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Determined to Succeed

The challenges of raising a child in a single parent household are well known in our society. What we don’t hear enough about are those that rise to the challenge, set goals for themselves, head out, and achieve those goals despite the obstacles. Artoneil Rodney is a person that fits that description.

Artoneil is training to become an electrician, a profession that you do not see many females pursuing, so taking on tough challenges is something she has embraced. What impressed us the most about her is that in addition to her electrician training she decided that obtaining Microsoft Excel skills would also be beneficial, which lead her to the Greater Paterson OIC.

Her desire to learn and her commitment to achieving her goals were evident from the start. Taking classes at OIC in the afternoon, caring for her daughter, and attending electrician classes at night was a full load, but she was determined to succeed. And succeed she did.

We were elated when Artoneil successfully passed her Microsoft Office Specialist certification exam in Excel and joyfully celebrated with her. She is a testament to what a person can do when they make up their mind to accomplish a goal, take on the challenge, and overcome any obstacles that get in the way. She is progressing in her electrician’s training and has decided to pursue obtaining her driver’s license as well.

We have no doubt that she will reach both goals and make a better life for herself and her daughter. We will be there to lend our support along the way.

Three Keys to an Effective Career Change

2022 is here! As the year begins the COVID 19 pandemic is still very much in play, and new variants continue to pose serious challenges. There is a small glimmer of light at the end of the of the tunnel. While there are still restrictions in place, we can still return to doing some of the things we enjoy. In terms of the job market, things are also beginning to pick up. Recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has the current 4.6% unemployment rate at its lowest point since the outbreak of the pandemic in March of 2020.

However, one interesting occurrence in the job market was the number of people who decided not to return to their previous occupations. The BLS estimates approximately 4.4 million people have quit their jobs, and contrary to what some believe, this is not due primarily to anti-vaccination, or mandated vaccination issues. That is a small part of it; but there are deeper, more personal issues at play here.

Photo By: Gatot Adri

The COVID-19 pandemic changed the way we work, and as a result, enabled more reflective time to consider meaning, value, and “work-life” balance. It gave people a different experience, and time to slow down and reflect on what is important to them. Yes, some jobs did not return after businesses closed due to the pandemic, but millions decided that they no longer wanted to return to their previous way of life especially in terms of their work lives. Some will pursue their entrepreneurial dreams, while others will seek to make career changes and make a fresh start. They want to find and do work that provides meaning and value to their lives and the lives of others.

I want to share a few thoughts for career changers to consider as they embark on making that fresh start. There are at least three things I think you should make a part of your career change process.

First, consider your passions. Think about the things you enjoy doing in your own time, such as hobbies or things you do just for the pure fun and enjoyment of doing it. I believe this is a critical part in setting a direction for career change. For example, I am a tech enthusiast. I enjoy building gaming and business productivity PC’s and learning about new technologies and how they impact our lives. What you enjoy may be entirely different but identifying what you enjoy and have a passion for is important. You can have one passion or multiple passions; it doesn’t matter. Taking those passions into consideration as part of your career change is what is important.

This leads to the second thing to consider in making your career change. Ask yourself some key questions regarding your passions. They would include: What are the things I am skilled at in my passion? Am I learning new things and developing new skills in the areas of my passions? These types of questions are essential to the third aspect of the effective approach to career change.

The third piece would be to identify what industry your passions fall under. Is it the tech industry? Maybe its culinary, fashion and beauty, botany or the environment, retail sales, automobiles, just to name a few. By identifying your passions, skills, and industry, you have the foundation on which to build a satisfying and meaningful career shift, instead of pursuing a “job” because you need to pay bills – as so many do – finding yourself working but stressed and unhappy.

I have encountered many people who have jobs they hate but go through the motions every day because bills got to be paid. Impactful career change is about finding that right match of passions, skills, and industry. The career change search begins with establishing which companies are in the industry where your passions lie. You are probably already a customer with one or more of these companies. After you’ve assessed what your key skills are in your passion, you explore to find if there are positions available with companies in the industry that match your skills, and if not find out what skills are in demand that you may need to develop. Learning new skills centered around things we are passionate about comes naturally, so that’s an easy obstacle to overcome.

The key takeaway here is that career change is more than just searching for a new job. Doing work that brings meaning, personal satisfaction, and benefit to others involves finding that right combination of passion, skills and industry.

Of course, paying the bills and meeting the needs of life are important, but if you can do it in a space that has these three elements, you are more likely to experience career growth, rather than seek career change. I hope that 2022 will be the year that more people find careers that bring these three elements together. We will all benefit as a result. Namaste.

This article was first published on Transformation.net

The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the Greater Paterson OIC, its Board of Directors, or any other group or individual affiliated.

Goals Achieved!

The staff of the Greater Paterson OIC would like to congratulate Aura Lopez on her remarkable accomplishments in our Small Business and Office Management training program.

Aura came into our training program seeking to make a career change. She has a passion for business and wanted to strengthen her skills in order to pursue better opportunities. She was accepted into our Small Business and Office Management training program, which includes the opportunity to earn industry recognized certification in Entrepreneurship and Small Business (ESB) or Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) in Excel.

Aura wasn’t satisfied with just one, she went on to earn both. Her commitment to achieving her goals and the work she put in to reach them was impressive to witness and speaks highly to the quality of her character.

We are confident that Aura will succeed in whatever endeavor she pursues next. We are grateful that we had the opportunity to work with her and we wish her all the best.

Overcoming Your “Great Wave”

Article is posted by Hollis Nelson, written by Sergio Abrams

So, you say today is the day you’re going to do it. You’re finally going to start your own business and become the successful businessperson you want to be. But wait, didn’t you say that yesterday? In fact, you’ve been starting a business for years now, haven’t you? No, it isn’t the naysayers and no; it isn’t a lack of time. No, my friend, the problem is you and the wave you’ve yet to conquer is yourself. You’ve been fighting with yourself for years and it is your inner self which has clouded your mind with many fears and self-doubt. Your negative thoughts about what may happen cause you to become stuck in what’s called “analysis paralysis”.

That’s you analyzing and accepting every reason you believe you might fail, instead of analyzing all the reasons you may succeed. It is that self-doubt and inner voice feeding on your fears, telling you day in and day out that you will fail if you venture away from your safe place. Yes, that wave of fear that overcomes you each time the mere thought of venturing out on your own comes to mind, lies in wait, waiting to shoot you down and steer you back into your comfort zone. The voice says, “It’s too dangerous”, “no one’s going to buy that”, “you don’t want to leave your 9 to 5”, “starting your own business is way too hard”, “how are you going to pay your rent?”. Your fear and self-doubt win by knockout in the first round.

In the movie Castaway, actor Tom Hanks finds himself on a deserted island after a plane crash with seemingly no way of escape or being rescued. To survive he improvises and uses unconventional methods, including using a volleyball which he aptly names Wilson, as a companion whom he talks to, to stave off insanity. He soon realizes that no one’s coming to save him and if he’s going to get off that island, he’s going to have to save himself. Standing in his way is the great wave. The wave is a barrier between the island he’s stuck on and open waters and the chance to be saved. Eventually, he builds up the courage needed to face and overcome his great wave, and after he gets past his great wave, he looks back at the island that once held him captive.

Photo by: Jairo Diaz

The island that would have still held him captive had he not faced his greatest obstacle overcame the great wave.

You can survive with fear, but you cannot truly thrive with fear, because verily fear will only keep you stranded on your comfort zone island. Fear and self-doubt will tell you that trying is no longer an option, and only contentment with mediocrity and life regrets remains.

Each of us has a “great wave” we must overcome to find genuine success, but sadly, so few ever find the courage to do so, waiting for someone or something to come along and save us from our inner selves. Nope, no one’s coming to save you. No one can save you from yourself. This is a battle you will have to fight on your own and until you step on the battlefield and face the enemy within, there can be no victory. Verily, the road to success is the hardest road to take, which is why it is the road less traveled. However, for those who choose to face that wave, the reward of living is great.

Yes, there will always be naysayers and dream busters outside of you, waiting to tear you down with “you won’t succeed” bombs, and you may fail a few times along the way, but success is a journey, not an overnight mission. There is no instant recipe for success unless you plan on winning Lotto, and we all know the chances of that happening. If that’s your game plan, then hey, have at it, who am I to knock someone’s hustle?

In the end, there are only two choices, and as Yoda once said, “Try or do not try; there is no in between”.

You can choose to stay on your island of despair or overcome the “great wave” of fear and self-doubt and achieve your dreams.

It is all up to you!

Earn More Money with New Skills

Earning more money can be as simple as assessing ALL of your skill sets. Most of don’t list all skills like typing, clerical, our ability to exhibit great customer service, we leave out things we think are irrelevant. However, it when you assess your skill set that you can begin to compare your skills to what is in demand. Then you can develop a plan to acquire the new skills you want. There are many way to acquire new skills without having to pay thousands of dollars. Let me know your thoughts about this topic I am interested in hearing your opinion?

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