5 Truths: Part 4, Highly successful people are not hopeful…they are optimistic.

by James Hale, author of “Getting Seen”

You thought “hope” and “optimism” were the same? Just smile. They are not!

Oh, yes, they do have definite similarities, and in casual usage they are thought of as synonyms. After all, both hope and optimism are considered powerful emotions based on belief. Both anticipate a positive outcome for a situation. Both feed a desire for the future. But the similarity stops there.

Hope is passive; optimism is active. According to Dr. Emmett Miller, hope has an element of desire—we hope for things we want to happen and what we hope for is usually possible. (I hope Johnny gets the job.) Optimism has more of an element of confidence—we believe good will come from the situation, we believe good with triumph over evil in the end, or that our innate strengths will carry us through. (I know things will be okay even if Johnny doesn’t get this job.)

Optimism knows that things will be okay regardless of the outcome. If “hope” and “faith” had a baby, it would be named “optimism.”

Like gasoline fuels a car, optimism fuels our ability to solve problems and find creative solutions to life’s puzzles.

So how does this affect your job search? Hope has a trap. That trap is passivity. People who misuse hope feel they have no personal control over a situation. People who draw energy from hoping for success often fail to take complete action because they rely instead on simply wishing for the best. They trust that hope will fill in the voids from their limited efforts. They sometimes then simply accept their lot in life and do not take action to help themselves … even when they could.

Optimism is very different. The strength of optimism is that not only does it keep us moving toward the things we desire, it also enables us to let go of the situation if our desired outcome is not realized. Without this motion toward a positive outcome and the ability to let go when reality falls short of our dreams, we tend towards depression, despair, apathy, and helplessness. We give up.

But there is more. Like gasoline fuels a car, optimism fuels our ability to solve problems and find creative solutions to life’s puzzles. When your career path gets steep and rough—when you have those extended periods when no one returns your calls or responds to your resume—optimism helps you see the footholds and the shortcuts. If you cultivate optimism in a way that keeps you in action and keeps you focused on what you can do to influence the outcomes you desire, success will be achieved.

When something bad happens to you, like a layoff or struggles in the job search, it will always do one of three things to you:

  • It will define you, so that you identify yourself by the condition (I am unemployed).
  • It will destroy you (by creating bad habits like isolating yourself from those closest to you)
  • It will feed you power and strengthen you.

People who are naturally optimistic are masters of the latter.  If you are not naturally optimistic, here is a checklist on optimism from Optimist International. See where you are succeeding and where you might improve:

 To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.

 To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet.

 To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.

 To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.

 To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.

 To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.

 To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.

 To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.

 To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.

“Getting Seen” Now Available for Jobs Seekers

Getting Seen, the ultimate book for job seekers.
Click here to order “Getting Seen”

“Getting Seen: The Ultimate Guide to Creating the Most Important Document of Your Life – Your Resume” dispels the misguided rumors that run rampant in the typical resume advice. If you want the same old resume advice, this book is NOT for you. If you want to do some pre-resume work and create a tool that immediately puts you in the top 10% of job searchers, read on.

Unfortunately, most resumes are nothing more than lifeless lists of a candidate’s job history. They don’t tell what the candidate has actually done, where he has done it, or why it was important. On the other extreme are resumes that are boiling over with detail, running into 20-25 page, or more! These authors have forgotten that a resume is ultimately meant to get you through the door, not do the interview as well.

This book examines exactly what recruiters, human resources personnel, and hiring managers are looking for in the resumes that they receive each day, and how you can give it to them. If you follow James Hale’s advice, you will drastically increase the odds that you will be seen and that recruiters will call you for a face-to-face interview where you can further wow them with your skills and professionalism.

Hale will show you what employers have come to prefer in terms of resume content, length, and format. These preferences have changed dramatically due to changes in technology and increased resume traffic. The author will also help you understand the function of a resume and the psychological profile of the person who evaluates it.

You will also learn how to present yourself so hiring personnel will see you in the position they are filling. You will have a shine on your resume where the rest of the pile will be dull and lifeless.

In this book you will learn how to present yourself in the absolute best light, but you will stay clearly on the ethical side of the line that so many people cross over by putting together resumes based on what they WISH they had done, rather than the reality of their background.

By putting together a highly targeted resume using the principles in this book, you will beat out the hundreds of people vying for the same job who have been seduced by the temptation to lie their way into a job they can’t handle. The author doesn’t want you to begin your relationship with your employer based on lies and subtle deceit.

“Getting Seen: The Ultimate Guide to Creating the Most Important Document of Your Life – Your Resume” will give you the tools you need to land the job you want.

“This is a book that gets to the heart of resume writing and that heart is the idea of using the resume as a teaching tool. I’ve been in the personal development business for almost 20 years and have not come across a better resource for the job seeker or career changer. People pay thousands of dollars for the advice and coaching that is in Getting Seen.” — James D. Smith, Author and President of Iron 2 Iron Equipping

“Fantastic! Getting Seen is a fresh look at the essential task of resume writing. This practical guide gets results! — Virginia Denny, Program Director, Delhi Center for Teaching and Learning

“Getting Seen” Table of Contents

Introduction
Chapter 1: Resume Fundamentals
Chapter 2: Resume Reconnaissance
Chapter 3: Intermission
Chapter 4: Where Your Resume Goes
Chapter 5: Before You Begin to Write
Chapter 6: Resume Layout
Chapter 7: What to Leave In, What to Leave Out
Chapter 8: The Scanning Test
Chapter 9: Dealing with Biases
Chapter 10: Resume Myths
Chapter 11: Last, but Not Least
Appendix: Sample Resume Analysis
About the Author

“Getting Seen: The Ultimate Guide to Creating the Most Important Document of Your Life – Your Resume” is available exclusively through the Kindle Store at Amazon.com. However, Kindle books can be read on any type of device thanks to both the Kindle Cloud (online reading) and various Kindle apps.

Truths #3 of 5: You Need Help

by James Hale,

80 – 90 % of job openings are filled by people who knew someone within the company to put in a good word for them.  Chances are you have landed a job in the past based on who you knew.

Sample resume formatTechnical skills alone will not get you job offers.  You need friends, coaches, mentors, colleagues, family, and a nice mix of people who recognize your potential and want to help you succeed.  Maybe PathChoices can be one of the people to help you on your career path.  Regardless, there is no doubt that you cannot succeed by yourself.  No success in Hollywood, politics, or the business world did so alone.  You must surround yourself with people who help you learn, grow, and flourish.  Think of all the coaches and managers that surround the big name Hollywood stars and the great business talent.  The most successful people have surrounded themselves with an “inner circle” of 8 – 20 people who can help them.  The road to success is rarely traveled alone.

And while you are surrounding yourself with people who can help you, keep an eye open for people you can help.  The world is packed with both children and adults who do not recognize their gifts or potential. They have never had anyone who believed in them.  A few of them will succeed in life, but many others will fail because no one invested in them.

At any time, there should be at least one person in your life whom you invest in with confidential discussion, productive advice, and genuine encouragement.  This person should be someone you are not required to help and who cannot offer you any assistance as a payback.  There should be nothing for you in the relationship.  It should be a selfless, giving act on your part.  It should come from the heart, even if you do not want to and you need to force it just a little.

Work is a social undertaking.  No one achieves success in their career without the help of others.  Find someone whom you admire and take them out to lunch once a month to pick their brain.  Hire a coach who will be totally honest in encouraging you and helping you see your blind spots.  Get to know people who work for the business you want to work for.  Chances are, the next giant step on your career path will come from one of these three sources.

Truths # 2 of 5: You CANNOT be Anything You Want to in Life.

by James Hale,

No, you cannot be anything you want to be in life.

That is a lie told by well-meaning parents who want their kids to dream big and achieve greatness.  The reality is there are limits and restrictions on your potential.  One of these limitations is your natural skills and talents.  There are some skills—perhaps reading or math or caring for others or an ability to focus quietly—that come easy to you.  Maybe you have chosen to work on refining these natural gifts into perfected talents, or maybe you are like most of us and fallen a little short in this effort.  Regardless, these seeds must be watered and nourished if they are to grow.  Get to work perfecting your natural gifts.

That’s your natural gifts.  But there are other skills that are not as natural for you.  These areas can limit your options in choosing a career, and they can be your downfall in the job search.  For example, the brilliant yet introverted mathematician who cannot deal with people makes a lousy teacher, if he does not deal with his shortcoming.  Similarly, the extroverted people-person who lacks the discipline to master mathematics also becomes a lousy teacher, if he does not try to control skills that do not come naturally.  Recognize that you are set free by your natural skills, but limited by those that are not as developed in you.

But raw skill is not the only variable affecting your ability to choose your profession.  You are also either empowered or restricted by your finances, your network of support from family and friends, and the unique opportunities that come your way every day.  You cannot simple “will” your way into a job by raw desire.  And no matter how hard you work at achieving career goals, some will simply stay beyond your grasp.  When I was in school at Western Kentucky University I worked hard to be the Geologist Senior of the Year.  I was a lab assistant, I volunteered to help teachers outside of class, I tutored people who were struggling in geology, and I studied nightly into the wee hours.  I got the highest grades in the class on nearly all my tests … and I came in second.  Similarly, everyday thousands of talented, brilliantly gifted kids work tirelessly to become the next music superstar … but only one person can hold this spot.  You must live YOUR life, recognizing that you will not have the opportunities provided to others.

James Hale is the author of "Quiet Spaces"

James Hale is the author of "Quiet Spaces"

You cannot be anything you want to in life … but the reality is even better.  You have been placed on earth for a unique purpose … with unique skills  … at a unique place … at a unique time.  You cannot be anything, but you can be one thing better than anyone else.  Better than anyone!  That’s because you have a truly unique skill set and completely unique opportunities that no one else will have.  Just like you may not be able to be the next President of the United States, the next president cannot be you … even if he or she tried.  The opportunities come your way every day, but they are usually subtle and you have to look carefully for them.  They reside in the manager you walk by every day, but never talk to.  The back-to-school scholarship you never looked for on the web.  The on-line degree taught by the university half-way around the world. The article in the newspaper about a community problem.  Or the difficulties that a friend or coworker is facing.

Look for YOUR opportunities.  YOU can serve YOUR purpose like no one else because of the unique combinations of abilities you have, the unique lessons your life experiences have taught you, and the unique opportunities that will be presented to you and no one else.  Successful people focus on the short-term opportunities around them, rather than the vague dreams that can never be realized.

Coming up next: Truth 3:  highly successful people have help.