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December 7 , 2014  -  Issue #38

Learning To Thrive No Matter What Is Around You Leads To Working Happy

In college, a professor once said to me that if I wanted to be a leader, I needed to have a spring within myself to draw from. A “spring” can be faith, confidence, strength, connection to your intuition or commitment to your values and principles.
Why does this matter? You do not have much control of what happens around you. You do have control of yourself.  The world is changing. You can encounter chaos, uncertainty, negative emotions and upheavals all in the course of a day.
How do you go on with your life and work in the midst of this all? You learn to take your own counsel and stay centered in yourself. You can cultivate your awareness of what is around you and then determine how you will respond to and live within it. 

Here are some things you can try:
  • Practice being fully in the present moment.
  • Be clear on your values.
  • Learn to stop when you lose your center and find ways to regain it.
  • Believe in yourself.
Rudyard Kipling’s famous poem If advises that you keep your head when all about you are losing theirs. That is advice well taken if you want to be working happy!
photo: Biederman,

Email me if you'd like to go further with this. I’m happy to help you get started!

photo: ermanno vanino
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What's Up For You?

We love answering your questions on your journey to working happy!

Q: I know that I am coasting in my work. I do not have the motivation to put more into my job, as it takes a lot of effort, and I also know, that to do so, I will have to step out of my comfort zone. What do you think about coasting, Ann?

A: Coasting can serve positive purposes at various times in your life. Sometimes, coasting can give you space for: things that need your attention outside of work, regrouping after a change or when you are experiencing uncertainty about your next steps. Coasting can be counterproductive when it is due to avoidance, laziness, lack of confidence to take your next steps or letting another person obstruct you.
It is interesting that you mention stepping out of your comfort zone. That is something worth looking at. Why are you reluctant to step out of your comfort zone? If the reasons involve fear, there’s something you can do. Determine what you need to be supported as you step out of your comfort zone. Doing so will remove a significant obstacle and you may find your motivation and passion for your work returning.           
Do you have a question you'd like answered?
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Contact Working Happy
  • See discipline as your ally, not your enemy
  • A quiet mind keeps you centered and in control. See my blog post: Ten Ways To Balance Your Mind's Unproductive Chatter
  • Have fun during the holidays this year. Find ways to lessen your stress so that you can enjoy them!
Click here for the words of Rudyard Kipling’s Poem If.


I have created a new Twitter handle, @WorldChrysalis. Its focus is getting through the changes our world is going through in a positive manner. Check it out.

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Meet Ann Vanino
“Your coaching had such a positive impact on my life. I'll forever be appreciative and thankful for the work we did.”
Ann is a career and new directions coach whose passion is supporting people as they create the life they want to live and working in organizations to increase managers’ skills and self-confidence. Ann’s journey has taken her from a childhood in New York City, to an environmental career working for government in Washington DC and New York City, working in the private sector and founding her own business in Los Angeles. Subsequently, Ann embarked on a second career as a coach and now lives in the High Mojave Desert of southern California, where she continues her coaching and is inspired every day by the solitude, beauty and silence of the desert and mountains that surround her.

Ann is the author of four books: Chrysalis: Personal Transformation From The Inside Out, Power Stories, Leadership On Trial and Coaching Corner Volume 1. Visit her at
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