Knowing when to be open

There is a time to be open and there is a time to be less open.

It’s important to choose wisely.

Being open with people can be a great way to create understanding and build a connection. But it should also be appropriate to the situation. The openness required to create understanding with a romantic partner and a manager are very different.

Plus, the level of openness is also affected by the boundaries in place by others and also ourselves.

If a client asks how you’re weekend was the boundaries you have in place will ensure the openness is fairly restrictive. But if a friend asked you”re more likely to go into signififcnatly greater detail and divulge information that you may not share with anyone else.

These thoughts about openness and boundaries are nothing new or revolutionary but I do think it’s interesting to think about. It gets even more interesting when you observe the way openness decreases and increases as relationships change. Perhaps as a colleague becomes a manager or a friend becomes a romantic partner.

Creating for your audience

When it comes to being creative and putting stuff out there, often we end up focusing on the wrong thing.

We ignore the audience we already have and put our efforts into reaching new people with the hope of growing and growing.

However, what often ends up happening is we lose our current audience in the process because they no longer feel like we’re creating for them.

Instead, you’re much better off putting your efforts into creating for the people that are already here. Those people are already interested and given time will care enough to spread the word, if what you’re putting out is good enough.

The problem with being attached to where you share your work

On one hand you could stick with sharing your work on a blog because that is what you know, are good at and are familiar with. There is a big difference between being closed off to new things and knowing what works for you.

If you’ve been doing it for years, chances are you’ve grown attached. The problem with getting attached is that this can end up clouding your judgement. Instead of migrating or expanding to a new platform, you end up choosing to stick with what you know. You end up doing this even when you know the current way is not working and there are better options out there.

An example of this could be YouTube. If you’ve been doing YouTube for a while and it isn’t going particularly well it probably won’t hurt to give Tik Tok a go. You don’t need to alter your message because it’s on a different platform. Find a way to share the same message whether on Instagram, YouTube, a podcast, or on Tik Tok etc.

Emotional labour

When it comes to the work that you do, do you work hard?

Not as in work that requires physical labour but another kind of hard work, the sort that requires you to give something of yourself. I guess it’s what is known as emotional labour.

So often, we refrain from exerting emotional labour because it’s easier not to. Or maybe you feel like it’ll wear you out or you just don’t want to give that much of yourself.

But I think it’s really just about making the choice to offer something of yourself. It’s sort of like an act of generosity, if you look back on the places you have worked you’re likely to find that your willingness to be generous varied.

I suppose that’s why I think it’s important that we like the place we work and the work that we do.

The importance of Sundays

I could probably write a book on what Sundays mean to me and how I spend them. This all came about after I started working full-time. Sundays were for ironing my clothes, preparing outfits for the week ahead and doing my hair whilst catching up with online classes.

Overtime Sundays have also become a day for writing blog posts, taking photos, editing, making plans for the week ahead, reading and relaxing.

I find that even though I don’t put any pressure on myself to be productive, Sunday tends to be the day where I get the most done.

I use Sunday to set myself up for the week ahead. It’s important for me because it allows me to be prepared when Monday rolls around.

What can you do right now?

We often put things off, telling ourselves that later will always be an option.

But we ignore the fact that life is finite. That perhaps starting today will be the only chance you get to finish what it is you wanted to do.

Your work is important, it matters.

Don’t focus so much on how much time you could have instead focus on the present moment.

Ask yourself, what can I do right now that supports my end goal?

And it doesn’t have to be about making money or working yourself to the bone. Perhaps what you can do right now to support your end goal is a 20 minutue meditation or write yourself a to do list for the week.

It’s better to start now and start small than not start at all.

Knowing why

When it comes to future plans we often forget the reason behind the paths we choose.

We know what we want, when we want it and what it will take but we forget the reason why we want it.

A common example is career paths. A person may want to become a nurse in the next 3 years after they complete studying which will require time, effort, patience and dedication.

The reason the person wants to pursue that particular path, may have once been clear but now is somewhat of a mystery.

It’s only until something happens that this person then remembers that it is because they want to help people. Or maybe, when they were younger a nurse took care of them and they decided that they wanted to be able to do that for other people.

If we now take it back to more general ‘future plans’, I think knowing why you want to do something is important. It could be travel plans, moving to a new country or trying a new activity. Sometimes even though we know what we want to do we get complacent and put things off . And so knowing what to do is often not enough for you to get things done.

However, knowing why you want to do something gives you a pretty good reason to do it.

Good in the long run

There will always be things that you need to do but don’t necessarily enjoy.

Often it’s these kinds of things that are good in the long run but in the moment, in the short run you’d rather not bother.

If it’s in a work environment you’ll most likely get it done because you have have to. However, when it comes to your own personal work or projects you might not have a monthly wage to motivate you to get things done.

And so you have to remind yourself of the benefits it will bring in the future.

But also remind yourself that if you don’t do it you’re more than likely to regret it later on when you’re unable to reap the rewards.

Instagram CV

If someone took a look at your instagram account, what would it show?

Would it help you gain employment in the area you want to work in or is it something you have just for fun?

I think that for many people, especially now with social media which is essentially a CV of sorts, you have the opportunity to show a much wider audience of people what you do. You could be a photographer, writer, creative director, textile artist, chef, singer, life coach or a poet.

You won’t necessarily get hired from Instagram but it can be used to showcase your work, like a portfolio.

75% qualified

There are stats to prove that when it comes to job applications women are less likely to apply than men, if they don’t meet all the requirements.

The interesting thing about this is that if you don’t get the job you don’t really lose out because nothing changes. So if you apply yo a job where you only meet 75% of what they are asking for, there’s no real risk at all, in fact you should probably do it more often.

The things you can’t yet do or don’t have much experience of are probably things that can be learnt on the job.

Of course, if what they’re asking for is experience in a specialised software that you’ve never even heard of it’s probably not worth going for. However, if the application asks for someone who has used a particular software and you have, don’t let not being an expert stop you from applying.

When you don’t perfectly meet all the criteria for a job application perhaps you feel like you won’t be able to do a good, you’re worried about your weaknesses (the things you’re not as experienced in) being exposed or maybe you don’t think you’ll get an interview.

All that stuff is just guesswork. You can apply to a job you’re perfectly qualified for and not get it, you can apply to a job you’re 75% qualified for and get it.

The risk of applying is minimal, I think the real risk is in getting your hopes up.

But the purpose of taking a risk is knowing there’s a chance it might not work and doing it anyway.