Wednesday, August 20, 2008

What Is Your Life Expectancy?

How healthy and active a life are you leading?

Take the following Life Expectancy Calculator to see what you're doing well, and what you could do differently to live a longer, healthier life.

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Sunday, August 17, 2008

26 Ways To Make Someone Happy

Just thought I’d give all of you a nice list of things to think about. This isn’t an in-depth post, but more of a thought for the day — is there someone you’d like to make happy today?
Making others happy is one of the best ways to have a great day yourself. It can brighten the world around you.

This list is just to spark some ideas, and please note that not every item on this list is appropriate for every person in your life. I trust you to figure out which actions go with which people.

Make someone happy today!
  1. Smile.

  2. Help them carry something.

  3. Send a thank-you email.

  4. Call just to see how they’re doing.

  5. Give them flowers.

  6. Cook them a nice meal.

  7. Tell a joke and laugh your butts off.

  8. Give them a cherished book.

  9. Bake them cookies.

  10. Praise them publicly.

  11. Thank them for a job well done.

  12. Listen.

  13. Be there when they’re in need.

  14. Give a free hug.

  15. Spend time with them, having fun.

  16. Do errands or chores for them.

  17. Say I love you.

  18. Help them get ahead.

  19. Be proud of them.

  20. Babysit if they need it.

  21. House sit if they need it.

  22. Buy them movie tickets.

  23. Coffee. Mmmm.

  24. Secretly leave them thank you notes.

  25. Deliver a nice lunch to them when they’re having a rough day.

  26. Be happy yourself.

Any other ideas on how to make people happy?

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Monday, August 11, 2008

Transformational Change

I love my dog. I love him so much, I call him my son. Happy is a 6 month old fluff ball of energy – all 5.20 lbs of him! He’s playful, funny, sweet and gentle. He loves to cuddle and get belly rubs. Whenever I hold him in my arms, he goes right for my face (and my earlobes in particular), and licks me with all his might. He also loves it when I plant sweet little kisses on his neck. He’s a ham. Have I mentioned that I love him?

I wasn’t always a dog lover though. In fact, I used to be deathly afraid of all animals. Like if I saw a dog walking on the same sidewalk, I would cross the street to the other side in order to avoid any contact. Getting over this clearly irrational fear of mine was always something I wanted to overcome. In 2001, I decided to vacation in beautiful Australia, the world’s sixth largest country and its largest island. Beautiful Australia, with its Great Barrier Reef, Outback, and the world’s largest monolith, Uluru (formerly known as Ayers Rock). But, as Bill Bryson wrote in “In a Sunburned Country”:

“(Australia) has more things that will kill you than anywhere else. Of the world’s 10 most poisonous snakes, all are Australian. Five of its creatures – the funnel web spider, box jellyfish, blue-ringed octopus, paralysis tick, and stonefish – are the most lethal of their type in the world. This is a country where even the fluffiest of caterpillars can lay you out with a toxic nip, where seashells will not just sting you but actually go for you. Pick up an innocuous cone shell from a Queensland beach, as innocent tourists are all too wont to do, and you will discover that the little fellow inside is not just astoundingly swift and testy but exceedingly venomous. If you are not stung or pronged to death in some unexpected manner, you may be fatally chomped by sharks or crocodiles, or carried helplessly out to sea by irresistible currents, or left to stagger to an unhappy death in the baking outback. It’s a tough place.”

I decided pretty early on in my Australian Adventure that I would use this trip to finally get over my fears. So, in typical Sandy fashion (read: “go big or go home”), I set out for some serious exposure therapy. I swam in the (shark infested) Great Barrier Reef. I fed kangaroos. I cuddled a koala. I stayed at questionable hostels whose showers and toilets were crawling with lizards and frogs, and whose outdoor eateries were feet away from wild dingoes. I even held a baby crocodile in my hand (and have the picture to prove it!). Like I said, go big or go home.

I look back on that trip with deep fondness and appreciation. If it hadn’t been for all the little risks I took back then, I would never have been ready to share my life with my sweet little guy, Happy. I would have missed out on his companionship, love and enthusiasm for life. Even though Happy has only been in my life for 5 months now, I cannot imagine my life without him.

Now I wouldn’t recommend this drastic change tactic of mine to everyone – in fact, it’s really important to know your own internal gage for change. Working with me as your Professional Coach, we can identify your own internal Change Speedometer, and together, we can set specific goals for positive transformation in your life.

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Thursday, August 7, 2008

What's Your Spiritual Type?

I don't consider myself to be a religious person. Yes, I was brought up with certain traditions of my religion. We observed the major holidays and prayed before certain meals like many other families out there. Despite the great effort on the part of my family, I nevertheless have spent countless hours over the years studying religious practices of many other faiths. In search. Always on the lookout for something to resonate deep within me.

So far, I can say with certainty that I am "skeptically spiritual". I still follow some of the traditions of my original faith. Some. But I've also incorporated other practices that just make more sense to me. Meditation is one, for instance. There's something about it that's soothing to me - that brings me some semblance of inner peace. I suspect my spiritual journey is far from over - it will probably evolve over time as I move into life's different phases.

I guess that's part of the journey that is Life.

For those of you who are on a similar journey as I, why not try out an interesting quiz, simply called "What's Your Spiritual Type?"

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Values: Peak Moment in Time

Integrity. Responsibility. Empowerment. Excellence. Community.

Those of you who have worked in a corporate environment have probably come across these and other similar core values that companies espouse.

But when was the last time you thought about your personal values – your own unique and individual essence?

Did you know that when you’re in touch with your personal values, you’re living your truth? That when you’re consistently honoring your values, your life becomes more fulfilling? The bottom line is that the clearer you are about what you value and believe in, the happier and more effective you will be.

If you’ve ever worked one on one with a professional coach, you will have noticed that we tend to be pretty passionate about helping our clients identify and more importantly establish ways to LIVE their core values. How do coaches help their clients gain a solid perspective on their values? Well, there are a host of values clarification techniques we use in order to allow clients to examine and articulate their values in a safe yet courageous environment.

To give you an idea of the type of work I do with my clients, I’d like to introduce you to one of the coaching techniques I use to help get to the core of my client’s values. This exercise, called “A Peak Moment In Time”, requires the client to think back to an especially poignant or rewarding moment in their life. A specific moment in time, within a specific timeframe. What was happening? Who was present? What was going on? More importantly, what were the values that you were honoring in that particular moment?

So I ask you… What core values are you guided by?

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

7 Secrets of Success...

I just found this gem on the internet and thought I would share it with you. Its author is unknown. Enjoy!

The 7 Secrets of Success...
I found the answers in my room.

Roof said: Aim high
Fan said: Be cool
Clock Said: Every minute is precious
Mirror said: Reflect before you act
Window said: See the world
Calendar said: Be up-to-date
Door said: Push hard to achieve your goals.

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Winning Career and Business Advice from Jack Welch

When Jack Welch stepped down as CEO of GE in 2000, he had succeeded in turning a $12 billion company into one of the largest and most admired corporations in the world - with a market value of about $500 billion. Pretty heady stuff.

But just how did he lead the way to such incredible change?

Mr. Welch had a very clear vision of a leader's role in the new economy. As he once wrote in a letter to shareholders:

"In the old culture, managers got their power from secret knowledge: profit margins, market share, and all that... In the new culture, the role of the leader is to express a vision, get buy-in, and implement it. That calls for open, caring relations with every employee, and face-to-face communication.
People who can't convincingly articulate a vision won't be successful."
Being a Professional Coach with a strong background in Human Resources, I can't help but say "I like the way this guy thinks!" Yes, he looks at the bottom line and the profit margins - he has to in order to lead a $500 billion global corporation. But how inspiring to see that he lead by example and believed in treating his human resources with openess, honesty and compassion.

Here's a great video interview Mr. Welch gave that speaks to his passionate beliefs on what it means to be a successful leader. Enjoy!

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

12 Famous Rules of Success

Steve Jobs is one of the most successful entrepreneurs of our generation. His success story is legendary:

He was put up for adoption at an early age. Dropping out of college after 6 months, he slept on friends’ floors and returned Coke bottles for 5 cent deposits to buy food. Eventually, he went on to start a little company by the name of Apple Computers, while that other incredible success story we all know as Bill Gates started Microsoft.

Mr. Jobs offered his 12 Famous Rules of Success to the 2005 graduating class of Stanford University. Inspiring words of wisdom from somebody in know. Here they are:

1. Do what you love to do.
Find your true passion. Do what you love to do a make a difference! The only way to do great work is to love what you do.

2. Be different.
Think different. "Better be a pirate than to join the navy."

3. Do your best.
Do your best at every job. No sleep! Success generates more success. So be hungry for it. Hire good people with a passion for success.

4. Make a SWOT analysis.
As soon as you join/start a company, make a list of strengths and weaknesses of yourself and your company on a piece of paper. Don't hesitate in throwing bad apples out of the company.

5. Be entrepreneurial.
Look for the next big thing. Find a set of ideas that need to be quickly and decisively acted upon and jump through that window. Sometimes the first step is the hardest one. Just take it! Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.

6. Start small, think big.
Don't worry about too many things at once. Take a handful of simple things to begin with, and then progress to more complex ones. Think about not just tomorrow, but the future.

7. Strive to become a market leader.
Own and control the primary technology in everything you do. If there's a better technology available, use it no matter if anyone else is not using it. Be the first, and make it an industry standard.

8. Focus on the outcome.
People judge you by your performance, so focus on the outcome. Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren't used to an environment where excellence is expected. Advertise. If they don't know it, they won't buy your product. Pay attention to design. "We made the buttons on the screen lookso good you'll want to lick them”. Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.

9. Ask for feedback.
Ask for feedback from people with diverse backgrounds. Each one will tell you one useful thing. If you're at the top of the chain, sometimes people won't give you honest feedback because they're afraid. In this case, disguise yourself, or get feedback from other sources. Focus on those who will use your product – listen to your customers first.

10. Innovate.
Innovation distinguishes a leader from a follower. Delegate, let other top executives do 50% of your routine work to be able to spend 50% your time on the new stuff. Say no to 1,000 things to make sure you don't get on the wrong track or try to do too much. Concentrate on really important creations and radicalinnovation. Hire people who want to make the best things in the world. You need a very product-oriented culture, even in a technology company. Lots of companies have tons of great engineers and smart people. But ultimately, there needs to be some gravitational force that pulls it all together.

11. Learn from failures.
Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.

12. Learn continually.
There's always "one more thing" to learn! Cross-pollinate ideas with others both within and outside your company. Learn from customers, competitors and partners. If you partner with someone whom you don't like, learn to like them – praise them and benefit from them. Learn to criticize your enemies openly, but honestly.

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Making Sure Your Next Job Is the Best Fit

OK, so you’ve realized that it’s time for a career transition. Off you go into the job market – networking, interviewing, selling yourself and negotiating like mad. That’s great!

But whoa there, tiger! Let’s take a step back for a moment. How much time are you spending interviewing prospective employers? Are you following your due diligence to ensure you’re making the right move – finding the best job fit? I can’t count the number of times I’ve come across people who’ve gotten hooked into accepting a new job for all the wrong reasons and without having done all their homework.

So, with this in mind, here are the Top 4 Questions You Should Ask Yourself To Ensure Your Next Job Is The Best Fit:

1. Who's the Boss?
If you're knee deep in the interviewing process, you will likely be meeting your future supervisor at some point. Pay close attention to how well you get along with this person – she will hold the key to your success and happiness in that position. Ask her what her leadership style is like and what kind of employee she prefers to manage. If you’re lucky enough to have the opportunity to interview with other members of her reporting team (as part of a panel interview, for instance), ask them too! I once knew an individual who had asked this question during an interview, and got a disturbingly honest answer from the supervisor: “I don’t like to manage my employees; I don’t like them coming to me with any questions”. If this person had been searching for a mentoring type of relationship with her prospective supervisor, she would have been sorely disappointed and jaded as her employee. Thank goodness she had the good sense to ask this key questions beforehand to avoid such a pitfall!

2. Who Are Your Future Coworkers?
Some people hate their jobs but love their colleagues so much that it overrides any unhappiness they have about their daily duties. On the flip side, just as these folks can make your work life great, they can also make it miserable. Ask to meet your potential teammates before accepting any job offer. One of my own best job interviews involved going out for coffee with my potential colleagues. It was a wonderful way for me to get a first-hand sense of the group dynamics and whether I would fit in. There we were, sitting at a Starbucks, chatting it up easily. It also was a wonderful opportunity for me to investigate the leadership style! While these folks were great at trying to sell the job to me, I nevertheless tuned into the semi-discreet looks they shot each other prior to answering my all important “so… tell me what Bob is like as a manager…”. I still accepted the job, but at least I went in there with my eyes wide open. Listen to your gut and make your decision accordingly.

3. Yes, Yes – They Want You… But Do You Want Them?
Sure, it’s a great ego boost to be offered a job – after all, it’s like entering a competition in which you win first prize! But any reader of Eckhart Tolle would tell you not to let yourself be guided by your ego. Put it aside. Instead, remind yourself what it is that YOU are looking for in a new job… If you’ve worked with me as your Career Coach, you would have already completed lots of self-assessments that would have clarified your vision of your ideal career opportunity. Take those sheets out, and compare them with the job you’ve just been offered. How closely do they match? The closer the match, the better the job fit. Look before you leap!

4. Is This Job Just Right - or Right For Now?
OK, reality check time. Money talks. That’s a fact. Your personal financial situation may dictate that you have to accept something less than your ideal right now. If you must agree to work at a less-than-ideal position and hope to stay just for the short-term, then start planning your exit strategy now. Own it. Otherwise, you might just find yourself in the same, less than suitable job years from now. And that would be pretty tragic for you, given all the hard work you’re doing today to get on the right path.

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Achieving Your Childhood Dreams

Carnegie Mellon Professor Randy Pausch gave his last lecture at the university Sept. 18, 2007, before a packed McConomy Auditorium. In his moving presentation, "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams," Professor Pausch talked about his lessons learned and gave advice to students on how to achieve their own career and personal goals.

Sadly, Professor Pausch passed away recently, after a lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer. Despite his grim diagnosis, or perhaps inspite of it, he managed to inspire millions of us around the world with his poignant, funny and inspiring "last lecture".

I challenge all of you to watch this video without being motivated to positive action in your lives. It's impossible. Prof. Pausch delivered a lasting legacy with this lecture. My thoughts go out to his family and to those who knew and loved him. Rest in peace.

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Baby Giggles

I just couldn't resist sharing this video from of the funniest laughing baby I have ever seen. Most of you have probably enjoyed this little gem before, along with the other 5.5 million viewers out there in the 'net world. Regardless though, I still think it's worth another viewing - if anything because it makes me giggle out loud everytime I watch it. And in my books, there's no such thing as laughing too little!

Happy giggling!

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching

Blog Launch!

Hey folks!

I’m thrilled to finally be joining the rest of the blogging community on the ‘net!

My hope for this blog is to share with you all the little blissful nuggets that come my way. So, without further ado, here’s a delightful link that was forwarded to me by one of my coaching colleagues today. It instantly brought a smile to my face. But more importantly, it brought home the fact that no matter which part of the world we may find ourselves, we are inarguably connected to others by more commonalities than differences.

It also made me want to put on my dancin’ shoes and travel the world.

Happy dancing!

In Bliss,
Coach Sandy

Sandy Kiaizadeh
Find Your Bliss Coaching