in their communication to put down other people out of insecurity and other

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pleaser achiever

A month ago, my boss mentioned that everyone on our team is a “Pleaser Achiever”?   I have been meaning to write about it ever since.  So what is a “Pleaser Achiever”, you may ask?  Well, let’s start with a simple quiz When someone comes to you for help at work and your boss tells you you can say

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growth mindset example

A few months ago, I did a veggie and fruit cleanse for the first time in my life.  Why?  All the usual reasons Vanity – I wanted to get back to my college weight after having two kids. Peer Pressure – My husband and my friend were doing it that week Efficiency  – I didn’t have

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How to Stop thinking about work

It is critical to your mental and physical health to know How to Stop Thinking about Work.  This post is written for my benefit and yours, if you find yourself in a similar situation. During the last six weeks, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about work.   I love my new job, and theoretically I am only working about 40 hours a week,  8:30

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career change at 40

Making a mid career change, a career change around the age of 40 or 45, is a courageous decision. It is possible for anyone in their mid-life to do this, as long as they understand the trade-offs involved. Below is a great question I received from a reader who is considering a mid career change,

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work life balance path

Achieving work life balance takes self-awareness, making tough choices, and being disciplined.  As a recovering over-achiever and perfectionist, this is hard for me.     My natural tendency with any job is to err on the side of working over-time and prioritizing my job above anything else.   The only reason I was able to maintain

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Every year seem to go by faster and faster. Do you feel that too?  Well, it’s New Year’s Eve Day and it’s time to look back and take stock of what happened in 2013.  It’s my way to slow down today and be grateful for 2013. At the beginning of this year, I decided to

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It is New Year’s Eve day.  I am supposed to be happy and excited.  Instead I wake up very agitated.  My mind is teeming with negative thoughts.  I have been sick for two weeks.  I feel behind.  I feel unaccomplished. I feel tired even though I just got a full night’s sleep. Then I catch

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A reader recently asked, via email, “How can one make up for a lack of self-confidence?  How do I beat this nasty character flaw?” Having self-confidence is integral to building Inner Excellence, so I thought this would be a good time to address this question. First, let me start by telling you a story: Gary travels to

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make-change-at-work

We have been talking a lot about the different soft skills we need to accelerate our career success, including self-management skills, which are needed to build inner excellence (like patience, persistence, confidence), and people skills (like communication skills, managing people skills, etc.).  Well, one thing is common between all of these topics: in order to master

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