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Make the Most of Winter: Start the new year off stress-free

A lot is made of New Year’s resolutions, but when it comes to stressing less in today’s world, we all need to start sometime.

New Year's resolution
Photo courtesy of Anadukic33/Adobe Stock

A lot is made of New Year’s Resolutions, but when it comes to stressing less in today’s world, we all need to start sometime.  

Thinking about a career switch?

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We spoke with Anthony Spadafore, Career Choice Specialist for Pathfinders Career Design, to get you off on the right foot.

How often do you have people come to you looking for a new job because they are no longer satisfied with their career?
I’d say that 75 percent of my clients are people who no longer like their careers, and they are usually in their late 20s to early 30s. Usually around 30 years old is when people want to start changing their careers and branch out into something new.

What do you tell them when they first come in?
I tell them to be sure that this is what you want to do. I always tell my clients to go on dates with the career before you decide to marry it.

What do they need to do to be sure that this is what they want to do?
Do a reality check. When you are thinking about turning your hobby into a career, the fundamental questions that you need to ask yourself are: What am I good at? Why do I like these hobbies? What experience do I already have in that field? What do I want my days to look like? Then talk to someone in that field, get to know them, and make sure that this is what you want to do.

What advice would you give to people who like their careers but want to branch out into new things in the company or move up the ranks?
For people who wish to branch out, my advice would be to meet new people in your company who work in the field that you want to go into. It is more about who you know than your resume because they will be the ones who will help you move forward. For those people looking to get promoted, do not rely solely on your degree or resume. Show that this is what you eat, sleep and breathe. Show that you are willing to do the work needed for the job, and they will take notice.

How can people maintain a good work-life balance?
You have to make work enjoyable. If you do not enjoy what you do, then it will only cause you stress. I suggest you propose something to your company that will allow you to bring what you like to do into your career. For example, I was an engineer who liked marketing, so I got to know the marketing team at my job. I worked with them. And through them, I got to the career of my dreams, which is helping and guiding people.

New Year’s Resolutions

According to U.S. News’ “Why 80 Percent of New Year’s Resolutions Fail,” here are five steps to consider when making New Year’s resolutions:

1. Think small. Begin with small successes such as washing a dish after you finish your meal.

2. Build self-trust. If you’re not sure you’ll stick with going to the gym five times a week, then don’t promise yourself that you will. It’s better to lose the battle than the war.

3. Invent challenges. Challenge yourself throughout the day to strengthen your ability to believe and to do. Don’t allow yourself to procrastinate.

4. Cultivate optimism. Train yourself to focus on the positives rather than the negatives. Don’t let insecurity suggest there are no positives.

5. Develop critical awareness. With awareness, you shed light on your destructive, reflexive habits and thinking and on any self-sabotaging mind games at play.

(January 2017 Make the Most of Winter)

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