Between Doors – Uncovering What’s Next in a Mid-Life Career Crisis

There are so many wise old sayings out there that are powerful – and that can also trigger many of my clients.  One of them is when one door closes another door opens.  It is a true statement.  It can be a powerful to believe.  It can give hope. It can also be angering when the time between the one door closing and the other door opening is long and drawn out seeming like an eternity with no end.  It is frustrating to be in that dark hallway between what was known and is now gone, and what exciting new opportunity is on the horizon but has not yet materialized.  It is a difficult time especially when the transitional time revolves around one’s job.  There are added stressors of financial stability and self-worth. Has a guiding dream lost its spark? Has once inspiring work begun to feel stale? Does your work or your life feel too small for what you are becoming? Have you found yourself forced into a time of career transition? Do you dream of work that is more true, more vital and more fully you? Is what is next for your professionally unclear?

Rikk Hansen
Rikk Hansen

Listen below as Rikk Hansen, one of the nation’s leading mid-career renewal experts, talks about that dark place of questioning, confusion, and the unknown, and how to move into a new success map for what is next. This is a terrific episode for anyone who is re-evaluating their career, who has been thrown into a job search, or who is exploring the idea of being an entrepreneur.  Learn how to navigate that dark hallway, tune into the truth of what is next for you, and, as Rikk says, become your Brilliant Next.


HerStory – Barbara Joan Zeitz records women’s history

Each time a girl opens a book and reads a womanless history, she learns she is worth less. – Myra Pollack Sadker

As I was browsing The National Women’s History Project website, I ran across this quote.  It was so powerful to me – especially in light of the incredible story of Mala Yousafzai.  Mala is a teenage girl who was just nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.  At the age of 14, she stood up for everyone’s right to education, at the risk of her own death.  It is a powerful story, but she is just one of many amazing women through the ages.

Unfortunately the accomplishments and courageous actions of so many women have been minimized, erased or ignored over the years.  Women have done much, but they never seem to receive the attention they deserve.  More importantly than the achievements of one woman is the realization of how a womanless history has led to women to believe they are less than men.

A Thesaurus of Women From Cherry Blossoms to Cell PhonesListen below for an eye-opening discussion with Barbara Joan Zeitz women’s historian, author and presenter as we explore the importance of women’s history and how to keep our stories alive.

We will also touch on some important women who have been forgotten and recently revived in the book, A Thesaurus of Women From Cherry Blossoms to Cell Phones.  Women like the 1964 Olympic gold medalist who could not obtain a US college athletic scholarship because none existed for women or like 17th century Mexican who wanted to pretend to be a boy so she could go to school.  Like the woman who developed occupational safety and health standards for others while she worked under gender-abusive standards or like the scientific women behind the DNA helix and wireless communication technology but never received credit.


Melissa Heisler, Stress Reduction Expert


An amazing thing happened, I made a mistake.  And it was a doozy too.  I set up my radio show incorrectly so my 30-minute show was abruptly ended in 15-minutes.  It is so important to me to have the radio show go smoothly because any missteps will be forever accessible therefore having an effect on my character, credibility, and how others perceive me.  However making that mistake was not the amazing thing.  What I was blown away by was how I handled it.

In the past this incident would have lasted days, weeks or years in my memory.  I would have replayed it again and again each time further instilling the belief of how stupid I was, of how I hurt others, and how I was unworthy of joy because of what I had done.  I would have used this incident to shame myself into oblivion.  But this time was different.  This time I apologized to my guests and made it up to them with an hour-long show later this month.  Then I forgave myself.  Yes, I made a mistake but it did not affect who I am.  Yes, I made an error but I was not an error.  Yes, things did not go as planned but that didn’t change my self-worth.

Melissa Heisler, Empowerment Coach
Melissa Heisler, Empowerment Coach

Perhaps for some of you this is a no brainer.  But my fellow perfectionists may resonate with my story.  How often do we judge ourselves by our actions and not our inherent worth?  How often do we forgive others but replay in our minds how we could have done better?  How often do we translate the ups and downs of being human into a judgment of our character?  There was such an amazing lightness when I release the burden of self-attack and moved into self-acceptance and true freedom.  I took responsibility for my actions and fixed the situation as best as I could, but the step I didn’t take was punishing myself for my error.  What would it have served? 

Brene Brown has a wonderful talk on TED about failure, shame, and vulnerability.  As she says, “Shame is the intensely painful feeling that we are unworthy of love and belonging.”  The mistakes I made in the past would have sent me into shame and would eventually attack my worth.  Being vulnerable about our errors releases shame and builds up our worth.  Shame holds us back from being all that we can be.  Releasing shame empowers us.

What are some things you are ashamed about?  What would happen if instead of hiding your mistakes and errors because of your shame you owned them, shared them, and embraced them releasing the power of vulnerability and acceptance?  Be brave and share your stories here so you too can be released from your self-imposed prison of shame.  Feel the power of vulnerability.

Village of Arlington Heights

Building Communities – Arlington Heights Mayor

When I started my small business the first thing I did was join the local chamber.  It was a great way for me to meet other business owners, learn about the city, connect to residents, and create a relationship with the city government.  Being part of the chamber not only helped launch my business, but more importantly it made me part of the local community.

Village of Arlington HeightsThere are many different aspects of a good community.  There are the local residents who by living there benefit from public services and that unique culture.  There are businesses which provide goods, services, and employment.  There are government agencies who manage the safety and security of the community.  And there are local non-profit agencies providing valuable services for those who would not be able to receive them otherwise.  There is a very important symbiotic relationship between small businesses and the residents of that city.

My local community of Arlington Heights Illinois is very important to me as I both live and work here.  It is interesting to be not only invested in the local schools, park districts, and streets of the Village as a resident, but also to be active in the issues and policies affecting local businesses.  A thriving business community supports the local residents, and a healthy population is important to the economic viability of every small business.

Village of Arlington Heights President Tom Hayes
Village of Arlington Heights President Tom Hayes

As a resident of the Village of Arlington Heights, I was excited to have our Village President as a guest on The Empowerment show.  Tom Hayes was recently elected Village President after outgoing President Arlene Mulder held that post for 20 years.  Tom talked about his belief in leadership by example.  Tom believes that “building consensus and encouraging involvement of Board members, residents and business owners throughout our community is the best way to advance the quality of life in Arlington Heights.”  Whether you are a resident of Arlington Heights or not, listen below for a lively discussion about building communities, supporting small businesses, and providing positive quality of life for residents of a small town.  Learn how your actions as a business or resident can affect your local quality of life.