One of the main reasons I started this blog is very cliche. I want to be the change I want to see in this world, particularly in the schooling system. All day and every day, I bang on to students about contributing to our community, and creating their own opportunities to use their personal strengths and uniqueness to offer this world what no one else can but them.
I love my mum and dad, and could quite easily live with them for the rest of my life. But for some of you, the thought of that would make you cringe. But I must say, financial freedom is liberating, empowering and something we all strive for and hope to achieve one day. I don’t think many of you would answer ‘no’ to the question, do you want to be a millionaire?
However, an article published in the New York Times writes, ‘one in five people in their 20’s and early 30’s is currently living with his or her parents, and 60 percent of all young adults receive financial support from them’.
I recently read an article in the newspaper about homelessness. What really caught my attention about it was the research outlined in the article about how labels significantly impact people’s wellbeing.
In a nut shell, people without a stable home commonly take on the label as being homeless, but not always. A lot of people who have no place to live claim they are not ‘homeless’ because their situation may be complicated. What was interesting but somewhat no surprise, was that those who described themselves as homeless had significantly lower self-esteem and wellbeing compared to those who rejected the label, even when having no place to live.
When it comes to mental health, when we use a label to describe ourselves, we begin to think and act in ways that are associated with that label.
Not awesome at computers? Me neither.
Is it helpful for me to spend hours trying to be ‘good’ at computers? It could be, but I can probably guess that I would be frustrated at least 80% of the time. I would have some serious self-doubt and self-loathing going on and I would be feeling down about myself when I realise how much I actually don’t know, but really wish I did.
I think that neuroplasticity is a concept that if we all knew how to utilise, we would all be the creators of our own reality. We would be empowered with the knowledge of how our brain works and would use this to shape our thinking and create high performing brains.
Your brain is a tool, and if used correctly it can serve you well. But a lot of us don’t realise that more often than not, our brain is using us.
Ever been on a plane? When the instructors are giving you the safety brief, you might recall the instructions being ‘put your own oxygen mask on before assisting others’. This makes sense. You’re no good at helping others with their masks if your passed out on the floor in an emergency, because you didn’t look after yourself first.
This is an extreme example, but it has the same message as what I would like to get across in this post. And that is, you cannot give your best to others, or be the best you can be, if you are not putting your own needs first. This might sound difficult if you’re in a relationship or if you see yourself being a good friend by putting other’s needs before your own. But I can guarantee you, you’re not much good to them if you’re a big pile of negative energy. And you don’t deserve that, either.
I am petrified of blood tests. You just say those two horrific words and I feel sick instantly. Ew, ew, ew, no thank you. With this kind of thinking, it is one hundred percent certain I will NOT change my behaviour and go and get one. Not going to happen. But what happens when I have to go and get one? I’m not going to all of a sudden find it an easy thing to do, and having those negative thoughts about it just makes getting one even harder. So, before I can change my behaviour, I first must change my thinking.
Blood tests are helpful. Blood tests are necessary. These are the type of thoughts I can use to replace the old ones. Only then might I change my behaviour and agree in actually getting one.
I have always believed that exercise is the key not only to physical health but to peace of mind. Nelson Mandela, Long Walk To Freedom.
Whether you enjoy physical exercise or not, you can’t deny the fact that it is good for you. For most of you, knowing that exercise is good for you in not brand new information, and more and more studies show that the mental health benefits of physical exercise are extremely beneficial for both your physical and mental health.
We’ve all had to sit a test at some time in our lives, some we feel better about than others. I feel like there are four ways to feel going into a test.
- Totally confident. Minimal preparation done because there is no need. I am the King.
- I’ve put in the work. I’m really proud of the revision and preparation that I’ve done. Bring it on.
- Quickly get me in there to take this test. I’ve crammed in so much information that at any moment it’s going to fall out of my head because it’s only just hanging in there.
- What test? I didn’t even know we had one… what’s it on?
Unfortunately, regardless of how you go into the test, it doesn’t necessarily predict how you will feel after it. We can do all the preparation in the world and feel stuck in test conditions.
So, I’ve put together a no BS guide to feeling good about every test that you take. When you get stuck on a question, these are some things you can do when you don’t know what to do!
Your resume is a marketing tool. It is a document that is put together to almost ‘sell’ all of your strengths and abilities that would make you the right person for any position that you aspire to.
What makes you unique? Why are you the right fit for the role and how can you contribute to the overall success of the organisation?
These are the questions your resume needs to answer – so it helps to know a bit about the organisation so you can choose your strengths, experiences and abilities that are relevant to the position you are going for.
There are a lot of websites out there offering advice on how to write a resume. The trick is to use your initiative in creating one that reflects you as a person, and that you are happy with. Whatever template or procedure you decide to use and follow, just ensure you like the way it looks, it includes what makes you unique and what strengths you have that would benefit the organistation.
I know what you’re thinking, and before you say it, let me interrupt… of course you have strengths! Just taking the initiative to write a resume and hand it in is a start!
Possible skills and strengths to use when writing your resume
- I am eager to learn (meaning your a great listener and ask appropriate questions)
- I am coachable and willing to learn (meaning you listen, pay attention and can follow instructions)
- I am committed to doing my best (meaning you give things a go and talk positively)
- I am capable of working within a team (meaning you can ask questions when you need to and offer to help your team members)
- I use initiative and can work independently (meaning you don’t have to wait to be given instructions all of the time, and can step up and help out even when you haven’t been asked)
- I am responsible, reliable and punctual (meaning you can be trusted and relied upon and show up on time)
How to set out your resume
Page 1 of your resume
- My resume begins with my name as the heading, with my address and contact details underneath it. I also have a small photo of myself (this is a school photo, not a party selfie, because I want to look employable and professional. But if your going for a position that involves partying, go ahead. It’s prob appropriate in that situation).
- I then include a subheading ‘Objective’. Here I have written a short paragraph (5 lines approx.) about myself, my passions and interests. For example, ‘I am a reliable, passionate and motivated student in Year 9 at the I’m Awesome College. I am always striving to be the best I can be with high standards and expectations. I take responsibility for my own learning and commit to all that I involve myself in. I am competitive at netball… etc.’
- My next subheading is ‘skills’. See above for some tips if you are unsure.
Page 2 of your resume
A reminder, these are just tips and ideas for you. It is up to you to use your initiative (a strengths of yours) to pick what advice speaks to you, how you might use it or tailor it to suit you, or does it give you other ideas of other things to include?
The second page of my resume includes subheadings like my education, what courses I have done and what jobs I have had previously. The following are ideas of possible subheadings you might use. I suggest putting them in order of when you did them, and include dates.
- Education (where you are going to school, what year level you are in and what subjects you have/are studying)
- Extra-Curricular (are you involved in any other activities outside of school? Like sport, music, art or things like debating? Have you participated in school activities like sport days or concerts?)
- Employment or Volunteer Work (have you worked before? If so, where and what did you do? If you haven’t worked before, have you volunteered anywhere? Again, where and what did you do? Have you been a part of any fundraising? If so, what for?)
- Achievements (have you won any awards like school captain, high test score in a subject, participated in interesting projects or won a race anywhere?)
- Experiences and interests (have you been on any school camps, or family holidays overseas or anywhere that gives you life experience? This is where you can think about the type of position you are going for and about other things you may have been a part of that would make you suitable and right for this job)
- Use dot points and separate your lines so it’s easy to read
- Include a separate page at the end just for your references. A reference is someone your potential employer may call and talk to about what you have written in your resume. So it is important that you ask the people to be a reference before you list them!
- Include three references (these people can’t be relatives. Perhaps a favourite teacher you might have, a sport coach or someone you have volunteered for or worked for). So you would list their name, email address and phone number. If you choose to, you could write a sentence or two about why they are a reference for you. For example, John Green (followed by contact details) – able to comment on my enthusiasm and passion for learning, my commitment to academics and ability to balance school with my passion for sport.
Did you find this post helpful? Is there any other questions you have that I have not addressed? Let me know!