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Category Archives: About Julie

Are you stuck because you are afraid of change?

Are you stuck because you are afraid of change?

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Are you stuck because you are afraid of change?Regular readers know this is the year of my long-awaited new kitchen. I admit I have been stuck. Stuck by fears mostly. Afraid to take the chance. Sometimes we get stuck in a corner.

This is how bad I have been stuck: (don’t laugh – at least not too hard)

  • For longer than I can remember, we keep the oven door closed by putting in the screwdriver.
  • The burners don’t connect right so before we turn them on, we push them tighter with a big fork.
  • The microwave makes sounds like gunshots and doesn’t turn, but it works if you are creative.
  • We glued the parts back on the dishwasher and stuck a nail in the track so the track doesn’t fly off.
  • There is no flooring because the linoleum was so badly ripped that I tore it out — in 2009.
  • The sink cabinet doors were removed when we moved in.
  • One of the lazy susans is just a shell because I pulled it out when we moved in. That was 1992.
  • Several of the kitchen drawers have been glued back together.

My fears had me stuck

I know the kitchen is the most expensive room in the house to redo. We bought the house in 1992 to remodel but we just never got to the kitchen. But I love to cook and be creative in the kitchen so I was sabotaging my own happiness.

At first we did entertain a little, but over the years we just stopped having anyone over for dinner except the boys friends. It is kind of embarrassing to be so stuck.

Regular readers may remember that the cabinets and new countertops are on order, the laminate flooring has actually been downstairs in boxes since about 2009 but I wanted the whole deal, the whole kitchen, not a band aid of a new floor. We talked to the appliance store and yesterday one of my favorite clients affirmed that the brand I am choosing is still a great brand and well manufactured in the USA. I’ll order the appliances soon.

We’re taking a risk, we putting ourselves further in debt and we are leveraging my son’s house to get the equity. But we will have a new kitchen this year. Maybe soon I will let you peek at before photos.

Son, Dan, the contractor will drive the project. I have seen his work before and I am excited. He was 5 when we moved in here.

What are you stuck with?

Don’t stay stuck in the same job because you don’t know if you have the ability to move on.

Imagine a consultative, collaborative, and interactive process where you and I talk through your job search from resume to LinkedIn to cover letter to how to go beyond exasperating online applications and find hiring managers.

You don’t have to imagine. This is what I do as a career professional and resume writer. I evolved as technology transformed job search and rapidly adapted to new ways of communicating. My clients may be half way across the country or the world but together, we share coffee, laughs, concerns, and turn a scary job search into creative, consultative writing sessions

Let me help you get out of stuck and into the career of your dreams.

Land your dream job! I help job seekers via interactive and personalized strategic coaching sessions to land their ideal job and achieve career happiness. Find out how to create your resume writing and job search solution here!

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Image courtesy of Ambro at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Why I need to be the author of my own blog content

Why I need to be the author of my own blog content

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Why I need to be the author of my own blog contentIn recent weeks, at least two people asked who writes my blog content. Until they asked, I assumed everyone knew I write everything on my site. I truly believe that my voice has to be the one on my blog.

I get requests frequently from people who would like to supply content here. I generally hit delete because the requests are from people I never heard of before and I don’t want anyone else writing my content.

Who writes your blog content?

One of my clients said that he didn’t know when I found the time since he knew how very busy I have been all year with new clients. He assumed I bought content or had other people write for me. He couldn’t see how I found time to write blog content with the number of clients I was juggling.

When he bought his package, he was disappointed because there were no open appointments for two weeks. But all was well and he was happy because I immediately added him to my cancellation list. He was able to get his project going much sooner due to clients who had to cancel because they were ill or had unexpected work commitments.

I told him that one reason I am writing more content lately is I recognized I failed to prioritize writing content. It is this blog that built my business and as I got busier, I slowed down writing blog content because I was writing for clients all the time. By reorganizing my schedule and by dropping other things, I found time to write.

Why writing blog content makes me a better career professional

In this blog, I often expand on answers to questions my clients asked. The blog allows me to give more career marketing information that will interest my clients and others looking for career help. I know I will never work with most of the people who read my blog, but I can make sure that there is quality content and information out there to help job seekers.

In the writing of this blog content, I find myself learning new things to help job seekers. It’s a win-win. The blog also gives me the opportunity to talk about things that are on my mind that go beyond career marketing, like this post. It’s a platform that let’s me reach out to other people and share my thoughts.

Love of writing

It helps that I really do love to write and you always get better at what you do with practice. Writing this blog for the past eight years and creating 970+ blog posts improved my overall writing and helped me understand content marketing to allow me to teach others.

This blog is a commitment but one that I truly love. As my list of regular readers expands, I find myself even more motivated to create new content.

Do you want to be on the cutting-edge of your career and job search? Read More Posts Like This One!

If I know there are people who appreciate my writing, it makes me want to continue writing.

Land your next role! I am the pioneer of a unique resume writing strategy. I use interactive live writing and coaching sessions to capture your value. This positions you for success in your resume, on LinkedIn, and throughout your job search. I help bring out your passion and stories to dig deep into your experiences with you. Learn more here

Image courtesy of iamharin at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Slow down – you move too fast

Slow down – you move too fast

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This year for Christmas (yes, I will always say Merry Christmas), I am working on consciously moving slower. We move too fast almost all the time. This year starting with the Christmas tree, I was deliberately slow. I documented it on Facebook. I took a photo of the empty tree. Two days later, I took a photo of the tree with just a few lights on and then later with just a few ornaments. I told the family as they passed through to put on a few ornaments. Last night, I took the photo you see in this post.

Ancient Christmas angelsTime for reflection

This allowed me to reflect on the process, to think about the memories attached to the ornaments. See those angels in the top middle? That’s a handmade ornament dating back to my grandmother. She was 72 when I was born and they were on her tree as long as I can remember. She died the day after Christmas in 1979. She met my further husband that year but told me she wasn’t coming to my wedding because she was going home before then. I complained when she said that and told her she could hang around a bit longer, she was 95 then but she knew. We got married in August of 1980.

The tree tells a story. Decisions made, choices, family, history. I think that’s why themed trees never held an appeal for me. I like taking the time to remember and this year, I took that time very slowly.

A few of my favorite things

I’d like to share a few more of the favorite things on my Christmas tree. Yes, it is a real one. I love the smell of the evergreen in the house and don’t mind the mess of the needles. To me, everything is too fast today. We don’t take the time to appreciate things. A real tree – even with needles that will need vacuuming makes me happy.

Christmas BirdThe next ornament I would like to share with you is the Christmas birds. There are actually many of them all over the tree. In the large photo at the right, you can see one at the top of the tree.  At the left, there it is in more detail. The bird says peace to me. They come from my Aunt Gardy who used to work for a special gift store and when she stopped putting up a tree, she passed them on to me. The birds were designed to fit on bulbs and illuminate but since our LED lights are much larger, we only have the birds positioned near the lights. The LEDs are cool lights but we did melt one bird some years back by having it too close to the wrong light. (Christmas memories.)

Being purposeful

Christmas GarlandThe tree is wrapped in handmade garland crafted in a third world country and bought at our church’s Mission Store. I make sure I buy something each year from the Mission Store. It lets me have tangible memories of why we need to help others. All of the funds from the store go back to the crafters. In the inset at the left as well as on the tree, you can see the little red tassels. My cousin, Judy, made those when my sons were little. They remind me both of family that I miss and my children’s early years.

There are many handmade items on the tree. Very few were made by me. But I treasure the time put into their crafting and creation. They all allow for contemplation.

Slow down and stop rushing

I think we all rush through everything these days. Seasons overlap each other and we live distracted lives. I am guilty too of being sucked in by electronic devices that take time away from contemplation and even interaction.

Breathe and treasure those moments

Today’s post is a break in my normal job search topics to share with you some of my memories and urge you to slow down. Breathe and treasure those moments. They don’t have to be elaborate or fancy. Simple memories will last longer. Slow down, we move too fast.

Make a move and trust!

Make a move and trust!

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Make a move and trust!

In a Facebook conversation with Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter from Career Trend while talking about my husband’s decision to leave the caregiver role he had with his dad for the past 8 and a half years, I said “Sometimes you just have to make a move and trust.” Jacqui can relate. She and Captain Rob (her husband) moved from Kansas City to Texas to be able to follow their sailing passion. With a business such as Jacqui’s and mine, your physical location isn’t all that important any more since most of our clients are virtual anyway. Meeting with a client is just a phone call, Skype call, or WebEx meeting away. Communication is always national today and sometimes global.

Make hard decisions and Make a move and trust!

In our case, we aren’t moving to another state or even another house but my husband might as well have lived in another state for the small amount of time we had together in the last 8 1/2 years. Quality of life was missing and for us it is a critical component to our happiness. My experience with trying to keep the non-profit contracts going when I wasn’t happy with the demand on my time showed me that you have to make hard decisions sometimes and trust that it will work out. My choice to focus my energy on Design Resumes has definitely been the right decision.

I have been blessed with an incredible amount of wonderful clients who have helped me grow the business. Many of those wonderful clients have been directly responsible for sending me new clients who also fit the wonderful client description. Solidifying the technology to be able to replicate my in-office consultations was key. Now 70-plus % of my clients or more are virtual though I do see some Central Wisconsin clients in the office. Communicating with Skype and WebEx has made a huge difference.

Key to quality of life for many of my clients is integrity and because the market is changing and opportunities are growing, they are not willing to stay in roles that expect them to compromise their integrity or quality of life. Your work is important but it shouldn’t overtake your ability to have family time and personal down time.

If you are now in a role that doesn’t fit, maybe it is time to move on and trust.

Need help? Hire me, Julie Walraven, Certified Master Resume Writer. I can take the pain out of writing your resume and even make it fun with a personalized, interactive process that teaches you strategic job search.  To find out how to hire me, Click Here.

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