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    10 Phrases Successful Women Use at Work

    There’s no way around it: we have to master workplace communication if we want to succeed in our careers. What makes the task all the more complicated is trying to find the perfect thing to say and way to say it in order to communicate clearly and be taken seriously. Unfortunately, even simple phrases can be perceived in a negative way. If I say, “Sorry about that!” my colleagues may believe I’m weak. If I say, “Friendly reminder…” my coworkers may assume I’m being passive-aggressive. So, we’re left frequently trying to strike the perfect balance in every interaction.
    It’s easy to get caught up in overanalyzing every tiny detail. Does this sound okay? Am I being too nice? Did I use too many exclamation points? The list truly does go on. While we’re still trying to figure out the exact perfect amount of exclamation points, there are a few phrases successful women have in their back pockets to ensure they’re communicating effectively. Here they are:

    1. “I don’t see it this way, and here’s why.”
    Stating your opinion—especially when it’s different from other viewpoints in the room—can feel intimidating and nerve-wracking. I’d be lying if I said I haven’t held back from sharing at times. 
    But here’s the truth: your opinion is as important and relevant as everyone else’s, and you deserve to share it! It’s not rude to disagree with what others are saying, and you don’t have to apologize for having a different opinion, either. When sharing your opinion, it’s essential to consider the timing and your justification to back up your argument. 
    For example, if you’re in a meeting and your colleague asks if anyone has a different point of view, share yours while it’s relevant, don’t wait until after the fact. And to back up your reasoning for seeing things differently, make sure you have some concrete examples or references to share. You could say, “I don’t see us needing to return to the office five days per week, and here’s why. My team’s productivity has not declined. I want to continue supporting our team members with the flexibility to meet their at-home responsibilities because they provide better output with this freedom.”  

    2. “I have more thoughts to share.”
    We’ve all been there: when you finally worked up the courage to share your perspective, and before you can finish your thoughts, a coworker interrupts and steals your thunder. 
    It happens all the time, and even though it can feel discouraging, it’s okay to jump back into the conversation and continue sharing your thoughts. If you’re sitting in a meeting and a coworker interrupts or speaks over you, try to find a natural pause in the conversation to say, “I have more thoughts to share. Thank you for your input, but I’d like to finish where I left off before we move on further.” Asserting yourself helps ensure your ideas are heard and gives you a well-deserved seat at the table. 
    This phrase also works well when a meeting gets cut short, and you don’t have the opportunity to finish providing your perspective. You can follow up via email and let your team members know you have more thoughts to share and outline them in the email or schedule a follow-up meeting to continue the discussion.

    3. “My workload is full right now. What if we ask X?”
    There’s a big difference between being a team player and getting taken advantage of, but successful women aren’t afraid to draw boundaries between the two. Women get asked to take on responsibilities outside their job descriptions all the time—be it planning an event or taking notes during a meeting. 
    Extra tasks add up quickly and can lead to burnout and frustration. So, the next time you get asked to take on extra work outside of your role (without additional compensation or recognition), don’t be afraid to clarify what does and does not fit into your workload, especially if the tasks aren’t part of your job description. But instead of leaving your team member hanging, try offering an alternative solution to avoid being a bottleneck. 
    If you aren’t sure where to start with this phrase, try using it the next time you get asked to take on a project you really don’t have time for that’s also outside of your normal workflow. You can say something like, “My workload is full right now, but I know X is really passionate about this subject and might be able to take this on.”

    4. “I deserve a raise.”
    The gender pay gap continues to exist. Confident and strong women know their worth and aren’t afraid to ask for what they deserve, even when it’s anxiety-inducing. 
    Even though we all wish we could simply state that we deserve a raise and receive one, there’s some additional work involved that will help strengthen your argument. Do your research to understand a fair rate for your role and create a compelling list of reasons that support why you deserve a raise, including your most recent achievements and contributions. Consider preparing your argument for your mid-year or end-of-year performance review, or find another time to talk with your manager (when you feel ready). 
    Being direct and confident about deserving a raise conveys to your manager that you know your worth and will fight for it (as you should). Add this phrase to your vocabulary to get what you want and deserve. 

    5. “I’m proud of my effort on this project.”
    We don’t give ourselves enough credit. In a world where we’re taught to downplay our accomplishments and avoid taking up too much space, pausing to recognize our efforts can feel unnecessarily boastful. 
    Hear me loud and clear: you have every right to celebrate your success and achievements, and being proud of yourself is an incredible feeling. And you don’t have to celebrate in silence, either. 
    1:1s with your manager, performance reviews, and team meetings are great opportunities to draw attention to your wins and effort. Don’t be afraid to give yourself a pat on the back, especially in team meetings where your teammates might not realize how much effort truly went into a project. 

    6. “I won’t be able to make the meeting. Can you provide me with a recap afterward?”
    Successful women know they must ruthlessly prioritize their schedule, and sometimes that includes turning down meeting invitations and removing themselves from projects where they know their team can cover the work without them.
    Speaking from experience, I often feel guilty when I turn down a meeting (who gave me the authority to do such a thing?), but the reality is that sometimes it’s necessary. Other priorities (including responsibilities outside of work) may be at the top of the list, and that’s perfectly acceptable. Letting your teammates know you can’t make a meeting but would like a recap afterward conveys that you still care about the topics being discussed without needing to be directly involved.

    7. “I appreciate you taking the time to chat today.”
    It’s tempting to apologize for asking coworkers for their time, especially when calendars are jam-packed. You might feel guilty for claiming an open time slot between meetings, but if it’s for a good reason, there’s no need to feel bad about it. 
    Using the phrase, “I appreciate you taking the time to chat today,” lets others know that you value their time without being overly apologetic. Thanking others for their time is a polite way to claim time for an important and necessary conversation that’s relevant to your workload.

    8. “Thanks for your patience!” 
    Unless it’s explicitly written in your company policies or you have an agreement with your team, there technically aren’t any requirements around when you must respond to an email or chat. So what you might consider a late reply might not be late. And perhaps the other items on your to-do list took precedence.
    No matter the circumstances, using the phrase, “Thanks for your patience!” is a great way to remove the self-penalization of late responses. This is an easy and quick swap for the oh-so-popular “Sorry for the delay!” note we’ve all sent.

    9. “Reach out if you have any questions or concerns.”
    You don’t have to explain or ask if your ideas make sense. We all have great ideas to share. Rather than worrying about whether the way you verbalized your thoughts made sense, encouraging questions opens up a two-way discussion between you and your colleagues. 
    Share your points (either verbally or in written format) and end with the phrase, “Reach out if you have any questions or concerns,” to wrap up the conversation and signal that you’re done sharing. 
    Successful women in the workplace stand confidently behind their ideas while offering an opportunity to provide additional context if needed—no more overthinking, overexplaining, or self-doubting. 

    10. “I appreciate your feedback, and I’ll consider it.”
    Feedback helps us grow and evolve, and the most successful businesswomen seek feedback, consider it, and implement change where necessary. That said, not all pieces of feedback are worthy of action, and sometimes it requires time to digest and absorb that information.
    Maybe your teammate reaches out to let you know that you’ve come across as passive-aggressive in a couple of emails lately. In a situation like this, it can be easy to get defensive. Instead, take the feedback in and respond with the phrase, “I appreciate your feedback, and I’ll consider how I might phrase things differently.”
    Listen actively even when feedback is hard to hear, and show appreciation for the person who gave the feedback. Commit to reflecting on it even if you decide no further action is needed.

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    In a Flop Era? Here’s How To Bounce Back From Failure

    You win some, you lose some. And if you’re here with me now, I am going to go ahead and assume that you’ve found yourself in what TikTok likes to call “a flop era,” which essentially refers to a period of time in which someone experiences a failure—whether it’s epically large or only small enough for you to notice. While the size of the flop doesn’t matter all that much, the way it can make you feel, no matter how big or small, can take a toll on you and make figuring out how the hell to bounce back from failure feel like a colossal undertaking.
    But hey, without failure every now and then, how are we ever going to learn and grow? It’s a natural, albeit annoying, part of life that we all have been through and will inevitably go through again. Luckily, there are practical steps you can take to bounce back from failure and become stronger than before, and we’re sharing them in a step-by-step guide ahead.

    How To Bounce Back From Failure: A Step-by-Step Guide

    Give yourself a break
    First things first: Take a deep breath and give yourself grace. Failing doesn’t mean that you’re a failure. Read that again. If you failed at achieving your goals, don’t let that lead you to a fear of not being good enough to reach them. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your circumstances or you’re disappointed, that is OK, but don’t beat yourself up for it. Take this time to relax and reflect so you can come back stronger than ever.

    Find the lessons
    I know that the last thing you want to do is spend time finding the light in a less-than-ideal situation, but the truth is that there really always is a silver lining; there is always a lesson (or two or three) that you can take away from a crap situation. Whether you know you did things that led you to where you are now or you believe that what happened had nothing to do with you, I urge you to use this as an opportunity to learn from it. And don’t be afraid to dig deep and get uncomfortable in doing so. Maybe this means you’re learning more about yourself, someone else, your career, or something else altogether. Either way, the lessons you learn now will help you (excuse me for sounding like a professor who uses too many cliches) find success in the future.

    Develop a plan for moving forward
    Nothing changes if nothing changes. Harsh, I know, but once you’ve spent time reflecting on what happened and what you can learn from it, there’s no sense in wallowing in the past. Instead, start developing a plan.
    To start, ask yourself the following questions: How will I approach my goals differently knowing what I know now? What kind of support do I need that I didn’t have before? How can I avoid the things that interrupted my progress the first time around? Next, think about ways that you can hold yourself accountable: scheduling check-ins with yourself on your calendar, telling a friend about your plan, or keeping a log.
    Now, write down your new plan, including as much or as little detail as you need. This could look like a written step-by-step plan with check-in points, a refreshed vision board, or an intention stuck to your mirror to remind yourself what you need to do every day for your goals. It doesn’t really matter if it’s written down or in your head. All that matters is that you do what works best for you—otherwise, you will find yourself in the same situation as before.

    Take small steps toward your goal
    You might feel like you’re behind because you’re starting over on your goals or pivoting your plans altogether. That is normal, but the reality is that you’re not behind and you don’t need to rush; everything happens in its own time. So don’t go overscheduling yourself to death trying to “catch up”, and instead, set your eyes on the small steps you need to take in order to yield big results.
    For example, if you wanted to start working out more but “fell off the wagon,” it doesn’t do you any good to go to the gym twice a day for two hours each to make up for the lost time. Start small and commit to 2-3 days a week for 30 minutes, and when you can stick to that, then you can adjust your workout routine. Going in too hard too fast can lead to burnout, and that is what we want to avoid if we are trying to make long-term changes for the better and avoid failure.

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    I’m Personal Development Obsessed—These Are the Skillshare Classes Helping Me Grow

    A short, four-month stint living in Washington D.C. taught me one thing: none of the guys I seemed to match with on Hinge had any hobbies. In fact, the concept of carving out time for something you chose actively not to monetize or share on your resume was completely foreign to them. Wait… so you *choose* to read? You’re knitting just for… fun? I stared back and responded with a flat “yes”—that’s kind of the point.
    I don’t blame them. In our world that emphasizes productivity above all else, we’ve all been fed the idea that maximizing our hours is the ultimate goal. Boredom? Impossible—I could be growing my audience on TikTok! But in recent years, we’ve collectively turned away from this inclination toward toxic productivity (the #girlboss is dead, after all). Thankfully, this has inspired a new perspective on personal development, one that pursues growth for growth’s sake alone. Professional and personal gratification, after all, rarely come from the external measures of success—stats, peer approval, etc.—that we believe will make us feel like enough. Fulfillment is an inside job.
    Of course, we can sharpen our skills and go after growth to support our careers—this isn’t a bad thing. It’s only when we prioritize our to-do lists and tasks above all else (or in an effort to avoid ourselves), that concern arises. As I mentioned a few times to the aforementioned political and finance bros: the ever-elusive quest for balance is the key. That’s right, I’m a fun first date.
    So, to uplevel my career, dive deeper into my hobbies, and satisfy my ever-curious mind, I’ve been making the most of my Skillshare account. Keep reading for the classes I’ve favorited and am plowing through. Growth awaits. 

    What is Skillshare?
    Back to the beginning. Similar to platforms like LinkedIn Learning, Coursera, and Khan Academy, Skillshare is an online learning community that allows users to access educational video content. And as you’ll see from the classes I’ve been taking, that content runs the gamut. You can enroll in everything from illustration to UI/UX design to video production to making your own furniture. Whatever you want to learn, there’s a course for it.
    To start, you can enroll in a free month-long trial. After that, you can select from either a monthly membership ($32/month) or an annual subscription ($168/year, broken down to roughly $14/month).

    My Favorite Skillshare Classes
    With 35,000+ classes, it can be easy to get overwhelmed when starting Skillshare. However, as a member, I’ve found that the user experience allows me to sort through and explore classes easily, helping me find the exact specific niche I’m looking for (clay miniature sandwiches, anyone?). And, once you start using it for a little while, the algorithm begins serving you up classes that end up being exactly what you’re looking for. With the basics established, let’s get into the Skillshare classes I’m obsessing over:

    Sewing Basics: Make Your Own Clothing
    I’ve been wanting to learn how to sew for years. Based on friends’ creations and all the inspo I’ve taken from social media, it’s clear that when you know how to sew, the sartorial possibilities are endless. After being gifted a sewing machine for my birthday (the Brother CS7000X, as recommended by Wirecutter), I set out to find the perfect beginner course.
    “Sewing Basics,” taught by designer and patternmaker Denise Bayron, is a two-hour, beginner-level course that takes you through sewing fundamentals to set you up for any clothing project. In it, you’ll learn:

    How to set up your sewing workspace (including how to actually work your machine!)
    Essential techniques like sewing straight lines, corners, and various seam styles
    Tips on how to shop for fabrics

    This is the perfect course to begin your sewing journey. Not only is the class organized with an intuitive progression, building on the skills you learn within each video, but Denise’s instruction is world-class. She speaks clearly, patiently, and with an obvious enthusiasm that makes every video engaging. What’s more, the overhead camera angles give you a close-up visual of the techniques and skills as she describes and teaches them.

    Start Your Creative Career: Build a Sharp, Smart Online Presence
    If entrepreneurship is calling, start this course asap. While social media is awash with countless creators and business owners living the dream as their own boss, it can be hard to know how to go out on your own. As the course’s instructor, entrepreneur Sonja Rasula, explains, she isn’t teaching rocket science. However, the skills shared in this course comprise the essential business training to help you establish your brand and grow your presence online and on social media.
    Oftentimes, creative professionals aren’t equipped with the nitty-gritty information to get their business off the ground. Sonja covers everything from creating a brand bible to building a website to utilizing social media effectively. In this course, you can expect to learn:

    How to interpret website and social media analytics to uplevel your content and drive conversions
    How to build a brand bible to effectively convey who you are and what you offer
    Tips for designing your website to create a streamlined user experience

    If you’re an artist, designer, writer, small business owner, or anyone who wants to build a creative career, this course sets you up with tools to effectively communicate your brand online. Not only does it include fundamental information, but I was surprised to discover in each video small, but game-changing tips that have ultimately transformed how I share my work and content.

    Content Marketing: Blogging for Growth
    Blogging has been around for even longer than many of us have been alive. And while some may assume that blogging requires less thought and effort than other forms of writing, effective blog posts are the result of strategic planning and intention. There’s so much that goes into blogging—from brainstorming a topic to outlining your draft to finishing things off with a headline that draws readers in—writing for the web requires countless more skills than you might initially think.
    This course is basically Content Marketing 101, taking you through the basics of what constitutes an effective blog post. And though it discusses mostly fundamentals, I found that it’s both great for beginners as well as marketers who want to improve their content production skills (hi, it’s me!). In it, you’ll learn:

    How to build your audience as a blogger/content writer
    An effective approach to writing a blog post start to finish (including how to brainstorm your topic, outline your post, and incorporate research)
    Next steps for building consistency with blogging (how to create an effective editorial calendar)

    I will preface that the instructor, Eric Siu, founder of the growth marketing agency Single Grain, isn’t quite as personable as other teachers. In taking the course, I found it more difficult to engage with what he was saying. However, the content and information he provides is top-notch. Personally, as someone who has built her career writing online, the most valuable lesson I took from this course was how to write a captivating headline—after all, how many articles have you only read the headline of? Probably a few many more than the entire blog post itself.

    Build Your Site & Shop: Beginner’s Guide to Shopify & Website Design
    If you want to establish an online presence—whether for yourself or your online business—having a beautiful and user-friendly website is key. But… you might be intimidated believing that you have to have extensive coding knowledge or pay thousands of dollars to build a website. This course makes it clear: you don’t need either to design a website that works for you.
    A disclaimer: this isn’t a course that’ll teach you all the backend ins and outs of building a website. Instead, if you want to create a website for yourself as a freelancer, small business owner, or a portfolio, I’d suggest enrolling. This course focuses on utilizing Shopify—taking you through all the steps of using the platform, tips for designing your site, and how to determine if you should use free versus paid templates. Some key things you’ll learn:

    A complete and thorough overview of Shopify (how to add products, build collections, and track inventory)
    An effective template for designing your Shopify site plan
    Bonus: how to build a portfolio on Adobe portfolio (great for designers and copywriters)

    As you can tell, this course will be great for you if you’re already considering using Shopify and aren’t sure where to start. While it does touch upon skills and teachings that can apply to other programs and platforms, I would only recommend taking this course if you’ll be hosting your work and product offerings on Shopify.

    Intro to UX: Designing with a User-Centered Approach
    For me, “Intro to UX” was more of a passion project/I’m-curious-about-this-topic course. While my day-to-day tasks don’t specifically require UX/UI knowledge, I do work adjacent to these designers. One day, after a meeting where I realized I had no idea what my co-workers were talking about when they referenced the “user flow” of our site, I decided to dive in. From taking this course, I realized there was a whole discipline of web design that I knew absolutely nothing about—and only wanted to dive into all the deeper.
    Clearly, this isn’t your course if you’re already working within user experience. However, this class is great if you have a casual curiosity about it like myself or if you’re a marketer or creative professional whose own work often coincides with this discipline (again, like myself). A few key things you’ll learn from “Intro to UX”:

    How to understand the user’s end-to-end journey
    How to improve your final product through testing and iterating
    How to identify your audience and prioritize their needs

    Beyond discussing the basics of user experience, the teacher, Cinthya Mohr, Sr. UX Manager at Google, does an incredible job of communicating the philosophy behind UX. Personally, as I began learning about the topic, all of it felt relatively abstract and hard to grasp. But Cinthya uses real-world examples and case studies to convey how user experience shows up in our everyday lives. 
    This is a relatively short, 45-minute class that sets you up with all the basics answering the what and the why behind user design. Definitely recommend pressing play.

    Interior Design Basics: Simple Steps to Your Perfect Space
    Like many of us, I’m home-design obsessed. The viral audio confirms: there’s one thing I get money’s worth from—I’m always at home. Lauren Cox, Design Program Manager for the online interior design brand Havenly, created this course to share the ins and outs of interior design. Yes, how we arrange and style our living spaces depends largely on personal taste and aesthetic. However, there are key principles—rules, if you will—that’ll help you uplevel your home. Expect to walk away from this course knowing the following:

    How to define your personal style and express it consistently throughout your home
    How to style according to specific aesthetics (i.e., Modern Farmhouse and Preppy Coastal)
    The ins and outs of the four key principles every interior designer utilizes: Color, Balance, Scale and Proportion, and Rhythm and Repetition

    I loved this course because Lauren gave concrete, tangible shape to the elements of home design I didn’t know how to describe. Everything from creating a sense of rhythm and balance within your space to developing a process for selecting pieces you’ll love for a lifetime—it’s all here. What’s more, Lauren’s tips apply to any budget and any home size. (PSA: Equipped with the knowledge Lauren provides in this course, you don’t have to be a millionaire to design a space you love.) 

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    How To Ask For a Raise Via Email

    I don’t know about you, but the mere idea of going to my boss, hat in hand, and asking for more money is enough to get my heart rate up. After all, discussing finances is awkward at best and uncomfortable at worst, but meeting with your manager face-to-face at least gives you the opportunity to use your personality, charm, and list of accomplishments to win them over, and asking for a raise via email erases that completely.
    That being said, while requesting a pay raise via email can feel impersonal and unprofessional, it certainly has its upsides. It gives your manager time to consider your request without feeling put on the spot and can remove some anxiety and increase your confidence. And since WFH and digital communications are now commonplace, asking for a salary increase over email is more acceptable than ever.
    If you’re curious about how to ask for a raise via email, you’ve come to the right place. With these tips and tricks, you can confidently craft the perfect message to your employer and get the raise you deserve. Keep scrolling to learn more.

    How To Ask For a Raise Via Email

    1. Know your audience
    Before you begin the process of asking for a raise via email, you should consider all of the different external factors that might impact your request. Has your company just had a round of layoffs? Have they cut department budgets due to the impending recession? Situations like these might affect whether or not your request for a raise is approved.
    On the flip side, have your company’s end-of-quarter meetings revealed skyrocketing profits? Is your team or role expanding? If so, now might be the perfect time for you to send that email.
    The size of the company you work for can also come into play here. Larger corporations might be able to keep up with inflation while smaller ones can’t. If the latter is true of your company, waiting for the upswing is more likely to get you the answer you’re looking for.
    In the end, knowing your audience is key in this process. So consider the current climate of your company and industry when requesting a raise. After all, you want a yes here, so biding your time may be worth it in the long run.

    2. Make a clear request
    You’re busy, your boss is busy, their boss is busy—the whole world is busy, so it’s a good idea to get right to the point. In both the subject line and opening paragraph of your email, make it clear that you’d like to talk about a pay increase. A subject line along the lines of “Salary Increase Request” or “Formal Request for Pay Raise” will be enough to get your boss’s attention. Then, reiterate what your subject line says in the first or second sentence of your opening paragraph so there’s no confusion about what you’re emailing them about.

    3. Back up your request
    Simply telling your manager you work hard won’t be enough, so before you request a raise, take the time to review your major accomplishments and key contributions to the company. You can use a recent performance review, additional responsibilities you’ve undertaken, or data that demonstrates how much your work and efforts have benefited the company. Having specific examples that back up your request will not only make you feel more confident about asking for a raise, it’ll also show your boss why you deserve one as well.
    It’s also a good idea to conduct plenty of salary research before you send an email asking for more money. To do this, use a free online salary calculator, platforms like LinkedIn, or an employee resource group if that’s available to you. In addition to knowing what you’ve given to the company already, knowing where your salary falls in line with today’s current job market will help ensure you’re not underselling or overselling yourself when it comes time to make the ask. Location can also play a big factor in salary ranges so make sure you’re cross-referencing your findings to ensure your request is in line with the area your employer is in. 

    4. Be reasonable
    Much like the best salary expectations question is open-ended, the best raise request is too. The average annual raise is about 3%, but it’s always good to ask for more than you want. You never know; you may be surprised with an above-average pay increase. Instead of throwing out a specific number, consider asking for a raise of 7-10%, but you can aim higher if you’re trying to battle sky-high inflation or have taken on additional responsibilities and feel like you’re in a position to ask for more.

    5. Schedule a meeting
    A raise is a big deal, and chances are, your boss will need plenty of time to mull over what you’re asking. So before signing off, make sure they know that you’re open to scheduling a meeting to discuss this proposition further. This will give you both more time to prepare and dive deeper into the request, and will also give you extra time to talk through your ask, get clear on what you’re looking for, and prepare for possible negotiations.

    6. Be polite and gracious
    Above all else, keep the tone of your email polite and gracious. Thank your boss for their time at the end of the email and show appreciation for them and your current position in the company. This will help you stay professional and look good to the higher-ups, which can definitely work in your favor.

    Raise Request Email Template
    Template 1
    Hi [Manager’s Name],
    I hope you’re doing well. I’m reaching out today because I believe now would be a good time to discuss my compensation for my role as [job title].
    I have made significant contributions to the company over the last X years, including [insert accomplishments]. I have also taken on additional responsibility in X ways over the past year, which shows my commitment to the team beyond my job description.
    Given all of this, as well as what people with my experience make in my position, I would like to ask for a salary increase of X%, and would love to set up a meeting with you to discuss this further.
    Thank you for your time and consideration.
    [Your Name]

    Template 2
    Hi [Manager’s Name],
    Now that I’ve been at [Company Name] for X years, I wanted to reach out and see if we could schedule a time to talk about an increased compensation of X%. Based on my contributions of X, along with the current job market and rising inflation, I believe this is a reasonable ask. 
    I’m very proud of the work I’ve done and am excited to continue growing my role alongside the team. I’d like to discuss this more with you, so let me know if we can schedule a time to chat after you’ve had the chance to consider my request.
    Thank you so much!
    [Your Name]

    Template 3
    Hi [Manager’s Name],
    I’m reaching out today to discuss my compensation.
    Since my salary was established, I have shown commitment to my role and demonstrated my abilities as a team player and trustworthy employee. In addition to my day-to-day duties, I’ve also made contributions that have greatly benefited the company, including:

    [insert accomplishment here]
    [insert accomplishment here]
    [insert accomplishment here]

    My current salary is $XX,XXX, which is X% lower than the average salary of someone in my position with my skill set. Based on this information, along with my skill set and work performance, I would like to request a salary increase of X%.
    Please let me know if we can set up a time to discuss this further. Thank you in advance for your time and consideration.
    [Your Name]

    What To Do if You’re Told “No”
    What happens if you send that email, have a meeting with your manager, and are ultimately told “no”? Whether your manager provided you with feedback that will help you get to where you want to be or your company just doesn’t currently have the budget (despite the fact you’re qualified), that answer is tough to hear. Sit with your feelings for a moment and then take one of these next steps:
    If you’ve been given constructive feedback, reflect on this conversation and then meet with your manager to discuss next steps. Ask them what they’d need to see from you in order for you to earn that raise. Then, in your subsequent check-ins with them, demonstrate the ways in which you are working towards that place. If you check everything off their list, that raise will be yours in no time. 
    On the other hand, be prepared for a no if your company is not financially in a place to give you a raise. Chances are they see how hard you work, want to give you the raise you deserve, but can’t at this time. Ask your manager when a good time to circle back would be and mark that date on your calendar. In the meantime, keep being the kickass employee you are so when the time comes, you might be able to receive an even bigger bump than you originally asked for.

    Can’t Negotiate To Save Your Life? This Expert’s Tips Will Help More

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    An Expert Weighs In: The How and Why of Negotiating Your Salary

    Welcome to The Everygirl Podcast. Whether you’re looking for insider secrets from successful women that have your dream job, are interested in expert advice to transform your health and feel your best, or just want to be entertained and laugh along with us on your commute, we’ve got you covered.

    If there’s one thing I hate more than confrontation, it’s confrontation that has anything to do with money. I want to crawl under a rock anytime salaries, wages, or budgets are brought up. Unfortunately, I can’t turtle my way out of conversations about money, and neither should any woman. That’s why this week on The Everygirl Podcast, we’re speaking with Jennifer Justice, former entertainment lawyer for Jay-Z and Beyoncé and founder of The Justice Dept.
    Jennifer has dedicated her career to advocating on behalf of women who are underpaid and overworked in male-dominated industries. She has a wealth of knowledge (pun intended) about wage negotiation tips and tricks. Why should we be making the conscious, informed choice to negotiate our salaries? Read on for Jennifer’s answer, and check out this week’s episode of The Everygirl Podcast for more.

    Why you should be negotiating your salary

    Advocating for your own worth makes you a better asset to the company
    When you’re offered a new position, it’s a big deal. Odds are that the company you are negotiating with has sifted through several candidates in order to land on you. According to Jennifer, one of the main reasons why salary negotiation is so important is because once an employer has decided they want you to be a part of their company, they are going to want to do everything possible to make sure that the deal is sealed. “Hiring people takes a lot of human capital time and effort,” Jennifer said on The Everygirl Podcast. “If you’re not advocating for yourself, are you going to advocate for the company?”

    The wage gap is real: negotiation is your way to help close it
    PSA: Women are 200 years away from closing the wage gap. Of course, much of this unfortunate statistic has to do with systemic sexism; however, Jennifer advocates for salary negotiation because she knows that when individual women fight for higher wages, the more capable they are of changing that system. “We’re not asking for enough, and we’re being underestimated and underpaid,” she said.
    When you advocate for higher wages for yourself, you have more opportunities to support other women, buy women’s products, and put money back into what Jennifer refers to as the matriarchal economy. Salary negotiation is about more than just your own finances; it’s also about closing the wage gap, one step at a time.

    Jennifer Justice’s top negotiating tips

    If possible, negotiate over email
    According to Jennifer, asking for more money face-to-face, or even on a Zoom call, can make you lead with emotion. Her recommendation is to discuss potential options and offers over the phone with your employer, but if negotiation is needed, tell your employer you need time to think about it. Then, actually do take some time to think about it, and communicate your thoughts in a well-composed email so you can lead with logic rather than emotion.

    Act as if you are negotiating for someone you really care about
    Sometimes, it can be easier to advocate for others than it is for ourselves. Jennifer suggests imagining yourself negotiating on behalf of your friends, family, significant other, or even your pet. “Ask yourself what it is in your life that you love more than yourself. For me, it’s my kids,” Jennifer said on The Everygirl Podcast. “When someone is trying to take advantage of you or get too much out of you, they’re really doing it to that person you love so much.”
    At the end of the day, if you are being underpaid for the work you are doing, you will have less time to put into the things and people you love. Whether that’s time with your family or resources for your kids (or pet, or even your passions!), being underpaid will affect many areas in your life. Remembering this while you go about the negotiation process can help put things in perspective.

    Ask for all the things, not just a higher salary
    Unfortunately, higher wages are not always something that you can count on during a negotiation process. Budgets are budgets, and as much as you may want to break the glass ceiling with your salary, sometimes it’s just not in the cards. Jennifer recommends presenting an alternative to higher wages, such as higher benefits.
    Jennifer even suggests asking for a different title as a trade-off for salary when negotiating. “You need the title for wherever you’re going next,” she explained on The Everygirl Podcast. “That actually speaks to what you’re going to do, versus the salary, which the next company’s not going to know about.” Getting a better title for your job, even when you might not receive a salary increase, can set you up for success in the long run. As Jennifer points out, negotiating is all about creating a brighter future. More

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    5 Tips To Overcome Your Fear of Public Speaking

    Do you ever feel like your stomach is doing backflips and your palms are all sweaty just from thinking about speaking in public? Well, you’re not alone. For so many of us, speaking in front of a group can trigger a fight or flight response that makes us want to sprint in the opposite direction. Especially since we’ve now become so accustomed to Zoom meetings and remote positions, public speaking is arguably more nerve-wracking than ever. But with the right tips and tricks, you can stand at that podium or in front of that boardroom with Beyonce-type confidence in no time. From deep breathing exercises to actually visualizing success, we’ve got you covered with effective strategies that will make you feel like a pro in front of any audience. Here are 7 of our go-to tips and tricks for the job:

    5 Tips To Overcome Your Fear of Public Speaking

    1. Become an Expert in Your Topic
    When it comes to public speaking, knowledge is power. Although it sounds a bit obvious, it’s a crucial point to remember: the more you know about your topic, the more confident you’ll be when presenting it to others. So, be sure to research your topic thoroughly and gather as much information as possible. This can mean reading articles or books, watching videos related to your topic, talking to experts in the field, or even attending relevant events to gain new insights. Go above and beyond in your research—there is literally no such thing as being too prepared! This will not only boost your confidence but also make your presentation more interesting and informative for your audience. All in all, be the know-it-all.

    2. Prepare an Outline or Create a Notecard
    Organization is key when it comes to delivering a successful speech or presentation. Creating an outline or note card can help you stay on track, and keeps you from getting lost in your thoughts or choked up from nerves. What makes a successful notecard, you may ask? First and foremost, you obviously want to avoid reading everything you’re saying word for word off a piece of paper. So, start by brainstorming your key points and most prominent supporting information, then take the time to organize them in a logical sequence that flows well and makes sense to your audience. Don’t worry about getting everything perfect on the first try, as you can always revise and refine it as you practice. Not only will this help you stay organized and focused, but it can also alleviate some of the extra stress and anxiety that comes with public speaking. If one of your biggest fears is drawing a blank, then this tip is your best friend. 

    3. Make That Eye Contact
    Eye contact is not only important for building a connection with your audience, but it also helps you keep them engaged and focused on your presentation. Staring at your notes or the floor throughout your speech will make the audience’s attention wander elsewhere, like their phones or what type of sandwich they’re going to get on their lunch break. By making eye contact, you let your audience know that you care about them and their presence in the room. No one wants to have a conversation with someone who couldn’t care less about them, right? If you’re feeling nervous about making eye contact, start with small groups of people or even practice in front of a mirror (cheesy, but it really does help!). And don’t be afraid to smile or show a bit of personality when making eye contact. It’ll make you seem more confident and therefore get into a better, more natural groove. The goal is to make a connection with your audience, and making eye contact is key for that aspect.

    4. Practice Deep Breathing Techniques
    Ever since we were little kids, we’ve been told to take a deep breath when we need to calm down. And guess what? It works. When we get nervous, our breaths become shallow and rapid, which can increase our anxiety and make us feel even more anxious. So by practicing deep breathing, you can calm your nerves and reduce stress, which ultimately leads to a stronger, more confident speech or presentation. Before you begin, take a few moments to focus on your breaths, and breathe in slowly through your nose and fill your lungs with air. Hold your breath for a few seconds and then release it slowly through your mouth, and repeat this process several times to allow your whole body to loosen up and feel relaxed. If you start to feel nerves creeping up while you’re speaking, find a good moment for a natural pause and get in one good breath. Staying grounded is everything, and breathing is one of the best ways to do it. 

    5. Visualize & Manifest Your Success
    It’s time to be your own hype girl. If you go into a situation insisting that it’s gonna go horribly, chances are that’s way more likely to happen. Visualizing a successful speech or presentation and telling yourself that you’re gonna nail it can help you mentally prepare by creating a positive mental image of yourself delivering it with ease. Leading up to the big moment, try to visualize yourself standing in front of your audience, feeling calm, collected, and confident. Imagine your voice is strong and clear, and that your audience members are engaged and captivated by your points. Give yourself some positive affirmations, and know that you’re going to do the absolute best that you can. Public speaking is very much a mental game, so if you genuinely believe you’re going to nail it, you probably will. Now go own that podium. 

    Networking Works: Here’s How One Connection Changed My Entire Career More

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    How To Change Careers at 30

    Career changes are stressful, exciting, and downright emotional at any age, but there’s something about making them at the big 3-0 that can feel particularly conflicting. After all, society tells us that we’re supposed to have it all figured out by our thirtieth birthday, so the idea that you may have gotten your career wrong can be an unpleasant reality. On the other hand, the prospect of potentially exploring a new job that feeds your soul can be invigorating. After fumbling through your 20s and getting the hang of adulting, it’s natural to wonder whether it’s even possible to change careers at 30 and if these emotions are worth exploring and starting all over again over.

    Can You Change Careers at 30?
    Yes, you can absolutely make a career change at 30. In fact, it’s arguably the best time to make a career switch because you typically have fewer responsibilities than you would at 40 or 50. Naturally, this can make it easier to invest in yourself, start a new career, and become successful as you spend the next 30+ years making money from something you’re passionate about before retiring.

    Switching Careers at 30 Can Lead To the Best Years of Your Life
    Life is too short to be anything but happy, and if you’re going to work for a living, it might as well be doing something that brings you satisfaction. At age 30, you know yourself better and what your priorities are, how you work, and what you want out of life. This mental clarity can help you find a new career path that aligns with your goals, values, and what lights your soul on fire. For example, if you value your downtime, you’ll know to look for a position that prioritizes work-life balance when it comes time to find a job.
    Additionally, at 30, you have around 10 years of work experience under your belt, and employers won’t discount your relevant experience or skills you’ve spent the past decade cultivating and honing. There’s also a strong chance you won’t have to start your new job at an entry-level position; there has to be at least one transferable skill in your repertoire (though you likely have a very long list). Likewise, the professional network you spent your 20s building can also help make the switch easier, and will come in handy should you ever need references for future employers.

    Questions To Ask Yourself If You’re Looking For A Career Change At 30 Years Old?
    Career changes are a big deal, so it’s important to take some time to evaluate and discover the true reason behind your desire for change. Doing this will help give you the confidence you need to make the leap and move forward.

    Am I good at what I do?
    Do I enjoy what I do?
    Is my work environment toxic?
    What is it about my current career that isn’t working?
    Am I feeling adequately challenged in my current role?
    What am I passionate about?
    What do I see myself doing for the rest of my life?
    Am I willing to take a pay cut and work my way up at a new job?
    What kind of job do I already have the skills for?
    What are my life goals?
    How will changing careers impact my finances?
    Would I stay if something in my current role changed?
    What can I gain by quitting?
    What do I lose by quitting?
    Am I following passion or money?
    Are my expectations realistic?
    What do I want my life to look like in 5 years?

    How To Change Your Career at 30

    1. Examine your current career
    On The Everygirl’s podcast episode about changing careers, our Branded Content Editor, Ashley, shared how she made the transition from full-time nursing to a career in media and content creation, and suggested first checking in with yourself about your current career before making a change. This honest self-assessment will help you determine what’s missing from your current role and get clear on what kind of job you want to pursue.
    Think about what led you to your current field and position. Was it driven by passion? Did you choose it because it was deemed a “safe choice” by the adults in your life? Consider any interests that led you to this job, and which aspects you like and don’t like about it. Be sure to write this all down on a list or plug it into a pros and cons template to keep track of everything.

    2. Take inventory of your skills and passions
    It’s also a good idea to make a list of all your skills and passions. Once you’ve done that, go through that list and contemplate which career path you might want to explore and which of your skills are transferable (think: communication, flexibility, time management, etc.). Chances are, a lot of them will be helpful for your next career. Getting clear on your exact skill set, what you’re good at, and what lights a spark in you will make finding the right career easier.

    3. Determine your new career path
    Use your notes from the first two steps as a reference and begin thinking about a new career path. Assess your strengths and weaknesses, personal interests, and what you want long-term out of your next full-time job. This might include better benefits, a solid retirement plan, flexibility, the ability to quickly scale the career ladder, and so on. With this information, you can then determine which career path you’d like to explore.

    4. Find your new career 
    There are numerous jobs in every industry, so it’s important to do your research and look at basic job descriptions, average salaries and requirements, and typical paths for every occupation in your chosen field. This will help you decide exactly which job to pursue, get clear on the relevant experience and transferable skills you already have for that job, and what you need to obtain in order to be fully qualified. Also, make sure to research companies you might want to work for, and if you’re looking to branch out and do your own thing, be sure to conduct extensive research on the best ways to do so successfully and everything you need to get started.

    5. Refresh your resume
    Having an up-to-date resume is never a bad thing. After all, you never know when potential employers or other professionals might seek you out. So regardless of your experience or whether you have all the skills needed for your dream job, refresh your resume to include all relevant skills and experience you currently do have. Then, share it on platforms like LinkedIn, Indeed, FlexJobs, a personal website or portfolio, or link in your social media bio.

    6. Gain relevant experience and obtain new skills
    Consider what skills you need for your dream job, and look into various ways to get it. This can include things like going back to school part-time and working towards a new degree or enrolling in skill training courses, reading self-help or educational books, and studying people you look up to in your dream job. In addition, freelancing, volunteer work, internships, and job shadowing are also great for this and can help you build your professional network in your new career.
    Likewise, honing your skills in your free time is also invaluable. If you’re interested in writing, start a personal blog; if you want to become a graphic designer, download Canva and experiment. The list goes on and on, and the options are truly endless—we live in a world where gaining experience and skills is easier than ever, so be sure to take full advantage of it.

    7. Prepare your finances
    Career changes can be tough financially, so if you’re getting ready to make the switch, now’s the time to prepare. Look at your income, living expenses, debt payments, and what you’re putting into savings every month; see if there are any ways you can adjust your budget and contribute more to your emergency fund or areas you can cut back in to decrease the total amount you’re spending per month. You may have to change your lifestyle for the time being, but having a substantial financial cushion will make it easier to transition into a new role and adjust to any changes in your income.

    8. Put yourself out there
    Putting yourself out there can be scary, especially if you’ve been at your current job for a while, but doing so will give you the confidence to apply for new jobs, accept new opportunities, and step into the woman you want to become. Market yourself on social media and reach out to friends, family members, and your professional contacts in the industry you’re looking to join; let them know what your career plans are, and ask that they kindly keep you in the back of their mind for potential opportunities. Making career moves quietly can be empowering, but marketing yourself will put more eyes on you and potentially help you land your dream job faster.
    Don’t be afraid to apply for new jobs—not getting the job is the worst that can come from it. At the very least, you’ll get in touch with and put in front of the right people, and have a chance to make an impression that can help you later on after you’ve built up the necessary skills and gained relevant experience.

    9. Don’t burn a bridge
    Lastly, don’t burn a bridge in your current role with your current employer. Keep going strong at work until you land your dream job, and once you do, be sure to tell your manager right away and give at least two weeks’ notice. Thank them for everything they’ve done for you and express your gratitude for what the job taught you; send an email to your colleagues telling them this as well. Likewise, be sure to offer to train your replacement, and go through and organize your work files before your departure.
    Career changes don’t happen overnight, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Take advantage of the fact that they take time by starting out slow. Dedicate yourself fully to pursuing what you’re passionate about and give it your all. In no time, you’ll be exactly where you want to be in your career.

    Networking Works: Here’s How One Connection Changed My Entire Career More

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    Don’t Start a Side Hustle If…

    I didn’t mean to start a side hustle. It just kind of happened. I started writing for fun and then I blinked and seven years later, here I am. And while I accidentally found myself side-hustling, I’m relieved to know I’m in good company. 50% of Americans have a side hustle! 1 in 2 people are working their 9 to 5 jobs, and then as soon as they clock out, they’re focusing on their 5 to 9 side hustles. From creating online courses to walking dogs to freelancing to becoming a content creator, the type of side hustles available now seems limitless. While side hustles are a way to supplement an existing income, their genesis differs from one person to another. Some people start a side hustle to increase their income and their lifestyle, while others utilize side hustles as a creative way to build new skills and boost their resume.
    No matter the reason you want to start a side hustle, there are a lot of things to consider before taking the plunge. What seems like a good, easy idea can lead to working an 80-hour a week side hustle, leaving you tired, stressed, and overwhelmed. And while many people hear all the buzz and find themselves wondering how to have a side hustle, it might be more important to focus on why not to have a side hustle. If you’re wondering what those reasons are, here are six.

    Don’t Start a Side Hustle If…

    1. You Value Your Down Time
    If you’re the kind of person whose downtime is filled with non-negotiables like practicing self-care, nurturing relationships, or focusing on self-improvement, side hustles may not be for you. While side hustles sound fun and flashy, they take up a lot of your hard-earned downtime. You may start a side hustle with the intention of saving extra money and creating a lifestyle of freedom, but what you might end up with is a rich bank account and a time bankrupt life. If a lack of time for the activities you love stresses you out, you might want to pause your plans to start a side hustle.
    But if you’re willing to negotiate on a few of the items in your life that you used to see as non-negotiable, it could be time to take the leap. If you think you’re ready, here’s an activity you can do to test the waters. For one week, track your time, including your downtime. This will help you take stock of how much free time you actually have during the week and where you’re willing to change how you spend your time. Once you have a clear understanding of how much available time you’re willing to devote to a side hustle, it’ll be easier for you to get started.

    2. Your Current Role Is Your Priority 
    Side hustles require a lot of effort to get off the ground and maintain. Now think about adding that workload onto the current responsibilities of your full-time role. Does that feel like too much to manage? If so, now might not be the time to start your side hustle. If your current role is your focus because you’re trying to grow in your career or land a promotion, that is absolutely where you should dedicate your attention. Yes, many people call it a rat race, which sounds negative and unappealing, but aiming to build a career you love in a field you’re passionate about is something to be proud of.
    Side hustles often get glamorized on social media and can instill a sense of FOMO. But they are of no value to you if they become a distraction from work. Getting a side hustle off the ground takes time, and it takes even longer if you want to turn a sustainable profit. So, it’s OK if you realize the modern-day American dream looks different to you. Everyone’s journey looks different, and there is no “right” career path. If a side hustle isn’t a part of yours right now, or ever, feel confident knowing you’ve built a career that works for you.
    If you ever find yourself curious to dabble in the entrepreneurial space, know that going from a 9-to-5 a serial entrepreneur doesn’t happen overnight, which means you need a job to sustain you along the way. If you’re confident you can effectively balance your current role with your desire to start a side hustle, go ahead and get started. But know that it’s a balancing act, and if push comes to shove, the activity that actually pays your rent may take precedence.

    3. It’s Misaligned With Your Goals
    People aren’t always looking to get into the side hustle game because of money. Sometimes it’s for something money can’t buy: skills and experience. Learning new skills and gaining hands-on experience is an invaluable way to grow or pivot your career. I could write a book filled with true stories that illustrate this. Why? Because it’s exactly what I did. 
    When my five-year plan after college began to crumble, I needed to figure out what was next. To do that, I started writing to process my career journey. I loved it so much that I decided I wanted to make writing a part of my full-time gig. But hiring an accounting major for a writing or communications role can be a hard sell. And so, I started freelance writing to gain transferable skills to land a new job. I was ready and willing to do whatever it took to prove I was worth hiring. It took a lot of unpaid gigs, early mornings, late nights, and missed plans. In hindsight, it was absolutely worth it. But it’s not for the faint of heart.
    If your current personal or professional goal is to pivot careers or add valuable skills to your resume and a side hustle can support your goals, take every opportunity to get started. But if creating a side hustle feels misaligned with what you’re striving for, it’s OK for those plans to take a backseat so you can focus on achieving the goals at the top of your list.

    4. You’re Looking for Immediate Passive Income
    Side hustles are a great way to earn income, sometimes even passively. But it’s unrealistic to expect a cash flow from products and enjoy the passivepreneur lifestyle from day one. It takes upfront work to get to a place where you can set it and forget it to earn an automatic income. And while it sounds like rainbows and butterflies, there isn’t a magic button you can press to get you there. It often takes a solid business plan, substantial investment, grit, and determination. If you’re not in a place in your life where you are willing to put in the work and sacrifice some of your time, money, and comfort now to earn a passive income later, then I’d reconsider your side hustle plans. 

    5. You’re Risk Adverse
    Risks can be scary, and rightfully so. They challenge us and put us in uncomfortable situations without guaranteeing success. Taking a risk can often feel like a big leap of faith, and that’s exactly what starting a side hustle feels like. A risk-averse person may prefer never to start something if there’s no promise it’ll work out. But without risks, there are no rewards.
    Risk-averse people may also seek comfort in job security. Job security is a wonderful thing, but it’s also a promise that a side hustle can’t keep. Starting a side hustle while you have a full-time job can help mitigate some of the risks that come with something new. If your idea fails (which it’s a totally normal thing that can happen and doesn’t mean you’re a failure), you have the cushion of a job to support you. Only you can determine your comfort level when launching a side hustle. But if you’re waiting for the right or safe time, know it may never come.

    6. You’re Not Comfortable Marketing Yourself
    When you start a side hustle, you’re a one-woman company. You have to wear many hats because you are the sales team and the talent and the customer service agent and the social media team and the tech team—and literally everything else. You are the face of your side hustle and the sole person responsible for making it happen. If you’re thinking, “Game on, I love this type of work,” then you’re ready to dive into a side hustle. But if it’s cause for hesitation, then I’d reconsider.
    Being forward facing and putting yourself out there can be incredibly uncomfortable for people, but it’s absolutely necessary when side hustling. Being uncomfortable isn’t a bad thing. Growth often comes from discomfort. But you have to be ready to take on the uncomfortable stuff and market yourself to make your side hustle successful. It’s up to you to decide if you’re ready for the challenge.

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