How to Prepare Yourself to “Work It” at your New Job

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Getting a new job is so exciting, isn’t it? It’s a chance for a fresh start, with new opportunities for growth and new challenges. It’s a chance to meet new people with whom you can share thoughts and ideas, and a new forum for collaborating. It’s a time when you can reinvent yourself and there is a world of possibilities on the horizon…

Can you tell that I’m about to start a new job myself??

What gave me away, all the dreamy verbiage above about possibilities and growth? Well, I can’t hide it. I’m extremely excited, and this transition has been a long time coming. It’s one of the reasons I’ve been a bit reticent on this blog as of late (my apologies!), and now  it’s finally happened! I can’t tell you how excited I am to spread my proverbial wings and to expand my skill set and responsibilities, which I know I’m capable of and have been itching to do for quite some time.

The idea for today’s  post sprang from my own efforts to ready myself as much as possible before I start my new job. In an effort to assist those of you out there getting ready to embark on your new career path, I’ve put together 6 easy things you can do to start your new job on a high note.

Take some time off (if possible)

I know that this may not be feasible for everyone depending on individual circumstances. But if you can, you would be wise to take a period of time off after wrapping up your previous position and starting your new one. It allows you to put some distance between the old and the new, to disengage, and to rid yourself of any lingering stress.

For those of you who’ve made job transitions in the past, you may well recall the exhaustion you felt immediately after your final days of work. In fact, you may have been inexplicably exhausted for several days after. That’s why it’s best to take a couple of weeks off if you can, allowing yourself the first few days to succumb to that fatigue and do next to nothing.

If you don’t have the luxury of a few weeks off (as most of us unfortunately don’t), then absolutely make sure to do the next item on the list….

Take a “Mental Health Day”

What’s a Mental Health Day, you may ask? It’s a day devoted entirely to YOUR well-being. Do some good things for yourself that help you to relax and rejuvenate. Need a few ideas? Try one of these:

  • take a hike
  • get a massage
  • visit a museum
  • read at a coffee shop
  • take a luxurious bubble bath
  • go to the movies
  • listen to music
  • do some shopping
  • get a haircut or manicure
  • do something creative – draw, paint, craft, knit
  • write in your journal or write a letter

The point is this: do whatever it is that makes you feel happy and promotes a feeling serenity. You deserve it and you really need it in order to ready yourself for your big day.

Do Your Research

This is a big one. Do as much pre-prep as you can to learn about your new employer before your first day. You should already have good background information from interviewing for the position, but definitely familiarize yourself some more with the company’s website, their LinkedIn profile, any other social channels they may be using, etc.

Buy Yourself a New Outfit for your First Day of Work

I encourage you to buy yourself some new work duds for your first day. You can think of it as both a reward and an investment. A reward because you landed that new job! You should feel proud of your hard work, and you can feel good about celebrating your accomplishments with new professional attire. It’s also an investment in your new career that will help you to feel more confident and start you off on good footing your first day.

Of course, it may not be realistic or feasible for everyone to splurge on a new outfit. And if you can’t, that’s okay too. But do spend a little extra time on making yourself feel special. Give yourself an at-home manicure, try a new hairstyle, do whatever you can to make yourself feel special and give yourself a little extra “oomph”….feeling more polished and pulled together will give you that extra boost you need to approach your new place of employment with confidence and class.

Plan Ahead

Spend some time thinking about what your morning routine will look like before your first day. Will you shower the night before or in the morning? How much time will you need for your commute (factoring in any possible traffic)? Will you eat breakfast before you leave? Will you need time to make coffee and lunch in the morning or will you prepare it all the night before? Do you know alternative routes to get to work in case your main route is unavailable for some reason? Do you have contact numbers for your new employer just in case you are delayed by traffic? Prepare yourself as much as possible so that you’re calm and collected your first day.

Prepare your Work Tote or Briefcase

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Think about what items you’ll want to have on-hand at your desk and pack them the night before. Here are some of my recommendations:

  • Planner, notebook, pen, folders (these items aren’t necessary because you’ll normally be provided with some by your new employer, but I personally like to bring my own because I find that using pretty organizational work items helps me to work better).DSC_0009
  • Personal items: hand lotion, vitamins, tylenol, mini-deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, tampons, hand sanitizer, bobby pins/extra hair elastic, hairspray, throat lozenges, gum, water bottle, coffee travel mug, extra phone charger (if you have one), a picture or two to personalize your spaceDSC_0006

And finally, get as much rest as possible before your big day. On that note, I’m going to do just that! Wish me luck tomorrow. 🙂

R

5 Planners that Pop

And for this Friday’s “Bright Delights”, I decided that since school is just around the corner, I would feature some bright planners. These are 5 that I covet and they all happen to come from Etsy.  Gotta love Etsy…

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5 Bright Organizing Solutions

Happy Friday All! It’s a rainy one here in Connecticut.

For today’s five Friday “Bright Delights” I thought I would share with you some colorful organizing solutions that I fell in love with. One might say I have a bit of an “obsession” with organizing. It’s what I love to read about when I have downtime and I’m constantly trying to envision how I can organize my home in a more practical and functional way. My fiancé and I bought our home a little over two years ago, and as you homeowners know, it’s always a work in progress! It’s slowly but surely coming along…

Anyway, here are my five faves for this week…hope you find some inspiration for organizing your own space here!

1. From See Jane Work, I adore this collapsible chevron tote that comes in multiple bright colors.

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2. Desktop clutter is one of those things I struggle with and that makes me crazy…this apple green organizer from The Container Store corrals small office supplies in a tidy fashion…and it looks cute too!

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3. This great space saver from Ikea can be hung on the back of your door and can be used to organize everything from cosmetics in your bathroom to office supplies in your home office. The vibrant flower pattern puts a smile on my face!

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4. How awesome is this little modern filing cabinet from Poppin? Even better–it comes in 6 (yes 6!) different neon colors.

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From Capri Designs, I’m enamored with this stylish, portable tote and it’s sunny pattern. I think I would create excuses just to tote it around all the time!

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Cast your vote for next week’s featured category!

R

Spring Clean Your Life: Step 5 – Polish your Resume & Professional Persona

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So far in the “Spring Clean Your Life” series, we have addressed the garden, cleaning the home, the pantry, and the closet. Now, we are going to shift gears a bit and talk about another area that’s as much deserving of an annual cleaning as your closet or your pantry:  your professional persona.

 

There is no better time than now to scrutinize your resume and make sure that it is current and accurate. This does not just pertain to job seekers, it’s something you should make it a point to revisit annually regardless of whether or not you are looking for a career change. If the only time you pay your resume any attention is when you want a new position, it’s possible you may already have forgotten some key projects you were a part of, accomplishments and accolades, dates, etc. It’s better to make examining and updating your resume an annual ambition.

 

Here are a few items to consider:

New News

In the last year, did you start a new position, learn a new skill, take a new course, gain a new certification, volunteer, join an organization? Don’t forget to include new information.

And don’t forget: if you add a new position, be sure to update the dates of your most recent position and change your action verbs from present to past.

Contact Information

Did your name change because you got married, divorced, or for some other reason? Make sure the name on your resume is the same as the one you are using currently.

Did you move, change your phone number, open a new email account? Again, be sure that people have the right information so that they can get in contact with you.

Whittle It Down

If your resume is longer than two pages, cut it down. Weed out any irrelevant positions. For example, there’s no need to include that summer you worked at Kohl’s on your marketing resume. Only include skills, work history, and personal attributes that are directly related to your career search.

Research

What do I mean by this? The science behind the resume is an ever-changing and evolving one. The layout and phrasing you used even three years ago might now be considered antiquated. Do a little research into new resume trends to make sure that your resume isn’t  outdated. See Resource Links below for some helpful hints.

Include Links to Social Media Sites

This isn’t an absolute, but if you have a business-related social media platform or website, adding links to those relevant sites to your resume can provide a prospective employer or recruiter with more insight into your potential value as an employee. The key here is to make sure that it ties in to your profession. In other words, do include a link to a relevant Pinterest board or Twitter handle, but don’t include a link to your personal Facebook page.

Proofread

Proofread, proofread, proofread! I cannot say this enough! A prospective employer or recruiter will throw your resume out the window for something as minor as a spelling or punctuation error. Do not be careless here, it could cost you an interview opportunity!

Resubmit your New Resume

If you are looking for work, then remember to submit your updated resume to any job sites and recruiters that already have your resume on file.

LinkedIn

I’ll touch on this briefly, but since my next post in the series will be about social media, I’m not going to get too in-depth. Once you’ve updated your resume, make sure the information on your LinkedIn profile has consistent and up-to-date information.

Ask someone to write you a recommendation and/or endorse you on LinkedIn to support statements you have made on your resume.

Add new contacts and delete obsolete ones.

 

Got any other tips? Feel free to share!

R

 

Resource Links

Careerealism Resume Tips

Resume formatting suggestions from Monster

Marie Claire’s New Resume Rules

The Job Pyramid’s Resume Trends and Tips for 2013

Pinterest – search resumes and other keywords on here, and you’ll find a plethora of useful information

Infographic resume

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My info graphic resume!

Thank you to the Pinterest community for exposing me to the phenomenon of the infographic resume. I am enthralled. This one is from visual.ly and what’s particularly cool about it is the ease of use. If you have a profile on LinkedIn, you can create something like this in literally 30 seconds. See for yourself!

Welcome to my Blog

Welcome to my blog

Hi there!

I’m Rebecca, a marketing professional in my late 20s living in the northeast.

I am endlessly inquisitive, creative, and always looking to learn.  My big life goal is to live life as brightly and wholly as possible. This blog is about my journey through the work world, wedding planning (I’m getting married this November), and life in general.

I have a lot of interests–some might say too many!  But here are just a few: discovering new music, health, learning to cook new things, interior decorating, traveling to new places, fitness, fashion, watching movies, curling up with a good book, Pinterest (!), researching marketing trends, beauty tips, organizing, wedding planning, drinking wine, sipping tea, DIY, art, WRITING, and everything in between.

I hope you you’ll join me for the ride, and that you’ll enjoy reading about my musings, interests, and learnings.

Happy reading!

R

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Rebecca Cretella