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Creating Striations: Defining 2013

Kara Lynn Bird (Flickr)

By Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter

Pensive, yet excited.

Intellectually wrung, yet physically and emotionally rested.

Lingering, deliberating, strategizing, planning, poised for renewed momentum.

The days between Christmas and New Year’s are gently stretched and pulled with the weight of contemplation, and hope. Renewed resolve to complete the incomplete and start the unstarted provide momentum and hope.

The days leading into 2013 are robust. Weighing heavily on my mind are vows to:

1. Perpetuate My 2012 Resolution to Get Fit. My husband, Captain Rob and I hit the ground running in January 2012 to shed weight and strengthen our bodies. We succeeded! As of today (Dec. 30), I’ve lost 30 pesky pounds while also focusing on toning and sculpting.

After (Dec. 2012)

The before picture (on the bottom) shows me in the midst of transformation (about four months in), while the after photo (on the top) illustrates where I’m at today (taken the week before Christmas).

While delighted for the changes accomplished in the past 12 months, I’m not yet done. However, monitoring the scale is no longer my number-one priority (though, I aspire to shed another 10 lbs.); as importantly, my goal in 2013 is to heighten strength training. This includes increasing the weights I lift and changing up my routines throughout the year.

A significant aspect of my escalated strength training initiative is my goal to create striations in my shoulders and greater muscle definition overall.

Moreover, I realize that health and fitness objectives are never completed. While celebrating milestones is important, the organic nature of the human body requires continual effort and change. My vow is to continue this fitness journey throughout my life.

Before (Apr. 2012)

2. Revive Mine – and Rob’s – Personal Voice in the CareerTrend Blog. This past year was satisfyingly expansive as the CareerTrend brand was transported via Glassdoor to US News, and beyond as we were represented in a variety of high-profile news media including Business Insider, AOL and FOX Business.  However, along the way, we slowed a bit in creating our own personally-imbued content.  My goal is that 2013 will ensure a minimum of three posts per month on the CareerTrend blog from either Rob or me.

3. Deepen Communications With My CareerTrend Clientele through regular reach-out via social media, email and quality-focused newsletter content.

4. Serve My Clients’ Needs, With Vigor. While the intellectual and emotional investment often is daunting, and I am satisfied that my clients are reaping value beyond their financial investment, I know I can do even better. I strive to strengthen my resolve and continue to improve on my value to my clients.

5. Show (don’t just tell) My Family and Friends I Value Them, more readily and frequently than I did in 2012.

6. Visit Kansas City, Missouri, and in particular, spend time with my parents and sisters/their families, and friends, who may be available.

7. Increase My LinkedIn Investment. This business, marketing and relationship propelling network is often underutilized. My job is to remain abreast of latest trends and techniques that will lift my clients’ careers; as well, I personally need to continue to expand my value and offer meaningful contributions through daily updates and reading, commenting on and sharing my networks’ content.

8. Create a Zen Office. While focusing in on my writing often consumes my imagination and transports my mind, I still desire (and need) a more encouraging, stimulating and motivating environment in which to conduct my day-to-day business and design career and blogging stories.

9. Rein in My Run-Rampant Email In-box. This speaks for itself. I plan to work on this through the month of January. Clearing the clutter of the accumulated emails will augment the ‘zen’ mentioned above.

10. Support Fellow Business, Marketing and Careers Bloggers Better. Encourage, promote and comment. This will mean better organizing my time and centering efforts on those folks (friends, colleagues) whose intellectually and emotionally replete blogs I most admire.

11. Be a Better Wife and Partner. I am excited about the goals and dreams Rob and I have articulated with one another for the rest of our lives, and in particular for the next 12 months. I vow to be fully present, energized and communicative as we move through the day-to-day. It’s often the little things that shape and bolster the foundation of a marriage. 

12. Read More. I must prove to myself, and to Rob, that the Barnes & Noble ‘Nook’ was a wise investment. I must read more in 2013.

13. Improve My Relationship With God. I will continue reading my C.S. Lewis book; download the Bible to my Nook; and talk to God more frequently.

Have You Committed to Your 13 Vows for 2013?

What projects, goals and/or commitments would you like to address, reinforce, start or re-start? If you haven’t taken time to do so, what is stopping you? I’ve read many naysayer posts indicating that ‘resolutions’ are out, but I must object. We can resolve to achieve (most) anything we want. It’s about taking a stand to commit to what’s important, then adapting your sails throughout the year to adjust for the unexpected while maintaining an eye on the destination.

What better time to cut your losses for the prior year and start with a fresh slate than now, as 2012 comes to a close? New years are considered ‘markers’ for a reason! They are chronologically defining!

And, don’t forget to Think BIG! While day-to-day action steps may range from quite small to very large, make sure that your end goals are LARGER than your current reality. Create milestones and markers, and celebrate along the way!







Quit Being a Career Lightweight

By Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter

Your career is organic. It is a living, virtually breathing organism that needs to be nourished and exercised. Without attentive, continual care, you cannot expect your career heartbeat to remain vibrant and strong.

To prevent career malnourishment, consider applying these five activities to your daily routine:

1. Stop Weighing Down Conversations. Too many people, especially early in their career or in the throes of transition, want to be open to all opportunities and are unwilling to ‘limit’ their options. Therefore, they weigh down career conversations with non-nutritional messages that lead to flabby results. Forget that. Reign in your fear, and get absolutely focused on what you want and where you fit. Then, lean up your communications with well-honed, sharp content that lifts your career advancement to new levels.

2. Build Up a Value Proposition. This means, you must take the time to do the heavy intellectual lifting. Perform extensive introspection—in writing—as to what your unique areas of value are and weave these into your resume, online profiles, emails, texts and networking orations, among other venues. Ensure you are intimately digesting your own value and that it pulsates throughout your career bloodstream. This will make the natural articulation of who you are, and why you are different from the next great candidate, possible.

Continue reading, here: 5 Ways To Pump Up Your Career Muscle.


Image via Kim + Chantelle | Flickr

“Be Inspired”: 10 People Who Inspirit Me!

By Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter

For me, being inspired is important.

That is one of the many (many) traits that motivated me to marry Rob; he is inspirational. “He makes me want to be a better woman” – adapting a favorite Jack Nicholson quote from As Good As It Gets.

In recently very public posts, HERE and HERE, I’ve laid out Rob’s and my fitness transformation initiative that began January 2012. It’s worked, but not because I am so strong or disciplined–although, I like to think I possess those traits in some modest measure–but more because I am motivated. And, motivation emanates from within, and from without.

Today, I’d like to share some external influencers that rouse me to be more, try harder, embrace the process, be exhilarated by both small, and large, steps forward and simply who help me to feel confident that I can soar to new heights of contentment and life satisfaction.

Rob ‘muscling it up!’ : )

Those Who Motivate Me!

1. Rob Poindexter. Rob is my husband, my best friend and my heart. It is natural, therefore, that he motivates me to be more! His own fitness shift and physical and mental revamp is visually and intellectually invigorating. He also partners with me through our lifetime journey to become better individually, and as a result, each a better half of the whole.

SmashFit (Heather Frey) via flickr



2. SmashFit (Heather Frey). She writes, “Your fitness is 100% mental. Your body won’t go where your mind doesn’t push it.” I regularly read her “mojovational” wisdom HERE (on Facebook) and HERE (on Twitter).

3. The Biggest Loser contestants and trainers. Rob and I have watched this reality television show together for the past 2-3 seasons, end to end, cheering on the contestants and being inspired by their tenacity in achieving phenomenal weight-loss and fitness goals. Despite last season’s unseemly drama, the end results still astounded and motivated us.

The theme, “No Excuses” is one we embraced, and which propelled us to launch our January 2nd change effort. Perhaps our favorite contestant was Kim, a former professional wrestler who shed 118 lbs (trimming from 252 to a stunning 134 lbs). Her determination–and results–galvanized us!

4. Dr. Oz. His healthy living segments have helped enkindle our diets and helped us carve out new healthy living habits, from providing information on herbs and spices to food selection processes (including how to read labels for better decision-making) and much more!

5. My sister, Susan Barrett-Hensel, a baby boomer who likely would outdistance most gen-y’ers in the area of fitness. She exudes fitness. I admire and respect her dedication, discipline and passion.

Susan participating in the triathlon!

Her successful pursuit to complete a triathlon impressed me, and many others who follow her journey.

6 – 10. Several Facebook and Twitter pals: @CathyLowe, @CindyLarson33, @CarolynSmith, Suzie Kummins-Poirier (@AceConcierge) and  Chele Wells (@TheNetConnector) post regularly resonating, healthy, positive words and also support me in my journey. I aspire to their strength, physically and mentally. In particular, I’m inspired by their triceps, their abs and their energy as I climb the mountain to reach the pushups pinnacle!

In addition, I am a member of a private weight-loss mission group on Facebook, and I tip my hat to the four ladies with whom I exchange encouragement and insights intermittently. Because of the private nature of the assembly, I cannot thank them publicly, but if any of you are reading this, ‘thank you!’ for inspiring.

These are just a handful of the people who inspirit me to be more, to achieve more, to DO more every single day, in relation to my specific health goals.

When it comes to specific goals that you have been struggling to achieve, do you feel yourself falling a bit behind?  Whose motivational energy and insights might you tap to help compel you forward?

If you are looking for a health and fitness inspirer or career trainer and motivator to boost your goals forward, just look around you, people who are achieving the goals you yearn to achieve are everywhere. Tap into their energy and you can soar alongside them!

If you are in need of a professional career strategist to help motivate, inspire and provide pragmatic, pithy career story-telling that will help attain your career goals, please contact us at today!

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