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6 Secrets To Upgrading Your Professional Images

6 Secrets To Upgrading Your Professional Images

Many people feel that we are living in a more casual world these days, and that it isn’t as important to have a professional look as it once was. Actually, it is more important than ever, and those who look professional are going to be more successful than those who don’t care about the images that people see and don’t take the time to make themselves look professional in their images. Here are some tips to help you make your images more professional.

1. Your Goals

Knowing your goals will help you decide if it is time to change your images. For instance, if your images show you as a fun-loving type and you want to be taken more seriously, then it is time to make some changes to your images. Or, you may appear too serious, and you want to appear more spontaneous and fun. Your images should reflect your goals. Remember, if you want to make waves in the business community, your images shouldn’t show you riding the waves or doing other un-businesslike activities.

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2. Timing

There are certain times when it is a good idea to upgrade your professional images. For instance, if you are moving into a new line of work, taking on a public role within your company, etc., this is a big change, and your images should reflect that. Or, you may just be bored and feel that you are stuck in a rut, and changing your images may be the thing to help you get out of that rut. Talk to friends, colleagues, etc. and find out how they see you, and ask if they think you need to upgrade your images at this time.

3. Your Context

Take a look at your environment, and ask yourself what the norms are within that environment. What shows status in your community? Who do you want as your audience? How do others that you admire present themselves? The more you understand the context of your appearance in your images, the better able you will be to change the images to those that work for you and make you look like the professional you are.

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4. Uniform

For instance, if you wear a uniform for your job, you can add to your professional images by using customized patches on the uniform, rather than direct embroidery, which is much more expensive. Learn more about patches at WikiHowPatchSuperstore.com and YouTube.

5. Working with Pros

Before you go out and have new photos taken, you need to put together a team of people who are going to ensure that your images are exactly what you want them to be. Your team should include a personal stylist (or a free styling service such as one from J.Crew) and a hair stylist instead of a traditional barber. Your photographer should be a professional, and not just a friend or family member who takes good pictures.

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6. Efficiency

In addition to upgrading your images, you should be upgrading your overall style. Make sure that you do this with efficiency. The whole point isn’t to be vain, but to find standard clothing that you can wear regularly that become somewhat of a uniform. Take your stylist with you and buy everything at once, instead of making multiple shipping trips by yourself and just buying one or two pieces at a time. This way, you will tend to get clothing that all mixes and matches and becomes your personal uniform.

You might be surprised at what upgrading your style can do for you, and for your career (not to mention your love life). Just look at the Trivago guy. Just last year, he was considered “creepy” by many. Now, he is cleaned up and has a more professional look, and “creepy” has turned into “hottie”. You can do the same thing with a stylist and efficiency.

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Featured photo credit: Chris Zerbes via flickr.com

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Jane Hurst

Writer, editor

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Last Updated on March 31, 2020

How To Break the Procrastination Cycle

How To Break the Procrastination Cycle

How often do you find yourself procrastinating? Do you wish you could procrastinate less? We all know how debilitating procrastination can make us feel, and it seems to be a challenge we all share. Procrastination is one of the biggest hindrances to moving forward and doing the things that we want to in life.

There are many reasons why you might be procrastinating, and sometimes, it is really difficult to pinpoint why. You might be procrastinating because of something related to the past, present, or future (they are all intertwined), or it could be as simple as biological factors. Whatever the reason, most of us follow a cycle when we procrastinate, from the moment we decide to do something to actually getting it done, or in this case, not getting it done.

The Vicious Procrastination Cycle

For some reason, it helps to understand that we all go through the same thing, even though we often feel like the only person in the world who struggles with this. Do you resonate with the cycle below?

1. Feeling Eager and Energized

This is when you commit to taking a new action or getting something done. You are feeling confident and optimistic that, this time round, you will do it!

2. Apprehension Starts to Come Up

The beginning stages of optimism are starting to fade. There is still time, but you haven’t done anything yet, and you start to feel uneasy. You realize that you actually have to do something to get it done, and that good intentions are not enough.

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3. Still No Action

More time has passed. You still haven’t taken any action and probably have a lot of excuses why. You start to panic a little and wish you had started sooner. Your panic starts to turn into frustration and perhaps even irritability.

4. Flicker of Hope Left

You can still make it; there is a little time left and you ponder how you are going to get it done. The rush you get from leaving your task until the last minute gives you a flicker of hope. There is still time; you can do this!

5. Fading Quickly

Your hope starts to quickly fade as you try desperately to understand why you just can’t do this. You may feel desperate and have thoughts like, “What is wrong with me?” and “Why do I ALWAYS do this?” You feel discouraged, or perhaps angry and resentful at yourself.

6. Vow to Yourself

Once the feeling of anger or disappointment disappears, you most likely swear to yourself that this will never happen again; that this was the last time and next time will be different.

Does this sound like you? Is the next time different? I understand the devastating effect that procrastination has on many lives, and for some, it is a really serious problem. You also have, on the other hand, those who procrastinate but it doesn’t affect them in any way. You know whether it is affecting you or not and whether it undermines your results.

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How to Break the Procrastination Cycle

Unless you break the cycle, you will keep reinforcing it!

To break the cycle, you need to change the sequence of events. Here is my suggestion on how you can effectively break the vicious cycle you are in!

1. Feeling Eager and Energized

This is when you commit to taking a new action or getting something done. You are feeling confident and optimistic that, this time round, you will do it! The first stage is always the same.

2. Plan

Thinking alone will not help; you need to plan your actions. I always put my deadlines one or two days in advance because you know Murphy’s Law! Take into consideration everything that you need to do, how long it will take you, and what you will need to get it done, then plan the individual steps.

3. Resistance

Just because you planned doesn’t mean that this time is guaranteed to be different. You will most likely still feel the resistance so expect this. This stage is key to identifying why you are procrastinating, so when you feel the resistance, try to identify it immediately.

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What is causing you to hesitate in this moment? What do you feel?  Write them down if it helps.

4. Confront Those Feelings

Once you have identified what could possibly be holding you back, for example, fear of failure, lack of motivation, etc. You need to work on lessening the resistance.

Ask yourself, “What do I need to do to move forward? What would make it easier?” If you find that you fear something, overcoming that fear is not something that will happen overnight — keep this in mind.

5. Put Results Before Comfort

You need to keep moving forward and put results before comfort. Take action, even if it is only for 10 minutes. The key is to break the cycle and not reinforce it. You have more control that you think.

6. Repeat

Repeat steps 3-5 until you achieve what you first set out to do.

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Final Thoughts

Change doesn’t happen overnight, and if you have some deeper underlying reasons why you procrastinate, it may take longer to finally break the cycle.

If procrastination is holding you back in life, it is better to deal with it now than to deal with the negative consequences later on. It is not a question of comfort anymore; it is a question of results. What is more important to you?

Learn more about how to stop procrastinating here: What Is Procrastination and How to Stop It (The Complete Guide)

Featured photo credit: Luke Chesser via unsplash.com

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