Pacing yourself for a new year

Business Man jumpingMany people will be starting new jobs, courses and challenges at this time of year. September is a traditional time to enrol on new courses; start training others or starting a new job (for graduates). It is a really exciting time: a new beginning; time to make a mark and become the person you want to be!

However, I want to share some words of caution, when launching into your next challenge – without sounding like a grumpy old lady! It is easy to go ‘full out’ from the word go – full of energy and totally immersed in your new opportunity. That’s brilliant and you SHOULD be totally committed. BUT you want to maintain your charisma, energy and effectiveness to fully grab the opportunities.

Make sure you balance your life with ‘stress breakers’

Last week I was lucky enough to meet a number of dynamic teachers: some were very experienced and others were new to the profession. I know from experience, that it is easy to go full out in the teaching profession, then lose your voice and be totally exhausted by the beginning of October! Other professionals are similar. So here are my top tips to pacing yourself for your new job.

  • Make sure you balance your life with ‘stress breakers’. If you have a social hobby such as being in a running club, choir or other activities where you meet people, join a local group and participate once a week.
  • Keep in contact with your old friends; there might be a time you need their support – support from someone outside the bubble of your new job, and someone to confide in.
  • Make sure you have enough sleep. It is unusual for people to be effective workers if they don’t have at least 7 hours sleep a night. A good employer will let you come in late if you have a late night work engagement. If they don’t try to catch up on your rest the next evening.
  • Consider what you eat: if you are existing on take away food, snacks and sweets, try to supplement this with fresh fruit and salad to have a more balanced diet. Your diet can make you sluggish if it is not balanced.
  • Drink plenty of water and if you go out for an evening where you drink alcohol, make sure you drink the same amount of water to ensure you aren’t dehydrated the next morning.
  • A new job or opportunity is a long race – it isn’t a sprint but a marathon with lots of ups and downs. If you go FULL out from the beginning, whether it be using your voice too loudly if you are training people, to using your energy ALL THE TIME, you will collapse with exhaustion and won’t be as effective. I don’t want this for you!

Good luck in your new adventures! And if you have any other top tips, do share them below!

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About the author

Susan Heaton Wright is a former opera singer who works with successful individuals and teams to make an impact with their voices and physical presence. Using her experience in using the voice and performing on stage, she works with people to improve their performances in a range of business situations; from meeting skills and on the telephone, to public speaking, presentations and appearing on the media.

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