Sunday Habits to Prepare for the Week Ahead

The Sunday Scaries is a common term to describe that feeling we all get late on a Sunday afternoon. The weekend is already over and it’s time to go back to work! There are some strategic things you can do on a Sunday to prepare for the week ahead.

Meal Prep

Oftentimes, because we fail to meal prep, we end up eating whatever we have at the office or spending money on take-out food. To negate this problem altogether, prep your meals on Sunday. Prepping your meals for the week give you one less thing to think about in the morning and during the day. Your mornings will be much more stress-free as well because there is one less thing for you to worry about. Perhaps the best part of meal prepping is that you get to take the time to choose healthy foods that you want to support and sustain you throughout your work week. By purposely choosing healthy foods packed with energy and protein, you are setting yourself up for success that week.

Take Time for Yourself

With the weekend coming to a close and a fresh week upon you, Sunday is the perfect time to spend time on self-care. The best part about self-care is that it is totally up to you how you decide to give yourself that care. Some people find relaxation through yoga, while others find it on the golf course. The time that you spend with yourself with help to calm you and center you for the week ahead.

Follow up on Commitments

Throughout the week, you have likely made commitments that you have forgotten about when Sunday rolls around. Sunday nights often allow us the undivided time to respond to emails and fulfill our commitments. When you are able the mark these items as “done” on your checklist, you’ll have less to worry about as you start out the week.

Reflect on What You’ve Already Accomplished

Before you tackle your Sunday, take the time to reflect on what you’ve already accomplished in the previous week. This helps you to prioritize what needs to be done this week, but it serves a bigger purpose. When you write out everything you’ve already achieved, you’ll see just how productive you can be. This will give you motivation as you head into the new week.

Sunday nights don’t have to scary. Rather than dreading the week ahead, take proactive steps to ensure it’s a good week! You can do this by meal prepping, taking time for self-care, following up on previous commitments and reflecting on achievements.

Body Language Tips for Leaders

As a leader, you not only have to convey confidence through your words and actions, but also your body language. Those you lead are constantly looking to your for cues and it is part of your job to have strong body language. What are some tips that you maybe have not heard of before that convey confidence? Read on to find out!

Keep Your Hands Open

This is a body language tip you may not have heard of before. Closing your fists or clenching your hands not only increases the tension in your body, but also the tension in the way you present yourself to others. In addition, you want to keep your hands away from your face. You may think that’s a strange tip, but many adults take their hands to their faces, especially during meetings. This conveys boredom and extreme disinterest. If you are ever unsure of what to do with your hands, rest them in your lap if seated and hang them by your side if standing.

Widen Your Stance

As a leader, you want to project when you speak. In order to do this, stand with a wide stance when addressing a group or during a meeting. Not only does this help to amplify your voice, it portrays confidence. When you stand with your feet solidly planted and equal weight in both feet, you create a big, broad stance of a true leader.

Master your Eye Contact

Eye contact is important for everyone to use in communication. It not only helps you establish rapport with the interlocutor, but it also helps you understand what they are thinking in certain situations. You have to find a happy medium between too much and too little eye contact, though. If your employees constantly find your staring at them, they will likely be intimidated. If you never make direct eye contact at all, they will feel disconnected from you and like you don’t care.

There are plenty of tips out there about the best body language. While there are some that will always hold true, there are also some unique body language tips for leaders. By keeping your hands open when you speak, both you and those you are speaking to will relax. When you stand with a wide stance, you will project your voice and convey confidence. Lastly, when you master the art of your eye contact, you will have the body language of a great leader!

How to Make Interviewers See you as the Right Fit

Are you interviewing for a new job? Maybe you’re interviewing internally for a different position. Either way, your job is to make the people interviewing you see you as the perfect fit for the job. How do you do this? Follow these tips to make interviewers see you as the right fit!

Understand Their Pain and How to Solve it

A Good job candidate understand that the company is currently going through some kind of pain and needs it addressed. When you can understand the business situation by doing research ahead of time and making an educated guess, then you will appear to be the right fit for the organization. Why? Because you actually understand what it is they need. If you can discuss what you can do in order to help them fulfill this business need of theirs and resolve this pain, that’s going to bring you that much closer to landing the job.

Show the Right Demeanor

Imagine a hiring manager has to select between two candidates. Candidate A has all of the right skills but they didn’t smile much during the interview and were a bit standoffish. Candidate B was not as strong as Candidate A, however, they were personable, engaging and confident. A good hiring manager will hire Candidate B. They have slightly less skills but their personality wins them over. You want to be friendly, confident and very engaging.

Tell Stories

This ties directly into being engaging in your demeanor. To be engaging means you know how to tell a good story. If a candidate is able to walk an interviewer through their background and accomplishments in an interesting way, this will invite them into your world in a positive way. Interviewers will spend more attention on you and for longer periods of time. This will help you to see them as “the right fit.”

Sell Yourself

An interview is a sales presentation. If you’re not selling yourself to the interviewer, then you’re not doing a good enough job of selling yourself to the company and the interviewer. As a result. You’re not going to be seen as the perfect fit for the job. You have to sell yourself. This means you must articulate why you are the right fit for them.

How to Make a Good First Impression on the Job

Have you just taken on a new job, or a new department and you really want to make a strong and positive impression on the job right from the start? The following tips will help you to get into the right mindset to make a positive first impression.

When you start a new job, you need to be polite, friendly and courteous. Beyond all the typical formalities, there are a few key things that you need to be aware of and you need to start to implement if you truly want to thrive in this new position.

Spread your Positive Energy

What does that mean? Get to know the people that you work with, but also get to know the people on your floor and in your department, even if they don’t introduce themselves to you first. IF you see someone working in your company that you haven’t yet introduced yourself, make the effort. Shake their hand and tell them who you are and what you do and ask about them!

This integrates you into the team and the community at the company. You will no longer just be the “new person.”

Figure out the Lay of the Land

Make sure that you ask the people that you meet through your initial introductions what they do at the company. This will be very helpful for you as you continue to work there. IF you know that there’s a certain item you’re going to need or a resource to refer to, because you’ve already made that initial introduction and connection with the right people, you’re going to know who to reach out to when you have a particular question. This will help you as you continue in your role at the company.

Ask Good Questions

This is something that people often don’t think of. If you know how to ask good, smart, questions, people will remember you. This is a question where you are showing genuine curiosity about why something is being done the way that it is, just so that you can understand it better for yourself. If your boss is explaining a new task to you, you want to sit aside and see if you fully understand the process and why it is being done the way it is.

Everyone yearns to make a great impression on the job, but not everyone achieves it. Instead of just winging it and hoping to make a good impression, follow the tips above.

Tips for Improving Productivity in 2019

Are you looking for ways to increase your productivity in 2019? You can download every app there is but unless you commit yourself to increased productivity, you won’t see results. Follow these methods for increased productivity:

Use Your Calendar

Many of us start the new year with a calendar and promise ourselves that this year will be different. This year, we will use the calendar. Events will be marked and checked off when completed. Unfortunately, just like a New Year’s diet, this rarely ever happens. Instead, try working off a virtual calendar such as Google Calendar. You can set events, meetings, important reminders and everything you need right on your calendar. You can even set alarms to go off an hour before each event is set to occur. In today’s digital age, a digital calendar is the way to go.

Get Quality Sleep

In 2019, make it a goal of yours to get quality sleep, consistently. Why? Sleep deprivation costs U.S. companies hundreds of billions of dollars every year. When employees aren’t well rested, they cannot produce results. As people, we have very busy lives and we need sleep to recover from our days. It is all too easy to push back your bedtime in order to stay awake and catch a late night tv show. While this feels good in the moment, you will regret it in the morning. The benefits of a good night’s sleep far out way to benefits of watching a tv show. With a good night’s rest, you will experience more focus, more concentration and feel better all around the next day!

Time Block Your Days

Time blocking is a technique used by many people to plan out their day. Take the amount of time you have in the day and map out how you plan to use it. For example, you may block off 2 hours for meetings, 2 hours for a big project, one hour for emails, etc. When you block your time, it is much easier to maintain productivity.


Everyone is looking to improve their productivity in the office and out of it. By using your calendar, getting consistent, quality sleep and using the technique of time blocking, you will instantly see an improvement in your productivity levels.


Leadership Skills that Require Zero Talent

When you gain a leadership role, you may believe that you need to gain additional skills in order to be the best at the position. In reality, there are innumerable traits of a good leader that require zero talent or work at all:

Do what You Say You Will

The best leaders say what they will do and then do what they say. Whether it’s a large project or a small issue, if you don’t do what you said you would, it erodes your credibility, builds distrust, and stifles momentum. Once you lose that trust with your employees it it close to impossible to get it back. What are some ways to follow through with your word? Make note of something the moment someone asks you to do it. This will eliminate the possibility of forgetting it completely. In addition, try to take action as quickly as possible when it comes to doing something that someone has asked of you. For example, if your employee requests a day off, instead of telling yourself that you’ll get to it later, go in and approve or deny the request as soon as you see it in your inbox. This is showing your employees that their needs are important to you and you will do what you said you would do.

Set a Good Example

It takes no talent to set a good example. Simply make it a goal of yours to always set the best possible example. That can show up in many different forms including: always showing up early or on time, following through with your word, acting and dressing professionally and maintaining a positive attitude. These are soft skills that go a long way when someone is forming their impression of you. Make your presence around the office one that others can emulate.

Listen with Intention

Intentional listening is something that is rare these days. Be different! Practice intentional listening instead. How does that look? When you listen with intention, you maintain eye contact, you don’t try to interject and you actually hear what the other person is saying. This can happen in daily conversation or in high level meetings. When you become known as an intentional listener, more people will seek you out. It is a rare trait these days but a very valued one.

Leaders have a lot on their plate all of the time. Instead of focusing on what you need to learn, focus on the skills you already have that require zero talent. Following through with your word, setting a positive example and listening with intention are all skills that require zero talent yet yield amazing returns.

Signs Your Computer Has Been Infected by Malware

What are some signs that your computer has been infected by malware? Some people believe that computer viruses are a thing of the past, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. The following are signs that your computer has been infected by malware and what you can do to help.

Outgoing Emails

One of the ways these viruses work is through spreading by email. If you have seen some emails in your outbox that you know you did not send, that is one clear sign of malware. Along those same lines, if you receive an email that looks suspicious, do not open it.

More Advertisements Than Usual

We are all used to seeing advertisements throughout our daily computer usage. However, if you begin seeing more than normal or advertisements occurring while you’re offline, your computer likely has a virus. They are often times for an antivirus software, which is another telltale sign of a virus.

You Get Locked Out of Your Computer

This is a specific type of virus called ransomware. Ransomware is attempting to extort money from victims by freezing up their computers and then demanding a payment to restore access. This is an extremely recognizable form of malware. You will see messages alerting you that your computer is locked or frozen until you follow the link. Whatever you do, do not click on the link. The best way to combat ransomware is by frequently updating your computer as well as backing up files as much as possible.

Your System Tools Are Disabled

If you are a savvy user, you may suspect when you are being attacked by malware. Most of these users then launch their Task Manager in order to find the source of the problem. This is when they find out for sure they are being attacked. If you open those applications and receive a message saying that your options have been disabled, you most likely have been attacked my malware.

Do you suspect your computer has been infected by malware? If it is exhibiting any of the above behaviors, it most likely has. If you see outgoing emails that weren’t sent by you, if you are receiving more pop up advertisements than usual, getting locked out of your computer or your system tools are disabled, you are also most likely the victim of malware. Stay tuned for next month’s blog where I offer tips for handling a malware attack.


What People Should Know about Cyber Security in 2018

Cyber security is an issue that affects most of us in our daily lives, both at work and at home. It’s important for all modern day computer users to educate themselves about cyber security, regardless of their industry, since home computers are just as susceptible to cyber crimes as those at work. In addition to smartphones and home computers, the creation of the Internet of Things (IoT) has opened up a whole new series of challenges when it comes to protecting your data. In this day and age, threats can literally come from anywhere in the world and they are rarely traceable, so being proactive is key.

In addition to standard viruses, people now have to worry about identity theft and having their shopping habits and personal details stolen for data mining and marketing purposes. With the advent of blockchain technology and online currencies like bitcoin, the dangers of theft and manipulation is a very real financial concern. Today’s electronic voting machines are also connected to the internet, joining them to the IoT. This means diligent security measures must be taken seriously, now more than ever before.

A smart general rule of thumb, whether at home or in the office, is to never click on any links or attachments in emails or text messages that seem suspicious, even if they appear to be from a known sender. In addition, installing legitimate antivirus and malware software is a necessity, since these programs will automatically update themselves with new database definitions in order to help fight against the never ending stream of potential risks.

In addition to having round-the-clock online protection, if you are a business owner you  should also employ additional steps to protect yourself from outside threats. One way of doing this is through transparency and communication. Sharing your company’s security policies with your clients will reassure them that their data will be safe, and will also benefit you in the long run if any issues arise. Moreover, you should instruct your legal department to include rigid security clauses in all merchant agreements so that all parties fully understand the terms. With respect to your employees, you should provide adequate security training and ongoing support at all times to people within each level of your company, from sales to customer service. In addition to ensuring your IT department writes secure code, you should also ensure that developers and testers all have the latest security updates installed on their computers, as well as automatic settings to update existing safety protocols.


Tips for Improving Mental Health in the Workplace

Mental health issues are prevalent in every corner of society. From streets to CEO office’s, no one is immune to mental health struggles. That is just one of the reasons leaders must understand how to recognize and work with employees who are struggling with mental health related illnesses. The following are some tips for improving mental health across your workplace.


Employers today have the option to provide more flexibility than ever before in the workplace. Employees can work from home, can work altered hours, etc. Leaders and employers who recognize the importance of flexibility will not only attract top level talent, they will also have healthier employees who feel the freedom to meet personal and professional needs without pitting one against the other. Flexibility is crucial to positive mental health because it provides employees with some ease when necessary. If someone is struggling with a mental health issue and working from home provides comfort and less anxiety, employers have the ability to make that happen. In 2018, leaders and employers must be flexible on many levels to ensure the mental health of their employees.


Psychological safety is consistently listed as an employee’s most valued factor when it comes to a job. When people feel safe and trusted, they are much more willing to open up on personal and professional levels. As a leader in your company, one thing you must invest in is the trust of your employees. Employees who feel trusted are much more likely to come forward when experiencing mental health issues. Not only that, trusted employees will complete better work and be more willing to express their ideas to other team members. This leads to collaboration, where the best ideas are born. Letting your employees know that you trust them results not only in better overall mental health, but also improved results. It’s a win-win situation when you trust your employees and they know it.

As we enter 2019, more and more of us recognize the importance of mental health wellness in the workplace. Unfortunately there are not nearly enough resources for employers to help their employees deal with these issues. Luckily, providing flexibility to your employees as well as letting them know how much you trust them are two important things you can do on your own. The healthier your employees are, the healthier your company is.

Police and Addiction

According to an article in Police Chief magazine, the stressors that officers are exposed to in their everyday jobs “surpass the typical range of emotions” most people experience. The range of cases an officer handles ranges from the banal to the hair-raising and appalling.  In a single shift, a police officer may have a run in with a drug addict, comfort a victim of domestic abuse and be involved in high speed chase. This leads to the need for a coping mechanism. One out of four police officers on the street has an alcohol or drug abuse issue.

Officers and Substance Abuse

When a police officer becomes so stressed by the job that they turn to drugs and/or alcohol to cope, they begin a scary cycle of abuse. They are not dealing with the trauma itself but rather numbing it with substances. This boosts the production of chemical signals of pleasure, which can make an officer feel at ease. What are the factors that cause this to occur? Working hours and a very insular culture are two of the largest contributing factors.

Working Hours

Officers often work rotating shifts as well as put in a good amount of overtime hours. This leads to non traditional sleeping patterns, time spent away from family and friends and oftentimes a feeling of isolation. While these hours and schedule are part of the role, there are better ways for officers to cope than by turning to drugs or alcohol.

If an officer feels as though they are really not coping well with their schedule and turning to drugs or alcohol as a result, it would behoove them to take a leave of absence. Robin Kroll was quoted in The Police Chief saying: “When officers struggle with addiction, it is critical that they take time away from the job. Medical leave allows officers to fully concentrate on recovery, which includes gaining insight to the root of their addiction.”

Insular Culture

Police officers work in an insular culture. This culture is driven by the deep-seated belief that no one outside the field can understand the pressures they face on a daily basis. This leads to cops primarily fraternizing with other police officers, and often this takes place at a local bar.

As much as police officers and first responders help their community, there needs to be more support for them as they deal with the effects of their jobs. Police officers are humans too who need to process their emotions and deal with stressors of the job in healthy ways.