Love the one you’re with: know what you’ve got and flaunt it!

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Who do you see when you look in the mirror?

We want you to see a woman ready to start turning her work dreams into her new reality.  A fabulous woman confident in her knowledge and abilities. A woman ready to do work she loves!

But do you find the mirror can get fogged up?

We know that you need to wipe away the steam and get clarity about your future. To do this you’ll need to recognise what you’ve got to offer in all the areas of your life. Then you can begin to confidently put these talents and skills and strengths to good use.  You’ll need to be a bit of a detective!

With a bit of effort we CAN identify and make the most of our talents, skills and strengths!

Proudly identify your key work related strengths and skills

We often shy away from looking too closely at our achievements and don’t want to seem boastful.  Or maybe we tend to think of things we do as “just being part of the job” and “nothing special”.

Let us assure you - your achievements are well worth celebrating and give you clues to uncover your strengths.  So make a start on identifying your strengths and skills by answering these questions.

  • What do people rely on you for?
  • At work (or elsewhere) what have you been the “go to girl for”?
  • What do you most enjoy doing in your roles - and know you’re good at?
  • What are 5 things you’re really proud of that relate to work?

Once you’ve made your list you can look for the patterns.  What’s consistent in your achievements? What might be other ways of describing your achievements? And what stands out that can help put your future plans into action?

How can you start recognising your achievements and feel strong positive energy?

Leverage your character strengths

As you proudly identify your achievements and work focused strengths, we also encourage you to think about your character strengths. Each of us possesses a range of qualities which influence what we do and how we choose to do it.  Using our most developed character strengths feels natural, energises us and gives us our point of difference.

Are you the person who raises spirits and smoothes conflict with your sense of humour? Maybe you’re the superbly organised team player who helps keep everyone on track?  Perhaps your creativity and curiosity means that brilliant new initiatives often start with you?

So now you’re focusing on all that you already have proven you can do (and so definitely can do again!).  There’s one pitfall to watch out for!

Don’t forget to banish the biggest threat - your inner critical voice

Quieten your worst critic!

It’s easy to notice and dwell upon the stuff that annoys or disappoints us in ourselves (those anti-achievements), but we need to avoid getting de-railed by our self-criticism!  We can accept that we’re not perfect. Then we can make a habit of looking for our strengths and benefit from that energy and engagement to work towards our goals.

So, love the one you’re with!!

We’re in your corner

Kate & Debra - Flourishing Mothers

PS. If you’re interested to investigate your character strengths have a look at www.viacharacter.org or get in touch to find out how you can use your strengths to super-charge your life.

What's your plan, Jan? What to do about work, when you don't know what to do!

As a working mum, do you ever feel like you’re in the wrong job? Or that you’ve compromised your career hopes? Do you wrack your brain, wondering if you can find a job you love that works with the needs of your family? Do you go around in circles but not find an answer? Do you start to doubt you’ll ever have work that thrills you?

If this feels like you, you’re not alone! Figuring out what to do, and planning for a work future that fulfils you can feel confusing and overwhelming. Over time, you can start to lack confidence in your ability to make positive changes. You might  settle for second best.

It IS possible to do work you love AND look after your family in the way you’d like to

We’re here to tell you that it IS possible to do work you love AND look after your family in the way you’d like to. We help our clients do exactly this every day. If this is something you’d like to do, read on!

plan your future do work you love

When you don’t know what to do, the trick is to step back before you step forward. To spend time really understanding who you are in this phase of life. What’s important to you right now.

When you can examine your life from a bird’s eye point of view, it’s easier to see the way forward.

It’s also important to dream about the job you’d love, and how your work and home life life could look if you could wave a magic wand. It’s amazing how this process starts to build a bridge to your future. You can start to set meaningful and motivating goals. Your plan starts to form.

When you need a plan, but don’t know what to do, we recommend you start with these 4 steps.

  1. Identify your personal and work values. There are plenty of “values checklists” around, or you can read on to access ours. For example, do you value autonomy or teamwork? Financial security or legacy? Curiosity or prudence? When your work aligns with your values, you will love your job more.
     
  2. Decide on your priorities. Which domains of your life are most important for you to focus on right now?  For example, how important is your work versus time with family, being social and caring for yourself? This helps gain perspective and clues for how your work-life balance might look.
     
  3. Imagine yourself 5 years from now. What would you love to be doing or have experienced? Be creative and dream! Would you love to work for yourself? Make partner in your firm? Travel the world? You don’t have to hold yourself to it...what’s important here is that it gives our subconscious a direction in which to focus our attention.
     
  4. Start to articulate your “big picture” goals. Don’t start too specific or you’ll limit your options too early. For example, “I’d like to find work within 30 minutes commute from home”  or “I’d like to find flexible work - around 20 hours per week”. From here you can start to brainstorm the various ways to reach these goals.

In place of confusion, you gain clarity, motivation and confidence

Your goals become a roadmap, helping you make decisions and take action. In place of confusion, you gain clarity. And, because you act in a direction that aligns with your values and priorities, you feel motivated and confident.

Developing your own roadmap and making changes can be hard to do on your own - lots of working mums get help with this process! We highly encourage you to break the inertia and do these steps. Make a plan, Jan! Not only will it save time and avoid making costly job mistakes….it will help you find work that you love!

With love from Flourishing Mothers

PS. Please click here to download the Flourishing Mothers Values Checklist

Face your fears - to make progress towards your work dreams

Imagine it’s a hot summer day and you’re at the beach. The water looks so good, you definitely want a swim. But, as you start walking into the surf the cold hits your belly and you stop dead – you know the feeling!

face fears resilience work you love

Returning to work or changing jobs or careers can feel the same.  You know you want to be in a fulfilling role that satisfies your career dreams AND works with the rest of your life. But getting there often means braving some cold water.

Do you want fulfilling work that satisfies your career goals AND works with the rest of your life?

Where to start?

When we want to make change in our lives it’s our own thoughts that are often the biggest roadblock.  We think and think about what we want, but our fears stop us taking even a small action.  You need a way to deal with the unhelpful thoughts and move forward day by day. We suggest giving these 3 steps a try.

  1. Recognise your fears
    What exactly are the thoughts that make your freeze? Are you:
    - Worried you’ve lagged in your skills?
    - Concerned you won’t be able to compete in the job market?
    - Feeling you’ve lost confidence?
    - Wondering how on earth you’ll juggle everything?
    It’s uncomfortable to dig around in your thoughts and feelings but once you’ve identified the unhelpful thoughts that are spiralling around and around you can start dealing with them.
     
  2. Reality check
    Once you’ve identified what’s freaking you out the next step is to bravely take a clear look at your fears.  Are they real?  For example, if you worry that your skills are out of date you might test this by reading relevant job ads and descriptions online. Maybe you have a friend with a similar background to you who could help you realistically assess your skills and give you some industry insights.  You’re looking for clarity with this step, so if there are skills you need to refresh or learn you can devise a plan.
     
  3. Take a small step forward
    Now that you know your real position, you can start to practically move forward.  This isn’t about diving headfirst into the deep – it’s about working out the first step in a plan that will help you achieve a broader goal.  What is ONE thing you can do this week that will move you forward and you can feel proud of? You’ll be amazed at how good it feels to take a small action and it makes the next step so much easier!

What’s ONE thing you can do this week to move you forward?

As you work towards your dreams, keep these steps in mind. New fears will pop into your head needing to be dealt with. Now you’ve got a strategy!

If you’d like help to face your fears and  do work that lights you up, get in touch. We’re here to help you.

Best wishes for now

Kate and Debra - Flourishing Mothers