Saturday, September 29, 2007

Choosing Your Job

It is very important to choose your job and employers well, not just for the sake of being choosy but being reasonably choosy as well. I can still remember what one of my professors had told us. He said if you were to commit mistakes in choosing your job or your employer, do it in the first two years after graduation. He said do it at that time because if you keep on changing jobs, it wouldn't look good on your resume later on. And if you can, at least work for your company at a minimum of one year before changing jobs.

I, being so young and I guess naive at that time, thought, "Well, I'm not going to make mistakes. I'm going to get a job that I love." But things aren't that simple. You can send hundreds of applications, but companies don't reply immediately. You would have to endure the waiting period until the first company contacts you. By the time that happens, you would think that it's the only company interested in you. Then you would be so eager to maybe accept whatever they offer you.

My advice is don't be so in a hurry to grab unto that first job offer unless of course it's the job you really wanted and the offer is really good. Wait for the next job offer, compare the two and choose the better offer. If you really need a job immediately, another thing you can do is you can accept the job, but be open for other offers. Always check out other offers before you reject them. Again, as I've said do not this too often. Make calculated moves. Always think twice before you decide to take any job offer.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Be Flexible

Things don't always go as planned. No matter how well you have planned your day or your life, there are just things which are beyond your control. So you have to be flexible. You need to be able to adjust to your current situation and be able to steer yourself back on track again. Sometimes you even need to change your whole plan depending on the circumstances presented before you.

I have always wanted to be an accountant. Boring!!! Anyway, for me it was something I really wanted to do. I've always been mathematically inclined. I enjoyed numbers and wanted to go into business as well. But I also wanted to study in a specific university, not only because it was one of the best, if not the best, in the country because I could go there almost entirely free of charge. We weren't financial very well off so this was a very important consideration. I also didn't want to impose on parents so much.

As it turned out I passed the entrance exam to go to that university but not to the course I wanted. So I still opted to go to that school and quickly chose another course. I was a little disappointed but I was also excited to enter college at that time. Not everyone could go there because only a small percentage passes the entrance exams every year. So I still felt very fortunate.

When I got there I did very well in my first year. But it was not enough to get accepted to the accounting course which was my original plan. Again, that was another mishap in my plans. But this time I told myself I should maybe choose something else which is closely related to that course. So I ended up finishing business economics instead.

Some people may have been discouraged or may have felt hopeless. Others may have just spent so many years in college shifting from one course to another or transferring universities. That was not the case for me. I quickly realigned my plan and stood by it. I graduated on time and got a job two months after graduation.

This is but only one example. Maybe it's even just a very simple one. Life's trials come in small and large packages. You don't know what life is going to throw at you. You just need to accept them as they are. Do not dwell on the problems. Instead, concentrate on how you can go around them and be on the smooth road again.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Planning Your Day Ahead

No matter what you do, it helps when you've got a plan. I've always been a strong believer in that. But first you have to know what you want or what you have to accomplish. The same is true with planning your day.

Every night before going to sleep, I would think of the things I have to do the following day. Then I add the things which I had planned to do that day but for some reason wasn't able to. Then I would schedule them. You have to schedule even the little things because time flies so fast. You feel that you've just woken up but before you know it, it's already noon time and then night time.

The next thing you have to do is to follow your schedule. You have to be conscious of the time and do things as scheduled. You may lag on some chores or tasks but try to speed up so you can make up for the delay.

Of course, the degree of urgency would be different when you're at the office than when you're just at home. It would also be different depending on your line of work. But mind you, it's more difficult to stay with the schedule when you're your own boss and when you're just trying to do the chores at home. You don't have a boss to remind you or to demand from you that you do your work. So the more that you have to plan your day ahead. And the more that you have to discipline yourself to stick with it.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Taking a Break

Part of balancing your life is having a diversion from time to time. You can't just be pouring all your time and energy on "serious" matters such as work and taking care of your family. No matter how much you love what you do it will also be draining when you do it routinely all the time. So it would also help to take a time off and free your mind from any worries.

It doesn't necessarily mean that you should take a vacation on some island or just take off to some place and leave everything behind. In fact, you don't have to leave your home to refresh and rejuvenate yourself. It need not cost you a single cent but your time.

It's easy. Stop what you're doing for a minute. Get a glass water or juice or whatever your favorite drink is and drink it leisurely while watching TV or reading the paper. Or, just spend a minute or two talking to your husband or your wife about even the most mundane things. Maybe you can take off your hat as a parent and play with your daughter or your son. It could also be fun. If not, pick up the phone and call a friend. It will surely take your mind off from some of those wrinkle causing matters.

There are many ways you can take a break from the rigors of daily life. And the costs can go from zero to so much than you can afford or imagine. Be creative or take it simple. But take a break and you will surely come back refreshed and rejuvenated having more energy to do the things you do, be it as a CEO or VP of your company, managing your own business or just taking care family.

Balancing Your Life

One's life can never be perfect. There would always be something missing. And I have always believed that in order to obtain that thing you find missing, you have to let go of some things even just to some degree. And so we have to know which things we value more than the others.

We could be making big bucks but we would rarely see our husband or our wife. We wouldn't have time for our children. We wouldn't even have time for ourselves. Is that the life you want for yourself?

On the other hand, we could have all the time in the world taking care of taking care of the house, children and spouse. But we wouldn't have enough money to pay the bills. That wouldn't be so good either.

That is why we need to balance our lives. We need to prioritize things and we need to know which comes first. For me, my first priority in this material world would be my family. It is for them that I want to earn a good living. This would lead to my second priority which would be my work. I have to make a living to help my husband provide for my family. That is why I would always put my heart and my commitment to my work. I would do everything I can to produce the best output in whichever work I am doing. And last but certainly not the least, I also give priority to myself because what good will my intentions be if I will not be able fulfill them. And I also need to feel good about myself to have the energy to be able to be there my family and continue live life as it comes.