Tag Archives: productivity

every moment is a fresh beginning

Tuesday Truths 2018 Edition v8 SPECIAL EDITION

Hello Tuesday Truths Readers!

It’s been a whirlwind since we last communicated and I’m sharing BIG NEWS! See below:

APAICS announcement

Washington, DC – February 15, 2018 – The Board of Directors of the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS) is pleased to announce the appointment of Madalene Xuan-Trang Mielke as its next President and Chief Executive Officer, succeeding S. Floyd Mori who announced his retirement in October 2017. Mori has led APAICS for five years and fostered the organization’s significant growth in membership, engagement, and revenues during his tenure.
Mielke has more than 20 years of experience in political and leadership training and non-profit fundraising. She has spent her entire professional career working to bring diversity to the political process and mentoring candidates, elected officials and staff across the country. Mielke comes to APAICS from Arum Group, LLC., a political and non-profit consulting firm that she founded in 2002.
Secretary Norman Y. Mineta, who founded APAICS in 1994, remarked, “Madalene has demonstrated excellence in leadership and community engagement and I look forward to working with her to grow the organization to new heights.”
Representative Judy Chu (D-CA), Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) noted, “Madalene is an exceptional leader, and will bring APAICS to new levels of success. Now, more than ever, we need to increase the engagement and participation of the AAPI community in the political process at all levels of government. We have increasing numbers of AAPI elected officials and AAPI candidates running for office, and they will all benefit tremendously from her innovative and strategic thinking.” 
 
Mielke added, “I am deeply honored to have the opportunity to serve as APAICS’ next CEO. I look forward to working with the board and our stakeholders to highlight APAICS’ mission while expanding the organization’s platform as a resource to the AAPI community.”
Mielke will join APAICS in mid-March. Mori will continue to work with APAICS through its annual gala in May to ensure a smooth leadership transition.  
The Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS) is a national non-partisan, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to promoting Asian Pacific American participation and representation at all levels of the political process, from community service to elected office. APAICS programs focus on developing leadership, building public policy knowledge, and filling the political pipeline for Asian Pacific Americans to pursue public office at the local, state, and federal levels.
Visit apaics.org for more information. 
Contact: Helen Ruggiero at helen@apaics.org.

I’m looking forward to this next chapter in my career and greatly appreciate all those who supported me during this process.

What does this mean for my firm and Tuesday Truths? I will no longer be working in a paid capacity to partisan groups or candidates, however I will continue to work within the leadership development space and with non partisan entities to encourage voter registration/civic engagement. Tuesday Truths will go on hiatus until I can determine how much attention I can give towards maintaining the quality of article assessment and engagement. I hope that you will continue to read the archives and find the existing articles helpful in your career and personal development.

You can always connect with me via Twitter or through the Arum Group, LLC Facebook page. May you always find your tribe to uplift you and be of service to others who can benefit from your experience. We all have the power to make a difference. Thank you for your readership and for helping to build this community.

Until next time!

— Madalene

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Tuesday Truths 2018 Edition v6

Hope you’re having a terrific week! I was in Houston over the weekend doing a training at the Harris County Democratic Party. It was fantastic to meet people who are engaged in the political process and work with them to improve their technical skills. If you want to learn how to get more politically involved, let me know!

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  • There is still 10 months to 2018 and that means you have time ahead of you to meet your goals for the year. Some people like to ease into it and skip January as a goal setting month. So if you’re in need of a boost to help you on your way, look no further. Don’t be afraid of failing and don’t let that fear control you. You’ll be doing scary stuff in no time (a reminder for me to get back on the surf board!).

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  • Looking for a playlist that will reduce anxiety? It’s scientifically proven that these songs can reduce your heart rate and in fact, the number one song is so effective, it’s advised that you don’t listen to it while driving. Let me know what songs you like to relieve stress.

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See you next Tuesday! Thanks for reading/sharing/subscribing!

— Madalene

 

happy new year

Tuesday Truths 2018 Edition v1

Hi Tuesday Truths readers! Welcome back and Happy New Year! We re-started the clock for 2018 and we’re excited for the next 51 weeks.

Let’s go!

  • In recent months, I’ve had friends who left their very stable consulting jobs for new careers. They basically were burnt out and wanted jobs that fulfilled their passions. When I saw this article in Forbes, it really re-engaged my mind about the ideas that I have in my own mind about starting a new business outside of my current portfolio. These women turned their skill sets into new careers in different fields. It’s an amazing leap of faith (in yourself!) and isn’t for the faint of heart. Remember when we talked about failing bigger in 2017? What ideas have been churning in your brain??

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  • We’re technically in 2018 and although these questions are meant for the end of the year, it’s always good to ask them of yourself so that you can give yourself an assessment of where you are and where you were. My favorite question was, “Who enriched my life in a big way”.  These are definitely not your standard reflection questions and that brings a different mentality to how you answer the questions, and ultimately how you see yourself.

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  • One of the best parts about being a consultant is that I’ve had enough experience to see a variety of game plans and knowing my role, I can develop my own plan within the overall campaign with different clients. As a result, life isn’t cookie cutter and I get to do my own thing. If you’re looking to make moves on your career these tips can help you into the fast lane. All of these things apply to me even working as an independent consultant and even more so. Get out there and show your work!

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  • One of the things that I’m working on for 2018 is to be kind and to engage in more acts of kindness (random or otherwise). As a result, I hope that decreases any internal biases and a level of righteousness that can lead to being prideful. This certainly gets exacerbated when communicating with people who have different opinions/values than my own. It doesn’t help in continuing dialogue and the more time we can spend out of our echo chamber, the better it is to understand those who aren’t like us. Which leads me to the question is it possible to love your enemies? I think it’s an exercise worth trying.

Thanks for reading/sharing & subscribing! See you next week!

— MXM

 

 

 

Tuesday Truths 2017 Edition v52

This is it – the last Tuesday Truths for 2017! I can’t wait to see what shenanigans we can get into for 2018.

Let’s get to it!

  • The end of the year always brings reflection and scheming for new plans in the new year. One of the best things that I would advocate is to surround yourself with people who will bring the best out of you without drama or negativity. Be with people who will push you to strive for higher aspirations and help you find the motivation that you need to reach for loftier goals. Together you create positive energy and be one another’s support without contempt. Someone else’s success doesn’t cast a shadow on the light that you bring. If you need tips on how to build your own tribe (I hope that you can find community here too!) check it out. Thank you for being a part of my tribe 🙂

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  • Tackling new year’s resolutions? Here’s how you keep your promise to yourself. Incremental is always good. My goal of writing this blog has been going strong – 104 weeks straight and counting. I am a creature of habit so getting into a routine is pretty easy for me because I crave it as part of my personality. For Lent last year I decided that I would do more volunteer time instead of giving up anything so I started going to the DC Central Kitchen on a monthly basis and I will hit my one year mark in January. You’ve got people cheering you on as you make your resolutions so feel free to share them!

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  • Since I’m always striving to be #livinahappylife, this Harvard study piqued my interest about truly living a happy life. I see older couples who have only one another as a source of interaction and although they may be in their late 70s, I wonder if they’re really living a full life because they aren’t spending time outside of their marriage in their own activities. Although I’m an introvert, I know that I will need time with my friends and activities with others outside of my spouse to feel like I’m living a fulfilling life. Close relationships with family and friends are key factors in delaying mental and physical decline. So if you want to age in a healthy way, find your people! Are you seeing a thread in this end of year post?

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  • I think I’m a glass half full kind of person and although I spend a lot of time trying to think positively, I need to replenish the well. 2017 was a Debbie Downer year for me (as well as many others) so I’m going to take a more positive outlook for 2018. If you want to join me in training your brain to think more positively then let’s get going! I’m going to be more active in doing random acts of kindness.

I want to take this moment to thank you for taking this ride with me. I always look forward to your comments and your feedback. If you have a story to share or an article that will help your fellow Tuesday Truth readers, let me know. Your participation means a lot and I get so much joy in seeing you tag me on other social media platforms about articles you’ve read through the blog. I hope you take the time for rest and self-care because 2018 is going to be tremendous. Thank you for liking, sharing, commenting and subscribing. See you next week!

— Madalene

 

 

 

Tuesday Truths 2017 Edition v51

We’re 2 weeks away from closing out 2017. I’m ready – are you?

Let’s get to Tuesday Truths!

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  • Productivity is the buzz word for almost any new year’s resolution. How you start your day can set the tone for the rest of it. Here’s a guide to design your routine so that you can maximize your productivity. It’s not for everyone and you shouldn’t beat yourself up if you don’t adhere to it everyday. I usually exercise in the morning because I don’t have time any other time of the day so when I skip due to appointments or just out of sheer laziness, I know that I have another day to get on it.

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  • Since we’re talking about productivity, how about more ways to work smarter and not harder? I believe in making your own luck & that only manifests when you put the pieces together to create the environment that will best produce the results you want. Most people think that I’m on top of my game and to be honest, I’ve always been a procrastinator. I use RescueTime to help me control my time and I use timers to block off when I need to most concentrate. The article is terrific because it also shares how you can create an optimal to-do list without feeling overwhelmed, techniques to turn off work & loads of other ideas. Then there are some folks who are like, “Screw it! I hate productivity tips!” well we got you covered here too. Whatever you choose to help you is only effective if you can channel that energy to focus. Find different ways to get you there. It’s never a one size fits all solution.

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  • I love when I have friends who are sharing their knowledge and my friend, Cheryl Hori wrote a piece on millennials giving online contributions for Campaigns and Elections. Check it out, especially if you’re looking to see how to get that segment involved in your donor plans.

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  • When it’s the end of the year, people tend to think about how they’re doing in their professional careers and where they want to go next. Whether it’s a new position within a company or a new job/career altogether, recognizing how you work with people and how you report/manage your supervisor is critical to your everyday work life. If you have a bad manager and a good job, what do you do? Studies have shown that people are likely to leave vs staying because that kind of working environment becomes toxic. A manager who understands their role to their team and values their team members will earn a higher investment from their team, even if the job itself isn’t necessarily the work individuals want to do. Why? An environment that promotes your work is less stressful so when you start to think about your career trajectory, think about not only the job itself, think about the people who you will need to report to on a daily basis.

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  • People have such high expectations about the holidays and new year. I’ve always been a person who appreciates the anticipation vs the actual day and the reason that I like Christmas is because the spirit of generosity and kindness is so celebrated and should be exercised every day of the year, just not on 12/25 or the month of December. Here are tips to avoid disappointment while celebrating this holiday season although I would add that a lot of these suggestions are good for not being disappointed in life.

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One more week to go so thank you for taking this ride with me every Tuesday!

— Madalene

 

Tuesday Truths 2017 Edition v50

Today’s an election in Alabama (maybe you’ve heard of it?) and I’m thinking back to when I was sitting in an empowered room full of women from all spectrums of political ideology at Politico’s Women Rule Summit. Since we last communicated (hopefully you were reading Tuesday Truths last Tuesday, but no worries if you weren’t), we’ve had male Members of Congress announce their resignations, and more “exposed” for abusing their power for sexually harassing their women staff members. Time magazine announced their Person of the Year being the Silence Breakers, women and men who have both publicly and anonymously come forward to discuss their personal experiences of harassment. There has been a lot of discussion as well as heartbreak over the announcement of U.S. Senator Al Franken’s resignation. As a political operative, searching for political wins are usually on the forefront of my mind. How do we win? What do we sacrifice to get to winning? I know that Democrats are not in the majority in the U.S. Senate and it’s not lost on me that Alabama may send a man who is an accused child molester/pedophile to one of the most exclusive institutions in the world to craft public policy. I’m hardly a purist when it comes to holding an elected official accountable to Democratic/progressive values and that’s probably from years of working on campaigns seeing how we will always be disappointed by our elected officials. Governing is much more than adhering to values because we know that not everyone comes with the same ideological core and that means compromise. It’s not black and white. If women on the Hill (where legislation is created for the sake of the public good) can’t be respected as human beings and feel safe in their work environment, how can we expect that people will do the same for women and men in marginalized and vulnerable positions? No one is perfect and those who atone for their mistakes acknowledging their transgressions and working to become more enlightened people can certainly redeem themselves in society. There was a panel at the Women Rule summit that discussed what would it take to end sexual harassment in the workplace and first and foremost is ending the culture of silence. There needs to be zero tolerance of people abusing their power and people need to feel that there are consequences for such abhorrent behavior. It’s important for society to support those who have faced this injustice and to remember that respect should be given to all of us. I welcome your thoughts and hope that we can have a respectful conversation/exchange of ideas.

Here’s Tuesday Truths!

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  • Last week’s post had a very popular article about how your sleep pattern can affect your work day. There are a lot of wolves and lions in my universe (go back to last week’s post for reference). As we continue to talk about schedules and productivity, there is also a conversation about Makers and Managers. I’m a bit of both so I need to segment my days to create as well as to manage projects. When I need to do fundraising calls, I usually want a block of time so that I can just hash it out. I try not to create on days when I need to be heavy on the phones because I don’t want to be distracted by call backs or email replies. Since there is a large segment of the readership is dependent on someone else’s schedule, once you become a manager and start to think about how your schedule affects others’ productivity, you’ll be able to see how to fix the gaps.

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  • We’re heading into holiday season where you’re likely to be a guest for holiday parties related to work or your industry. In these settings, you’re bound to have conversations with strangers (or if you’re like me, then you’re hanging out in the corner enjoying the food, don’t be like me). So here’s a short video (11 minutes) where you can learn 10 ways to have a better conversation.

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  • For my friends on the Hill who are looking at their calendars and realizing that the Congressional recess is a little fuzzy, here are 4 ways where you can reduce stress inside and outside of work. It seems really weird to my industry to have a 9am – 5pm job. We do a lot of networking and events before and after we’re in the office. Holiday parties are scheduled for networking and not really for merriment. It’s all part of the work day. So sometimes it’s unrealistic to keep a routine or to get the proper amount of sleep to recharge. Know your limits and know what you need to do so that your work activity doesn’t get you sick.

Alright, friends – thanks for reading/sharing and I’ll see you next Tuesday!

— Madalene

 

 

Tuesday Truths 2017 Edition v48

I hope that you’re taking active measures to stay healthy during this holiday season. Several of my family members have been hit with a cough that has lasted for a few weeks & I’m doing my best to not catch any of their germs! Take those sick days so that you don’t contaminate and spread any potential viruses. I think it’s better to focus your energy into getting better then you can return to your regular activities fully committed. I do try to work out when I feel a little under the weather so that I can give myself energy, but that’s not always a good idea for everyone. To get ready for the long nights of events and celebrations, we’re sharing tips to beat stress and techniques to bring calm to your life.

Here’s Tuesday Truths!

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  • Did you know that I sometimes have dance parties at the office with Just Dance on my Wii? My office and I would sometimes take a break and do the sports games so that we could reset and exert some energy. It was fun to take a moment to not think about work and then feel rejuvenated to get back at it. Here are other ways that you can de-stress for under 10 minutes!

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  • I know that I’m a procrastinator. I’ve written several times about what pushes my buttons to get me motivated. I hold myself accountable to my colleagues and friends. They depend on me to get sh*t done & I hate to keep people waiting (so much guilt!). Knowing that my actions affects someone else pushes me to deliver. If you’re in need of an infographic to help you along, I hope this gets your motor running! I’ve come around to the “done is better than perfect” mantra although I still have pretty high standards so getting it right the 1st time is part of my mentality too.

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  • Negative people are a part of life. The ability to deal with them is also a matter of how you control your emotions and behavior. You can always avoid them. I like to try to incorporate it into my life – why? It helps me to better communicate and to learn how to navigate relationships with people. I wholeheartedly admit that I have less patience than in my younger days. Which only reminds me that I can’t always be with people that I enjoy spending time with all the time. I did the avoidance thing for a while and although it did create less stress for me, I also know that another outcome of that avoidance is lack of patience. How do you deal with negative people?

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  • Life is about a series of decisions and what choices you make. Even when you make a bad decision, you’re learning from the experience and you discard the regret. Owning it makes it a lot easier to learn from the experience. I always say that I make my own luck and that fate doesn’t control my journey. Making decisions when you’re not in the right mindset can also cost you. Don’t be afraid to allow a small amount of time to pass so that you’re making decisions with clear judgement. I usually don’t need help in making decisions. I will sometimes ask people for their opinions already knowing where I’m headed because I want to make sure that I’ve thought through the angles. It’s good to get other people’s perspectives and it helps me to see through someone else’s lens. Do you know what overwhelms me? Menu selections for events, mainly because I have to go through so many pages of menus to get to the items that I know that I will likely order. It really is my least favorite thing to do when I fundraise. When I redecorated my house, I knew what I wanted and filtered out all of the other noise. Stay focused on the priorities and you’ll see how your decision making process changes.

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  • Raise your hand if you’ve had difficult conversations with a team member/colleague/manager/staff? Those moments can be challenging for a number of reasons and trying to overcome the awkwardness is imperative so that everyone can move beyond the conversation. By doing so, you can be seen as someone who has the ability to collaborate under the most trying of circumstances. It’s never easy and the more you practice, the more comfortable you will become in finding common ground.

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  • I’m a big fan of reading to escape from my current perspective. I finished all of the Kevin Kwan books Crazy Rich Asian series (definitely a fun read!) and when I was crazy busy with work, I enjoyed re-reading Harry Potter. If you’re in need of book suggestions, here are the 100 notable books for 2017 according to the New York Times. Terrific for gifts for others and for yourself!

Thanks for reading/sharing and let me know what’s working for you! See you next week!

— Madalene

 

 

Tuesday Truths 2017 Edition v47 – GIVING THANKS EDITION

We’re a few days out from Thanksgiving and I wanted to give a shout out to all of the readers of this little old blog. I take your comments and feedback seriously and have enjoyed sharing the information that’s been curated so that you can find a path to your own success, whether it’s in your personal life or professional one. Thank you for reading/sharing and giving me feedback. I look forward to the rest of the year and creating a stronger community. I hope you enjoy the holiday with loved ones and I’ll see you next Tuesday!

In the meantime, let’s get to reading this week’s Tuesday Truths.

  • In earlier posts, I’ve talked about scheduling your priorities (no more wish list!) into your life. When I worked as an executive assistant, I had to work with that person’s calendar and I recognized early on that she had her priorities (a good thing!) and it taught me to recognize that she was putting herself first. It was a good lesson amongst many others that I learned. Working in a business where event planning is a heavy component and juggling multiple schedules is a regular activity, I know that I have to budget time for not just the event but also the travel time, the prep, the wind down and so many other details. The event may take 2 hours because that’s the call time; it’s all the other parts that have to be factored into the schedule. I started using a new software for scheduling appointments with people and it’s terrific because when I have events, I can cushion that so that people aren’t making appointments with me when I need to be on the road to my next event. It also allows me to block off time for me to be unavailable because let’s be honest, I actually have to produce work and that takes concentrated amounts of time not spent on the phone or that may mean that I have to schedule my own call time. I want that to be uninterrupted. Time management is so important in making things happen. That also includes making time for yourself to NOT DO ANYTHING. Just about everyone knows that I’m an introvert so when I have back to back days with lots of people in my life for work or even for my own personal time, I need time squirreled away with just me, myself & I. That way I can recharge and just enjoy being alone. Once I get that time, I can come back ready to talk with people again. You can’t be afraid to be still. That also goes for extroverts who need to be with people. If you don’t like having that alone time, then make sure you’re at as many events as you can possibly handle. Just be present and not over schedule yourself so that you’re running around just trying to make the events. For more tips, take a read from this article that talks about managing the schedule of high powered women executives.

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  • I have talked incessantly about women competition. I LOVE IT. I think it allows me to see where I can improve and what I can be doing better to help my fellow sisters. Everyone has different styles and I love learning from others. At the same time, I have gone through a lot of experiences where I can share those moments with those who may benefit from my triumphs and mistakes. Shalane Flanagan is the perfect example of how I like to operate. If you haven’t heard of her, she recently won the New York City Marathon and she’s the first American woman to do so in 40 years! Imagine running 26.2 miles in 2 hours and 26 minutes – AMAZEBALLS! As a former long distance runner who competed in high school in cross country and the mile and 2 mile in indoor and outdoor track, I know a tiny fraction about what it means to dedicate yourself to your sport. I am not a professional athlete by any stretch, yet my work ethic and belief in bringing my best all the time transfers to my professional life. When I read this article, I welled up with tears because 1) it shows that women can be supportive while also working towards their own goals and 2) I want this so badly in the areas where people think that women can’t do the work. This kind of sisterhood I can support. It is not horrible to say that you want to win and to be the best. It’s also feasible to achieve that while helping others.

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  • I’m going from one tear jerker to another and this time, Tracee Ellis Ross has got my number. I have never been one to imagine myself married. Yes, I know that I’m married now and even then it was traumatic to think that I was getting married when The Mister and I applied for our marriage license. I may be all “Pride and Prejudice” and for the most part, I want to see contentment as having a partner yet, I’m so far from a romantic. I didn’t think about my wedding growing up and certainly didn’t think about babies. My women friends who are single, without romantic love on the horizon (they do have love because that comes in all forms from friends and family) and/or without progeny are fierce and individually they may have come to a degree of happiness in their lives, they are amazing. They recognize the choices that they have made and are content. It may have taken them more time to acknowledge it and for public sake, they may not outwardly be hurting. Embracing the gender roles that make us women are defined by society. My own mother didn’t really recognize that I was “grown” until it was officially documented that I was married. For a long time, she would ask me about when I was getting married and because I’m stubborn (I’m my mother’s daughter after all),  I would defiantly tell her, “When I’m ready!”. I didn’t want to move forward on such a life changing event to please anyone, not even my mother. No one gets a say on your life. You may want opinions and you may want people to weigh in because that’s your prerogative. I don’t live your life and my thoughts have no bearing on how it implicates your daily existence. Put yourself FIRST.

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  • Along the same lines, Lidia Yuknavitch defies the stories of who she should be and stands up to create her own destiny. How we live our lives is up to us. Allowing someone else to take ownership of it, doesn’t give you your voice. Sometimes this seems like mumble jumble because when you’re in the middle of it all feeling stuck, you wonder how do I get out of it? When you’re thinking of how life has treated you unfairly without any choices that you made yourself, you can sometimes feel untethered. Feeling grounded to who you are regardless of what has happened to you creates your own story and voice. Yes, these things have occurred and you have prevailed to live another day. Don’t let others project their stories onto you.

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  • A lot of my clients compliment me on my diplomatic responses to somewhat crazy interactions. That doesn’t mean that I don’t release my rage in some other manner. I don’t channel it to my team or to others because I completely disassociate myself from who is being childish and those who have nothing to do with the situation. Sometimes, I feel the residual affects which could mean that I’m a little more cranky than usual or the smallest of actions may annoy me. I try to remember that everyone is going through something and hope that others will give me the same amount of grace. Bottling up anger is not healthy and when I find myself in situations where I’m at a disadvantage, I try to find the words that will allow the other parties and me to come to a win/win. It’s not about conquering anymore because I never feel good afterwards about it. It’s like the scene in You’ve Got Mail and Meg Ryan’s character talks about tearing into someone with all the negative things you could possibly say because it’s the heat of the moment and afterwards she’s really not happy with herself. That’s me because there are a lot of times where I feel that way and I start to lean into that space. It’s not my style so I pull back and find the words to express the situation in a way that isn’t just about me. Empathy is hard because you’re trying to place yourself in someone else’s position. That is definitely not as easy as it sounds. It doesn’t mean you justify other people’s actions. You acknowledge your own feelings and work towards not letting it control the rest of your interactions.

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  • I want to thank all of the wonderful women who stopped by a FriendsGiving I hosted last week! We donated toys, books & money in support of Children’s National Hospital and I’m filled with gratitude for their friendship and generosity. Thank you!

Just some of the toys and books that my fierce women friends donated to Children’s National Hospital

Thanks for reading/sharing and have an enjoyable week. See you next Tuesday!

— Madalene

 

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Tuesday Truths 2017 Edition v46

I’ve been in a good mood since last Tuesday with the success of the elections. Voters were unafraid to repudiate bigotry and racism. Diversity and inclusion may seem to be buzz words for the current environment and the truth of the matter is that different perspectives weaving throughout society brings humanity closer together. We are here to respect one another as equals with compassion and a level of curiosity that should lead all of us to better understand those who have had different experiences from us. Civil discourse is about respectful and factual conversation. We can disagree and yet still work to find common ground so that we can finds ways to help society. This was never meant to be easy. It’s hard work to listen to one another and to not discard someone else’s values. I have a difficult time doing it without getting emotional and that is something that I know that I must work on so that I don’t widen the divide. I recently saw an exchange on FaceBook where my peers were discussing gun control and I took lessons from it because it was civil and the person who I sided with in the exchange was respectful and acknowledged the opposing view. Patience is in short supply and I’ll take notes wherever I can find the most useful actions. I hope that you will also join me on this journey together.

Here’s Tuesday Truths!

  • My introduction for this week talked a bit about active listening. It’s having emotional awareness and the ability to acknowledge your own emotions, especially in the heat of the moment to bring it all together. I can usually read people’s reactions and try to work with that when in a challenging position. What I recognize is that when people who are close to me exhibit a type of behavior that I don’t agree with I resort to my more emotional side and get more stubborn. I’m a stubborn person by nature and having more emotional awareness tampers some of that willfulness. I’m going to have to keep this article bookmarked so that I can have it as a reminder for myself whenever I find myself in a situation where I need to improve. With the holidays fast approaching, you may want to use it when you find yourself in a heated discussion with your family.

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  • Priorities, people – you know that you’re going to start figuring out your new year’s resolutions for 2018, which is really your priority list. When we “gained” the hour with the return of standard time, I used my “extra” hour to sleep. Starting to think about that list really helped to set priorities. Your wish list on how you want to spend your time should be how you prioritize your time. Schedule it and stick to it so that it becomes a habit. Being able to prioritize yourself should never be a question. You need to take care of yourself first before anyone else so that you can be the best person you can possibly be so that you can be that version of yourself to help others.

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  • Taking the same attitude about priorities also means that at your work, you need to protect your time. Our immediate response to people when they ask, “How things are going?”, we say, “Busy!” because it’s a thing. If we’re not busy then we’re doing…what exactly? Take back your time and make it impactful. You may not have the ability to control your schedule because you’re a junior member of the staff and you have to roll with everyone else’s schedules first. That’s OK – you can still manage your time by taking the blocks of time that you can control and prioritize the projects and work that will help with your team or your manager’s time.

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  • With so many things that can pull for your attention, it’s bound that stress will occur. Believe it or not, stress makes you stronger. It tests your ability to take multiple pieces of your life and create systems to address them. Whether it’s direct action in addressing the many facets or the mechanisms that you create so that you are working at optimal performance, you are taking stressful circumstances and evolving your actions and attitude to come through the other side. If you didn’t have a lot of stress in your life, adversity may be more challenging for you. When you’ve experienced a lot, you’re able to work through these difficulties because you’ve created the support system you need to function. These skills will help you better manage your stress when those times occur.

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  • This Harvard Business Review article entitled, “Why Do So Many Incompetent Men Become Leaders?” certainly piqued my interest and not just because of the title. Charisma and confidence masking themselves as potential leadership qualities are propelling men into roles where transformational leaders are needed. Throw in bias and societies thinking that men are superior to women and we find ourselves in this current predicament.

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  • Does appearance really affect hiring decisions? I’m a believer in branding and that goes with the idea that I’m marketing myself and my work through a visual perspective as well as the work product. My sense of style is to be a little out of the box and the person who cuts my hair knows that I have a thing about not looking like everyone else. I want to stand out because I have a professional yet interesting haircut and an wardrobe aesthetic that says professional yet age appropriate with clean lines and far from cookie cutter as possible. When I pitch for clients, I want my work to stand out and my appearance to be the added benefit. A majority of my life has been spent making people aware that my outward appearance may appear to be one of a young professional who wears understated but finely appointed accessories with the experience of someone who actually has spent multiple decades in my profession. I may look younger, however my demeanor are going to point towards my actual numerical age. How do these factors increase already existing bias? It’s not only the people who go through the interviews, it’s also having diverse hiring managers who can look to diverse candidates for consideration.

That’s it for this week! Thanks for taking the time to read/share the post. See you next Tuesday!

— Madalene

 

 

Tuesday Truths 2017 Edition v45

It’s been an emotional few days with the recent “revelations” in the upcoming Donna Brazile book. I’ve had to give myself a time out on reading the news as well as comments on the various social media platforms for fear that I would be so enraged, my head would combust. There’s an election today and I’m most focused on those outcomes. GO! FIGHT! WIN!

Here’s Tuesday Truths!

  • Integrity is an essential aspect to garnering respect and credibility in any industry. I question people who talk about staff or consultants behind their backs in a derogatory manner. Personal attacks are unprofessional and when talking to members outside of your internal team about the work performance of others, it makes me wonder what you say about me when I’m not present. I’m a straight shooter. I will tell you what I think in the most diplomatic of terms because in all honesty, I believe motivating people by incentivizing them to see if they change their behavior, they will get positive results. Belittling people and engaging in office gossip as a member of senior leadership will only breed a toxic environment that deems that kind of behavior acceptable to the junior ranks. I don’t encourage engaging in it and when given the opportunity to change the subject so that comments aren’t based on personal differences, take the high road. Your integrity is valuable so don’t get caught up in the hype that can deplete you of it when others take a different tact.

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  • Taking the temperature of where you are in life requires occasional reflection. If you’re thinking about making a change in your professional life, have you started thinking about what inspires you, when people talk about spark, the things that excite you. My Instagram friend, Grace Chon, has talked about how she was a gigolo of hobbies because she had so many different interests until she found her passion in pet photography. It turned out OK because she started her side hustle and was able to quit her full time art director position to focus on her photography business. If you’re looking for how you can find the flames to ignite your personal spark, then take a read.

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  • I’m all about creating success by putting the ingredients together so that you can make your own luck. When looking at an unfavorable situation, I take the different parts that have created the environment and evaluate each ingredient so that I can see how I can improve the situation with the different variables. As a result, I’m giving encouragement to the parts that are doing well and tweaking the parts that need the most attention. On a personal level, it means tinkering with #livinahappylife because I’m responsible for my own happiness. I’ve toned down my purchases on material things and have thought more about what it means to experience a moment. Studies show that memories of positive experiences can trigger happiness. So if you looking for ways to find happiness, create the environment and you’ll have less work to do to get to a happy life.

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  • Are you feeling overwhelmed with your to do list and yet, your productivity has waned to abysmal levels? Sometimes it’s necessary to re-set and clear away the chaos so that you can reach deep into your reservoir of patience and get with it. I feel a lot of life is about having control and when I feel overwhelmed, I’m losing a sense of control. One of the things that I notice about my behavior is that I can sometimes feel overly scheduled so I have to remind myself that it’s OK to take a break. Thankfully, I have Aurnia to take on an afternoon stroll. A pup is always going to remind you that life isn’t always about you 🙂

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  • I’m glad to see that millennial women are heavily invested in their careers. I’ve never been afraid of the term, ambitious. It’s important to remember that individual success is measured by competing with yourself and not against the comparison of others. It’s also crucial that competition amongst women isn’t back stabbing as long as we keep a level playing field and respect one another’s abilities. It can spur innovation and creativity knowing that you have people who are bringing their A game and you can’t coast. Don’t forget that women who made their way into the workforce and into executive level positions did so under circumstances that weren’t in their favor. Much has improved although we need to recognize that equal pay doesn’t exist and is worse for women of color. More insights: millennial women are addressing their ambition and they want to see the opportunities that women have ahead in their respective companies before pursuing a career with that particular company/organization.. The recession played a factor in how millennials approach their job prospects and it shows when they are looking for job security.

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  • As we head into a new year (yes, we’re weeks away until 2018!) it’s a good time to evaluate your professional trajectory and see if you’re leading your career with purpose. If you decide that you would like to move in a different direction, how do you network yourself into a new career? One of the fundamentals of fundraising is follow up and networking itself is all about follow up. You have no idea the number of business cards that I give where people don’t follow up with me afterwards. It gives me a sense of how serious you are about talking about a particular project you may be interested in doing. Also, introverts make good networkers – we listen instead of talk and that can lead to big conversations from the people we want to connect with at an event.

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Thanks for reading/sharing. I’ll see you next Tuesday!

— Madalene