It’s funny how so many people want to write a story these days, but don’t know what they want to write about. How does that work? Continue reading “Writing Your Story|The Concrete Elements”
Does Education Matter When it Comes to Writing?
I will say upfront – you don’t need any type of degree to be a freelance writer. However, there are specific skills that come with this line of work and are required in order to have a significant impact. So the degree is not necessarily required, but education is a must. Here’s why… Continue reading “Does Education Matter When it Comes to Writing?”
2015 is Here and it’s Real.
It’s not to late to wish everyone a Happy New Year! I must say that 2014 flew by like dust. It’s going to be an entire year since I started this blogging journey and it has been nothing but rewarding. Thanks for your continued interest and support; I hope you’re inspired to do your heart’s desire as you read New3Creation material!
I want to start of with this thought provoking quote from Cheryl Strayed:
“I knew that if I allowed fear to overtake me, my journey was doomed. Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story from the one women are told. I decided I was safe. I was strong. I was brave. Nothing could vanquish me.”
~ Cheryl Strayed, Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail
This is an awesome quote on dealing with fear in a unique way. I’ve previously tackled the topic of fear here on this site and it cannot be stressed enough how important it is to tackle fear from a different angle. We can’t allow it to cripple us and determine our destiny. It doesn’t matter if you want to become a writer, astronaut or business owner – if you’re reading this be inspired by the fact that fear is nothing but an emotion and it NEVER lasts! It also doesn’t matter what type of situation you’re in; fear is not in control. You are…simple as that.
A new beginning
Think about the quote for a minute…what story have you told yourself? As we become older, we realize that a lot of things we thought were true as children aren’t so; ranging from Santa Claus to what a healthy marriage or relationship really means. The fact is that truth never stops revealing itself. It’s a constant organism that’s always at work. I once heard the saying that God reveals to redeem – nothing could be further from that truth. That’s why it’s okay to start over and not be afraid to make a new beginning. It’s easier said than done but you can get rid of all those old things that weighed you down before. You can decide what you will be concerned about from here on out – especially since its a new year. I always talk about creating yourself if you’re not happy with who you are. Not saying to create a facade, but build a new beginning for yourself and use that fear as a motivator. Trust me, when it comes to rebuilding and recalculating your journey, you need to make fear your friend!
When I decided to get back into writing, fear definitely showed up at the front door. I figured since I hadn’t been involved in writing since college, my chances of becoming a flop were very likely. Rejections and setback probably lay ahead and I wasn’t looking forward to any of that. But I had to do something. I had to make a decision. I must tell you that decision has (and continues to) paid off. So many doors have been opened to help me along the way and help create a beautiful future. You can certainly do the same.
Change the script
So what if your story isn’t a great one? Re-create your story to be what you want it to be. Tell yourself a different story and take charge of your destiny. Don’t let fear or naysayers determine it. The road is…different. It doesn’t consist of partying around and a bunch of friends saying great things about you. Writing your new script can be challenging because the atmosphere is quiet and you’re often alone, facing yourself and dealing with who you really are. It’s also filled with eye opening moments of joy that can’t be compared to anything else; installing wisdom in you to last a lifetime. You’ll also be surprised how much your choices and your story inspires others to take a leap of faith! That’s what New3Creation is about, to inspire, envision and be able!
I’ll press the pause button here until next time. But I will leave you with this question: It’s 2015 – what are you going to do about it? Will you let it determine your destiny or will you make a decision to change your story?
Chronicles of a Freelance Newbie: New Friendships Abound…
These past couple of months have been really fast-paced. When I first dove into writing, things were moving really slow (of course they were) and some days seemed as if my voice wasn’t getting to anyone. Even though I felt that way some days, I still kept posting and interested readers would trickle in. Well while that was going on I was doing traditional networking and so many doors have opened since then, which makes me extremely excited for the coming year!
Shout out to Kim of Abundant Life Initiative, who provided me an opportunity to share an experience of mine with her audience. I don’t quite remember how we connected, but at some point we were really impressed with each other’s blogs. Check out the post here. There will be many more to come in the near future. =)
There have also been pavement pounding sessions that caused new relationships to form. This is mainly because I’ve chosen one particular cause to cover through my writing. It’s a cause that is near and dear to me as a person and a writer and I intend to raise awareness about it. What’s the point in being a writer if you have no particular passion? When I write about this particular topic I don’t try to impress, I just write. Some folks have noticed this to my surprise and are interested in collaborating with me on different projects which brings an unique type of joy to me. I’ll be conducting interviews, creating new programs and attend specialized meetings because of this topic and the way I chose to go about addressing it with my writing. Check out my posts on Intimate Partner Violence here. I’m not sure if I will post on this particular site about the topic, because it was designed for my freelance experience and work portfolio, but we’ll see what happens.
Moving ahead for the new year…
I’ve continued to have new clients referred to me and more meetings with folks (most of them other bloggers) that are interested in working with me. The opportunities abound!
Of course, there was a lot of cultivation for these opportunities to happen. It’s a very exciting time. Since I’m a strong believer in face-to-face interactions, I recently started a meet up group specifically for career enhancement. In the past several months, I’ve helped quite a few individuals with their career by providing them guidance and sharing my own experience with them for encouragement. So if you’re in the DC area, stop by one of our meet ups! The experience will be a fulfilling one!
From the new relationships I’m forming, I expect more business opportunities to arise for my writing and consulting services. I have to be prepared for that so I’ve been touching up my skills on copy writing and pushing to stay on top of my reading.
Even though it’s been kind of slow around these parts, trust and believe other areas have been very busy! For instance, I still post useful articles on my Hub Pages site, including my first recipe! It doesn’t hurt to step out of the box every now and then, which I plan on doing from here on out!
Deciding to get back into writing and use it for an outward purpose has been a fulfilling experience. Whether it’s writing or blogging, new ideas, skills and confidence levels have definitely developed!
What have you been up to? I’d like to know your plans for the new year.
But it Looks Like You Don’t Even Care|5 Ways You’re Ruining Your Professional Image
Among the many hats I wear is that of a full-time career woman. Over the past 15+ years I’ve seen things and people come and go. This includes rights and wrongs as far as moving up the career ladder. Nothing too complicated, but little things that go a long way. People have come to me with questions regarding their advancement ad why they don’t move up as fast as they think they should. Well, there are always different factors and situations that will affect one’s career, but here are 5 solid ones I think will always stand the test of time.
Always complaining without presenting solutions. There’s nothing that irritates a boss or manager more than that one employee who complains about the company’s problems, but doesn’t present a solution of some sort. Not that your boss expects you to turn the company around by yourself, but many of them welcome suggestions that may help with current problems in the office. Don’t assume that your voice won’t be heard. Come up with a well thought out plan that can help with a current problem and present it at the appropriate time with your boss or during a staff meeting. You’ll be surprised at the end result.
Your physical appearance. This is one of the most common ways people ruin their professional image….their appearance. It’s quite horrifying what people chose to wear especially when they work in a highly professional environment that deals with plenty of customer service. You’re the initial representation of your company or department. It doesn’t make sense to wear:
– sloppy jeans
– tight jeans
– low cut blouses
– halter tops
– flip flops
These items damage your credibility and decrease your chances of being taken seriously. Do you have to come in wearing Armani suits five days a weak? Absolutely not. It doesn’t take an expensive wardrobe to be presentable everyday, especially if your office is business/casual. Some folks take this granted and become too comfortable with the “casual” part. Wearing a decent cut blouse and slacks will do the trick.
Here’s a useful link on office attire tips that won’t bust your budget: Perfect Your Professional Image at Work
Wearing your emotions for the world to see. There are many types of personalities in the average office environment. People come from different types of backgrounds and upbringings that may or may not mesh well in a professional environment. Additionally, some days at work are just awful and you’re ready for it to end already. While it’s normal to have such days and things don’t always go your way, it’s so important not to let your emotions control you and your reaction to the un-pleasantries of office life. Walking around with a frown or sitting at a staff meeting with your arms crossed and face turned up will get you absolutely nowhere. And don’t think your boss doesn’t notice because they don’t say anything.
In actuality, they do notice and make note of it.
It’s not a good look and it just shows you’re incapable of handling certain responsibilities, making management less likely to rely on you. Well if they can’t rely on you then your chances of getting that promotion are pretty much shot. It’s better to take a moment away from everyone and put your emotions in check. Whether it’s in a bathroom stall or venting to someone during lunch break, it’s better than walking around announcing to everyone how ticked off or disappointed you are about something. Keep it professional and make sure you do what’s expected of you…with a smile. It’s easier said than done, but it’s possible.
Not giving your best. It’s funny how those who do the bare minimum of their responsibilities are always the ones looking for praise and accolades. All they did was their job (barely) and they didn’t even bother to go above and beyond. If you’re looking to stand out from everyone else, you have to give management numerous reasons to have confidence in you and what you deliver because at the end of the day, your work speaks for you. Doing the bare minimum and expecting rewards for just showing up to work won’t cut it. Paying attention to detail, reviewing your work before submitting and performing quality assurance are habits that will make you stand out in the crowd – especially if you have decent management. Have pride in your work and interactions with people. Believe it or not you’re building a brand of yourself and want it to be as effective as possible.
Now, this doesn’t mean slaving away and being treated like a doormat. Know your worth and be smart about what you produce. It’s important to not only be on the grind, but to give yourself credit for it as well. If you’ve created a new form or an effective way of doing things in your office, keep track of that as a kudos to yourself and update it on your resume. If the time comes for you to ask for a promotion or salary increase, you’ll have solid reasons for management to consider (if that doesn’t work out, there are other companies who just might appreciate your accomplishments!)
Getting caught up in office drama. Another big turn off for other co-workers and management is the office gossip. They can’t wait to spread the latest rumor (or start it) and get in everyone’s business. It’s unprofessional and makes you look unproductive and horrible at your job. It doesn’t matter if it’s a corporate setting, beauty salon or mechanical shop. Gossiping at the job starts nothing but trouble and at the end of the day does damage to your image. It shows that you have little to no work ethic and can’t be productive when needed. Plus, you’ll be surprised at how aware management is of office gossip, who started it and who keeps it going. The last thing you want is for them to see you that way or to categorize you as a gossip. It’s one thing to be aware of it and something else to be caught in the middle of it. Avoid those who come around to run their mouths. Don’t encourage conversation with them and make it clear that you’re not interested. Keep a low profile and stay productive!
Are you frustrated in your current job? Have you thought about your next move? Ask and share right here in the comments!
It’s Harvest Time
And just like that, summer’s gone and the cold months are about to set in (this entire year has flown by like nothing). In order to get ready for the winter, now is the time to reap the crops that have matured the past few months. There will be no worries in the cold months because there’s a serious stash of food – all because the past few months were used to cultivate and grow food.
Besides the fact that time flies, it’s important to cultivate properly and bring in a good harvest. Are you looking for something to happen in a specific area of your life, such as a career move or starting a special relationship with someone? What steps have you taken to make it happen? A lot of times, we do more expecting than working. The season comes and goes without any fruit to pick, and we end up frustrated. You can break that cycle immediately and get to work. As I mentioned before, there were a lot of moves I had to make to get my promotion. It wasn’t easy by any means, but I knew what I wanted and it just had to be done. It can be difficult to get out of the area of wanting and to step over into the realm of WORK. It’s difficult to tend that soil in the beginning, but in the end it all pays off.
This is a constant battle many of us fight. The war within, the fight against oneself to do or be better. It’s never an easy task but it has to be done. I rage in this war all the time; whether it’s staying fit, blogging (!), being productive on the job or keeping myself in a good head space. I’m always reminded of where I’m aiming to go and the plan I have to get there. So here’s the thing: what do you actually want? That’s the first thing that needs to be established. From that point, you’ll know how to pace yourself. Self-discipline is no walk in the park, but there are days when you’re simply not feeling it, and that’s fine. Everyone is allowed a down day every now and then. In fact, they’re necessary to remind you of the goal you’re working towards because eventually you’ll have to pick up working where you left off. Are you the planning type? Be sure to invest a certain amount of time towards this goal each and every day – no matter how long or short that time may be! If there was a shorter, easier way around it, I would share it but there simply isn’t. There has to be focus and dedication involved.
Reap the Harvest!
I’ve read countless stories on writers and bloggers who put in years of hard work and are now enjoying the fruits of their labor. It’s the sweetest thing to sit back and watch things work for you after so much hard work has been put in. But the journey to get there is never easy. There’s a lot of lessons to learn, and a few heartbreaks may even be involved, but at the end, it will all be worth it.
Our Uniqueness as Writers
Everyone has a different voice, but now everyone realizes that for themselves. Some of us are quick to click around on other sites to see how others write and format their blogs. Nothing wrong with that, but it’s important to do that only ifyou’re trying to develop your own style. During this writing journey, I’m learning more and more about my writing voice I have and the things I can do with it. That’s one way blogging is so beneficial. It exercises the writing muscles as the unique voice develops. Time and time again I’ve seen blogs become successful because the writer chose to be themselves. It may not have happened overnight, but after years of developing and being themselves, an audience that appreciates their voice started to grow and the benefits increased for the writer/blogger. It’s very encouraging to see this happening as I develop my own voice. It helps me to know that I’m on the right track.
Although I’ve seen many writers become successful because of their unique voice, I’ve also seen blogs fail because the writer gave up posting for whatever reason. This is a lot easier said than done, but I’m learning to keep going and discipline myself to be consistent. As a result, it’s become somewhat easier to finish out ideas that were started and to express myself better. Not too long after that, the confidence level starts to grown and I have the guts to start reaching out and networking effectively (yes, there will be a post on that!).
Check Me Out
In addition to my recent guest blog stint, I’ve had other opportunities come my way. It’s very encouraging as far as other outlets coming my way. Not only do I have a lot to say, I have my own unique way of writing about it.
An article of mine was recently posted on P.E.R.K Consulting, an empowerment blog for organizations. It’s a small start, but a big deal for me in my writing journey. I’m also working on another gig that came my way just last week as a contributing writer! Once that’s done, I’ll be sure to post those links as well. Again, not holding back on my own way of writing is what will open doors for me. The same can happen for you, if it hasn’t happened already!
What do you think? Are you a new writer trying to find your own voice? I’d love to hear about your experience as a writer and blogger.
Feel free to share opportunities that have come your way.
6 Important Things I Realize about Transition
As life teaches us, transition can painfully be a good thing. Especially when moving from one place to another. I completed my first week in my new place of work and I have to say it was pretty amazing. My purpose in writing this post is to give insight on transition while sharing my personal experience with it…..whew, it’s been crazy!
If you’re wishing or hoping for something, be prepared to get it.
We’ve become so accustomed to hoping, praying and wishing, that we don’t know what to handle what we’ve been wanting when it finally comes. Of course, the best time to prepare for a wish to come true is before it happens. I pictured myself in the new job while I was still at the old one. Not only did it help me in present situation, but I was in a great mindset during my first week at the new job. I wasn’t nervous or anxious, just very excited to be in a new environment. Try it out; you may be surprised at how your confidence level rises!
Let go of the past
I have to admit this was a struggle for me during my first week. I had grown so accustomed to doing more than I should’ve been doing, that I had to slowly process not being burdened down with extra responsibilities anymore…I would actually get to do the job I was hired to do! Whoa! I was reminded a couple of times of my position and what it entailed. I was also told that I wouldn’t have to worry about all the extra stuff anymore. It was weird. I was so used to doing other people’s work. I’m now in a place that believes in structure and accountability so everyone knows what they’re supposed to do and they have the manning for it.
Accept the experience
Either way the experience goes, it’s a learning process. That was definitely the case before landing the promotion. Now I have to actually “accept” it in mind that this is what it is now. This is what I’ve been wanting and now it’s here. I have to embrace everything that comes with it. A lot of times we get so used to the negative that we become accustomed to it and think that something is wrong if it’s not in the picture. That’s so not the case. Letting go of old baggage and embracing new challenges go hand in hand.
To Whom much is Given, much is Expected
Transitioning always leaves you knowing more than what you knew before. Therefore the expectations will be higher. They should be higher within yourself anyway. Because you’re more knowledgeable now, there should be more productivity whether it’s in a relationship or on the new job. Because I’ve been promoted, there’s a lot more that’s expected of me and I must be able to come through. I have to read more now than I ever did before because responsibility, accountability and leadership is at a higher level. That’s where it can be nerve wrecking, but I won’t spend so much energy being nervous. I have to get and stay up to par with my new responsibilities. That’s just the reality of it.
Don’t be intimidated by the changes
Transitioning encompasses a lot of change, especially within. In my opinion, most people don’t like change. That’s why they’d rather stay in a situation they’re miserable in than step out into a new one. Change can be intimidating, but at times it’s necessary. This is where adaption comes in. Getting accustomed to a new environment is definitely a part of transition.
Since things are always changing, it’s best to prepare for change as much as possible. I don’t plan on staying on the new job forever. But I do expect to learn and grow in it. I will then take the experience and use it to go to the next level. The previous job definitely prepared me for my promotion. So it only makes sense to take notes now and plan for the future, which is finally starting to brighten up.
What are your thoughts on transition?
Career Moves – Why I Got Promoted
If I did it, then so can you. I recently received the wonderful news of getting promoted after years of hard work, frustration and what I thought were set backs (they actually weren’t, but I’ll get to that later). As I’ve mentioned before, I have a full time job that I do in addition to my part-time freelance work. I want to share tid-bits of my journey to where I am today career-wise and hope it helps you out in some way.
Making a plan
As my readers know, I love to make lists. My career is no exception. When I’m ready to transition or push for a higher position, I usually start out by making a list. It visualizes everything for me, from what I need to do, whom I should talk to, reading I need to do and strategies I need to develop. That way, when I’m sitting before management making a case for myself I won’t look foolish. The confidence is there and I know what I’m talking about. My message is clear to them and they often admire that. Even if you just write down “get a new job” or “start consulting business” that’s a great start. The more you realize what you want, the better you can go about planning for it.
I’d be a lying fool if I chose not to mention this part of my journey. It’s bound to happen at some point to everybody. We just have to choose how to deal with it. A couple of years ago I started applying for different jobs and got called for an interview. The organization was great, the location was excellent and the salary was out of this world. It was the perfect job for me. Out of 200 applicants, I made it to the final round of selection. When it was down to the final round, I went on a second interview and it went well. I just knew I had the job – I knew it was mine. Then it was silence, I never got the call that I’d been waiting for. After a couple of days, I called the manager that had interviewed me and asked if a selection had been made and he told me yes. They were impressed with my package but another candidate was chosen and it was a very difficult decision for them to make. I was crushed. I had to face my current supervisor and co-workers (some of them knew that I had gone on interviews – thanks to the supervisor) after that rejection. It took me a couple of days, but once I got myself together I made up my mind: that next time I come that close to getting a job, it’s because IT’S MINE! I didn’t care about circumstances, other candidates, or interviews. I was going to ace it next time and get the promotion. Sure, there were other applications I put in afterwards that weren’t accepted. I tried other avenues and looked at other careers in which I could advance. Nothing really happened for the next couple of years. But over that time I nurtured that one thought I had after the disappointment I faced with the dream job. I took the positive from the situation; the fact that I made that far out of 200 applicants spoke volumes. I interviewed well and I knew what I was talking about which meant I had pretty good market value. I just needed to keep trying and not stop until something happened. That’s what rejection does to you – if you handle it the right way. I didn’t let it consume me, I let it teach me (ha, I like that! (c) New3Creation Writing).
After learning from the hurtful bout of rejection and making my mind up to never be in that situation again, I started making preparations to actually be in my new job. Did I have it yet? No, but I was doing my darnest to get there! I increased my exposure to various parts of my career field, I went to seminars, I read guidelines and regulations, I volunteered for projects that no one else wanted to touch and went to meetings no one cared about. I picked management’s brain about career moves and what I needed to work on in order to advance (annual performance reviews weren’t enough for me and I made sure they knew that). Were any of these tasks giving me promotions? No, but they were definitely increasing my knowledge and helping me ad more accomplishments to my resume.
After taking a break from applying and pushing for a new job, I mustered up the energy to start applying again. I went hard core, or as a friend of mine says, went into “beast mode”. All of the interviews I previously went on, suddenly served as fuel because I’d become familiar with questions and expectations of positions. All of my responses helped me regain confidence in the push I was making. Before I knew it there were SEVERAL OFFERS on my plate for me to choose from!
I star my new position in a couple of weeks and I am ecstatic about it. The faith and hard work has definitely paid off. I say all of this of course to apply to writing; I want to advance in this career as well. I’m learning that it’s a slow process (molasses!) but I’m enjoying every moment of it as it continues to grow for me.
It’s Not Enough to Just be Alive
Don’t just exist – live.
I don’t know if that saying comes from someone else, but I’m claiming it as my own quote! Copyright!
Alright, on a serious note, a lot of us have been taught to thank God for another day, or that it’s a miracle to be alive another day…if that isn’t a lie, then I don’t know what is. Furthermore if that’s what’s considered a miracle of God, then the standards of what God can do for one’s life is pretty pathetic. I will expound on that in a later post. Right now I want to focus on the fact that a lot of folks are just looking at survival. Very little thought is actually given towards living. I realized this for myself not too long ago and I’m still learning now.
Don’t wait for everything to be perfect
If that’s the case, you’ll stay waiting because things will never be perfect. You can go out on a limb today if you want to. Get out of the comfort zone and do something different. I used to be scared to go places by myself because I was worried about what people would say about me. Now, I could care less. That decision alone has brought new ideas and revelations for my betterment. All because I decided to step out and go walk by the harbor by myself.
Make a decision
You’ve probably read and heard many things about living successfully and making changes. Well, nothing is going to happen if you don’t make a decision. Once you make your mind that you want to live and not just exist, the first thing you have to tackle is your mindset. So many harmful things have been programmed in us – from our own doing and from others. You will actually have to let go of certain beliefs and fears in order to make progress. If not you’ll be stuck at square one with a lot of regrets.
Are you afraid of living?
At some point, please ask yourself that question if you haven’t already. We get very comfortable in living paycheck to paycheck or by being reactive instead of proactive. When it comes to living a better life we’re afraid to step out because of the changes that come. Don’t let situations or emotional occurrences make the decision for you. They can serve as a guide up to a certain point, but use your mind and determine what direction is best for you to do more than just exist.
Many times when we overcome or survive a touch situation, we get stuck in survival mode. That’s when the victim mentality creeps in and takes over. Everything goes downhill from there. Victims can NEVER live. Once they decide to stop being victims, then they can live.