Posts Tagged ‘Time’

How to Have an Awesome Work Career

Monday, February 13th, 2012

I was reflecting on my work career (past, present, and future) this morning and came to the realization that my job is “awesome.”  OK, that word is overused, but I have young adult and pre-teen daughters, so I think I understand the different meanings it has, but I’m talking about the old definition of “awesome.” In others words, I enjoy almost every part of what I do for a living, and there is research in work psychology that explains why that is the case. So, here are the elements that make up an “awesome work career,” and some tips on how to get more of those elements in your own work life.

Meaning. An awesome job is one that has meaning. There is a purpose to your work, and you have to find that higher purpose. There is a scene in the movie Cedar Rapids, where Ed Helms’ nerdy character makes insurance sales sound like an uplifting career (“we are the heroes on the disaster scene, working to rebuild lives…”). Even mundane jobs, like customer service can be viewed as having meaning (e.g., helping clients, giving customers a great experience). If you can’t find the meaning in your current job after looking hard, it may be time to look hard for a new career.

Accomplishment. Choose a career where you can accomplish things, take pride in those accomplishments, and celebrate them. I take pride when I publish a paper, give a great lecture, or finish a blog post. The pride comes from readers and students who comment favorably on my accomplishments, and I’ve been known to celebrate with a glass of wine.

My friend Carlos makes car-racing accessories. He takes pride in the fact that he can build better quality accessories, and do them quicker, than anyone else at his company. I tell our college students to accomplish something at their summer internships – a project, a report, or helping run a successful event. If their internship doesn’t require it, I suggest they talk to their supervisor about taking on some extra, challenging project, perhaps one that the supervisor hasn’t had time to complete. It makes for a better internship experience to accomplish something that makes a distinct contribution, and the same goes for every job.

Positive Relationships. Nothing can make a career more awesome than working with terrific people, and building strong and rewarding relationships with them. I’m fortunate to have amazing, talented, and (yes) awesome students. I get to meet and network with wonderful clients in my consulting work, and I have some of the best research collaborators anyone could hope for. And, I try to steer clear of the bad relationships – those that can make your job an ordeal, and make you question yourself and your career choice.

Research clearly shows that relationships at work can be the greatest source of pleasure or the most tormenting source of pain and stress. Cultivate positive relationships and work hard to avoid the bad relationships (previous posts offer help in dealing with bullies and bad colleagues and bosses).

Balance. Very few people can have awesome careers if their lives revolve entirely around their jobs. An awesome career is one that allows time for family, friends, and the ability to pursue non-work-related interests. I often talk to people who are unhappy because their jobs consume all of their time and energy. Some of them change to careers that allow greater balance and flexibility, and although there are tradeoffs (e.g., less money, prestige, or a slower ride up the ladder). I rarely hear any regrets from them.

Does good fortune play a part in someone having an awesome career? To some extent. But it is more likely that people have to plan, make tough strategic career decisions, and work hard to make their career awesome.


Published by Ronald E. Riggio, Ph.D.

16 Steps to Write New Year’s Resolutions that Work

Monday, January 9th, 2012

Are you wondering how some people can make New Year’s Resolutions and stick with them, while other people can’t or don’t or won’t even thing about writing them out, let alone completing them. Here’s how to be successful at following-through on the new you in the new year.

  1. Start thinking about what your short term goal is for the next year.
  2. Remember or come up with your 5 and 10 year goals.
  3. When you make your New Year’s Resolutions, make sure that they relate in some way to either your short term or long term goals. The reason behind this is to link your resolution into what naturally motivates you to pursue change. This also helps you keep your resolutions high on your priority list as well.
  4. Plan out 2012. On a calendar pencil in the BIG events for the year.
  5. Pick a day where you have space and time to think, plan, and write out your resolutions. Anticipate writing out your resolutions. Make it fun and memorable. Our bodies are wired to seek pleasure.
  6. Brainstorm and jot down the things you’d like to change or do more of in the next year.
  7. Next, look at your calendar to see how much time you have each month to devote to each of your resolutions. Estimate how many hours or days per week you can work on each resolution.
  8. Plan for wiggle room. We usually have a head’s up for when there are good stressors or life events such as births, weddings, birthdays, celebrations, etc. However, illnesses, deaths, accidents, layoffs, car troubles, are usually unexpected. Give yourself time and compassion to deal with these unforeseen events.
  9. Set start and end dates for each of your resolutions. Before you commit to due dates, read through and do steps 10-13 first.
  10. Next look at how far you think you’ll get with each resolution in the next 90 days. Define what you will have to do to accomplish that resolution in the next 3 months. Write each step out. It’s okay to have 10 to 20 steps.
  11. Then looking at your calendar, define how many of those steps you can do in the next 30 days.
  12. Before you commit to what steps you’ll do in the first 30 days, check-in with your calendar to see how much time you can devote for the next 4 weeks.
  13. Set weekly due dates with 1 or 2 days to allow for the unexpected.
  14. Remind yourself of when things are due. Set up reminders in your phone, with software, or online calendars.
  15. Tell someone what you’re planning to do.
  16. Ask someone to hold you accountable to follow-through on your resolution. Someone who does not want your time themselves, who can be objective, can offer feedback, ask the hard questions, and help you brainstorm how to trouble-shoot setbacks, loss of motivation, etc. will guarantee a higher level of commitment out of you to perform and accomplish what you’d like to change.

Lyndsay Katauskas, MEd

Mars Venus Coaching

Corporate Media Relations

Provide constant celebrations of your client’s successes

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012
Stan Mann, Success Coach

Welcome to secret number 5!  You have learned how to be in the right frame of mind to create a 7 figure business and a free life filled with bliss; how to have prospects compelled to call you and meet you; how to easily without selling share your unique service offering; how to WOW your customers and now you are ready to provide constant celebrations of your customers success.

Many people wonder what I mean by a customer’s success.  Let me address this right away.  When a customer hires your company or buys your products or services that in itself is cause for a celebration of them making a great decision.  I instantly celebrate their success with a letter, note, brownies and other items.  I write personal note cards as well.

When else could a customer have success?  Here are some examples in my own personal life of my success as a customer of other people where I wasn’t acknowledged and could have been.  I had an expert re-do my social media look.  When this was done a celebration was in order.  I had my attorney file my papers for my foundation and no celebration occurred.  And I reached a major medical change for the better and my doctor missed the celebration opportunity.

How many of these opportunities do you miss?  Each time you miss one you show the customer they aren’t really special, you don’t really care deeply about them and you certainly aren’t exceeding their expectations.

Today I want you to think about all the celebration’s you could be having.  Create a big list.  Include holidays, birthdays, purchases, milestones and anything else you can think of. Be a bit wild and crazy and include as much as you can.

Then pick at least one item and implement that with every customer.  In a week or so create a list of 12-24 ways you will celebrate each of your customers regularly.  The sky is the limit so have great fun coming up with these items.  When you see how much your customer’s appreciate you caring about them and again wowing them, you will be excited to do more and more celebrating.

I celebrate all my customer’s because they are my customers.  They are my extended family and I acknowledge and honor and celebrate them regularly.

Study: Men More Likely to do Social Shopping

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Oct 30, 2011 1:28 PM, By Tim Parry

Men are more likely than women to conduct five of six social shopping activities, according to the 2011 Social Shopping Study conducted by ROI Research for performance marketing agency Performics.

Contradicting commonly held beliefs about gender and social behaviors, the study showed men more frequently research product information, read reviews, compare products, find product availability and get store information via social networks, shopping and deal sites; while women reign supreme when searching for deals, coupons and specials on similar sites.

“Women are reported to control about 80% of household spending, so it may be surprising for some to see men play a more dominant role in the social shopping and research process,” said Dana Todd, senior vice president of marketing and business development for Performics, in a statement.

The study also revealed that active social networkers most often turn to shopping sites like Amazon, eBay or brand websites to begin the purchase process when searching for a product (87%) and right before they commit to a purchase (83%). They are more likely to turn to social networks such as Facebook immediately after the purchase to share their experience (59%).

Online activity while shopping in-store is also gaining popularity. Many respondents said they occasionally or frequently conduct in-store social (20–50%) or search (18–62%) activities.

  • According to the results:62% said they conduct competitive price searches while in a retail location
  • 45% check-in at a store, 41% use a search engine on their mobile phone to look for information
  • 30% use a barcode scanner on their mobile phone to shop for prices
  • 25% pause while at a physical location prior to finalizing a purchase in order to seek advice on a social network
  • 41% said they wait between five and 10 minutes for advice on social sites before proceeding with their purchase.

Black Friday Traditions

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

Have you ever been to a Black Friday sale? Do you ever wonder what all the excitement is about? Given today’s economy, more and more people are looking to get more out of and for their money. Gifts are traditionally given as a sign of gratitude, thoughtfulness, or celebration of special events. If you have a long list of gifts to buy for the upcoming holiday season, what is the best choice the day after Thanksgiving: shopping or spending quality time relaxing with those closest to you?


Some people like buying just to acquire things. Getting up early or sleeping in lines to get the best deals can reinforce spending time with loved ones if you are doing the shopping with them, or it could take a more materialistic bent. Snatching up objects with little thought to whom or what it is intended for, can add both mental and emotional clutter to your life.

Here are some tips to stay focused on connecting with others throughout the gift searching and giving season. As you score on great deals keep in mind that gifts are given to connect with others and show them you care or are thinking about them.

  1. Identify your budget for the holiday season.
  2. Create a List of people important to you whom you’d like to find gifts.
  3. Write down gifts that each person on your list may like to receive.

Taking a few minutes to identify what the perfect gifts would be for who you would like to buy gifts for can prevent you from grabbing, snatching, and over-spending. If you enjoy making things, then you can also think about things you can hand make too.

It should never be about how much a gift costs, but the thought and effort put into picking out just the right gift that reflects celebrating your relationship to one another.

What’s the Real Purpose?

I believe the real reason why we want to get good deals is so we can let those in our life know how much we care about them.  When you find good deals do you:

  • Buy more presents so you can give gifts to more people or
  • Save and have peace of mind that you didn’t break the bank?

If you have family or friends in town, or if you’ve traveled to be with loved ones over Thanksgiving, you have to choices—take them with you as you go shopping or stay at home! Both ways you can connect and share laughs and memories together.

Whenever we have family and friends in town to give thanks together we tend to choose relaxing, chatting, and connecting with one another. And to us Black Friday is the perfect excuse to stay in and focus on family, because we hear it’s a crazy jungle out there!

Regardless of whether you stay in or go shopping on Black Friday, do you find yourself year in and year out using this day to think about and or connect with your loved ones? What’s your Black Friday tradition?

Lyndsay Katauskas, MEd

Mars Venus Coaching

Corporate Media Relations

Staycation Today

Monday, October 31st, 2011

Now that Labor Day is over, school has started, and fall is on its way—are you already craving a vacation? Including fun and play every day in your life—whether it is alone, with your family, with friends, or even colleagues is a necessity. If you’re not doing little things each day, then how you fix this is by writing it down, and then doing it! Planning a daily mini-staycation everyday can do wonders for your health, your self-esteem, your happiness, and your relationships too. Sometimes we get stuck in a rut where we become too bogged down by all the pressure at work and of keeping up our home, and caring for loved ones, that we forget that our bodies need and crave downtime. Creating daily breaks where you relax is not a luxury, even though we sometimes treat it as such. Even with the economy, everyone has time for play. It is inexpensive, keeps you young, and the only thing holding you back is you.

It is not a guilty pleasure to stop what you’re doing and just have fun. The only way to ensure that you have free play time every day is to plan for it. How?

  1. Go grab your calendar, planner, or cell phone—whatever you use to keep track of your appointments.
  2. Block out at least two times every day. How long you ask? Start with 15 minute blocks if you’re crunched for time. Some people can go all out & splurge with an hour or two a day. If you’re not convinced yet that you’re worth this amount of time to have fun, then choose a smaller amount of time, and work yourself up to the 1 or 2 hour option.
  3. During one block of time plan an activity such as:


Running like a kid—key here is to run with abandon, maybe kick a ball around too?

Playing with the dog (or kids)

Tickling the dog (kids or spouse are welcome to join in or be tickled too!)

Sing (in the shower, at the top of your lungs in the woods or in the house)

  1. During the second block of time—be spontaneous.

If you don’t have kids, borrow them! But do something that makes you laugh.


Dance to a favorite song

Play Barbie if you have them—or do something you loved to do as kid

Hopscotch anyone?

Recent studies show that even if you feel depressed, or are in a funk—if you can find something that makes you laugh, then your mood will improve. Likewise, if you engage in a physical activity—mood improves as well, because of the hormones and endorphins released in your body.

  1. Use an accountability partner. If you block out your time, and then find yourself fizzling out on following through (even if it’s only after a day of not taking the time for fun), then grab an accountability partner—such as a spouse, best friend, friend, co-worker, family member, or a coach.

Someone that holds you accountable ensures that a staycation everyday will happen. It takes at least 90 days, and often much more time to change behaviors, and then have them become a habit. You can alleviate future trips to the doctor, to a therapist, and fights if you take the time to nurture the part of you that craves fun, excitement, and joy. It’s not just a mood lifter, your spirit is fulfilled too.

Lyndsay Katauskas, MEd

Mars Venus Coaching

Corporate Media Relations

Shaky Ground, Clear Heart

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

The epicenter in Mineral, Virginia, of where the 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck on August 23, 2011, was less than 30 miles from me. With telephone lines down, it looked like the 4th of July with people over 300 miles away immediately posting updates on their Facebook pages to let friends and family know what happened and that they were okay. Life is always full of uncertainties. Sometimes it takes a natural occurrence like an earthquake not near a fault line or a tornado in an uncommon location to make us stop for a second and check in with our priorities.

I grew up in Alaska with daily earthquakes throughout the state. Earthquake drills are common practice at school, and watching blinds shake or being rolled out of bed was the norm. When things began creaking and shaking I instinctively scooped up dog and kid and found myself waiting out the groaning, rattling, rumblings in our nearest, sturdiest doorframe. I was calmly explaining to my soon to be preschooler that the earth was shaking like big dinosaurs stomping around outside.

I figured why not relate this to one of his beloved books so it was a fun adventure, rather than a potential disaster? He asked if we should put our shoes on, and I said—“sure honey, when the chandelier stops swinging and the trees outside stop their staccato swaying.” Using big vocabulary,made me stay in the logical part of my brain so I would stay calm rather than let my monkey brain create panic for us. Like all kids, he easily picks up the emotional nuances in our voices and faces to tell him how he should react—the shaking stopped and he was excited to put on his shoes and explore outside as we checked for cracks. With my military background my mind was also assessing the situation and hoping it was only an earthquake, and not another attack like 9-11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon inflicted by human beings angry at other human beings.

As I checked in with family and friends, I also found clients checking in with me. This brings me to my point: relationships. I created my business so I could spread and share unconditional love with as many people as possible. I believe we can all learn more life resiliency skills so are relationships are healthier, and we’re able to stay more focused on the present and attaining our goals—which often correlate to cultivating and sharing our talents with others.

Mars Venus Coaching based on John Gray’s, Ph.D., wide-body of male/female relationship dynamics is different from other coaching systems, because it focuses on helping people to understand how to communicate with different types of people so they are valued, respected, and heard. Coaching is also different from traditional forms of therapy, because the focus is on the present and creating 90-day action plans that daily step clients’ closer to their life purpose and goals.

I believe we’re only here on Earth for a blink of an eye, and if we have our priorities straight, then we’re engaging with other people and making their lives a little easier to live and bear. There is a lot of potential to be self-involved, greedy, evil, judgmental, and close-minded. When we focus our attention in this direction, then we take our energy away from what I believe is our main purpose: relationships. Having successful relationships professionally and personally is a life well-lived. Your daily interactions with others, and how many close, quality relationships you have are indicators of whether or not you’re making a difference in the world.

Where were you and what were you thinking about when the 2.8, 2.2, 4.2, and 3.4 aftershocks in Central Virginia occurred in the ensuing hours? Did you even feel them? If you were nearby and felt any of the shaking—did you check in with family and friends? If you were further away and new of loved ones somewhere along the affected eastern coast of America did you check on them? At the end of each day, regardless if there has been a life event that makes you wonder if you have your priorities straight—are you doing ALL you can do to express your gratitude and love for the people that make a difference in your life? Boot anger and low self-confidence out, and focus on what makes your relationships richer and more fulfilling—engage in the now, every day. Achieve your life goals.

Lyndsay Katauskas, MEd

Mars Venus Coaching

Corporate Media Relations

Busy Moms Embrace Common Cents

Monday, September 26th, 2011

It is that time of year again when moms begin prepping their children to go to school. In my case, it’s for preschool. As we go from virtually non-existent laissez faire schedules to the regimen of “You’ll miss the bus if you…!” We also have to ask ourselves what we’re doing to conserve our sanity.

It’s a known fact that in a 1 dollar U.S. bill, 100 pennies make up a dollar. So the question begs to be asked, if we have 24 hours in a day, and at least 8 of those hours should have the entire household snoozing, up to 11 if you’re under 4 feet tall…WHY are we cramming in more activities than is possible to get done in a 24 hour day? The math does not add up! Neither do the health bills further down the road.

Clients, and most have the title “Mom” or “Dad” on their resume, often come to me for help in time-management. Of all the seminars and workshops I do—when I have people shout out their greatest challenge—prioritizing their time tops the list.

Our bodies run on a circadian clock that resets itself around every 24 hours. We are not wired to be on the go all-the-time, and our bodies are wearing out with excess cortisol, a stress-producing hormone, chronically in our system.  Any mom knows that if you do not give your children enough down time, then they become over-tired, their “poop” schedule gets thrown off, and you have a child prone to melt-downs or temper-tantrums on your hands.

Guess what? Same goes for you Momma! Do you wonder why you’re short with everyone, or why it’s hard to convince yourself to be sexy or romantic? The only answer is: you’re not giving enough time to one very important area in your life. You.

And, you can bring your household back into a pleasant place to relax, unwind, and connect with those you love most. The way you achieve any goal is first to define the goal, create a strategy, and identify the actions you need to take on a daily basis to achieve the goal.

Goal: Everyone’s sanity, health, and a functional well-adjusted family.

Strategy: Build in at least 4-6 hours per day where the pace is easy-going. Make sure at least 1 of these hours is 1-on-1 time with just your “self.”

NOTE: No other distractions allowed. TV, texting, phone calls, internet—Banned.

Actions: Every day during the school week my family will:

  • Use this time to cook meals and chat with family about the day.
  • Pack lunches together.
  • Do the dishes, unload dishes, or fold laundry while catching up.
  • Spend time in the same bed or on the same couch cuddling and hugging.
  • Sit down to breakfast and dinner all together.
  • Demand quiet play time for everyone in the household.

During quiet time…Light some candles, diffuse essential oils, run the bath. This may be a good time for you to check email or make a quick phone call as the bath fills. But, guess what? Once the tub is full—it’s time for alone time for you.  Read a chapter of a good novel & then wash your hair. The point for you during quiet time is to relax. (You’ve been connecting and nurturing during some of the chores & meals.)

As a woman you’ll replenish your stress-reducing hormone, oxytocin.  You do this by nurturing and caring for others or yourself. The key is no expectations can be attached. If someone is expecting you to do something, oxytocin isn’t produced as readily.

The point for a guy during quiet time is to do an activity that is less mentally challenging or doing nothing…, however, his stress-reducing hormone is testosterone. There really is a biologically proven reason why guys drop to the couch at the end of the day.

Same goes for your kids. They need to produce stress-reducing hormones too. It keeps everyone’s digestion moving, makes for more restful nights, strengthens your immune system, and improves your relationships.

The more we’re able to disengage ourselves from distractions, the more time we will have both for ourselves, and for our families. In a society where the divorce rate has tipped to over 50%, don’t you owe yourself this break, this chance, to keep your body healthy, your sanity in-tact, and to continue to model balance to your children?

We all need down-time in our schedules. If 4-6 hours seems too much at first, set another target number, and work backwards from there. Just remember it’s non-negotiable. We can’t change our circadian rhythm, and we cannot change how many hours are in a day. We start early teaching kids’ routines and schedules (including nap time) for a reason. Be a do as I say, just like I do mom. You and your kids will thank you for it.

Lyndsay Katauskas, MEd

Mars Venus Coaching

Corporate Media Relations

Your Tango Expert Blog

Friday, January 21st, 2011

Your Tango Print Screen

Have you read our Your Tango Expert Blog? Take a look here.

Mars Venus Coach Nadia Ansari

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

Please take a look at our Mars Venus Coach in the United Kingdom; Nadia Ansari


Hello, and welcome, glad you decided to stop by…

Whether you’re familiar with coaching or it’s a completely new concept to you, I’m pretty confident you will have heard of the book Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus.

I first came across it in the form of Mars and Venus on a Date, when I started dating a particularly wonderful, but equally alien ‘Martian’ male… I’d often find myself pulling out my hair and despairing at the differences between us, at times thinking the relationship must surely be doomed! This was until a dear friend lent me her copy of the book… that was almost two years ago and I’m pleased to say that nowadays the relationship is a much happier and calmer, ever-growing and blossoming one.

So that’s where my enthusiasm for the Mars Venus work came from – because I experienced first-hand how much it worked. I’ve always been fascinated by human interactions despite being originally trained as a Business Analyst after following what others recommended as a ‘sensible degree’ in Information Systems Analysis. Even though I gained a First Class Honours in this, after some time trying to do the sensible thing, I still felt drawn more drawn to humans over computers.

Thus, as you might imagine, when the opportunity arose for me to be the first person in the UK to be trained by Dr. John Gray, said author of the now world renowned Mars & Venus name, I was pretty excited. I am proud to be the first Mars Venus coach in the UK and part of the international and ever-growing Mars Venus team – in fact I’m so committed to the idea of coaching that I have a coach too.

The reason for this is I believe continued education is essential for personal growth, and as such we could all use a coach to help us achieve our best – it is after all the reason that so many musicians and athletes already use coaches… not because they are at the bottom of the well and not sure how to get out, but because they want to continuously improve in order to achieve their best. It is personal development and learning that leads us to the wonderful feelings of empowerment and a ‘can do’ attitude. This renewed sense of understanding and achievement can have a fantastic impact on your personal and business life; as one naturally compounds the other.

OK, so that’s all very nice, but where does my drive to help you set your goals and achieve them come from? Well, just over three years ago I was diagnosed with an auto-immune condition that not only was making me very unwell, but also, as I was repeatedly informed, was ‘barely treatable and certainly incurable’. I went through a period of time feeling very sorry for myself and thinking ‘why me’ – but eventually found that far too depressing not to mention limiting – and so sought out other ways to resolve it. And I did.

Which is really what coaching is about: recognizing you’re in a situation that you’d like to change, then looking at all the various options that could enable you to make that change – then possibly trying a few that don’t work before finding one that does – following it through… and bingo, before you know it, you’re there.

It’s for that reason I’m passionate in helping people actualise and realise their full potential, both at home and at work. To help you to achieve these results, I hold seminars and one-to-one coaching sessions based on the Mars Venus Coaching principles. The focus is primarily on your personal and/or business goals; as well as helping men and women understand, respect, and appreciate their differences in both personal and professional relationships. Whether you have a general feeling that you’re not completely satisfied with life, love, work or play – or you have a very specific idea of exactly what is lacking in your life but are not quite sure how to change it, I can help you figure it out and get the changes rolling in.
So review my introduction from Dr. Gray at the top of the page, take a look at the feedback from a client below… and think about it – why not coaching? Then contact me through the email or telephone numbers listed…. and I’ll look forward to working with you in achieving your goals!

Goals are the fuel in the furnace of achievement. – Brian Tracy, Eat that Frog

Client Testimonial:

“I found Nadia’s life coaching extremely useful. Nadia’s methods are far more proactive and specific than business mentoring I have had in the past. Nadia understands her clients’ businesses and relationships. She provides expertise in a way that is easy to understand and put into action. She is professional and approachable, and I would highly recommend her for mentoring and seminars. Working environments can only benefit from seeking her advice.”
M. Davies
One-to-one client