Love Your Career, Love Your Life

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Written by Melissa Hefferman for Mywhirld.

When Bryan connected with me on LinkedIn, my curiosity and I sensed a like mindedness so I took the connection seriously.  This led to some wonderfully open exchanges that have left me asking myself, in contemplating writing something for his website, what is it that sets me apart from other recruiters and what value do I even have to add on the subject?  Or am I just one of many; clocking in and out each day, collecting a paycheck, chasing the almighty dollar, allowing myself and my worth to be defined by an arbitrary career in order to exist in this man-made world of money, business and commerce.  Then it hit me, because in reality I am a woman who has a great passion for her profession and who constantly thinks about life and how to live the best one possible:  my greatest value as a recruiter is intrinsic.  I’ve scratched my strictly informative toned article and am going to do what I do best instead, speak from the heart.

I am an ENFP, who knows she is an ENFP, and I am committed to improving upon my weaknesses and emotional intelligence because I’m striving for excellence in life.  That may sound like a lofty claim but optimism, as well as a high level of empathy and genuine love of people, is inherent in my personality.  Recruiting and I are, quite simply, a natural fit.  My self-awareness has brought me to a profession that is aligned with my personality strengths and likes perfectly and it truly does bring me great joy to work with, encourage, and champion my applicants during their career search.  And is not joy what we all ultimately want in our careers?  Not just to survive, but to thrive?  I believe that it is.  We all want excellence deep down and the first step towards it, the off-paper attribute that I search for in every applicant that I interview because I want them to succeed, is: do you know who you are?

Knowing who we are is a life-long process but our awareness can start immediately.  If you haven’t before, take a personality assessment online, examine your strengths and weaknesses then think about your chosen profession and whether or not it is aligned with your natural abilities and talents.  If it is, your chance for success is greater, keep at it and acknowledge your weaknesses so that you can improve upon them.  If it isn’t, and you want to live your  best life possible, I suggest that you have some changes to embrace.

From a recruiter’s perspective, I often find that you can hone in on this in interviews by asking open ended questions about the environments an applicant has worked in previously, what their likes and dislikes were, and then listening.  Above all else, listen.  If you are open, caring, and attentive (a recruiter who is in the right profession), people will open themselves up to you in return.  Hard skills and experience are either there or they are not; it is tuning into the soft skills and a person’s personality that will allow you to assist them best and place them in a position and environment where they will have an opportunity to thrive.  Isn’t that what it’s really all about?

We will all spend a tangible amount of time during our lives at work.  If we stop for just one moment and examine what our own strengths and weaknesses/likes and dislikes are beyond mere titles and salaries, and adjust accordingly, we may invariably place ourselves in a position and environment where we will shatter even our own expectations with passion and joy.  I tend to think of it like this:  to love your career passionately is to love your life passionately.   Why settle for anything less?

“There is no such thing as work life balance, there is only life” ~ Unknown

About the Author

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Melissa Hefferman is a Canadian expat who has called sunny San Diego home since 2004.  She misses her family but not winter.

In 2014, after examining her past work environments and related successes and failures (large corporate companies, small companies, remote experiences, sales and recruiting blended desk models), she knew that she would thrive best in a small company, working in an office with open and positive colleagues, in a recruiting only capacity (helping people is her passion).  She found just what she was looking for in her current role and feels blessed and grateful to work with a team of dedicated professionals who are like-minded and who inspire her on a daily basis.

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