business resources

How to Impress... And Do Yourself Proud

05 19 2016

That question:  “So, tell me, what are your strengths?”

Why asking that one question can increase confidence, reduce stress and help you perform better.  Fact. 

Interviews, pitches, any experience when you’re sat across from an interview panel – not anyone’s favourite experience I’d imagine, especially when the stakes are high.  You do your homework on the company and the role/opportunity, you get your most stylish outfit ready and you prepare for those unknown interview questions.  One that often comes up is the standard “what are your strengths?”.

What would be your answer?

Maybe you have a stock response on this.  Maybe you (ahem) ‘cherry-pick’ the strengths you think the interviewer wants to hear to match you to the role or opportunity in question. 

If you did have a mental list of things pop to mind, great.  But stop a moment and ask ‘how true do those list of strengths feel to the real you?’.

You see, outside of situations like this, it’s not a question that is asked often.  And it’s even rarer that we ask if of ourselves.

But, knowing your true strengths, talents and value is golden and here’s why.

When you are clear on the value you offer you will perform better in any situation. 

Have you been in that situation where the pressure is on: a job interview, a first date with someone you really like, meeting someone influential in your industry.  You’re trying so hard to impress that your mind races with the right thing to say and when something comes out you think “why on earth did I say that?”  You’re in your head and all the time not bringing your best you to the table.

But studies have shown that when you know and affirm your strengths and the values most important to you ahead of any significant situation, your body chemistry works with you (rather than kicking in that fight/flight response that often sabotages your efforts) and so you are able to be more present.  More you.

Test it out.  Think of an event/situation coming up this week where you want to do yourself proud.  Decide to test it out yourself.

–       In advance, write down the attributes you’re most proud of e.g. I’m funny / patient / driven / intelligent.  They don’t have to be attributes relevant to the situation/event, just the ones that feel most authentically you.

–       Write down what people come to you for help/advice on.

–       Add to the list the things that you value you most about you/your life.  E.g. I most value my family / friends / my body / helping others.  Write next to each of these why they are important to you.  What emerges will be your core values.

–       Right before your event, read and feel the words you’ve written.  Remind yourself of you at your best.  Remind yourself of the values most important to you.  Watch your posture change.  See a different perspective on the event ahead. 

–       Then reflect.  Often stressful situations leave you lost for words, later finding the perfect thing to say but just that little bit too late.  When you’re at your best, you’ll find you do yourself proud more often.  Reflect on what went well. 

Give it a try and share your experience with us in the comments below.  Now, go forth and sparkle!

To your best week yet, Emma x

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category: Design a business that sparkles, Design a life that sparkles, Uncategorized

Get your FREE 2015 goal planner

01 09 2015








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Featured on The Boss Mag: Stop wasting time on social media

04 15 2014

If you’ve ever caught yourself looking at the clock and wondering how you managed to spend quite so long checking your Facebook, Instagram and Twitter feeds, my post on The Boss Mag may be of interest.

In the post, I share:

  • How to use your intuition to guide your social media ‘play time’
  • The strategic filter you must apply before you check your social media feed
  • Why you should indulge the green-eyed monster a little
  • Time-savers you should be using.

Read the full post: 5 Steps to Know When to Stop Looking and Start Doing

I’d love to know what your biggest ‘time-suck’ is on social media and what one step you can take to break the habit.  Please share in the Comments below…

Image: Andy Bradshaw, Behance.net/One Eighty

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Featured on Design Sponge: How to use an identity change to find success

04 01 2014

Today I’m featured on Design Sponge’s Biz Ladies series talking about how to switch your identity to find success…

In this post I share:

– My geeky childhood fascination with powerhouse women

– Why taking the leap into entrepreneurship is just the first scary leap

– Five tactics to see you through the next big leap

You can read the full post on Design Sponge’s Biz Ladies series HERE

Image source: {1}

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Featured on: Mumpreneur UK

03 27 2014

I’m excited to feature on Mumpreneur UK where I’m sharing my thoughts on ditching the masculine business plan.

In this post, I share:

– How my desire for freedom influences business basics

– Why a business plan gathers dust

– My tips for writing a business plan with heart/

You can read the full post on Mumpreneur UK HERE

IMAGE SOURCE: {1}

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My one big learning from running a business… so far

02 16 2014

I worked in the corporate world for eleven years.  It was all I’d known of my professional life, except for a short spell of freelancing.  I was part of a team, I was managed, I was a manager.  My working life was shared with people.

Fast-forward to this evening.  I’m sat at my desk in my home office, just me and my laptop and a cup of tea.  Were it not for the company of Jake Bugg playing in the background, you could hear a pin drop.

I like to work this way.  Actually, I LOVE it.  I can spend hours happily ‘in the zone’, as my hubby calls it.  I do my best work this way.  But, it has its pitfalls and there was one biggie holding me back.

This past week I ran my first live webinar, The 4 Secrets of Successful Working Mummies.  I’d had this on my plan since last October – four months ago!! – but I kept putting it off.  It was new and daunting and well out of my comfort zone so it got shunted down the priority list, week after week.  As I mentioned recently, I’ve been working with a business coach and, during my coaching session on the 14th January, I committed to hosting the webinar less than a month later.  And guess what?  I made it happen.  And guess what else?  It wasn’t close to being as nerve-wracking as I thought.  I actually enjoyed it. 

As I treated myself to a bubble bath later that evening, I reflected on how the webinar had gone and asked myself what had stopped me doing it sooner.  The simple answer was fear.  I was worried about what people would think.  I knew my content inside and out.  I was confident that I was sharing great value with people BUT I had no-one to reassure me.  I realised that I missed the input that I would have had if I’d been part of a team.  A senior manager to make suggestions and revisions.  Peers to encourage and motivate.  And the simple truth is I was putting off facing into these fears because I could.

It’s not the first time in my career I’ve done something that pushed my limits.  In fact, it doesn’t compare to some of the fear-inducing situations I’ve faced BUT I couldn’t shy away before.  It was my job, my responsibility and I was accountable.  Bingo!  The light went off: I hadn’t been holding myself accountable.

I looked at the other non-movers on my to-do list and recognised the same pattern.  If something was new territory or a little bit scary, I was avoiding it.  With no senior bod to report to, I was letting myself avoid things.  

Decision time.  I realised I had a choice.  I could scratch the ‘scary’ things from my plans completely OR I could face them head on and see where they lead me, personally and professionally.  If you know me at all, there was no decision to be made… I’m all about overcoming the mental blocks and hurdles to design a life and business that sparkles.  So, watch this space.  In the words of the song, from now on every day I’m hustlin’

Now it’s your turn.  What are you putting off?  I’d love for you to share in the comments below what one thing you’ve been avoiding and why… AND what action you can take to make it happen. 

P.S. Don’t you just LOVE this mug by Ashley Brooke Designs in the picture?  I think I need to treat myself to this little beaut as a daily reminder…

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Tools of the Trade: Download the budget planner

07 15 2013

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail” – Benjamin Franklin

And the great Mr F’s words are especially true for the financial planning of your business.  Accounting and sophisticated planning are to be left to the experts but having a plan for your business is a must.  Financials, not my strong point.  Organisation, on the other hand, is.  Today, I’m sharing a copy of my budget planner which you are free to download here.

I’d love to know what you think in the Comments below.  What’s your attitude to planning the mulla?

 

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