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Monthly Archives: January 2012

The right outfit for you

Laura Petruchik worked for my business, Shenouda Associates Inc., as a technical writer before starting her family. We have stayed in touch through the years. I was delighted to learn how Laura benefited from journaling through Career Success in 12 Easy Steps. In response to my email wishing Laura and her family a happy new year, she wrote, “I’ve been wanting to get in touch with you to let you know that your book has made a wonderful difference in my life! Your email prompted me to finally write a review. I won’t give it away. I’ll let you read it (posted on Amazon).”

Here’s Laura’s book review, posted on Amazon.com:

What a gem! Before reading this book, I was truly at a crossroad. Years as a successful professional, followed by many more years as a stay-at-home mom, then some time trying to re-introduce myself to my previous career. Something just wasn’t right. Being a mom had changed me, changed the way I look at the world and my role in it. I wanted something different for myself—a new career—a new definition of Me. The process seemed painfully slow and frustrating. After all, my biological career clock was ticking! Career Success in 12 Easy Steps was the key to my self-discovery. I was curiously journaling my way through the book and came to a halt in the section that asks you to envision yourself in your dream job. Never would I define myself as a fashionista, but the question “What are you wearing?” led me to my Ah-ha moment. I pictured myself in casual sporty clothes, holding a patient chart. Combining this with other pieces of the puzzle I had put together with the help of this book, I am now back in college studying to be a Physical Therapy Assistant. I have found my new passion. Sometimes the key is in the smallest of details. Career Success in 12 Easy Steps is a wonderful way to assess, to evaluate, and to tease out those details. What are YOU wearing in your dream job?

A success story starts with having a dream and taking the next steps. Kudos to Laura for discovering her new passion and returing to college to make her new passion a reality! Now, what are you wearing in your dream job?

Balance life and work with yin and yang

Long-time Shenouda employee, Donna Muldoon, applies the concept of good enough to balance work and life

The biggest lesson I’ve had to learn regarding work and life balance is the concept of good enough. This has been especially difficult for the perfectionist in me but has ultimately been the philosophy that helped guide me, and console me, during my most hectic times.

Reminding myself that not everything has to be perfect and that many things can be done to the good enough state has saved me productive time and energy, and allowed me to feel better about the job I’ve done on some tasks. Of course, this is best applied to mundane, repetitive tasks like household chores or yard work but has also been useful at work on similar types of jobs—ones that come back around for many revisions.

It’s not always easy to remember to stop at good enough. I still feel like I’m cheating—not doing my best—but it has helped to achieve some measure of balance in my life at important times.

All the planning, organizational tools, support structures, and helping hands can’t guarantee work and life balance. The small degree of balance present in my life is largely due to an incredibly patient and considerate employer who allowed me the latitude to keep most of the balls in the air, most of the time.
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A few words from Judy Shenouda, the “incredibly patient and considerate employer”

As a small business owner, I recognize the critical importance of balancing the needs of the business to deliver the products and services that clients purchase with the needs of workers who have all kinds of non-work demands on their time and energy. Over the years, I have learned to address this yin and yang balancing act. Read More