Do these New Year resolutions sound familiar: I’m going to lose weight, start exercising and find a new job.

The “USA Today” newspaper was introduced on Sept. 15, 1982. Management described its innovative approach of reporting news as a short overview of major news events going on in the world. They believed people didn’t have time to read lengthy news stories and that consumers were looking for a short description of the biggest stories in 10 minutes or less. The approach has proven to be successful, and I find it ironic that we now have “tweets” which is an even shorter version of sharing one’s opinion about the news.

When I was twenty years old my mom told me, “Before you get married look at your girlfriend with both eyes wide open. Once you get married close one eye because you’ll see things you can’t change.” When we’re in love, we’re extremely optimistic. We overlook our partner’s flaws and some people even believe they can change their spouse once they get married. I can almost hear you laughing. I’m going to take my mother’s advice, close one eye and describe why this story has relevance to your career.

It’s not that unusual for people to have a personal trainer, nutritionist, financial advisor, physical therapist and chiropractor. When we’re younger, a family physician is sufficient; as we grow older, the list begins to expand, and often includes, a cardiologist, dermatologist and optometrist. Before I turned 50, I made fun of the seniors who constantly talked about their physical ailments — and now I’m one of them!

How many people are unhappy in their jobs? Would you estimate 30 percent, 40, maybe 50? The Pew Charitable Trusts reported that 30 percent of people feel their jobs are “just a job to get them by.” According to Forbes, 52.3 percent are unhappy at work, while 63 percent are not engaged in their jobs. And, finally, the New York Daily News reported that 70 percent of U.S. workers are unhappy with their jobs.

Oh, it feels good to get promoted. We all enjoy the obvious benefits that come with a promotion such as a pay raise and a new job title. But I think it’s the recognition that feels the best. Our culture is all about winning; that’s why we enjoy TV shows like "American Idol" and "The Biggest Loser." On weekends we watch sports and nothing is bigger than the Super Bowl. Let’s face it, we’re obsessed with winning.

Ask someone for help and they’ll be glad to help you out, but don’t tell me what to do. There’s a reason our parents taught us to say please and thank you. As kids we grow up being told what to do by our parents, teachers and other authority figures. Once we become adults, we want to be independent and make our own decisions.

I’m a baby boomer, and I grew up in the 1960s hating the establishment. I never wanted to “work for the man" but having a family and paying the bills forced me to compromise and work for a large employer. Or, as my parents called it, I got a "real job."

I’m a Baby Boomer, and I grew up in the 1960s hating the establishment. I never wanted to “work for the man,” but having a family and paying the bills forced me to compromise and work for a large employer. Or, as my parents called it, “Get a real job.”

Imagine receiving this phone message from your boss when you get home: “Hey, could you call me back at your earliest convenience? Thanks.” It’s safe to assume this would make most of us feel a little anxious. Did I do something wrong and will my boss assume it was my fault before he listens to both sides of the story?

Before the 1990s it was not unusual for someone to work more than 30 years for one employer. We use to make fun of the fact that they would receive a gold watch at their retirement party. I think it’s ironic that today many of us don’t even wear a watch, we check our cell phone or Fitbit if we want to know what time it is.

Here’s an “Aha” moment in the employment business. Most people are looking for a new job because they’re unhappy with their current circumstances. They either don’t like their boss, their co-workers or in the worst-case scenario they’ve been fired. If they were really happy with their current circumstances, why were they surfing the internet looking for a new job?

Someone once said everything is negotiable. My mother bought and sold antiques, and that was definitely her philosophy. But when it comes to negotiating your salary the picture is far more complex.

The job market can be a confusing place. If you believe the data, the unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been in decades. But, the experts suggest this is because many people have stopped looking for work and millions more are underemployed. So, has the job market really improved or should people continue to be anxious? You could research this question, but today I’m going to suggest we apply a little bit of common sense.

Some of my best ideas have hit me when I’m walking the dog, playing golf or driving a few hundred miles in my car. My worst moments are when I sit in front of the computer at 9 a.m. Monday and I tell myself, “OK, it’s time to write a good column.” Creativity doesn’t follow a schedule. It happens when it happens, and you need to pay attention or else you’ll miss some great opportunities.

It may not be accurate to call a computer a machine, but it seems like computers will soon operate every machine in the world. The internet isn’t a machine, but I would be lost without it. I own a hybrid car, and a few years ago I parked it in the airport parking lot for several days, and when I returned it wouldn’t start. I called Triple A and when the truck arrived the young man told me he never jumped a hybrid car before, and he wasn’t sure what to do. Before he could call his office, my wife had a video from YouTube on her computer and she taught him how to jump-start my car. He was embarrassed, but we got our car running.

People lose jobs for a wide variety of reasons. In a majority of cases it’s through no fault of their own.

I am lucky to be part of a small group of homeowners called “lakers.” It’s reasonable to assume that a laker owns lakefront property, but simply owning lake property is not sufficient justification to be designated as a laker. This is a title you must earn, and during my third year on Cayuga Lake, I was provided the opportunity to earn my stripes.

It’s no secret that our infrastructure in the United States is in need of repair. The most widely accepted rating is a D-minus, and that’s both good news and bad news.

Career Advice

When you’re preparing for an interview, chances are you’ve got the usual stuff down: your resume, talking points, stellar eye contact, and small talk. Those are easy—you can practice them in the mirror or with a trusted interview prep buddy. But what happens when you get a bit of a curveball, like difficult behavioral interview […]

As my senior year of college started to wind down, I saw many of my friends scooping up job offers that would match their fancy new engineering and business degrees. Things were a little different for me, as an English major. There were no tech or finance companies out there picking up recent grads who […]

The 9-to-5 grind in an office or cubicle just isn’t for everybody. And if you have a number of demands on your plate (like taking care of a family or going to school), that format just may not work for you at all. More and more employers are accommodating their employees who need a different […]

Being a nurse is not an easy career choice—nurses typically face a host of pressures and challenges throughout their professional lives that the average worker never has to confront. The stresses of a job in which you’re constantly dealing with serious life and death issues, working in hectic and emotionally charged environments, and juggling the […]

The post How nurses can find the balance in a hectic career appeared first on TheJobNetwork.

If you think the only path to being successful in today’s lightning-paced, ultra-competitive world of work is to venture out on your own as an entrepreneur, then think again! The truth is, that’s just one of several ways to achieve success along your career journey. Another route that’s gaining traction across industries is becoming what’s […]

The post All about intrepreneurs—and why you need to be one appeared first on TheJobNetwork.

When you’re applying and interviewing for a new job, everyone’s on their best behavior. You’re (professionally) dressed to kill and making eye contact like a boss while you talk about your many qualifications. The hiring manager is basically an ambassador, working on selling the organization to you. And even though you might have a sense […]

The post Managing a demanding manager: a workplace survival guide appeared first on TheJobNetwork.

As an HR professional, you’re undoubtedly aware of the importance of maintaining a talent-rich pipeline of active and passive candidates for open and future positions at your company, and to keeping your organization’s departments stocked with employees best suited to support and advance its mission and goals. After all, your key performance metrics are likely […]

Oftentimes, when we think of age discrimination, we assume it happens to workers who are near retirement age or already senior citizens. Or maybe we picture employees who were fired or demoted for being too slow, or “low energy.” But the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) was designed to protect workers ages 40 and […]

Primarily based on recognizing and learning to respond to other people’s emotions, empathy in the classroom can aid learning and help foster a more harmonious and respectful classroom. Students who exhibit empathy have been shown to have better test scores—but that’s not really the point. Learning other’s perspectives, including emotions, is a vital part of […]

Those of us in the workforce—from seasoned industry veterans to newbies who are just getting started on their career journeys and everyone in between—have learned a few inescapable facts, regardless of our industry or aspirations. Success is a fickle, tricky, thing, and a lot of variables come into play that helps separate those of us […]

Are you a retiree who wants to return to the workforce? If so, you’re in good company, and part of an increasingly expanding group—in fact, AARP recently published an article highlighting the growing trend of older adults who have previously retired from the workforce making a return to gainful employment, often on a part-time basis. […]

As a hiring manager, almost nothing is as important as ensuring that your company has unfettered access to the best available talent in your industry whenever you have an open position on your team. That said, something that’s just as important is protecting your organization from candidates who lie on their resumes—including everything from small […]

Attention entrepreneurs: We know that you’re eager to kickstart your business idea and build it into the next wildly successful corporate empire. After all, fortune favors the bold, and a commonly shared trait amongst successful entrepreneurs is an unwavering self-confidence at all costs and a capacity to handle risk. However, that doesn’t mean you should […]

At some point in your career, you’re going to have an awkward interview moment. It may be something you say; it may be coming from the interviewer; it could be anything. In the end, all you can do is laugh it off and hope for the best (or start working on the next opportunity), but […]

It’s easy to picture your career as one long, unbroken path, from the start of adulthood to the day you retire. You know what’s not so easy? Reality. Life can get in the way of even the best-planned career paths, causing gaps and disruption in your employment history. Maybe you took time off for personal […]

Most of us have ideas about how we’d like our career paths to unfold, including where we’d ultimately like to end up before we hit retirement and the steps we need to take along the way. If you’re being realistic with your vision, you’re also aware that reaching your goals and achieving your preconceived target […]

When it comes to our professional lives, most of us have a clear hierarchy of needs, including a viable salary, acceptable benefits, and responsibilities that align well with our abilities. After all, we spend so much of our lives at work (nearly 90,000 hours over our lifetimes, according to a recent Business Insider article) that […]

Attention Baby Boomers: Although you’re technically approaching the age when people typical start thinking of retiring from the work world, that doesn’t mean you can’t be a valuable and productive part of a company or business. Or perhaps you’ve already officially retired and have decided that you’d like to re-enter the workforce in some capacity, […]

Attention entrepreneurs: Are you eager to kickstart your own business? Of course, the notion of being your own boss and taking your idea, nurturing it with some hard work and ingenuity, and grabbing hold of a little luck in order to turn it into a successful venture is an exciting prospect—and you may be itching […]