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Assessing Your Skills For A New Job

When it comes time to look for a new job, any professional will know you are entering into competition with a number of other motivated candidates. So what does it take to be the ideal candidate for the job you want? In many cases, just being the ideal candidate is not enough. You also need to be able to sell yourself as the ideal candidate. You may be an experienced and talented professional with a great many professional skills, but you need to have the skills for the job at hand. To ensure you can present yourself as the person for the job it requires you to assess your skills and determine what you are bringing to the position and what more you need to bring. This can be more difficult than it seems, so let’s look at the most effective ways of evaluating your skill set for a new job.

Be critical.

Before you start with an evaluation of your skills, you need to be ready and able to take a critical approach to the process. We’ve often talked about the underrated talent of self-evaluation and how it can be a very difficult thing for many people to accomplish. Confidence is an important part of the job search process, but confidence doesn’t mean you are unwilling to recognize faults in yourself. In fact, having this critical eye for your work can actually improve your confidence as you identify areas of struggle and turn them into strengths. Take an honest look at your skill set stacked up against the job. What is stopping you from being the ideal candidate? Use this critical eye for all the following steps in the evaluation process and you’ll finish with a much stronger skill set than when you started.

The job description is your guide.

When vying for a new job, the job description will forever and always be the number one tool at your disposal. No amount of confidence should ever let you think the job description is not important. It should be your Bible for the application process. Remember, employers want to find the right person. Everything they put in the job description is valuable information for you, especially when it comes to your skills. They lay it all out for you in plain English every skill they consider to be essential for the position. They aren’t trying to trick you into thinking you’re right for the wrong job. Study the job description thoroughly and ensure you as a candidate are addressing each and every point in the most effective way possible. If there is anywhere you are falling sort, put the work in until it is among your strongest skills. In the end your resume should be a mirror of their job description.

Look at it from the employer’s view.

Your objective as a candidate for a new job is to make the hiring process as easy as possible for the employer. Picking the right person for a job is a lot of pressure and you better believe they are going to do all they can to ensure they are selecting the best option. Therefore, you want to present yourself to the employer as the clear and obvious choice. While there are variety of aspect they’ll be looking at, special attention will be paid to your skills and how they relate to the job. Consider how you can present your skills to them in a way that would leave no doubt in their mind that you can excel in the position. Look at yourself as a candidate from their perspective. Where are the big question marks? Thinking about it from this perspective can help identify where you need to fill in the gaps and become the strongest possible candidate.

Think about proven skills.

Finally, when an employer sees your resume and sees your skills that apply to the job at hand, their next question becomes, how well do you implement these skills? The value that experience gives you as a professional is that your skills are proven. The skills you use in your day-to-day work become more valuable to an employer the more you can demonstrate a proficiency in using those skills. A candidate who not only possesses the necessary skills for the job but has also proven they can use them to great success in a job will always standout to an employer. Think of how you can demonstrate this in the hiring process. Certain projects or work that clearly shows you putting the skills to work successfully will further convince employers you can hit the ground running in a new position.

Your professional skills are an incredible asset when looking for a new career path, but remember that your skill set can always grow and improve. These kinds of evaluation help to make you a candidate that cannot be ignored.

If you’re looking to get back in the professional work, sign up for FREE with BoomersPlus. We help match experienced professionals with job opportunities that fit your skills. To learn more, visit our website at https://www.boomersplus.com/ or email us at info@boomersplus.com.

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19 Quotes About The Joy Of Reading By Famous Authors

Reading is a skill as well as a privilege. We are all lucky to live in parts of the world in which education and information is available for anyone who wants it. And yet, it’s probably fair to say we take reading for granted. It’s not malicious or spoiled on our parts, but it’s such an accessible part of our society that it’s hard not to forget how special it is sometimes. But there are those to whom reading has changed their life in very obvious ways. Some of the most celebrated authors in history have spoken about the joys, the benefits and the necessities of reading. To hear from people who have made a living off the written word show such reverence for the medium is heartening. Have a look at what just a few of the great literary minds had to say about the joy of reading.

  1. “The answers you get from literature depend on the questions you pose.” – Margaret Atwood
  2. “Books smell good. They look good. You can press it to your bosom. You can carry it in your pocket.” — Ray Bradbury
  3. “Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read them at all.” — Henry David Thoreau
  4. “We read to know that we are not alone.” —S. Lewis
  5. “When I look back, I am so impressed again with the life-giving power of literature. If I were a young person today, trying to gain a sense of myself in the world, I would do that again by reading, just as I did when I was young.” — Maya Angelou
  6. “It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.” — Oscar Wilde
  7. “My alma mater was books, a good library…. I could spend the rest of my life reading, just satisfying my curiosity.” — Malcolm X
  8. “I cannot remember the books I’ve read any more than the meals I have eaten; even so, they have made me.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
  9. “Picking five favorite books is like picking the five body parts you’d most like not to lose.” — Neil Gaiman
  10. “Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.” — Mark Twain
  11. “To learn to read is to light a fire; every syllable that is spelled out is a spark.” — Victor Hugo
  12. “Books are a uniquely portable magic.” — Stephen King
  13. “You think your pain and your heartbreak are unprecedented in the history of the world, but then you read.” — James Baldwin
  14. “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one.” — George R. R. Martin
  15. “Until I feared I would lose it, I never loved to read. One does not love breathing.” – Harper Lee
  16. “When the Day of Judgment dawns and people, great and small, come marching in to receive their heavenly rewards, the Almighty will gaze upon the mere bookworms and say to Peter, “Look, these need no reward. We have nothing to give them. They have loved reading.” — Virginia Woolf
  17. “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” – Toni Morrison
  18. “There is no friend as loyal as a book.” — Ernest Hemingway
  19. “Be awesome! Be a book nut!” — Seuss
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5 Tips For Making A New Habit Stick

As we previously looked at, bad habits can be difficult to kick. However, not all habits are bad. There are certain routine activities you can form into habits that actually better your health, like exercise habits, work habits or something you do to better yourself. Unfortunately, just as bad habits are hard to get rid of, it’s not easy to make a good habit stick.

Time and dedication help to form routines and that’s just the beginning of how we form our habits. But there are ways to keep those positive behaviours a part of your life. So if you’d like to incorporate some of them to your daily routine, check out some helpful tips to making them stick.

Set a timetable.

The end goal with trying to establish a new habit is to make it such a normal and regular part of your life that you hardly even notice that you’re doing it. Of course, that’s not how it’s going to be when you’re just starting out. These habits are new to your life and therefore you’ll need to spend some time assimilating them into your schedule. Give yourself 30-days to dedicate to this habit. Don’t skip any days, don’t get lazy and don’t make excuses. Just 30-days of giving this new habit your attention. Your don’t need a deadline for when you need to be done, but it’s important to keep this strict timeline up front to ensure you’re off to a good start.

Be consistent.

Activities become habits due to regularity. You start doing something enough then your internal clock just starts to accept it as part of your routine. However, breaks in the activity, especially at the beginning can disrupt the routine and set you back to square one. Stay on course for those first 30-days. There will be distractions and temptations. You’ll want to make exceptions but if you start saying “yeah, but…” now, when does it stop? Consistency is very important to your success here.

Keep things simple.

When starting a new activity, you may feel inclined to go all or nothing. Brave as that is, it’s more likely to cause you to stumble. Piling on too much too fast makes the task that much more difficult. It can also work to dissuade you if you do fail as you’ll see it as a much more difficult task than it needs to be. If you’re aiming big because that’s your ultimate goal, then great, there’s no reason you should abandon that, but it’s not a race to get there. Start small and build on it as it becomes more routine. It’s a much simpler and accessible way to making a new habit stick.

Find replacements.

As mentioned before, temptations will be a pretty big hurdle to overcome. When you’re trying to give up a certain kind of food, it might seem doable at the moment, but then you see commercials for your favorite burger joint and your friends are going out to eat, and suddenly it’s not so easy anymore. You’re going to miss those things that were easier but stood in the way of your goal. To help fight back against temptations, find replacements for those things you’ll miss. Instead of going out to Happy Hour with your friends, get coffee with them. instead of watching television, read a book. Simple swaps can distract you as the temptation inevitably starts to fade.

Keep your eye on the prize.

No matter what methods you use to establish your new habit, it won’t be easy. You’ll probably want to quit at one point or another. In these instances, the only thing you can do is remind yourself why you’re doing this in the first place. What will you gain from having this habit become a part of your routine? The reward is why we do these types of things and a healthier lifestyle is a pretty good reward. You can be specific with your rewards to, or give yourself your won reward as motivation – though nothing that will undo your progress. We all need that little kick every once in a while to keep moving forward, you can need to figure out where the kick is coming from.

For more Health & Wellness content and everything else in the world of boomers, sign up with BoomersPlus for FREE. Go to www.boomersplus.com or email us at info@boomersplus.com to learn more.

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Embrace The Culture Shock When Travelling

Have you ever had the pleasure of experiencing culture shock?

No doubt, in your years of travelling, you’ve been somewhere that was completely different from the world you grew up in. Most of the world is made up by cultures you likely know little about. However, you can travel to a place and not get a sense of how the lifestyle differs from your own. That doesn’t make you an ignorant or rude traveller. For many of us, vacation means relaxation and spending time with loved ones. Hanging out in a resort hardly offers a glimpse at what the actual culture is like. But when you allow yourself to be immersed in a new place that is when you can experience what they call ‘culture shock’.

The idea of culture shock is that you are introduced to a new culture so radically different than your own, that it is a genuine shock to the system. Some have described it as an out-of-body experience, others have said it is like visiting a new world. Some say that it is impossible to experience culture shock in a place like North America because our culture is depicted so much in media around the world. But really, culture shock is something that can happen to any traveller from any destination, visiting any other destination in the world. And despite what some might perceive, it’s a well worth experiencing.

There aren’t a bunch of people saying culture shock is a bad thing, but it is sometimes seen as something travellers want to avoid. Search ‘culture shock’ on the internet and you’ll see plenty of articles dedicated to tips for getting over culture shock or ways to ensure you don’t get culture shock during your next trip. However, you may also find a few helpful articles suggesting that culture shock might be a good experience. Having experienced it myself, I can tell you that I absolutely agree.

For one year of my life, I moved to South Korea to be an English teacher. It was a bit of a spontaneous decision and I knew it was going to be a very different experience than I had ever had. I had travelled plenty in my life up until that point but as they were all leisurely vacations, I couldn’t say I ever experienced culture shock. I really didn’t know what to expect moving to a place where I didn’t speak the official language, where I looked like an outsider and where so many aspects of daily life were foreign to me. Not having expectations maybe made the whole thing more of a shock.

Now, I don’t want to present it as if I was all on my own. I worked at a school with other English teachers, including other Canadians, and there were many other Westerners in the area, but the experience was still surreal. There was hardly a waking moment that I wasn’t reminded that I was in a new place. And it was incredible.

When you are in a situation like that, your brain is working in a way that you rarely ever experience. I was always in a state of adapting and it presented everything as a big puzzle I was slowly working away at. It wasn’t just the language barrier, though that was a major hurdle. Perhaps coming from where I did, there’s a privilege you take for granted of always being understood by everyone around you. Losing that was a challenge and at time I felt I had alienated myself. But it was also somehow energizing having the ease of communication suddenly taken from me. Again, this left me with no option but to adapt and learn.

Something that was an immense help was the amazing South Korean people. As much as I sometimes felt like I was sticking out like a sore thumb, everyone was always very welcoming and gracious to me. I cannot think of a single instance where someone was openly impatient with the foreigner who was operating at half the speed of everyone else. They taught me helpful things and brought me along to share their culture with me.

Though I made efforts to make friends, learn to language and put together somewhat of a normal life for the short year I lived there, I never felt the need to get over the shock of it all. I made routines, got along on my own when necessary and fell deeply in love with the food. But I never lost the feeling of being in a new place that I had only scratched the surface of.

The experience taught me so much about myself, challenged me in ways I had never been challenged and gave me new perspectives of how people live. Was it uncomfortable at times? Maybe, but I always saw the bigger picture of what the experience would mean to me. Visiting new places is supposed to be an experience like no other, so don’t avoid the culture shock, embrace it and enjoy it as much as you can.

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8 Tips For Learning A New Skill

Regardless of your age, new skills are a value as a professional. You might have the necessary skills to perform your job, but as the industry changes new tech is introduced and new methods are established. It is important to be able to stay up-to-date. Boomers are often criticized for being unwilling to learn new things on the job. However unfair that criticism may be, you need to be able to prove it wrong. Not only that, but continuously pushing yourself to learn and grow as a professional helps you stay engaged in your work. Teaching yourself a new skill is certainly not easy, but if you’re willing to dedicate the time and effort to learning, you’ll soon have a new addition to your skill set. Here are a few tips to help you along the way.

Structure your learning.

The obvious first place to start is by setting out a game plan. There’s a significant amount of time that needs to be dedicated to learning a new skill and you must ensure you’re putting in that necessary time. If you tell yourself you’ll work on it when you can, it could either drag on for far too long or be pushed aside and forgotten. Set up a schedule for when and how you’ll do the work. Having this structure will help you from going off track and wasting time.

Be realistic.

While structure is important, don’t feel the need to set a deadline for yourself. You can have expectations for how your progress is going, but be realistic with those goals. Understand what is necessary to accomplish your goal then base your timetable off of that. You want to stay disciplined, but rushing the outcome isn’t helpful in actually retaining the skill. Also, be realistic about your end goals as well. Will you have mastered the skill? Unlikely, but having a solid understanding of it to build off is a fine goal to have.

Be open to different learning methods.

When learning something like this, you want to have every avenue of learning at your disposal. You might say, “I’m a visual learner” then seek out methods that fit your perceived needs. However, that’s cutting off so many effective and informative ways of teaching. Studies have shown that the theory of different learning styles doesn’t exist. You might have preferences, but if you want to really learn the skill, you need to be willing to challenge yourself with new methods that might be more effective.

Understand the skill before you begin.

It’s likely that, whatever skill you wish to acquire, it’s more complex than it seems on the surface. Take riding a bike for example. On the surface, the skill is being able to sit on a bike, pedal and ride it. But what’s the most important aspect of the skill? Is it balance? Speed? The type of bike? Understanding the whole picture allows you to identify the best process of learning the skill.

Don’t be too narrow in your focus.

Similar to the above point, you can’t look at the skill too narrowly. Maybe you want to use the skill for a specific reason and you seek to learn it from that view point. That only teaches you one aspect of the skill, not the whole thing. Say you were trying to learn how to play the guitar – don’t approach it by trying to learn how to play your favourite song, but rather learn the basic chords that build most any song.

Take it in parts.

You’ll probably know well that tackling a large task is easier to manage in smaller chunks rather than trying to take on the whole issue as one. The same is true of learning a new skill. When you have a good overall sense of the skill, you can then break it down into sections that build on each other. Work on one and when you feel comfortable with it, you can use it to learn the next section. Trying to take it all in at once will probably mean you’re not absorbing key elements.

Test yourself as you go.

As mentioned already, this will not be a short process. When you have a long-term task at hand, it’s important to have some way of measuring your progress as you go. When you make your schedule, add regular progress tests along the way to see if you’re staying on track. This can help you to determine if you need to amend your timeline, as well as which aspects of the learning are working, and which need work.

Don’t neglect the mental aspect.

While your focus on learning a new skill is likely the technical aspects, it’s important to recognize that there is a mental barrier that most of us have to deal with. It can be intimidating trying to learn something new. Especially when you’re starting the process with basically no knowledge, it can seem like a pretty big hill to climb. This is when you need to give yourself that mental kick in the butt and remember all those times you have successfully learned a skill from scratch. This is just one more thing you’re adding to your arsenal so don’t let the process scare you off.

If you’re looking to get back in the professional work, sign up for FREE with BoomersPlus. We help match experienced professionals with job opportunities that fit your skills. To learn more, visit our website at https://www.boomersplus.com/ or email us at info@boomersplus.com.

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Fatherly Advice From Some Of Televisions Greatest Dads

This weekend, we celebrate Father’s Day by recognizing the men who helped to shape our lives into what they are today. What better time to look back on some of the most memorable father’s in television history.

Now, not all these men would win father of the year – some are downright dangerous – but they all practiced that time-honoured father tradition of offering up some good ole fatherly advice. Some of it is quite good, some of it… not so good. But just like the advice from our own fathers, there’s something to be learned every time. Let’s have a look at some of the best words of wisdom from TV most memorable dads.

 

THE GOOD

 

“Not everyone can be a Don Drysdale. Maybe you can, but maybe you can’t. Now in the meantime, you just go in there and you do the best you can” – Mike Brady, The Brady Bunch

“I wanted my children to go as far as their gifts could take them.” – Howard Cunningham, Happy Days

“You know we have a lot of funny notions born inside of us, Half-Pint. The funniest is that we’re supposed to hide the way we feel about people. Let me tell you, everybody wants to know that they are loved, or needed, or cared about. Anybody who doesn’t want to know that has something wrong with them.” – Charles Ingalls, Little House on the Prarie 

“Sorry is not the magical word that makes everything right again.” – Andy Griffith, The Andy Griffith Show

“The man who passes the sentence should swing the sword” – Ned Stark, Game of Thrones

“Nobody does anything without help, Will. People open doors for we and I worked hard to open doors for you. It doesn’t make you. It doesn’t make you any less of a man to walk through them” – Phillip Banks, Fresh Prince of Bel Air

“Women do all right when they have all the modern conveniences, but as men are better at this rugged type of outdoor cooking. Sort of a throwback to caveman days. Hand me those asbestos gloves, will you Wally?” – Ward Cleaver, Leave it to Beaver

“No one man can tell another man how to live.” – John Walton, The Waltons

 

 THE NOT-SO GOOD

 

“Kids, you tried your best, and you failed miserably, the lesson is . . . never try.” – Homer Simpson, The Simpsons

“Son, always remember the Bundy Credo. Lie when your wife is waking. Lie when your belly’s aching. Lie when you know she’s faking. Lie, sell shoes and lie.” – Al Bundy, Married With Children

“For a dummy, you make a lot of sense.” – Fred Sanford, Sanford and Son

“Success is 1% inspiration, 98% perspiration and 2% attention to detail” – Phil Dunphy, Modern Family

“Until you pin me, George, Festivus is not over” – Frank Costanza, Seinfeld

“Never give up control” – Walter White, Breaking Bad

“When you work with electricity, it’s a good idea to shut it all off. Now follow me upstairs and I’ll show you how to treat a severe electrical burn” – Tim Taylor, Home Improvement

“Get out of my chair, Meathead!” – Archie Bunker, All in the Family

 

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What Is Your Favourite Book Of All-Time?

Last week, we looked at some of the of the ways you can reignite you love of reading. One of the methods we suggested was to revisit some of your old favourite books. It’s a seemingly simple solution, but it’s not as regular a practice as you might think.

Today, we live in a world of instant media, which certainly has its benefits, but it has maybe caused us to drift away from the joys of reading. To be clear, I don’t mean to speak for everyone as I’m sure some of you remain avid readers. But it’s true that many people don’t make the time for reading anymore, let alone revisit something they’ve already read – and that’s a shame.

Honestly, re-reading old favourites is a great way to remind yourself how fun reading can be — but it’s so much more than even that. Returning to something you love can tell you a lot about yourself. It can bring back old memories, it can remind you of your interests at a certain period of time, and it can show how you’ve grown over the years. It might not always seem it, but books play a significant role in our lives, which is why revisiting our favourite books is a conversation worth having – allow me to get the ball rolling.

I’ll confess, much to my surprise, when I asked myself the question “what is your favourite book?” an answer did not immediately come to mind. It’s not something I’ve given much thought to over the years, so I didn’t have an answer ready. But even then, after some reflection the answer became quite obvious.

While there are a great many books I’ve liked and admired over the years, it’s an exclusive club of books that left such a lasting memory that I revisit them again and again. I remember reading Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein for the first time and being blown away by the complexity of a story I had thought I knew. I was similarly engrossed and disturbed by the brilliance of Cormac McCarthy’s No Country for Old Men, a book that shows me something new each time I go back to it. And of course, anything by the great Elmore Leonard is a sure-fire winner for me. But there is one book I’ve returned to more times than I can count, never tiring of it, never changing my opinion of it and always just enjoying the time I spend with it. The book is George V. Higgins’ The Friends of Eddie Coyle.

The book is a simple crime story told in such an expert way. Like Elmore Leonard’s greatest books, this gem explores the criminal side of law and order, bringing humanity to the crooks we rarely ever see. It’s a story of the blue-collar aspects of crime, taking away all the glamour and showing crooks who are just trying to make a living (albeit a dishonest one). The story follows a low-level criminal on the verge of a long prison sentence, desperately looking for a way out while trying to live by the outlaw code.

Why do I love this book so much? It’s hard to narrow down. I’ve always loved these kinds of stories. It’s not flashy or big in scale, but it’s a definite page-turner. There’s a tension to the story that is palpable. The grounded approach to the subject matter makes it all the more intriguing, like you’re eavesdropping into a world you don’t know but one that seems wholly authentic. Despite not being a comedy, there’s a biting humour in how it presents the working-class aspects of this world. The dialogue is pitch-perfect, never sounding forced. The whole thing doesn’t have an ounce of fat on it. No part of it lags, nothing seems unnecessary. The book not only gave me a new love of reading, but inspired me as a writer as well. When I read this book it feels like I’m revisiting an old home. In fact, just talking about it makes me want to jump back into those pages.

So, now it’s your turn. Tell us about your favourite book and what it means to you? What piece of literature have you gone back to more than any other? Share your stories with us at info@boomersplus.com.

For more great content and everything else in the world of boomers, sign up with BoomersPlus for FREE. Go to www.boomersplus.com or email us at info@boomersplus.com to learn more.

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6 Tips For Kicking A Bad Habit

No one among us is perfect. We all have those bad habits we wish we could rid from our lives once and for all. For anyone who has tried, they know this is far easier said than done. We let these habits become ingrained in our lives so much that removing them feels unnatural and we are triggered to return to them no matter how bad they might be for us. But there are many bad habits that are quite negative for our health. Smoking is an obvious one, and made more difficult to kick because of its addictive properties. But it could also be poor diet or lifestyle habits that affect our overall health. Therefore, though it is difficult, we need to learn to kick these habits for good.

While there is no tried-and-true method for kicking a bad habit, there are certain approaches and techniques that are more effective than others. Here are a few tips to help with this difficult but important task which can leave you living a healthier life.

Understand it’s not going to be pleasant.

The biggest hurdle to overcome when kicking a bad habit is the mental aspect. This cannot be underestimated and it’s important you work to address it from the beginning. Everything in you is going to be telling you that you want to keep this habit. If you could walk away from it easily it wouldn’t be a habit. You need to separate yourself from it and that’s going to take a fight. You’re not going to enjoy the process and it’s important to prepare yourself for that fact as it will help keep you moving forward even as it gets harder.

Don’t expect a quick fix.

The old saying that “If it seems too good to be true then it probably is” certainly applies to this situation. There will be no shortcuts to kicking your bad habit – not if you want it gone for good. Some people go for the “cold turkey” method of quitting all up front and trying to beat back those cravings. It’s true that this works for some, but for many it’s a sort term victory and leads you right back to your old ways. If you want it done right the first time you have to be willing to put in the time and effort.

Set out your goals.

As with any undertaking like this, setting goals for yourself can help with the process. Just saying you want to quit drinking soda is a good end goal, but how are you expecting to get there? These things are more effective when done in steps. If you have a deadline you’re giving yourself, be realistic about it. This isn’t something that can be rushed and still be a success. You can take it slow, making weekly goals for yourself then build on those goals more and more. This is a great way to chart your progress and keep you from letting yourself slip.

Identify your triggers.

Whatever your habit might be, it’s likely that you have a few triggers associated with it that need to be addressed. Triggers are those elements that have been so associated with your habit for so long that they cause you to crave or revert to that habit. For a lot of smokers, alcohol is a trigger. You might associate junk food with certain activities. However, it’s also possible that you’re unaware of your own triggers. You’ll need to identify them yourself. Think of when your cravings are the most intense and what may have brought on those feelings. Once you know what the triggers are you can figure out how best to address them.

Replace it with good habits.

Sometimes habits are so hard to kick because they feel so routine. Certain times of day or certain activities just make you feel like you should be indulging in your bad habit. Instead of trying to break that routine, use it to your advantage by replacing it with a healthy habit. Every time you crave a soda, have a glass of water. Every time you want a smoke, go for a walk. No, this isn’t going to be as satisfying at first, but in time, these habits will become part of your routine and will push your bad habits out.

Be rigid but don’t be too hard on yourself.

Discipline is very important when trying to kick a bad habit. If you are not pushing yourself enough then what’s to stop you from reverting back to the habit whenever you feel like it? You need to hold yourself accountable in seeing this through. Having said that, you will have setbacks. Everyone slips now and then. This shouldn’t be ignored but if you are too hard on yourself these setbacks can hurt your motivation just as much as going too soft can. Learn from your struggles and move forward smarter about what is needed to succeed.

For more Health & Wellness content and everything else in the world of boomers, sign up with BoomersPlus for FREE. Go to www.boomersplus.com or email us at info@boomersplus.com to learn more.

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7 Reasons You Should Travel Somewhere New

Every trip you take is its own little adventure. Whether you’re visiting friends, sitting on the beach, or trekking across new lands, you’re making memories by putting yourself in new experiences. You probably have a favourite travel destination that you would return to again and again, but you can also add to your adventure by exploring brand new places around the world. There are so many countries and cultures you’ve yet to experience so why not check a few off your list. Here are just some of the reasons why you should take your next trip somewhere new.

Try new things.

Whether it’s food, activities or customs, when you travel to new places you are constantly being given the opportunity to try new things. Those opportunities should be taken more often. We might get the occasional opportunity in our daily lives, but visiting a new place is all about throwing away the mundane and mixing things up. You’ll never know how much you love something until you try it for the first time. You might actually leave having learned a good deal about yourself.

It’s a confidence booster.

Even if you’re going for a relaxing vacation, visiting somewhere you’ve never been is a bold step. You could easily travel somewhere familiar but instead you’re taking a chance and embracing the unknown. Now, there are certainly bigger risks to take but giving yourself that experience is a great way to show yourself you can handle new things. The more new experiences you take on, the more confident you’ll be in facing new challenges.

Improve your social skills.

We’ve talked about how rewarding it can be to meet new people on your travels. Travelling to new places not only gives you the opportunity to make friends all over the world, but also pushes you to be social in a way you might not be used to. Strike up conversations with locals, ask questions and be friendly. Once you go home, you might find it much easier to socialize having experienced it in this way.

Get a culture shock.

The comforts of home can feel pretty great when you need them, but every now and then it’s nice to allow yourself to be completely out of your element. There are so many cultures all around the world that are so different from your own. To move from the familiar to the unfamiliar in such a big way is something everyone should experience. It can expose some profound things to you and show you ways of life you never knew about before. It’s not an exaggeration to say it can be a life-changing experience.

Learn about new places and people.

Of course, it’s not just about the experience of being a stranger in a new culture. There is also the privilege of being able to learn about a new place. Regardless of where you’re travelling to, if you keep an open mind and a desire to explore, there’s no doubt you’ll be leaving knowing more about a place than you did before. You could learn more about the world around you just by visiting and absorbing the experience.

Embrace your adventurous side.

We can get caught up playing it safe and sticking to what we know, forgetting how much fun it can be to try new things. Going somewhere new might not seem like a big step, but you are placing yourself in a situation where you must be willing to be adventurous and move outside your comfort zone, even if it is just a little. Putting yourself in this position reminds you that new things are good, not as intimidating as they seem, and it also gives you courage to embrace that adventurous side more often.

Have stories to tell.

Think about when you get together with loved ones, or even when you meet new people. How do you communicate with each other? Telling stories is such a natural way of communicating and telling our own stories give people an idea of who we are and the life we’ve lived. It’s how people will remember us. Experiences like this, that not everyone has been through are important to share. It’s not about bragging where you’ve been but sharing your stories. You may even inspire someone else to seek out the same, which is about the best thing you can do for a person.

For more travel content and everything else in the world of boomers, sign up with BoomersPlus for FREE. Go to www.boomersplus.com or email us at info@boomersplus.com to learn more. 

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Translating Skills Into A New Career

For many boomers, this stage in their career is one of change. Retirement is obviously a big example of this, though it is not for everyone. There’s a lot of talk about boomers staying in the workforce longer, but a growing story has been that of the second-act career. In this stage of their professional life, a lot of boomers want to keep working but want something new as well. This leads them to pursue new career paths.

Starting a new career like this is certainly intimidating. Despite years of experience, employers are not always looking for boomer candidates. You have to be able to present yourself as valuable and capable within this new position. That can be difficult. How can you make it clear that you are the right person for the job? If you see a career change on the horizon, consider this and take the following approaches to ensure your transition is as successful as it can be.

Make a skills inventory.

One early approach you can take is to consider the skills you already have at your disposal. No doubt you’ve acquired a lot of valuable skills over your long career. Make an inventory of them for your own reference. Don’t just think about the skills that might be useful in the new position – consider all of them. Start with the most valuable skills, think about the first skills you learned on the job, skills you need to improve on, soft skills that are useful in any type of work. Then start thinking of the skills necessary for the new position. Rank each skill in terms of proficiency and value to the position. Once completed, this will act as a great starting point to determine where your current skill set stands.

Consider your strongest assets.

Selling yourself to a new job means demonstrating your value. Out of all those many skills you’ve acquired throughout your professional life, there are some that will standout as your strongest skills. What are the skills that place you above the other candidates and make you a value? Identifying these skills is not always easy. This type of self-reflection can be difficult for some people, but it’s important to be able to identify your strengths in this way so you can effectively highlight them. If your strongest skills don’t translate, consider how they can be leveraged as an asset. Having a keen understanding of your own skills means you can understand how to sell yourself to a new position.

Study the job thoroughly.

Now that you have a sense of what you are bringing to the table, it’s time to look at what else you need to be bringing. This is when you do a deep dive into your new position and learn everything you can about it. As with any new job, you should know the job description inside and out. Read through every line of it to get the best understanding of everything they are looking for. What skills are they highlighting and which ones do you possess? This is where you must identify those skills you need to improve on and certainly which ones you need to add to your repertoire. I’ve never heard of a business trying to trick candidates with a job description. For the most part, they are telling you in plain English what is needed and expected for the job. It’s up to you to ensure you meet those standards.

Talk to someone in the industry.

Entering a new area without prior experience leaves a lot of uncertainty. You know your skills, you know what the job is, but there’s still a lot about it you won’t know until you actually start working. The closest you can come to gaining this experience ahead of time is by learning from someone else’s experience. Find someone in the industry, or better yet, someone who has performed the same job. Pick their brain for details, challenges and advice. Discuss what skills are best put to use in the position and ask them about their own experience within the position. Do your own research into the industry as well. Stay up-to-date with new skills and where things are headed. Second-hand experience is the next best thing to first-hand experience.

If you’re looking to get back in the professional work, sign up for FREE with BoomersPlus. We help match experienced professionals with job opportunities that fit your skills. To learn more, visit our website at https://www.boomersplus.com/ or email us at info@boomersplus.com.