Your ultimate guide to making the most of the silly season

Your ultimate guide to making the most of the silly season

Your ultimate guide to making the most of the silly season

The days are getting warmer and the evenings longer which means we are on the downhill stretch to Christmas, the silly season and the end of the year.

And with restrictions finally lifted – it’s time to get out and about and connect… in person. 

But this does not mean that it’s time to put your career aspirations on hold, swan off with a cocktail in hand or slip into your summer sandals and head to the beach for that long awaited break. Not quite so fast, my friend. That time will come but not quite yet.

Here’s what I suggest you focus on first. 

As I’ve discussed with many high-achieving women over the last couple of weeks, this is the perfect time to get out and about connecting and positioning yourself for the types of roles you would like to be considered for come the new year.

  And with the Great Resignation ramping up – there are plenty of amazing opportunities out there. They may not all be being advertised, but they are there and the way to access them is through your connections.

In just the last 2 months 6 of the ladies in The Leadership Connection (my inner circle membership for Mid Career Women) have secured amazing new roles.  

So, ladies, it’s time to dig into the back of your wardrobe, pull on some real clothes and head out for a pre-Christmas drink, coffee or lunch. Look through your contact list and pick up the phone to colleagues from years gone past.

Go into this festive period with an intention to have some fun, while also making the best use of the opportunity to strengthen key relationships, build your profile and seek opportunities in the hidden job market.

Yes… I’m suggesting you be a little bit strategic.

As I’ve discovered, through many discussions with women over the last couple of years … knowing how to have these conversations and exactly how to position yourself can be bewildering.

Here are my 5 best suggestions for making the most of the festive silly season.

  1. Relationships first, business second.

Focus on building genuine robust relationships. No one likes to be taken advantage of or used. So, look to develop authentic connections and be willing to give even more than you would ultimately like to get from the relationship. And remember, a handwritten, heartfelt note to those people you are grateful to have in your life will go a long way to raising your profile as a genuine professional worth supporting.

  1. Own your accomplishments.

When someone asks you how the year has been, speak of what you have achieved and what has made you proud this year. No more hiding in the shadows or skipping over the wins. This is all about positioning your skills and talents and developing your personal brand.

  1. Be open to new opportunities.

At this time of the year people will ask you about your work, what you’re doing and if it’s been a good year. If you’re on the job market… let people know (with discretion of course.) If you don’t know exactly what is next for you then share that you are exploring opportunities that will allow you to use your X, Y and Z skills and further develop your interest and passion for A, B and C.

  1. Ask for introductions.

Your next role is most likely to come through an introduction or a recommendation from someone in your network. So, let’s expand the network. Ask your connections whether there is anyone within their network that may be valuable for you to connect with. Remember, you will never get what you don’t ask for.

  1. Have fun.

Let’s face it, it’s been a tough year and you’ve worked hard, so let’s take some time to enjoy the festive season. A positive, optimistic and fun attitude during the silly season will do wonders for your soul and boost your chances of a fabulous opportunity coming. 

LET'S CONNECT

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Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

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Your energy is contagious and your reputation is at stake

Your energy is contagious and your reputation is at stake

How you show up at work matters. The type of energy you bring to your work impacts your effectiveness while also shaping your professional reputation. It’s not something many of us give much consideration to, but it can absolutely influence our outcomes and whether or not new and exciting opportunities come our way.

So let’s pause and reflect on the type of energy you bring to work every day – whether that’s in the office or while working from home. 

Imagine for a moment that you are encased in a bubble and in that bubble is your energy. That energy could be positive, energetic, loving, inspiring, compassionate, caring or it could be negative, stressed, anxious, angry, sharp, abrasive or abrupt.

And as you move through your day … your energy is bumping up against other people and is having either a positive or a negative impactregardless whether you’re  working in person or virtually.

Your energy will absolutely shape the opinion others have of you and influence the mood and the morale of the team.

Recently, I caught up with a senior leader whose energy was tuned into the land of frustration, crankiness and in a constant state of fighting against the system.  At every turn, all they could focus on were all the things that weren’t working and how a particular global decision was negatively impacting on them and their team.

They shared with me that they were constantly tired and feeling like they were in a “battle”.  They weren’t sleeping well and there is no doubt that they were gaining a reputation for being a negative influence throughout the business.

This was so unlike the bright, bubbly, solution-focused energy they usually brought to the leadership table.

So my question to you today is…

  • What energy are you known for? 
  • Are you having a positive or a negative influence on those around you?

Your energy is more contagious than the common cold!

The energy and attitude you bring to your work will rub off on your team and colleagues and influence how they show up and interact with you. 

Your energy also impacts your personal productivity, the decisions you make and the effectiveness of your communication. It’s pretty difficult to think strategically or creatively or to build effective relationships with people when you are in a really crappy mood!

And most importantly, how you show up every day will absolutely be influencing your professional reputation.

Everyone you come into contact with will be silently judging whether they like working with you and whether they see you as an effective leader based on your energy and attitude.

So let’s put on our big girl pants and take a little responsibility. 

It’s time to be more conscious of our energy and agree that there may be times when we’re not bringing our best selves to work.

HERE ARE 3 ENERGIES YOU ARE BEST TO BANISH FROM YOUR BUBBLE.

  1. Overwhelmed Crazy Women. Yep … this is the crazy woman who is about to go into meltdown. I know that you know her. Maybe you know her rather too well.

If you are familiar with this women, you know that it’s like her brain has been hijacked by an alien. She is unable to function effectively and she emits a chaotic energy. Her decision making powers have gone out the window along with their usual calm, rational efficiency.

Generally the trigger will be an unusually high workload that has spiralled out of control and ironically her response makes getting through her growing “to do list” almost impossible to complete.

  1. Negative Nelly. Unfortunately this energy is all too common in many workplaces.   I know her well… she chose to show up in me for a time some years back. Ugly but true.

She genuinely loves to get involved in idol gossip that has nothing to do with her. She is fuelled by wingeing and complaining and has an incessant focus on problems outside of her control.

The glass is always half empty and she has every reason under the sun why things won’t work. The Negative Nelly loves to blame others and make excuses… and rarely takes any responsibility.

  1. Don’t Come Near Me … because I’m about to snap. Ahh… scary! If you are taken over by this energy, look out. You are about to get a reputation to be hard to work with and may well find your colleagues giving you a wide berth.

Some of your team will be scared of you, some won’t trust you and some will choose to avoid you as best they can.

This angry ant is like a pressure cooker, on the verge of exploding. She can at times say things she doesn’t really mean but once they are out… she cant take them back.

And the choice is entirely yours…

We all have the choice of how we show up and how we respond to situations around us.  

If you recognise that you have let one of these unresourceful energies out to play a little too often… think about what impact it is having on you, your work performance, your team engagement and ultimately your reputation?

Perhaps it’s time to upgrade the energy in your energy bubble!

 

LET'S CONNECT

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Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Happy business woman using digital tablet in modern office with christmas tree in background. Young middle eastern woman smiling and looking at camera during xmas. Portrait of cheerful young businesswoman working during christmas time with copy space.

Your ultimate guide to making the…

The days are getting warmer and the evenings longer which means we are on the downhill stretch to Christmas, the silly season and the end of the year.
And with restrictions finally lifted – it’s time to get out and about and connect… in person.

Jane Benston

Hit a mid-career plateau? 5 assumptions…

Is it possible that you are your worst enemy when it comes to progressing your career? Are you playing small, ruling yourself out or holding back from stepping up to the next level of leadership?

Jane Benston

High achievers have these 5 things…

Have you ever wondered why some people seem to have the gift of turning everything they touch into gold? They lead the best teams, they achieve exceptional results and get noticed and promoted more often. And to top it off … they seem have everything sorted in their life outside of work too.

Jane Benston

Hit a mid-career plateau? 5 assumptions that will keep you stuck?

Hit a mid-career plateau? 5 assumptions that will keep you stuck?

Is it possible that you are your worst enemy when it comes to progressing your career?  Are you playing small, ruling yourself out or holding back from stepping up to the next level of leadership?  

I see smart, super talented, ultra-experienced professional women languishing in middle management roles.  They have what it takes to excel as a senior leader, but they get stuck. It’s frustrating and demoralising for them and a sad waste of exceptional talent. 

If you can relate – I’m sure you’re doing it consciously. I don’t think any of us mean to hold ourselves back. 

You don’t set out to undermine your own success. You’re not deliberately underselling your brilliance or letting the best opportunities pass you by… but I’ve seen it happen. 

So how does it happen? 

It’s when we unconsciously hold beliefs that are at odds with our goals and ambitions. We make automatic assumptions that prevent us from taking bold action, raising our profile, speaking about our aspirations or applying for the ideal next role. 

Are any of these 5 common beliefs keeping you stuck at a mid-career plateau?

1. I’m not ready yet. 

Research shows that women tend to grossly underestimate their abilities and rule themselves out of more senior roles even when they are more qualified or experienced than the eventual winning candidate.

The truth is, it’s likely that you are ready.  You don’t need more experience or an MBA or validation from whoever you think knows you better than you know yourself.  You are way more capable than you think and the only way you’ll truly know you’re ready is by giving it a go! 

2.  It’s not the right time.

The last few years have been tough.  You may even feel mentally drained.  I get it we’ve all been dealing with a LOT.  But a new role or an exciting challenge may be just the thing to get you out of your rut and motivated to do your best work again.  

3. I’m too busy. 

The epidemic of busy continues to zap our time and our energy but to what end? If you were to do a quick 60 second audit of what has kept you busy today – has your busyness contributed to your health, happiness, fulfilment or professional growth?  

  • Are you busy doing what is most important to you, your team and your organisation?
  • Are you busy doing what will bring you joy, fulfillment and meaning?
  • Are you busy doing work that will contribute to your career progression?
  • Or have you become stuck in the busyness of life and checking off your to do list?

    4. I might fail. 

Yes, you might! But you might also excel! Imagine that!  And even if you do stumble, you are way more resilient than you might at first think.

We have a choice of settling for the status quo or to take a chance on ourselves. 

If the fear of failure comes up for you – ask yourself “If I did, could I handle it?”   Undoubtedly the answer is almost always YES.

5. I can’t afford it. 

Sometimes a financial investment is the best way to fast track career progression or to open up new opportunities. 

Have you ever found yourself saying…

  • I can’t afford to attend the conference I really want to go to.
  • I can’t afford to take that holiday that would really help me to pause, reflect and decompress. 
  • I can’t afford to invest in a development program or mentoring that would really help me to up level.

When we say we can’t – we make it true, and we immediately shut off the opportunity.

Imagine instead asking the question; “How might I make this possible?” This one simple question opens up possibility and choice 

Which of these beliefs ring true for you?  Could it be the reason you’ve hit a mid-career plateau? 

Self awareness is the first step towards change and getting unstuck.  

Good luck.

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Happy business woman using digital tablet in modern office with christmas tree in background. Young middle eastern woman smiling and looking at camera during xmas. Portrait of cheerful young businesswoman working during christmas time with copy space.

Your ultimate guide to making the…

The days are getting warmer and the evenings longer which means we are on the downhill stretch to Christmas, the silly season and the end of the year.
And with restrictions finally lifted – it’s time to get out and about and connect… in person.

Jane Benston

Beautiful smiling business woman in suit and glasses sitting at the desk, working at contemporary computer with documents in light office, talking on mobile phone, conducting pleasant conversation.

Your energy is contagious and your…

How you show up at work matters. The type of energy you bring to your work impacts your effectiveness while also shaping your professional reputation. It’s not something many of us give much consideration to, but it can absolutely influence our outcomes and whether or not new and exciting opportunities come our way.

Jane Benston

High achievers have these 5 things…

Have you ever wondered why some people seem to have the gift of turning everything they touch into gold? They lead the best teams, they achieve exceptional results and get noticed and promoted more often. And to top it off … they seem have everything sorted in their life outside of work too.

Jane Benston

High achievers have these 5 things in common

High achievers have these 5 things in common

Have you ever wondered why some people seem to have the gift of turning everything they touch into gold? They lead the best teams, they achieve exceptional results and get noticed and promoted more often. And to top it off … they seem have everything sorted in their life outside of work too.

Meanwhile others struggle along, getting frustrated by their failures and going nowhere fast.   

It turns out that high performers think and operate differently.

The good news is that by adopting some of the key characteristics of those high achieving superstars you too can more consistently achieve more of what you want from life and work.

5 Critical Characteristics of high achievers

  1.  They believe it is possible.There is a correlation between what we believe is possible and what our results are. If we think we can’t, we won’t. If we think we can then there is a fair chance we will. It is like our belief becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Believing in your ability to succeed drives action, generates a can do energy and defeats self doubt.  You are more likely to notice opportunities as they arise and go after them with a sense of confidence and certainty.

  1.  They resist the fear of failure. High achievers know that they are likely to encounter failures along the way. They don’t let the fear of failure hold them back from taking action. Just like the rest of us they experience fear. The difference is that they act in spite of it.

Many high profile successful people including Oprah, Arianna Huffington and Brene Brown have spoken about their failures as being learning lessons on their way to success.  They do not fear failure or internalize it; they don’t identify with it or say, “I am a failure.” Instead, they study and analyse their failures, and take what they can to learn from them.

  1.  They consciously create their future. They don’t leave their life or professional success and happiness up to chance. High achievers regularly carve out time throughout the year to get specific about what they want, and then to go about achieving those things.

So, start with the end in mind.  Get specific about what you want from your career and your life.  Visualise it.  Document it.  Talk about it.  Believe that it is on its way.  It’s now just a matter of time.

  1.  They stay focused on the goal. High achievers keep their eye on the prize. They know what they want, they know why they want it, and they go after it.

There is going to come a point in the pursuit of any big goal when you are going to want to quit and walk away.  Perhaps it gets hard, you hit up against a challenge or resistance or you lose motivation. 

You must remain connected to why this endeavour is important to you and focus on what is at stake. This will give you the push you need to keep going when things get tough.

  1.  They reject the comfort zone. High achievers know that progress and growth doesn’t come from within the comfort zone.

Think back across the career achievements you are most proud of.  It’s highly likely that these achievements are characterised by the fact that they were challenging and required you to stretch beyond what you thought you were capable of.

Growth happens outside your comfort zone.  You are capable of so much more than you think.  Be brave and take the step.  Trust that you will be about to handle the challenge.

Next steps…

By focusing on even one of these characteristics can create a massive shift in your results.  Which one will make the biggest  difference for you?

 

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Happy business woman using digital tablet in modern office with christmas tree in background. Young middle eastern woman smiling and looking at camera during xmas. Portrait of cheerful young businesswoman working during christmas time with copy space.

Your ultimate guide to making the…

The days are getting warmer and the evenings longer which means we are on the downhill stretch to Christmas, the silly season and the end of the year.
And with restrictions finally lifted – it’s time to get out and about and connect… in person.

Jane Benston

Beautiful smiling business woman in suit and glasses sitting at the desk, working at contemporary computer with documents in light office, talking on mobile phone, conducting pleasant conversation.

Your energy is contagious and your…

How you show up at work matters. The type of energy you bring to your work impacts your effectiveness while also shaping your professional reputation. It’s not something many of us give much consideration to, but it can absolutely influence our outcomes and whether or not new and exciting opportunities come our way.

Jane Benston

Hit a mid-career plateau? 5 assumptions…

Is it possible that you are your worst enemy when it comes to progressing your career? Are you playing small, ruling yourself out or holding back from stepping up to the next level of leadership?

Jane Benston

Rock Your Career Post Lockdown

Rock Your Career Post Lockdown

Over recent weeks I’ve been reflecting on how much the professional landscape has changed since March 2020.  The way we work, where we work and what we work on, has in many ways changed forever.

And right now, we are transitioning to yet another new phase of uncertainty and change as we move towards opening up and “living with COVID.” 

We don’t yet know what the new normal will look like – but we can be sure that most organisations will not slip back into operating as they did pre-pandemic.  

Many businesses are in the middle of developing new plans and strategies for the coming years and are reviewing whether they have the right people to implement their vision and are in search of the best talent to bolster a depleted workforce.  

The “Great Resignation” that is currently sweeping around the globe is also creating mass movement of talent.  People at every level are reassessing their work and life choices and making decisions about what matters most to them.  

The flow on effect is that top talent is in high demand and is opening up some incredible opportunities.

You may be exhausted from the very long lockdowns and restrictions.  You may be thinking you’ll just limp through to Christmas and take some time early next year to consider what’s next for you…

But if you can find the strength, I encourage you to be curious about the opportunities that are all around you RIGHT NOW.

Over the past 2 or 3 weeks my diary has been filled with appointments, supporting mid-career women who are taking advantage of the job opportunities available.  Some of these women weren’t even looking for a new role – but have been approached to consider exciting projects that were too good to pass up.  

And not only are they securing these exciting roles – they are also negotiating significant pay rises, attractive benefits including flexibility and continued working from home and have had a say in the creation of the job specifics.  

Are you ready to take advantage of this unique moment in history – where you as a talented professional, are in the box seat?

You have the power because they want and need you – even more than you want and need the role they are offering. 

Here’s what to do right now to take advantage of current job opportunities

1. Know what you want. 

Start by getting clear on what your ideal next role might look like.  It’s OK to dream a little about the type of work you’d like to be doing based on what you love to do and your unique talents, skills and experience.  Importantly, think about the value you’d most like to contribute to a business.  

With this clarity, if you are approached about a potential role, you’ll be ready to assess it based on what you really want. 

2. Spread the word

This is not a time to fly under the radar.  You’ve been hidden away at home for long enough!  It’s time to reconnect with your professional network.  Pick up the phone or arrange time to meet for coffee – even if it’s in a park for now.   

If you’ve been too busy or have lost your professional mojo of late, how about putting some time aside in the coming weeks to re-establishing some of your key relationships.  

The best opportunities are being filled via word of mouth so make sure you’re not shy about sharing what types of roles you’d like to be considered for. 

3. Believe

In the current climate, hiring managers are looking for talent with room for growth.  What this means for you is that there is a chance you may be approached for a role that you would have previously thought was out of your league.  

It’s time to believe in you.  You are ready!  Say yes and then surround yourself with a support team to assist you to grow into the role.  

If they believe in you … so should you!  

Good luck.  You’ve got this. This is your time. 

 

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Happy business woman using digital tablet in modern office with christmas tree in background. Young middle eastern woman smiling and looking at camera during xmas. Portrait of cheerful young businesswoman working during christmas time with copy space.

Your ultimate guide to making the…

The days are getting warmer and the evenings longer which means we are on the downhill stretch to Christmas, the silly season and the end of the year.
And with restrictions finally lifted – it’s time to get out and about and connect… in person.

Jane Benston

Beautiful smiling business woman in suit and glasses sitting at the desk, working at contemporary computer with documents in light office, talking on mobile phone, conducting pleasant conversation.

Your energy is contagious and your…

How you show up at work matters. The type of energy you bring to your work impacts your effectiveness while also shaping your professional reputation. It’s not something many of us give much consideration to, but it can absolutely influence our outcomes and whether or not new and exciting opportunities come our way.

Jane Benston

Hit a mid-career plateau? 5 assumptions…

Is it possible that you are your worst enemy when it comes to progressing your career? Are you playing small, ruling yourself out or holding back from stepping up to the next level of leadership?

Jane Benston

What are you waiting for?

What are you waiting for?

Every day I speak to women who are waiting.

They are waiting to feel smart enough, good enough, old enough or for someone to notice their talent or how hard they are working.  

It shouldn’t surprise me… because I remember a time when I was waiting to feel ready for the next step in my career.  I had no idea why I was waiting or what being ready would look like or feel like… but I was waiting.

Career progress is only achieved when we stop waiting and become proactive in our development.

If you are waiting to step up to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition… it’s time to stop waiting.  

Here are the 7 top reasons I hear from women about why they are waiting.

  1.  Waiting to feel worthy or good enough.   If this is you – it’s likely you see yourself with less potential or skill than others do!  Imposter Syndrome is often part of the story where you allow your inner critic to influence your confidence and self-belief. 

One talented leader I worked with was waiting to “feel” like a leader before speaking up in a leadership team meeting.  Another was waiting to feel more confident before agreeing to present her ideas to the board – even though she was passionate and expert in her field. 

  1.  Waiting to be old enough. Do you have a belief that you need to be of a certain age to be considered for a particular level of leadership or to be taken seriously? 

I have worked with high achieving young women who have rocketed into positions of influence at a young age but then feel they have to wait for their age to catch up, to take the next step.  

  1.  Waiting to be ready.  Ready for what?  Who knows?  But still you wait! Perhaps this is linked to feeling good enough or worthy enough.  It is certainly linked to the fear of failure and the need to protect yourself from risk.  

And sometimes it’s got nothing at all to do with professional capabilities.  One woman told me she was waiting to lose weight and buy a new corporate wardrobe before she started looking for a new job.

  1.  Waiting to be knowledgeable enough.  Do you think you need more knowledge, skill or training to be able to take the next step?  Perhaps you do!  But it’s highly likely you don’t.  

If you don’t believe me… seek advice from someone who knows you well and understands the requirements of the types of opportunities you want to be considered for.  My guess is that the quickest and most effective way to get the knowledge and experience you think you need, is by saying YES and taking the next step.   

  1.  Waiting until it is your turn.  Getting promoted because you have done your time went out of vogue years ago!  Career progression is now all about taking opportunities and going after what you want.  You will be given opportunities based on the value you can offer and being the best fit for the role not because of your years of tenure within the organisation.
  2.  Waiting until you are tapped on the shoulder. This strategy may have worked well for you in your early career – but at this level of leadership, hard work and results isn’t enough to get you noticed.  I know it should be but it’s not! 

Progressing your career is up to you.  It is about raising your profile, creating opportunities and taking steps to make it clear that you are the obvious choice for promotion or consideration for inclusion on an exciting project.

  1.  Waiting until your circumstances change.  Most of us have a lot going on outside of work which at times can impact what we are capable of or prepared to take on at work. Kids, holidays, moving home, weddings, illness, COVID!  These are all good reasons to take a step back but are you using your circumstances as an elegant excuse?

Stop waiting and take action!

If you recognise yourself in any of these, perhaps it is time to take your foot off the brake, lift your finger off the pause button and get into action.  

You are already good enough and experienced enough and you already know enough. If you are waiting for someone to notice your brilliance and hand you your perfect job, you could be waiting a very long time!

Your professional fulfilment and growth is up to you.  Go out and grab it with both hands… NOW!

And know … you are already enough!

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

Similar Blog Posts

Happy business woman using digital tablet in modern office with christmas tree in background. Young middle eastern woman smiling and looking at camera during xmas. Portrait of cheerful young businesswoman working during christmas time with copy space.

Your ultimate guide to making the…

The days are getting warmer and the evenings longer which means we are on the downhill stretch to Christmas, the silly season and the end of the year.
And with restrictions finally lifted – it’s time to get out and about and connect… in person.

Jane Benston

Beautiful smiling business woman in suit and glasses sitting at the desk, working at contemporary computer with documents in light office, talking on mobile phone, conducting pleasant conversation.

Your energy is contagious and your…

How you show up at work matters. The type of energy you bring to your work impacts your effectiveness while also shaping your professional reputation. It’s not something many of us give much consideration to, but it can absolutely influence our outcomes and whether or not new and exciting opportunities come our way.

Jane Benston

Hit a mid-career plateau? 5 assumptions…

Is it possible that you are your worst enemy when it comes to progressing your career? Are you playing small, ruling yourself out or holding back from stepping up to the next level of leadership?

Jane Benston

Courage over comfort – A career building mindset

Courage over comfort - A career building mindset

As humans we are wired for comfort. It’s why we resist change. It’s why we get stuck in a role that no longer works for us. It’s why we say no to amazing professional development opportunities. It’s why we avoid tackling the big issues or having the difficult conversations.

It’s easier to operate from within our comfort zone – but as they say – nothing good or exciting happens there!

I recently interviewed a wonderful female leader about how she went about building her impressive career. She shared with us that one of her secrets to success was operating from a mindset of Courage Over Comfort.

Throughout her career she had time and time again chosen courage over comfort – not only at pivotal career defining moments – but as a guiding principle for the daily challenges that came across her desk.

Choosing courage is a conscious choice. It doesn’t happen by accident.

It’s not an easy choice, but it promises huge rewards – including massive growth, expanded career opportunities, building an impressive reputation or the simple pleasure of proving to yourself that you are capable.

So, whether it’s making a bold career move, tackling a tricky team performance issue or saying yes to opportunity to share your ideas with the senior leadership team – imagine what could be possible for you if you were to choose courage over comfort.

Here are 5 keys to operating from the mindset of courage over comfort.

1. Trust in your greatest potential. The only way to discover what you are truly capable of is to give it a go. We do not experience growth and we cannot demonstrate our capabilities when we remain firmly rooted within our comfort zone.

2. Embrace the suck. Not everything will go to plan when you choose courage over comfort. It’s very likely you’ll mess up. It will be unfamiliar and uncomfortable. You will need to resist the tempting call of comfort and be willing to go through the pain. It will get messy in the middle – but trust the process and trust that the growing pains will be worth it.

Remember – we may shine most brightly from the mountain tops while our biggest growth happens in the deep valleys!

3. What if? Before you take the plunge to step courageously into the new or unknown – ask yourself “If it all went terribly wrong, could I handle it?” The answer, 99 times out of 100, will be a very big YES. If you did get yourself into a pickle, you would work it out. You are talented, resilient and you undoubtably have a track record of bouncing back from missteps along the way.

4. Allow your inner circle to have your back. We all need a cheer squad in our lives – and they are all the more important when we choose courage over comfort. Let down your defences and let others in to support you, advise you, hold you accountable and ultimately celebrate your wins with you.

5. Build the muscle. Every time you choose courage over comfort you will be extending your comfort zone. What once required you to take a deep breath and put on your big girl pants will eventually take less and less courage. Commit to building your tolerance for discomfort by consistently flexing your courage muscle.

Where are you currently holding yourself back by choosing to stay firmly within your comfort zone?

Choose courage over comfort today – knowing and trusting that it will be worth it!

LET'S CONNECT

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Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

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Are you making this one critical job search mistake?

Are you making this one critical job search mistake?

If you are in the market for a new role (and let me tell you the job market is HOT right now) then please listen up.

Most women I meet are going about their job search all wrong.  It’s costing them valuable time, emotional energy and access to the best opportunities that are most likely to bring joy and fulfilment.

And – it’s quite possibly costing them getting paid what they’re worth too.  

The NUMBER ONE MISTAKE I see most people make is that they go out to the job market and ask; “I wonder what’s out there that I could do?”

They are relying on others to work out what would be a good fit for them and passively wait for the right thing to turn up.  It’s frustrating, emotionally draining and leaves them at the mercy of others.

If you’ve done this too… don’t beat yourself up. 

It’s the way most people approach the job market.

But it’s a flawed.  It leads you to trying to fit yourself into a role that’s not exactly the right for you. 

So, BEFORE you go and speak to recruiters, reach out to your network or engage a resume writer, do this one thing FIRST. 

Start looking within!

Take the time to truly know yourself!  Who are you?  What do you do better than most?  What value could you bring to an organisation?  What do you really want to being doing and just as importantly – what don’t you want to be doing?

Can you clearly answer these questions? 

If you can’t – you are NOT YET READY to put yourself out there on the job market!

It’s only once you can clearly articulate who you are, what makes you unique and what it is you actually want to be doing – that you can truly take a proactive, empowered approach to you job search. 

The best most aligned roles go to those who can say…

This is who I am.  This is what I can do.  This is the value I can bring to your business… Do you want me? 

This approach puts you on the front foot and has the RIGHT potential employers queuing up to speak with you.  And because they’ll easily recognise you as a valuable asset to their business – you’ll be in a powerful position to ask for the remuneration you know you deserve. 

So, if you haven’t yet done the work to truly know yourself – stop right now. 

Get clarity – then get back out there.

Knowing yourself WILL speed up the job search process, put you in the driving seat and increase the chance of you landing a role that will play to your strengths, stretch and challenge you and bring you joy and fulfilment.

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

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Hate workplace politics? Here’s why you should embrace it.

Hate workplace politics? Here's why you should embrace it.

Eek! If you hate the very idea of workplace politics, I want you to hear me out.

I agree it’s icky and can be a truly ugly game.

It may make your skin crawl. Perhaps you’ve made a commitment to yourself that you would never do it.

You hate when you see it in others. And it’s frustrating to see them being rewarded for it – getting recognition they don’t deserve or even being promoted because they’ve played the game so well.

The truth is …

Avoiding the political game is hurting your career.

You’re missing out on being considered for the best opportunities.

Your best work is being overlooked or ignored.

And there’s even a chance you are being paid less because of it.

So, what’s the solution? How can you get seen, heard and recognised without playing politics?

The answer is…

Get comfortable with tooting your own horn – just a little – in a way that allows you to remain humble, authentic and in integrity.

It’s time to get comfortable with not only doing great work – but also to speak about the great work you and your team are doing.

It’s not icky. It’s not political. It’s smart!

It’s time to step out from the shadows and stop hoping and expecting your work to speak for itself. Yes, I know your great work should speak for itself – but at this level of leadership – it won’t.

It’s time to get comfortable with speaking about what you are doing and the value you are contributing to your organisation.

Leaders are visible. Leaders actively build their profile. Leaders consciously create a reputation that positions them for what they want to be known for.

So, if you hate the political games – don’t reject it. Instead, create your own game.

Raise your profile, build your reputation, get the recognition you deserve – but do it your way…. in a way that’s authentic to you.

Don’t reject it outright. There’s lots to be learnt from understanding the politics but it doesn’t mean you need to play the game in the same way as those who make your skin crawl.

Find your own way.

Jane

P.S. If you’re a mid career professional woman who is ready to invest time and energy in your professional development, here are some ways I can help you:

1. Join the Leading Ladies to connect with mid career professional women

It’s our FREE Facebook community where talented professional women, dedicated to growing into their full leadership potential, connect and share. Click here to join the group.

2. Join our Ignite Program to achieve more while working less.

I’m brining together a small group of mid career professional women to help them step up as leaders, have a bigger impact and get the recognition they deserve – without working harder. If you’re feeling stuck, under-appreciated or nearing burnout, send me a message and I’ll get you all the details.

3. Work with me privately

If you’d like to work directly with me to help you to take the next step in your career… just send me a message … tell me a little about where you’re at and what you’d like to work on together, and I’ll arrange a time for us to connect.

 

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

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Jane Benston

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Is your self criticism getting in the way of your professional growth?

Is your self criticism getting in the way of your professional growth?

Many mid-career professional women are overly critical and hard on themselves.  I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that!

They’re great at identifying what they could improve on, but not-so-great at identifying what they’re already exceptional at.

They’re skilled at setting high goals for themselves and ticking things off their to-do lists, but not-so-skilled at celebrating their wins along the way.

They’re phenomenal at seeing everyone else’s gifts, but not-so-phenomenal at recognising their own talents.

The most terrible thing about self criticism, is that it tends to hold women back in their careers – they question the worthiness of their contributions, keep quiet and stay small.

Because of this, they don’t get the recognition and promotions they deserve …

WHICH JUST PERPETUATES THE CYCLE OF SELF CRITICISM! 

But don’t despair.  If you’ve struggled with being overly self critical, I have some tried and tested tips to help you.

One – Get clear on how your self criticism looks.

Everyone’s self criticism shows up in different ways. Recognising how yours is presenting itself is crucial if you want to put a kink in the cycle and choose a different path for yourself.

Is your self criticism leading you to speak unkindly to yourself?

Is it leading you to say ‘YES’ to anything and everything that is asked of you (even if your calendar is already full to the brim or the request is out of the scope of your role?)

Is it holding you back from sharing your innovative ideas in meetings?

ASK YOURSELF: How does my self criticism show up at work or in the way I lead? How is it influencing my actions and behaviours?

2 – Identify the impact your self criticism is having on your career.

We can sometimes be fooled into thinking that our self criticism is serving our careers …

“It keeps me focussed and drives me to take action!”

“It stops me from growing too big for my boots! I don’t ever want to be a leader with an ego!”

“It makes me likeable – my team loves me!”

But while all of this may be well and true, self criticism also has a way of hindering our career growth …

It can keep you stuck in doing mode, rather than being a strategic visionary.

It can lead to you not chasing new opportunities.

It can result in you staying hidden and therefore not being recognised for promotions.

And all these things get in the way of you being seen as the amazing leader you are. 

ASK YOURSELF: How has my self criticism fooled me into thinking it’s helping me? How does it hold me back from stepping into all I am capable of? 

3 – Get support

Having a community of like-minded women around you who understand the challenges of being a mid-career professional, who help you see when your self criticism is rearing its ugly head and who celebrate your gifts, makes a real difference.

Knowing you are not alone in this struggle is game changing!

Self criticism amongst talented mid career women is common, so let’s not beat ourselves up about it.  But at the same time – let’s agree to do something about it.  

Be reassured that with a little focused attention we can shift our habitual patterns of thinking away from being  self critical to focus on our achievements, talents and self worth.  

And simply having people around us who ‘get it’ and who cheer us on, can have the most profound impact on how we perceive ourselves.

In fact, it’s possibly the most profound module that has the biggest impact for the participants of IGNITE, my 8 week group coaching program for mid-career professional women! 

Interested in exploring this topic more?

Explore my group coaching program, IGNITE.

Have a read of these helpful articles – ‘If You’re Beating Yourself Up – Stop It!’ andDo you need to share the load?’.

LET'S CONNECT

Click below to…

Join “Leading Ladies” – a private FREE Facebook group of over 1600 other mid-career professional women to inspire and support
Join the newsletter list for weekly tips and strategies showing you how to ignite your career, lead your way and accelerate your success. 
Watch The Next Level Training to breakthrough to the next level of leadership, impact and recognition.  
Get my best tips on working smarter not harder 
Read my latest blog post.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact my team.

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Happy business woman using digital tablet in modern office with christmas tree in background. Young middle eastern woman smiling and looking at camera during xmas. Portrait of cheerful young businesswoman working during christmas time with copy space.

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The days are getting warmer and the evenings longer which means we are on the downhill stretch to Christmas, the silly season and the end of the year.
And with restrictions finally lifted – it’s time to get out and about and connect… in person.

Jane Benston

Beautiful smiling business woman in suit and glasses sitting at the desk, working at contemporary computer with documents in light office, talking on mobile phone, conducting pleasant conversation.

Your energy is contagious and your…

How you show up at work matters. The type of energy you bring to your work impacts your effectiveness while also shaping your professional reputation. It’s not something many of us give much consideration to, but it can absolutely influence our outcomes and whether or not new and exciting opportunities come our way.

Jane Benston

Hit a mid-career plateau? 5 assumptions…

Is it possible that you are your worst enemy when it comes to progressing your career? Are you playing small, ruling yourself out or holding back from stepping up to the next level of leadership?

Jane Benston