The Top 3 Keys to Your Self Care Tool Kit

Self-Care is often difficult for highly career focused people. Without it, fatigue and burnout are inevitable. The tendency to overextend without prioritizing self-care practices is an easy, but dangerous, pattern to develop. Work demands seem urgent, and are even framed as such by others, so it can be counterintuitive to pause and take a look at what is going on with our own bodies and mind. Yet our suggestion is to think of yourself as an athlete. To be your best you have to condition yourself on all levels.

When we want to make changes to feel better, it is easy to think that we need big alterations. Sometimes this is true, but often it is the smallest, consistent changes that are the most powerful. Simplicity and ease is essential while you experiment and implement new ideas and ways of doing things. 

Our team of highly trained career coaches helps clients identify and implement new ways to practice self-care with greater ease and simplicity. Below are the top three keys of self-care we’ve come up with. Read through and decide what small but powerful changes you can implement into your schedule.

1. Vital Wellness

Our bodies are comprised of rhythms that have their own autonomous flow, the breath, sleep, and digestion to name a few. Being aware of these aspects and doing what you can to attend to them gives greater vibrancy to our experience of life.

self care
  • Nutrition What you put into your body, you get out of it. Eating nutritious foods, and enough of them, are important for physical wellness. Pay attention to how you feel after eating, notice the effect of different foods. Practice the 80/20 rule and eat clean whole foods, veggies, and protein only during the week. You may be surprised the impact to your energy levels.
  • Hydrate 75% of people are chronically dehydrated. Being properly hydrated means your brain and body are functioning properly. Plus you will feel less hungry and more awake.
  • Breathe Breathing deep into your abdomen, allowing it to swell, creates an instant feeling of grounded calmness. This is because you are stimulating your vagus nerve, which slows your heart rate and lowers your blood pressure.   
  • Movement The word “exercise” often has the feel or connotation of one more obligation, one more task on your to-do list. Whatever the form, movement allows your body release to endorphins, which increase your feelings of overall wellness. This is lifelong – your desires and needs will change – pay attention and change things up
  • Bodywork We carry a lot of tension from our physical lives. There are many options in this category: massage, acupuncture, chiropractic work, etc. Make it important to set aside the time for yourself and find the methods that help you recover from your day to day.
  • Sleep Hygiene In many ways your sleep “life” is as important as your waking life. Over time see what works best for you. What is your ideal amount of sleep each night? Give yourself this. Set boundaries to make it happen.
  • Give Your Body Mindful Attention Use the body scan technique to check in with each part of your body. Listen to what your body is telling you. Caring for yourself is how you show up for the most important things in your life.

If you struggle with this area of your self-care toolkit, it may be time to seek assistance outside of yourself. Our team of life coaches at Ignite Your Potential can give you the encouragement and empowerment you need to overcome the challenges you have in this area. Their expert coaching service will allow you to:

  • Establish the traction you need to make change
  • Find your presence
  • Expand your own resourcefulness to increase your engagement
  • Help you overcome crisis
  • Get back your vitalness
  • Optimize whatever area you want to work on: get a complimentary session!

2. Mental Wellness

Mental wellness refers to your emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing. When this area of your selfhood is in order, you experience a state of well-being in which you realize your own abilities, cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively and fruitfully, and are able to make a contribution to the world. Here are some ways we keep this in check:

  • Perspective Attitude has a direct effect on how you experience life. Keeping a good attitude is a powerful way to relieve stress and find more joy. This takes self-awareness, begin by paying attention to your internal dialog, the way you are talking to yourself about the world as you walk through it. Begin to influence your attitude by looking for the positive and productive angle. Learn to coach yourself into a better attitude.
  • Feel and Name Your Emotions Repressing or blocking your emotions doesn’t provide the necessary release you need in order to move forward with your life. Your emotions will leak through or cause other challenges if you don’t acknowledge them. As something comes up for you, take the time to name what you are feeling. Bring some understanding to what’s happening for you emotionally. It can be helpful to talk with a friend or a therapist. Giving space for this is a way of giving space to yourself, who you are, and what you’re feeling. People who do this find more peace of mind will arise.
  • Resolve a Nagging Issue We all have a small nuisance in our life that secretly plagues us, like a lost button, broken cabinet, a piece of clothing that needs repair, etc. Pick a new one each week and eliminate it.
  • Set Intention Prior to getting your day started, take a few minutes to meditate on your intention for the day. Intention allows us to navigate obstacles with clarity and confidence.
  • Relationship with Self Our view of ourselves is very important. Make sure you’re treating yourself as if you would treat a beloved child who was in your care. How would you feed that child? How would you talk to that child? We are obviously not children, and I don’t mean to infantilize anyone, but this analogy is meant to offer a right perspective. You are important. Treat yourself that way.
  • Give Time to yourself Whether this is a vacation, a day off, or even space to take a short nap. Make time for yourself to rest and recoup.
self care

Prioritizing self-care will not only strengthen and energize your career but will also help you develop a greater sense of peace of mind and clarity.  

Our team of expert career coaches can help career-focused people and executives strengthen a variety of aspects of their lives so they reach their highest potential in their careers. Click here to receive a complimentary initial session!

3. Environmental Wellness

Your environmental wellness is comprised of the things you regularly experience outside of yourself that have a direct impact on you. Here are some ways we maintain a high degree of environmental wellness:

  • Make Connections Making new connections with positive, interesting people is rewarding, refreshing, and expands perspective.
  • Discernment Everyone brings something different into your life. Jim Rohn said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Choose wisely.
  • Create your Surroundings Be mindful of how you best work and use this to create surroundings that support you and your workflow. Is it in natural light? With music? Without clutter? Pay attention to the ambiance and other conditions that contribute to your ideal productivity and happiness. Create spaces that are optimal for you.
  • Use Technology Wisely Consider how much time you are spending on social media and on your devices in general. Is the amount of time your spending working for you? Notice if you feel energized or drained by these habits and act accordingly. Technology is an amazing set of tools that are endlessly helpful to us but make sure that they aren’t becoming a habit pattern that isn’t serving you. Also, think through customizing your social media, choose to unfollow negative people or negative media outlets.
self-care

At Ignite Your Potential, we know maintaining a high degree of this self-care involves letting go of old habits. For support to attain better self-care so you can achieve more in life and career, Ignite Your Potential coaches are standing by ready to get started.

Get my free appointment >

Level Up Your Note Taking: Make the Next Meeting Matter

First Things First

You likely spend time in meetings, and maybe some of you, a majority of your work life is within meetings. We’ve all experienced the draining, demoralizing feeling when a meeting is not productive. So before we begin to discuss best practices in note taking for said meetings, I want to turn you on to these useful tips by David Grady that help you attend less meetings and make sure, before you even attend, that they will be useful. Here is his hilarious TED talk called How to Save the World (or at Least Yourself) from Bad Meetings.

note taking

However, when you are in productive meetings, why might you want to make sure your note taking is masterful?

  • It will help you be more engaged and focused.
  • You will remember and capture needed information.
  • You will document proof that certain things did in fact occur.
  • Excellent note taking allows strategic thinking to emerge.

Upfront Guidelines

Your job when taking notes is to listen for and summarize key messages regarding:

  • Action Items,
  • Decisions,
  • Learnings,
  • Context, and
  • Notes relevant to you.

The whole purpose is for your learning and reference. Do not go in depth, you are not a court reporter. Less is more. Take partial notes that you can fill in after the meeting. In other words, write down enough to trigger your memory.

Preparation

Block ten minutes before the meeting for preparation. Ask yourself the follow questions and consider beginning your notes for the meeting at this stage.

  • The person leading the meeting, what are their objectives and agenda?
  • What are your objectives or agenda for the meeting?
  • What do you need to bring: discussion points, check-in data, etc?
  • Are there questions you need answered?
  • What would success look like for this meeting?

Block ten minutes after the meeting to synthesize your notes. Organize your to do’s, next steps, and deadlines in your tools of choice (project management software, calendar, app, etc.)

note taking

What Must be Captured

  • Action Items. To do’s, tasks, action requests. Keep this as clear as possible: Person X to do (specific task details) by (due date.) Who is suppose to do, what, by when.
  • Decisions. Outcomes and decisions agreed by the group.
  • Learnings, or follow-ups to learn something.
  • Intel, Observations, Strategy in summary.

Questions to Get the Right Info

While you never want to ask questions that take the meeting off course, there are questions that help clarify, keep you engaged, and help the meeting stay productive. Here are just a few that can help:

  • “Can someone please state the decision we’re making?”
  • “Can we recap decisions and next steps?
  • Use reflective listening. “Am I hearing that Barb will own X and Ted will deliver Z by this date?”
  • Ask the speaker clarifying questions that have them state key takeaways. “What do you think are the most important takeaways?”

Best Note Taking Apps in 2019

Using the best and most appropriate tools for the job at hand is an important aspect. Here are the best note taking apps in 2019.

Conclusion

note taking

Becoming masterful at taking notes in meetings means that you have all the information you need to do your job well. This basic skill is one that will set you apart and have you be more effective in your role. Topics and skills just like this are part of the support you can expect from an Ignite Your Potential career coach.

How Our Career Coaching Method Can Bring You Lasting Career Fulfillment

I remember as a child, an adult saying to me: “You’re not supposed to like your work. It’s what you do to pay the bills.” This statement is the antithesis of what we know to be true at Ignite Your Potential. If your career and role fits you, to a positive degree, you will be energized by your work. Every one of us can have a career that fits our greatest strengths and personality patterns… which is the truest recipe for engagement and career fulfillment. To be clear, this doesn’t mean once we know what the right fit is, we are finished. There is always next-level moves, calculated compromises, and professional development. Think of the “right fit” as a recipe that makes up the foundation of your career. The rest is built upon it.

We all have blindspots. Areas that we don’t notice, or are so used to, that we don’t see the bigger picture of what is actually going on. It is our core mission at Ignite Your Potential to look deeper, to view your personality, strengths, and values. We pay attention to the patterns in your work life and career choices, and weave together a career pathway that aligns with the key tasks and responsibilities that energize you the most. Here are the ways we can turn your bland, draining, or potentially burn out inducing career into a path where you get real fulfillment and reward.

career fulfillment

We assess your personality patterns and top strengths and align them with your career.

Everyone has personality and strength patterns that are actually a reflection of how we are wired neurologically. At Ignite Your Potential, we take an inventory of your personality and strengths combination. We call this your Career Criteria. Whether you are analytical, strategic, a problem solver, focused on objectivity and efficiency, empathetic, create good synergy on teams, well organized, good at creating systems, etc… whatever your offerings… the more you know, the more you can succeed at work. We use scientifically normed assessments to compile your Career Criteria (personal inventory) and then go through a structured process to determine the best career match.

We help you build a strategic action plan that defines a fulfillment-driven career.

You and your Ignite Your Potential career coach will form a partnership and a process that transforms your individulaized Career Criteria into:

  • A checklist to vet potential career paths and roles.
  • Your unique selling points.
  • Areas where you want to set goals for professional development.

Working toward a career that fulfills you rather than drains you requires setting specific and detailed goals. Ignite Your Potential has perfected a structured process and will help you get to lasting career fulfillment.

Our thoughtfully developed materials guide you through a brainstorming process so you can begin to list all your potential pivot points. Some of these pivot points may be easy to get to from where you currently are, whereas others may be significant career changes. Once this process is complete you will use your Career Criteria to vet these ideas and in this way narrow down your list until you’ve decided the next right career move. At that point, you and your coach collaborate on the strategic action plan to bring you through the pivot to your next career that is aligned with the areas you naturally excel in.

We’re with you throughout the whole process.

Your Ignite Your Potential career coach is dedicated to seeing you through this entire project. Beginning with turning your focus inward to inventory your personality and strengths and compiling this into your Career Criteria, then brainstorming to list all your potential pivots, finally creating a strategic action plan to make the next right career move. Once you begin to activate your plan, your career coach will support your accountability and motivation as you complete the transition to the other side. We consider it a success when you have made the pivot and achieved a more fulfilled career life.

We care beyond words.

There are many life coaches and career coaches who may help clients with one aspect of this but are unable to support this entire career pivot project. At Ignite Your Potential, we have the experience, education, past performance, and extensive materials we’ve developed, to support your process, beginning, middle, and completion. All of the coaches at Ignite Your Potential are not only extremely well educated in their field, but they continue to educate themselves, work on their own professional growth, and believe that their own continuous development feeds into the mastery of the craft of career coaching and life coaching.

In addition, years of positive and mutually beneficial relationship building with their clients has made them some of the most empathetic, kind, and caring people you’ll ever have the pleasure of working with. We pride ourselves on how much we care about our amazing clients.

Bottom Line

Ignite Your Potential is more than just a helpful hand in your job search. Ignite Your Potential is a team of positive, smart people who’ve dedicated their lives to matching people’s set of unique skills and offerings with a career that gives them the fulfillment they deserve.

To connect with one of our coaches, visit here for a free introductory session.