WBarbara Savonahen I was a little girl, I would stay up all night and dream of one day being in the student housing industry. Okay, well... not exactly. Just like the majority of us in "the industry," (as we so lovingly call it) I stumbled upon it by sheer accident.
It started with "The Honeymoon Phase." How does one know when they are in this phase? Well for me, the symptoms were quite obvious. In fact, they were easily diagnosable to even the common eye.
They included: excitement, eagerness to get to work, overflowing creativity, boundless energy, and enthusiasm for miles. Just like in the early stages of any courtship, I gave careful thought and consideration to what I would wear the next day. In fact, my wardrobe prep mirrored that of an elaborate Celine Dion concert.
I visualized myself leasing one apartment after another. All the while thinking how lucky I was to have stumbled into this beautiful relationship. I prayed that we would have a lifetime of happiness together.
Fast forward three years. I was the same girl, but now I was terribly ill. A new set of symptoms had presented themselves. They included: inside-the-box thinking, tardiness, grogginess between the hours of 9 to 5, and really boring outfits. The situation was dire. What was wrong with me? After careful thought and self-examination, it become obvious. I had been bit with a career-killing bug— "The Over-It Phase." I had lost my will to be fabulous at my job.
Just like in any life-threatening situation, I realized that I needed to take drastic measures. What would I do? I started out by prescribing myself a serious dose of medicine: an amazing new outfit with a great pair of shoes. And that was my first step to a full recovery!
In my journey for rediscovering my passion for my career, there are a few tricks that I picked up. These are the lessons I want to share.
1. Your attitude is your brand. Just think, everything and everyone is a brand. When I say "McDonald's," you may think golden arches or crispy, salty French fries. If I say "Tiffanys," you may think "little blue box of happiness." Ask yourself, "What does my personal brand bring to mind?" If you don't like what your brand is saying about you, simply change it.
2. Henry Ford is a genius. He said, "Whether you think you can or think you can't, you are right." Stop thinking negatively or you will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
3. Stop being insane. Albert Einstein so eloquently said, "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." After three years of working in the industry, I had become insane. I was using the same tactics, losing my joy, and expecting different results. If what you are doing isn't working, do something different.
4. Decide who you want to be and dress the part. Buying a new outfit was more than just retail therapy. It was a physical act that said, "I'm ready to move on from this phase and move onto a new role." I had outgrown that position. I was ready to be promotable. And that required a new outfit.
5. Don't settle. To settle means to make do or put up with. Don't make do with your job or put up with your life. Remember, "life is in session." (Sorry, it may sound cheesy, but it's true!)
6. Get out of your rut and into your groove.
Over the years I have to admit that I have been bit by the "Over It" bug several times. That's when I know that it's time for a new adventure...and a new pair of shoes.
— Barbara Savona is CEO of Sprout Marketing, www.WatchYourBusinessSprout.com, www.twitter.com/watchitsprout