Organic Blueprints Blog

Carroll is a life coach in Richmond VA. You can find articles about life coaching, career coaching, business coaching and ADD coaching here. Please feel free to read about these as well as young adult and executive coaching.

What in the World is Life Coaching, Will it Make Me Feel Better?

What is life Coaching?

Well, Coaching has been around for a long time. It has been the way athletic success comes to the players. I coach business, life, career, students, and ADHD. The basic information (process) is exactly the same thing. Sounds ridiculous, but it is strategy, tactics, practice and play. So first we have to get to know you, you are the most important person in this process. Then we roll into what do we have to do to accomplish the goal that you gave me when we talked.

I have had 4 coaches in my life and for me the structure of it gave me an opportunity to circle back around and check to see if I was headed in the right direction. See if the goals I had set in front of myself going to be achievable or did they need to be broken down in a different format. When you work with a coach it is structure, accountability, strategy, and then you go out and test your theory to see if in the real world it works.

What is your approach to Coaching like?

Thank you for asking, I am a person that looks at from you first and what you are trying to accomplish second. Meaning we look at three profiles to figure out your abilities, your interests, and how you work. Whether a person is looking for a career or trying to figure out how to manage their company if we go out and try to use someone else’s personality, someone else’s strength it is a real reach for people. So it is much easier to figure out who you are and get you in a “Lane” for your future. A perfect example is: If you are head of operations and you need an assistant you might want to consider your personality first. If you are strict, you might want to choose someone that is more negotiable and if you are more charismatic and flexible you might want to choose someone that is stricter to hold the group more accountable.

Any one whether they are running a company or they are in the right job can figure out what their personality is so they can surround themselves with the right people to augment what they want to accomplish and that is in all worlds. That is home, that is volunteer work, or jobs whether you are an individual contributor or whether you are a manager.

Thank you for joining us, we will be doing more videos and I look forward to having you.

What Exactly is Career Coaching, Will it Help Me Professionally?

What exactly does Career Coaching look like?

We are made up of ourselves (talents, interests and Skills) and Career Coaching looks like figuring out those things out first and then figuring out how to move into a job that is basically those things. Most people feel like it is impossible; neither thing is impossible, often when you make a career move you would move closer to the things you want.

I will give you a personal example. I left management and took a contract and contracted 4.5 years as a recruiter. Then opened this business. That happens to people all the time. Career pathing is not a short-term process. It is finding the direction, broadening how you think about it and then moving toward it. Part of how we look at it is “What % of your job do you dislike?” So if you dislike 70% of your job you may be very uncomfortable in the situation. If you can make the next move and reduce the activities that you don’t like to 50% of the job and then the ultimate goal is to continue to reduce the % of your job that you dislike. The goal is to have a job that only includes dislikes to 20% to 30% of the job.

It sounds like a dream but people do it all the time. You have to know where you are going. Your next job might be 30% better and at the same time career coaching includes improving in your current job. Many people make poor decisions when they have disengaged from their current job because they feel guilty for not producing their best work.

So the first thing I ask people to do is to recommit to the job that they are in so we can look at that job to see the next move. It proves that you really don’t like the job or when you reorganize your job and manage your career in the situation you are already in lots of people stay or push out their move to accomplish 3 or 4 more goals in their current job. My coach actually did that once when I said that I was going to make a move. She felt that I needed to train at another national conference before I moved to another job. You need to stay another year. Lot’s of times that happens to people: sometimes it is time to go, sometimes it is staying another year and at times it is waiting 5 years.

Thank you for joining us, we will be doing more videos and I look forward to having you.

A Guide to Creating Internal Structure Without an Office Environment


In a situation like this where you are stuck at home without office structure to guide you. What are tips for creating an internal structure that you can live your life around?

The reality is the most successful structure that I see is external structure meaning can we put in place some more deadlines. If we were living a more normal life we would invite someone over for dinner and we would know we would clean our house before they came. Or we would plan a trip and all of our paper work would be done before we walk out the door. All of those things are gone now, I still think some of the keys to structure are body doubling and either blocking time or rotating thru projects.


I will explain. In the situation we are in today we could actually body double and block 4 hours to get something done and just be there to get things done. I hire body doubles sometimes and they might actually be studying the other room but someone is in the house and that makes me settle down and get the work done. So one option is to make an agreement with friends and they are like a body double. The Second one is to have a group of friends that you need to report back to regarding what you are trying to accomplish. The Third one is to have a plan for some kind of meet up for getting some exercise so the work needs to be done before you meet. (Another option with boring things is to shift between exercise and the activities that are not interesting.


About getting things done, I have two ways I encourage people to accomplish the activity at hand. I have to block big blocks of time. If you ask me to do something that is 40 minutes every day I really cannot do it that way. I can block a half of a day on one day and get it all done. Even when people what to study something or learn something that they have not been exposed to before I tell them to block the time once a week and then they will at least get started on the project.

Years ago I would do the boring things, 4 different things at a time. That was housework, expense reports, cooking and something that had to be turned in but was not creative. And what I would do is flip from one thing to another every 15 minutes. So today we would have multiple monitors and the reason for flipping was so my brain could think about boring task I had to do next and I could get it done much more quickly with the variety. That is another option, I also set a deadline for getting 4 or 5 of those things done in 2.5 hours. I could meet the deadline because there was a little bit of competitiveness in it.

Hope this helps, we will be doing other subjects as we move along on a regular basis. Hope you will join us again.

A Couple of Key Tips on the Interview Prep.

This is what I like to do for people preparing for an interview.  

Prepare 16 hours:  First they are shocked when I ask them to prepare for 16 hours for an interview.  I want them to know the people that they are going to be with, I want them to know their skills and their experience cold and I want them to know the company and the industry.  If you have all the information then you will be very calm.  

Research and practice:  Reviewing and answering behavioral questions, looking at the personalities of those who will be in the interview with you.  Even if you have to join linked In so you can see all of their profiles and review all the PR and documentation about the company and the industry.  Check out Glassdoor, Linkedin, Press, etc.  

What makes you uncomfortable in an interview:  Being clear about the things you are not comfortable with, that is one of the key subjects.  So people have things happen to them along the way in their career, maybe they were unemployed for 4 months and they think that it is a huge gap.  If you can talk about it and feel comfortable with what you are telling so it becomes about you and your presentation.  If something has happened you are going to go straight out with some information but not a lot unless it is asked for by the interviewer because you don’t want that experience to be the focus of the interview.  

Thank you for joining us, we will be doing more videos and I look forward to having you.

Anxiety Stops Me From Achieving My Goals

I struggle with starting projects because the I am afraid that I am not doing it right or it is not going to work out.

Lots of people feel that way. American Management Association recently released an article that talked about entrepreneurs. 35 % of the entrepreneurs are dyslexic in the US and about 20% of the entrepreneurs in the UK. https://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/05/business/worldbusiness/05iht-dyslexia.4.8602036.html

Maybe the UK does not tell you how to do things; in our corporate structure policies and procedures are so tightly laid out that if you can accomplish the task a different way and you have found another way to do it, you may not be allowed to. That means the person that has dyslexia is going to leave the company and start their own business and do it their way.

Now you are working remotely, you might actually be able to try some ways of doing things differently than you have done before. It would be a chance to see what it is like if you are not in a system where people are managing you so tightly.

For ADHD people with distractibility. Distractibility in the DSM description was argued about in the original name for ADHD. Some of the Doctors wanted to call it Attention Inconsistency. I actually think it should have been Inconsistency because of ADHD people like me; one day I can write the book and the next day I can barely find the page or one day I can run the company and the next day I don’t seem to be able to find my way to the bathroom. The Neuro-Psychologist that tested me said “ No one can figure out whether you are lucky or smart because the inconsistency is so obvious.”

Another thing I encourage people to do is to do it wrong the first time and count on starting it over. Get an hour into a project and see if it is working. If it is working, that’s great. If it is not working throw it away and start again. Go ahead and start then you can see whether you are accomplishing the goal. I always count on the first 1.5 hours being a throw away for me. I don’t have as difficult a time as some people do getting started. If I get started and it is a throw away then I am on to the right answer. Sometimes that is an easier way to accomplish thing; being perfect is not in the game for most humans so I would encourage you to stop thinking that you can actually be perfect. I want you to be able to accomplish the goal. I encourage you to try different ways of doing things and not to feel like you have to do it the perfect way when you get started. I would like to see everyone find their own way of accomplishing things, it is a lot easier.

I hope this helped, we will be doing other subjects as we move along on a regular basis. I look forward to seeing you again.

How to accomplish all the things you want

Wow, sitting in the doctor’s office with my 92-year-old Dad has changed what I ask my clients to consider. I ask that they look ahead 30 years and create a plan, working backwards using 10 year increments. Everyone asks what are you going to do in 5 years and there is always a pat answer for that, but we disregard the changes that go on in life. What stage will your life be in 10 years from now: family, work, career and personal development and lifestyle.

Even working through this with experienced clients, no one ever believes they are going to reach 80 or 90. What would it be like to life the fullest life you can imagine? One of the most important parts of this planning is you (your skills and loves). Another part is thinking about lives of those around you: ages of children, stage of your careers, etc. Looking at things this way changes your sense of urgency about parts of your life and identifying your real priorities.

  1. Grab a notebook or open a document and look at your life in 10 year increments for the next 30 years.
  2. Ask yourself what you will have done over the previous 10 years. Often people tell me that they want to learn an instrument, double the size of their business, reduce stress, spend more time with family, have more friends, make a job change, etc.
  3. Ask yourself (and your partner or spouse) questions like:
    • Where do I/we want to live?
    • How old will my/our children be?
    • How old will I/we be at the juncture of those decades?
    • What life style do I/we want?
  4. Document the activities and events that are going to occur one decade at a time. This will show you how much you want to accomplish.
  5. Take a step back and sleep on it for a couple of weeks to see if you have included all of your goals for each decade.
  6. Your projections and goals might include subjects like family life, hobbies, profession, community, activities, etc.

If you would like to continue the conversation and design your ideal life, text or call 8048695403. Or request a consultation https://www.organicblueprints.com/contact-us/

Thank you for reading this and enjoy your day!

Design Your Life

Design Your Life: Getting Intentional

 

Creating changes so that you’re living your most authentic life.

Intentionally Designing Your Life

As we approach the end of February and head into March, getting further away from the New Year’s resolutions, now is a great time to reflect on personal, professional, and business goals, ensuring that you are remaining intentional about life choices and where you place your time and energy. Are you living the life you want? Is your family living a life that reflects your values and priorities? And if you want to make changes, how do you get from point A to point B? Get intentional and implement changes to design your life.

Throw Out Your Preconceived Notions!

In business, career, and life coaching, you are often asked to define your ideal day. What does your ideal life looks like? Often times answering these questions can mean throwing out preconceived notions of what your life “should” look like and digging deep to gain clarity about what you truly want. Designing your life is about identifying your values and priorities.

Doing this type of honest reflective work can mean tweaking every day habits or developing new behaviors and mindsets. Designing your life and gaining clarity on what you truly want can mean identifying steps to implement major changes like switching careers, moving to a new city, or restructuring your business. These changes may be personal changes that you implement on a individual level or it could involve implementing changes with your business partner, spouse, or family.

Designing your life is ultimately identifying what your best life looks like, what you value, and then making sure your choices lead you towards that life.

If you’re interested in working with me to guide you through designing your ideal life, text or call 804-869-5403  or request a consultation. I offer mapping and strategy sessions to individuals and couples who are looking to gain clarity and design their lives. I also offer business coaching, executive coaching, career coaching, and life coaching. As your intuitive guide, creative inquirer, and thought clarifier, I’m the coach most likely to “get you.” Fast.
Your referrals are always welcome.

Decision Making Strategies

Elon Musk. Bill Gates. Warren Buffet. What do these men and others like them have in common? Besides being very wealthy and brilliant businessmen, they all use strategies that help them make decisions and minimize risk. I don’t suggest that you try to design the next rocket or electric car, but I do have several suggestions for strategies that can help you make decisions in your daily life.

Make the most significant decisions early in the day when you have the energy, mental stamina and focus.

These are the decisions you subconsciously avoid. If you do not take the time to look at the decisions in the morning when your willpower is the strongest, you may not make them at all. As Mark Twain famously said, Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.”

Avoid allowing small nagging choices to surreptitiously drain your mental stamina.

For instance, breakfast, lunch or dinner choices and other trivial decisions that we make every day take away most of our time. Delegate these decisions or make them less important and time-consuming. Once these decisions are taken care of, you will discover that your reservoir of making great decisions will last longer throughout the day.

Widen your information base when faced with a critical decision.

Things get easier when you ask the right questions. Use all resources at your disposal to get more information — friends, the Internet, experts in your field, etc.

Research your presumptions.

You live in a world of information-overload. Go online or talk to people around you to see what worked for them in similar situations.

Acquire some distance to gain perspective.

It is the oldest trick out there – detach yourself from the emotions of the moment.  A great time to put it on the back burner is night and a wonderful time to think about the decisions or questions is first thing in the morning before anyone else is up!  Clarity will come!

Test, Test, Test.  

If you are making involved life or business changing decisions, be sure to test them.  For example, if you are thinking of going with a new technology, spend several days working with it on a site that already uses it (if you pay them for that kind of time, it may save you many thousands of dollars).  Or if you are considering living in the country, rent a place and stay for two months.  It will save you lots of mistakes.  Using this over and over in both your business and personal life is a way to save time and money. Always prepare to be wrong. You have made mistakes (and you will continue to make mistakes). That is the only way to gain perspective.

Once you begin to use one or more of these strategies for better decision making and need help, please call me <<804-288-0099>> or email me <<carroll.schuller@organicblueprints.com>>. I’ll be glad to work with you for a more effective plan to accomplish your dreams or next step.  It may not be the next SpaceX, but we can try to get you heading in your next best direction.

Great Careers Are Grown

Building a great career goes beyond earning seven digits a month or achieving job satisfaction. A great career is not limited to specific industries or businesses. It is a product of various elements, including your satisfaction, success and motivation, fulfillment of needs and achieving of your dreams.

So, what creates a great career for someone? It’s passion! Larry Smith, economics professor at the University of Waterloo, compiled his 35-years of career counseling in a 15-minute TED Talk session, which was based on the idea of being passionate about your job. According to Professor Smith, passion is the driving force behind building great careers and the backbone of your inspiration, motivation and innovation.

One challenge that could potentially derail a career that is backed by passion is a lack of communication skills. Consider the president of a company, staring at a wall during an important business meeting because he/she lacks appropriate communication skills.

You need communication skills to:

  • Express yourself to others
  • Sell yourself in the competitive market

Finding Your Passion

While passion is your strongest driving force, it is also the hardest to find. The difference between passion and desire is similar to the difference between love and a crush. You may want to enter an already thriving industry, but the desire to outdo others can be lost after some time, while passion for something does not fade away as easily.

Passion is the energy that keeps you up and working on the weekend. You can be passionate about anything – from simply making money to building an empire and making a name for yourself.

Things You Must Know During Your Student Years

Today, many students may be more concerned about getting higher paying jobs as opposed to building a great career for themselves. Hence, it is important to note a few things:

  • No subject in your school is useless. Subjects that may seem to be useless during schools actually serve to enhance your critical thinking skills.
  • Work during vacations. Find internships. Hunt for jobs that offer exposure in your field and not just money.
  • Learn as much as you can from people around you.
  • If at any stage, you feel that you are losing interest in a specific job, then it is better to switch to another job.
  • Just like you cannot skip to advanced classes without learning the basics, you cannot reach the top in your selected career without starting from the bottom and working your way up slowly. Always remember that smooth transitions are essential for safer landings.
  • It is important to learn from your mistakes and keep moving.

Some people identify their passions and build great careers, even before finishing college. Take the example of Mark Zuckerberg, the great Facebook founder. He found a passion and stuck to it. It can take decades to build a great career.

 

Now that you have the roadmap to building a great career, all you need is to stay focused and motivated!  If you need help in developing one or do not know where to begin, please give me a call at (804) 288-0099 or email me at carroll.schuller@organicblueprints.com, and I will work with you to develop your roadmap and journey with you in accomplishing your goals.

 

 

family on vacation

We Are in the Middle of Summer and Renewal–Warm Up to It Before It Is Over!

The warmth of summer is all you need to rejuvenate your spirit, family bond and business activities. Without digging further into the reasons, let’s have a look at how you can actually warm up this summer!

Switch Off and Go for a Staycation

Often hard to think of what would change the way you feel about the day-to-day humdrum of life with very little to experience or learn beyond the obvious. You may have tried stargazing and ended up gazing at the screen of your phone?  Nothing new! All of us have become so attached to these screens that we may be spending less time with our family and friends. I often feel so guilty when I take a break from technology and feel like I am going to let someone down. I even feel as though I will not work hard enough. Consider a few ways you might spend more time with your loved ones this summer. I am sure you will be able to think of many more!

Switch off all your electronic devices and head to the nearest grassy plateau. Prepare grills and cook smoked pork ribs with corn. Dance or sing your heart out or play guitar, violin or any other musical instrument you like around a bonfire. Watch the starry night from your camp while sipping frothy coffee. Sleep early to wake up at sunrise without an alarm – don’t worry, the magic in the songs of birds is sure to wake you up.  (If you cannot hear enough birds, try one of the alarm sounds on your phone—birds!)

Readjust Your Routine

Adjust your routine to take out time for a long-awaited activity. Want to meditate? Start doing it! Want to go swimming? Buy a pool membership! Want to go for an evening jog? Want to visit a colleague or a good friend.  Get out of the office.  Just do it! Want to wash away toxins? Start detoxifying your body! Whatever it is you have been meaning to do, don’t wait any longer.

Take Employees on a Boating Trip

Why boating? You will be surprised to know the benefits of taking time out for your employees and business for something as simple as a boating trip! You might have employees who fear venturing into deep waters. Boating might offer them a new experience, bring out their creativity, and boost their morale. Hence, they will be more productive once they are back in the office. For others, the trip will increase employee loyalty as such a trip can make them feel valued. Boating trip is just an example. You can also take your employees on a more adventurous trip, such as skydiving. However, the expense would be definitely bigger and we don’t want to cool down your savings while warming up your business.

Go for a Walk into the Wooded Park

Forests have their own charm! Birds chirping in the trees, walking or running within the woods, reading a book on a bench. Notice the fun the children are having and write one of your siblings or friends a note, text or email about that kind of fun.  It will bring a smile to his/her face.

Clean Up

Yes! Clean up the clutter. Clean your bedroom, lounge, closet, basement, workstation, office library – clean up all the clutter from your life in general. Pick up trash when you are out walking. Sell the pre-loved items in good condition to the thrift store and throw away unusable ones. Reorganize everything and re-paint the walls and doors if needed. Add a bit of creative design in rooms and fix the lights or any malfunctioning taps/leaky pipes. Nothing renews your energy and spirit more than a clean space and organized space.  Take one category at a time!

Volunteer—Either Voluntary Helping or Organized Volunteer Work

Donate rolling carts to churches for the homeless, as they walk many miles a day.  Or just take protein drinks when you are out for the homeless.  Find a neighbor or a friend that needs some help.  Gain a taste of what people need, everyone could use some help.  It helps to understand what people need, that is not an economic or emotional things, it is just a fact all of us need a reason to be helped and a reason to help.  It is what makes us human.

Finding organized places to volunteer is a great option and that is fairly easy to research on line.

With these tips, it’s time to warm up your spirit as well. Smile more, hug more and praise more. Above all, love yourself more!

Enjoy your summer!

 

If you need help with your career and moving to the next level, let me know. I’ll be glad to help you. Email me at carroll.schuller@organicblueprints. com.