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Archive for the ‘making the best of it’ Tag

Quick Thought   Leave a comment

I have a friend who has a favorite statement, “It is what it is.”  The phrase is certainly not his creation, nor is it unique to him, but I would definitely call it his catch phrase.  It’s his go to response when something bad happens.  And it’s a very stoic response.  Good, bad, or ugly a situation is what it is and you just have to accept it as is.

Or do you?  While I appreciate the sentiment, that there’s no use getting mad about a situation that has already happened, it’s not entirely true.  A better way of phrasing the thought would be “It is what you make it.”

Viewing things as “It is what it is” suggests that you have absolutely no control in the situation.  It’s totally beyond you.  But in all situations you always have one absolute level of control, and that’s how you respond to it.

For example, you just got off of work and are ready to head home when you go out to your car and one of the tires is flat.  “It is what it is” reminds you that getting mad about the flat tire doesn’t fix it.  “It is what it is” reminds you that being mad won’t make changing the tire any easier.  In fact, getting mad could make it worse.  Certainly there isn’t anything wrong with responding to the situation with an “It is what it is” attitude and just fixing the flat in peace.

But what if you had an “It is what you make it” attitude?  Instead of this being a flat you just have to take care of, you could view it as a way to test your life skills.  You don’t change the tire very often so now you get to take a moment to show that you are self-sufficient.  You could ask a coworker to stick around and keep you company while you change the tire.  It is what you made it, a chance to socialize with your coworker.  If your coworker can’t stay, is there some problem you’ve been meaning to devote some time to?  If it is what you make it, this time just became thoughtful time to work on that problem.

While accepting things for what they are in an emotionally even way is a good thing, why not choose to take control instead?  It is what it is can be good, but why settle for good?  Choose it to be what you make it to be and make it great.  Have a great day.  Peace.

 

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Job Hunt Update   Leave a comment

So I told you all a bit ago that I had put in for a new job that I had to go take a typing test for.  I took the test and scored well over the speed requirement.  Because of the score I got on the typing test and the skills test I took at the same time I moved on to the next round of the hiring process.

Today I completed that round, which was an interview panel.  So for today’s blog I thought I’d give some suggestions on how to do better on an interview.  Now of course I won’t know for a bit how I did in regard to moving forward in the job process but I can say right now that I did do a good job on the interview.

First thing to keep in mind is going to be an obvious one.  How you dress.  As you walk in your appearance will be the first thing they judge.  It gives a sense of how seriously you take the hiring process.  I chose to wear a nice set of clean and ironed khakis and a long-sleeved, button up shirt, with polishable black shoes.  Why did I pick that?  You should aim for something slightly more formal than you’d wear on the job.  For that place the employees can dress in jeans and polos.  Very casual business casual.  My outfit would be at the upper end of business casual.  It showed I was serious about the job without overstating it.  Wearing a suit would have been overshooting the mark and could work against you if you’re better dressed than the people doing the interview.  It can come across as snobby.

The second thing to keep in mind is your answers are your answers.  Right or wrong,  good or bad, those are the answers you gave.  So give them with confidence.  Giving an answer with confidence at least tells the interviewer(s) that you believe in your answer.  You didn’t just babble on to get an answer out.  That was the answer you wanted to give.  It may not have been the one they were looking for but they’ll appreciate the fact that you owned it.  Confidence is an attractive quality.

Speaking of confidence, be mindful how you sit.  Slouching or leaning back in the chair makes you seem disinterested and possibly slovenly.  The impression will be that you’re not taking the interview seriously.  Leaning forward toward the panel can also be problematic as it could be perceived as challenging or aggressive.  The best posture is to sit up straight, knees slightly apart with your hands on your legs.  It’s a dominant stance and exudes confidence.  It’s ok to have your hands up and moving to make points or gestures that are germane to what you’re saying as long as you’re not just moving them without purpose.

At the end of the interview you should remember to do two things.  The first is to thank the interviewer (or panel) for their time.  It’s polite and shows respect.  That means the last thing you’re doing will be leaving a positive impression on them.  The second thing you should do is pull an Elsa and let it go.  The interview is over.  There’s no point in second guessing your answers at this point.  There’s no point in worrying how you did.  None of that will change what just happened.  Having said that if you can review your performance without beating up on yourself that’s a useful thing to do.  But getting on yourself for not having the “right” answer or assuming you failed the interview is counterproductive to moving forward.  You did your best, be happy with that.  Besides, it’s silly to beat yourself up over an interview that you haven’t even found out the results for.  Which will be even more silly if you get the job.

The final thoughts I’ll share relate to if you find out you didn’t get the job.  When they call you with the news that you didn’t get it thank them anyway.  You look magnanimous for doing it and it leaves a bridge there in case there’s another opening you can apply for in the future.  Also, if given a chance, ask them if they have any feedback for you about the interview.  It gives you information on how to improve your performance while letting them know you’re all about improving.  That’s a win/win.

Finally, remember it’s the results of a job interview, not a commentary on you or your life.  They had to pick one person and it didn’t happen to be you.  That doesn’t mean you aren’t qualified or were a bad choice.  Think of it this way.  A McLaren P1 can roast a Bugatti Veyron in a drag race.  Does that make a Veyron a bad car?  Of course not.  It’s still smoking fast, the P1 is just a bit faster.  You could still be an excellent candidate for the job but if they can only hire one person and there was someone slightly better than you, it’s not a negative reflection on you. Being a Veyron is ok.

With that I’ll remind you to stay positive, keep looking, and have a great day.  Peace.

When Life Hands You Donuts, And You’re Keto.   Leave a comment

Today at work we were treated to a lunch of deli sandwiches, chips, cookies, and donuts.  Not exactly the healthiest fare.  And most certainly not keto.  It’s easy to look at the spread and think “well I can’t participate in this” and avoid the break room entirely.  But you can always make the best of any situation.

How could I participate in this decidedly non-keto meal?  Well there were actually a few options.  It just required my being attentive.  The first option was the deli sandwiches.  They were either turkey, chicken, or ham served on a ciabatta bun with romaine lettuce, tomato, and cheese.  The sauces were on the side so you could add them to taste.  All I had to do was remove the ciabata bun and the rest of the sandwich was keto.  Was it as filling as eating the whole sandwich?  No, but then again one of the nice things about the keto diet is not feeling hungry so I don’t eat as much anyway.  Each deli sandwich came with a pickle, which is also keto, and not everyone likes pickles.  So I was able to get a couple extra spears that way.

The donuts, which were from the beginning of the day as a “breakfast” food were also served with coffee.  The donuts were obviously a no go but black coffee is not only allowed on the keto diet, it’s actually helpful.  The water volume helps with satiety and the caffeine in the coffee helps rev up the metabolism.

So I was able to partake, I just needed to focus on the few good things I could have, and not focus on the wide spread of things I shouldn’t have.  I just picked the best options for me from all the available ones so that I could enjoy the provided meal with the crew.

And that brings up the last option I had for making the best of the situation.  Let’s assume none of the food would work for me.  Maybe the sandwiches were made with a sugary dressing.  Or it was all just cookies and donuts.  I still had a final option available and that was just grab a cup of coffee and hang out with the gang anyway.  I’ve fasted for just over two days before so certainly I can make it through one lunch hour.  And the point of the meal was to socialize while eating.  Even if I couldn’t eat I didn’t have to deny myself the opportunity to socialize.  Especially since the socializing was the best part.

And that’s how we should view all situations presented to us in life.  Don’t focus on what we’re denied.  Focus on what works or is good for us.  Like going to the store and the only parking spots are on the far end of the lot.  Don’t focus on how it sucks you’re so far from the building, focus on how you’re getting in extra steps unexpectedly which is good for your health.  When you go into the store to buy some food and your favorite brand is out of stock don’t focus on the lack.  Focus on the opportunity to try something new.  Then you get into your car and start driving home and the roads blocked due to an accident.  Don’t focus on the hold up.  Focus on how you’re getting a few extra minutes to meditate you didn’t realize you’d get.  Focus on how you get to try a different way home tonight.  Or better yet focus on how lucky you are that you go there after the accident and not during.

Regardless of the situations you find yourself in this week, make the best of them.  You always have a choice of viewing things in a positive way, or a negative one.  And being positive just feels so much better.  So give it a try.  Find your silver lining and make it a great day anyway.  Peace and happiness.