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  • On Getting Better

    I’m fortunate to have a career I love. Lately, in evaluating my life goals- personal, relational, and business- I’ve found a fire ignited that has pushed me to give more each day in so many ways, and realize that my happiness in my professional life and my satisfaction in other areas is cyclical.

    I work with a company that’s built on simple, wholesome principals- Lead Differently, Teach Relentlessly, and Serve Passionately. Semonin’s core values are repeated in every meeting, printed on our in-house marketing materials, and splashed across awards. These three values are a motivation factor: each day, I wonder if I’m setting an example in and out of the office, if I’m educating my clients on how to best move forward in a transaction, if I’m really giving my all each time I write a note or pick up the phone. In speaking to my manager as well as some friends this week, I’ve noticed that these principals have begun to spill over into my personal life.

    If we’re lucky, we spend 40 hours or so working each week. If we’re luckier, we spend 55 hours or so sleeping. Factor in commute times, lunch breaks, and a couple of hours of overtime, and we are left with only 50 hours or so each week to ourselves. To assume that we don’t stay in “work mode” for a few of those 50 hours is just silly. Of course our work lives influence our personal lives! The goals we set, and the game face we wear at our nine-to-fives are going to influence our out-of-office selves as well.

    I worry, so often, when I see folks posting on social media about hating Mondays, counting the hours until the weekend. I hope, truly, that these people don’t hate their lives as much as it seems on their Instagram feed or their Facebook page. I remember, though, being stuck in a career at one point in my life, and feeling like Monday morning’s alarm was the end of my love for the week. It was a huge risk to switch careers- and especially to switch to a career that offered commission-only paychecks! Still, that risk was worth taking, and I found that each day that I apply our core values- Leading, Teaching, Serving- is more successful than the day before, and fuels a passion for being better in each area of my life.

    My hope for you, friends, is that you’re willing to give more of yourself, to be better in every way. My hope is that you wake up each day with goals in mind, whether small (I will make a homemade dinner tonight) or large (I will finally apply to grad school). My hope is that the happier you are in your career, the more you’re motivated to be more satisfied in your personal life, and the more pleased you are outside of the office each day, the more satisfied you’ll be when you sit at your desk or stand at your station. If that’s not possible, friends, I sincerely hope you have the bravery to take the risk. Make time to sit down with a career counsellor, your boss, your best friend, or your favorite elementary school teacher to discuss your goals in life, to work towards finding your passion, and to feed a desire for a better life, as if your livelihood depends on it.

    You can get to where you want to be, I promise. While going from a part-time retail worker to multimillionaire overnight may be a stretch, there are several resources available for career advancement and overall satisfaction in your job and in your life. Check out this article from Entreprenuer offering links on career, communications, technology, leadership and analytical advancement, this one on starting a new career from The Every Girl, and this article on the benefits of job satisfaction from the American Psychological Association.

    ** photos by Kyle Lueken **

    ** dress- Burberry, shoes- bcbgmaxazria, furnishings- Mitchell Gold Bob Williams, Bernhardt, etsy **