This week I spoke at an event hosted by the Career Development Association of Australia called Managing Your Career During Difficult Times. As one of a panel of four, my particular task was to convey ideas and strategies for successful  job search.

I have given many presentations at conferences and forums and what I have learnt is that you just never know what is going to ‘land’ with the audience most. In this case, it was the question “When are you at your best?”

Its a simple and yet complex question; one I like a lot. Because as you think about it more and more, it draws you in to a positive state of self-reflection, allowing your key values and skills to bubble to the surface and  the people and activities that matter most to become clearer. It provides a framework to make decisions about your future.

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For me, I thrive most when I have autonomy and opportunity to create and think expansively about things.  I seek out positive, caring and capable people – they bring me energy. As well, I purposefully move beyond self doubt when it emerges and I practice gratitude to help keep things in perspective. I take on work that I feel can make a difference to people’s lives and at the same time stretches me professionally and allows me to learn new skills.  I also know that when I look after my health and get plenty of sunshine, I will thrive. And finally, knowing that my family, and friends are safe and pretty much happy in their lives is most important.

I am at my best when these things more or less align, making me much happier and productive. Do I achieve this flow all of the time? Well, of course not. Things come out of left field, personal and professional challenges crop up, stuff happens. Some of these things I have no control over. What I can control however is how I respond to them. Returning regularly to this question keeps me focussed on what matters most, when to say yes or no, and where to put my attention.

Everyone has the potential to be at their best, a lot of the time. So, when are YOU at your best? Its a great question to ponder.

Next week I’ll be happy to share the tips that I spoke about at Managing Your Career During Difficult Times.

Until then, have a great weekend!


carole 006