In my line of work, I hear from hundreds of new people each month, and I often connect with professionals in a public, open way but privately as well. Through this experience, I’ve seen scores of toxic behaviors being demonstrated that push people away (including myself) and burn bridges with others. And I’ve witnessed the damage that these negative behaviors can cause – to relationships, professional success, career growth, and to the well-being of both the individual behaving in a toxic way, and to everyone around them.
Let’s be honest here – I daresay that every one of us has acted in a toxic way at one point or another in our lives (none of us are completely immune to it). But many folks are more evolved, healthy, balanced, and self-aware, and so it happens more rarely in their lives.
Whether your toxic behavior is a common occurrence, or once in a blue moon, it’s critical for your happiness and success, and for the success and wellbeing of others around you, that you are able to recognize when you’re behaving badly, and shift it (and apologize and take accountability for it) when that behavior it emerges.
The 6 most toxic behaviors I see every day are:
Taking everything personally
In the powerful little book The Four Agreements, don Miguel Ruiz talks about the importance of taking nothing personally. I teach this concept in my coaching programs and courses, and talk about it in my two books as well, but there is often pushback on that idea. “Really, Kathy – don’t take anything personally?” people ask.
We’re toxic to be around when we believe that everything that happens in life is a direct assault on us or is in some way all about us. The reality is that what people say and do to you is much more about them, than you. People’s reactions to you are shaped by their filters, and their unique perspectives, wounds and experiences. Whether people think you’re amazing, or believe you’re the worst, again, it’s more about them.
I’m not saying we should be narcissists and ignore all feedback. I am saying that so much hurt, disappointment and sadness in our lives comes from our taking things personally when it’s far more productive and healthy to let go of others’ good or bad opinion of you, and to operate with your own heart and intuition as your guide. So yes – don’t take anything personally.
Tip: In speaking with renowned forgiveness expert Dr. Fred Luskin on my Finding Brave podcast, and reading his powerful book Forgive for Good, he talks about one way to remind yourself why you shouldn’t necessarily take an insult or poor behavior personally. He suggests that we ask ourselves this question: “Would this person act in this way to EVERYONE or just you?” If the offending individual would most likely behave in this negative way to everyone, then why should you waste your time and emotion taking it personally?
Obsessing about negative thoughts
It’s very hard to be around people who can’t or won’t let go of negativity – when they dwell on and speak incessantly about the terrible things that could happen and have happened, the slights they’ve suffered, and the unfairness of life. These people stubbornly refuse to see the positive side of life and the positive lessons from what’s transpiring. Pessimism is one thing – but remaining perpetually locked in negative thoughts is another. Only seeing the negative, and operating from a view that everything is negative and against you, is a skewed way of thinking and living, and you can change that.
Tip: Take some time this month and pay close attention to the type of thoughts you have. Start to embrace the idea that, “I am not my thoughts. I am separate from them.” Once you recognize that, you can start to have greater control over what you think and believe. You can learn to reshape your thoughts to something more life-affirming, whichs shifts their impact on your emotions, behaviors, and the stories you’re telling yourself – about life, people around you, your own worth, etc. Begin to observe your thoughts in a more neutral, curious way, and ask yourself, “Is this thought helpful? Will this thought support me to be happier or crush me down further?”
Treating yourself like a victim
Another toxic behavior is non-stop complaining that fuels your sense of victimization. Believing you’re a victim, that you have no power to exert and zero influence on the direction of your life, is a toxic stance that keeps us stuck and small. In my former work as a marriage and family therapist, I worked with many people who’d suffered terrible trauma in their lives but also found the courage and strength to bounce forward and turn it around as a way to uplift themselves and their lives out of the trauma.
Now, in my work and from what I’ve experienced in my own life, I know that we have access to far more positive power, authority, and influence over our lives than we often believe. When you refuse to see yourself as a hapless victim of fate or chance and stop believing the world is out to get you, you’ll find that you are far more powerful than you realized to shape what happens to you.
Tip: If you feel like a victim right now, I’d suggest exploring where you might be handing over your power to someone or something else. For a quick way to assess where you might be experiencing what I call the 7 damaging power gaps that negatively impact a staggering 98% of professional women and 90% of men, take my quick Power Gap survey. If you have one or more of these gaps, it will be much harder to reach your highest, most joyful goals for your life and work. And to learn more about how to experience more good luck, opportunities and influence, check out my interview with Christian Busch on ways to expand serendipity in your life.
Cruelty – lacking in empathy or putting yourself in others’ shoes
One of the most toxic and damaging behaviors of all – cruelty – stems from a total lack of empathy, concern or compassion for others. We see it every day online and on social media – people being devastatingly cruel to and judgmental of others just because they can. They tear people down online but in a cowardly way, using their anonymity as a weapon. And an online forum allows them to attack people that they will never meet in person or look into their eyes to see the evidence of how hurtful they’re being. Cruelty, backstabbing, and ripping someone to shreds – it’s all toxic, and it hurts you as well as your target.
I had a powerful learning experience about this years ago. I came into the house one day in a nasty mood, and shared a mean, sniping comment to my husband about the way a neighbor was parenting her child through one of his problem phases. In less than 24 hours, that very same issue the parent was dealing with came home to roost in my house, with my child. It was as if the Universe sent me the message that “Ah, if you want to be cruel and demeaning about someone, we’ll give you the same experience you’ve judged so negatively, so you can learn some compassion.” And I did.
Tip: If you find yourself backstabbing and tearing someone else down online or in person, stop in your tracks. Dig deep and find compassion in your heart, and realize that we’re all the same in core ways – we’re all human, suffering with our own foibles, fears, insecurities and challenges.
Then take a hard look at why you’re motivated to be so judgmental and cruel. Ask yourself with as much love in your heart as you can, “What exactly does it give me, to be like this?” Am I trying to build myself up or feel more powerful or confident, through the act of putting someone down?” The reality is that, when you’re doing this, it shows only one thing to the world – that deep down, you don’t feel good about yourself.
An inability to manage your emotions is toxic to everyone around you. We all know these people – men and women who explode over the smallest hiccup or problem. Yelling at the bank teller for the long line, screaming at your assistant for the powerpoint error he made, or losing it with your child for spilling milk on the floor.
Sure, we all have moments or times when we lose control. But if it’s a regular occurrence, that you overreact with anger, rage, fear, criticism, or other emotions that destroy your peace and balance, then something more is happening.
Tip: If you find that you’re overly reactive, losing it at every turn, (or if other people tell you that you are) you may need some outside assistance to help you understand what’s at the root of your emotionality, and to gain greater control over your emotions. There’s more to it than appears on the surface. An outside, neutral perspective – and a new kind of support – is often instrumental.
Needing constant external validation
Finally, people who constantly strive for validation and self-esteem by obsessing about achieving outward measures of success, are exhausting to be around. Those men and women who are caught up in the need to prove their worth over and over, and constantly want to “win” over their colleagues or peers, are toxic and draining.
Over-attachment to how things have to look and be, and to achieving certain milestones and accomplishments (or winning at everything) rather than going with life in a more flexible, easy manner, can wear you out and bring down everyone else around you.
There is a bigger picture to your life, and it’s not all about what you achieve or win at today. It’s about the journey, the process, the path – what you’re learning and applying, how you’re helping others, the kindness, generosity and love you show, and the self-growth process you allow yourself to engage in.
Tip: Try to stop obsessing and stressing over particular outcomes like, “I need that promotion now!” or “My house has to be bigger and more beautiful than my neighbor’s,” or “My summer vacation has to be impressive.” A desperate need to prove your dominance or value and build your self-esteem through outer measures of success is often a sign that you felt you didn’t receive the validation and acceptance that you were longing for as a child, and you are looking for it now, at every turn. But that need for external validation can push away the very outcomes and happiness you’re longing for.
In the end, for those who engage in these toxic behaviors regularly, I’ve seen that regret often seeps into their lives, and they can begin to feel very badly for what they’ve put people through, and how they’ve damaged their own lives and relationships.
Regret is a deeply painful thing to experience, especially as we age and look back on all that we could have been and done with our lives. Take time now to address and revise these behaviors, to experience the life you’re truly wanting.
Kathy Caprino is a career and leadership coach, author, host of Finding Brave, and trainer/speaker helping professionals achieve greater success, fulfillment, and impact. For hands-on career growth help, join her Coaching programs and take her new video training course The Most Powerful You, based on her latest book The Most Powerful You: 7 Bravery-Boosting Paths to Career Bliss.
New Study Reveals Majority of UK’s Young People Unaware of Careers Advice on Offer
3rd July 2023, London, United Kingdom:
- A new study from Youth Group finds three fifths (63%) of 18–25-year-olds are unaware of the current career advice available to them.
- Just under half (48%) feel they are limited when it came to accessing vital career guidance.
- Findings revealed to coincide with the anticipated launch of Season 3 of ‘My Duvet Flip: The careers show for young people’ fronted by UK’s Chief Youth Officer Jack Parsons.
- The latest season of My Duvet Flip is backed by returning Season Two partners Aviva & EY, who are now joined leading UK jobs platform Totaljobs.
- Season 3 is available to watch on LinkedIn, Youth Space, TikTok, and YouTube, starting from July 1, 2023.
Youth Group, the nation’s leading youth employment company with over 1.7 million members, have published new figures underlining the extent to which young people are being left without the necessary access support and guidance needed to successfully start their careers and navigate the UK’s turbulent job market.
Figures released by Youth Group reveal a clear gap between the guidance currently provided and the needs of young job seekers. The majority of young people (16–24-year-olds) are simply unaware of the available career advice resources on offer. A further 48% also found that when trying to access these resources they have felt restricted in terms of the advice they were able to access.
It is response to clear gap in careers guidance that ‘My Duvet Flip: The Careers Show for Young People’ is returns this July for its highly anticipated third season.
Backed by returning Season 2 partners Aviva & EY, season three also introduces a brand new partnership with leading UK recruitment solutions provider Totaljobs, part of global digital recruitment platform, The StepStone Group.
Totaljobs is well-aware of the considerable challenges being faced by young people in the UK. Their own report in the nation’s future talent, released in October 2022 found that half (48%) of 16-18 year olds in the UK believed they were receiving a lack of career advice at school.
Totaljobs has over 20 years’ experience helping individuals find the best job that suits their life circumstances. Whether it’s the first step in their career or a job to cover their expenses, together, this partnership seeks the best guest line-ups, whilst providing educational and job advice to instil confidence in young people across the UK to achieve their employment goals.
By joining forces with ‘My Duvet Flip‘ Totaljobs aims to empower and inspire the youth of the UK. Season Three, presented UK’s Chief Youth Officer, Jack Parsons will continue to engage in up-front, candid conversations with global business leaders, entrepreneurs, and politicians. The show explores their career journeys and seeks to extract valuable tips and advice for viewers from their own experiences. The series also offers insights into what motivates these leaders to succeed and what inspires them to start their day with a positive mindset.
Season Two saw an incredible line-up of guests, such as UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, Debbie Hewitt, FA Chairman, Sebastian Dettmers, Chief Executive Officer, of The Stepstone Group, and President of Google Europe; Matt Brittin.
The second season of ‘My Duvet Flip’ attracted an impressive 9 million views and generated over eight times more engagements compared to the previous season.
Jack Parsons, CEO of Youth Group and the UK’s Chief Youth Officer says:
“I’m excited to present the third season of ‘My Duvet Flip’ and share the motivational and honest conversations I’ve had the privilege to experience with some of Britain’s most successful business leaders, including Sebastian from The Stepstone Group,” shared Parsons. “The podcast is all about supporting the millions of young people across the UK and empowering them to achieve their goals.”
Sebastian Dettmers, Chief Executive Officer of The Stephone Group said:
“I am proud that Totaljobs will now be a partner of ‘The Duvet Flip’ for the 3rd season. Earlier this year, I guested on ‘My Duvet Flip’ and met Jack in person and was very excited by his mission: to be an inspiration and support to young people in the world of work. This fits very well with what we do at The Stepstone Group and at Totaljobs where we help to help find the right job for everyone.”
Jack Parsons, has already earned multiple accolades, including being recognised as LinkedIn’s ‘Top Voice for Young People’ and ‘Top 15 Young Entrepreneurs to Watch,’ hopes that the second season of ‘My Duvet Flip’ will inspire young individuals across the UK to realize and fulfil their potential.
Notes to Editors:
Survey conducted by Youth Group between February to April 2023. The total survey sample was 15,847 young people between the ages of 18-25.
Brayan Jimenez talks about Maximizing Business Growth: Unleashing the Power of a Strategic Financial Controller in Fintech and Business Improvement
In the fast-paced world of business and fintech, organizations face unique challenges that demand a strategic approach to financial management and operational enhancement. A skilled and experienced strategic financial controller proficient in implementing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems and optimizing processes is the catalyst for unlocking growth potential and mitigating risks.
This article delves into the significance of having a strategic financial controller, the risks associated with neglecting one, and the exceptional value they bring to businesses in the fintech sector.
What is a Strategic Financial Controller?
A strategic financial controller is a highly skilled professional who plays a crucial role in managing an organization’s financial operations and driving its financial success. They possess a deep understanding of financial management, accounting principles, and business analytics, allowing them to provide strategic insights and guidance. Unlike traditional financial controllers, they take a proactive and forward-thinking approach, aligning financial strategies with the organization’s overall objectives.
They work closely with key stakeholders to develop and execute financial plans, optimize profitability, and mitigate risks. A strategic financial controller also excels in identifying opportunities for operational improvement, implementing efficient processes, and ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements.
Their expertise in ERP systems and data analysis enables them to provide accurate financial insights for informed decision-making. Overall, a strategic financial controller is an invaluable asset in driving financial stability, growth, and long-term success for businesses.
The Value a Strategic Financial Controller Brings to Businesses
A strategic financial controller brings immense value to fintech businesses, mitigating risks and driving growth through their expertise in various key areas.
- Financial Strategy and Planning: A strategic financial controller aligns financial strategies with business objectives, providing guidance on capital allocation, funding strategies, and financial forecasting. This ensures businesses are well-positioned for growth and financial stability.
- Operational Efficiency: By implementing ERP systems and optimizing business processes, a strategic financial controller enhances operational efficiency, minimizes costs, and maximizes resource allocation. This leads to improved productivity, reduced inefficiencies, and increased profitability.
- Risk Management and Compliance: In the fintech sector, compliance with regulatory requirements is paramount. A strategic financial controller helps navigate complex regulations, ensuring compliance and mitigating legal and reputational risks. They also establish robust risk management frameworks, safeguarding against potential threats and strengthening data security measures.
- Data-Driven Decision Making: A strategic financial controller has extensive knowledge of financial management and data analysis. They empower executives to make informed decisions, spot market trends, and spur innovation by converting complex financial data into usable insights. This gives companies a competitive edge and encourages long-term growth.
The Risks of Ignoring the Role of a Strategic Financial Controller
Failure to employ a strategic financial controller exposes businesses in the fintech sector to numerous difficulties and risks. Without their expertise, organizations may encounter:
- Inefficient Financial Operations: Inadequate streamlining of financial processes leads to errors, delays, and subpar financial reporting, hampering decision-making and compliance efforts.
- Regulatory Non-Compliance: The highly regulated fintech landscape requires meticulous adherence to complex regulatory requirements. Without a strategic financial controller’s guidance, organizations may struggle to navigate these regulations, resulting in legal and reputational risks.
- Inadequate Risk Management: Fintech companies handle sensitive financial data and are prone to cybersecurity threats. The absence of a strategic financial controller increases vulnerability to data breaches and financial fraud.
- Missed Growth Opportunities: Absence of a dedicated professional overseeing financial strategies may result in missed growth opportunities, failure to optimize revenue streams, and suboptimal investment decisions.
In the ever-evolving world of business and fintech, the role of a strategic financial controller is pivotal. Neglecting to employ one exposes businesses to inefficiencies, compliance risks, and missed growth opportunities. However, by harnessing the expertise of a strategic financial controller in ERP systems, financial management, and operational enhancement, fintech organizations can thrive, outpace their competitors, and achieve sustainable growth. Investing in a strategic financial controller is a strategic decision that ensures financial stability, streamlines operations, and propels businesses towards unprecedented success.
Breast Cancer: Facts, Symptoms, Prevention and Latest Research
Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers that affect women worldwide. While significant progress has been made in early detection and treatment options, it remains a serious health concern with potential life-altering consequences. This article provides an overview of breast cancer facts and statistics, symptoms to look out for, ways to lower risk factors, screening methods available for early detection, and the latest research developments in finding better prevention measures and treatments.
Facts and Statistics
Breast cancer is the most common cancer globally, accounting for 12.5% of all new annual cancer cases worldwide. In the U.S., an estimated 287,850 new cases of invasive breast cancer and 51,400 new cases of non-invasive (in situ) breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in women in 2022. About 13% of U.S. women will develop invasive breast cancer during their lifetime.
The risk factors for developing breast cancer include being a woman and getting older; however, some genetic mutations can also contribute to its development. While about 85% of breast cancers occur in women with no family history of the disease, Ashkenazi Jewish women have a higher risk due to a higher rate of BRCA mutations.
Breast cancer death rates have been decreasing since 1989 due to treatment advances and earlier detection through screening; however, persistent disparities exist among different racial or ethnic groups. Black women are more likely than any other group to die from breast cancer due partially to high rates of triple-negative breast cancer diagnosis.
What Are the Symptoms of Breast Cancer?
Breast cancer symptoms can vary from person to person, and some individuals may not experience any signs or symptoms at all. However, there are warning signs that people should be aware of.
These include the appearance of a new lump in the breast or underarm, thickening or swelling of part of the breast, irritation or dimpling of breast skin, redness or flaky skin in the nipple area or on the breast, pulling in of the nipple or pain in this area, nipple discharge other than milk (including blood), and any change in size/shape/pain experienced within any portion(s) of your breasts.
It’s important to note that these symptoms can also occur due to non-cancerous conditions; thus it is recommended for an individual with such concerns to seek advice from their healthcare provider as soon as possible so they can determine if further testing is needed.
Ways to Lower the Risk of Breast Cancer
There is no guaranteed way to prevent breast cancer, but there are steps that can be taken which may help to reduce the risk. Some risk factors are beyond an individual’s control, such as age and gender; however, other factors like body weight and alcohol consumption can be modified.
For all women, maintaining a healthy weight throughout life by balancing food intake with physical activity is crucial in reducing the risk of developing breast cancer after menopause. Regular moderate-to-vigorous physical activity for at least 150-300 minutes per week (or any combination of these) is also recommended.
Alcohol should either be avoided or limited to one drink per day at most since even small amounts have been linked with an increase in breast cancer risk.
Breastfeeding for several months after childbirth might also lower the chances of developing breast cancer while using hormone therapy after menopause can increase the risk. In case hormonal treatment options are required post-menopause, non-hormonal options should be discussed with healthcare providers.
For women who are known to have an increased risk of developing breast cancer due to certain genetic mutations or family history etc., medical interventions like genetic counseling/testing and prescription medicines like tamoxifen and raloxifene could help lower their chances of getting it. Preventive surgery or close observation for early signs of this disease could also be considered based on individualized assessments made by healthcare professionals.
Screening for Breast Cancer
Breast cancer screening is used to detect the disease before symptoms appear. Tests like mammography, ultrasound, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be used for screening. The primary goals of breast cancer screening are early detection and reduction or elimination of deaths from the disease. Mammography is currently considered to be the best tool available for breast cancer screening as it has been shown to reduce fatalities resulting from this type of cancer.
While digital mammography may be more effective at identifying cancers in dense breasts, 3D mammograms may improve sensitivity even further by reducing false-positive results that lead to additional testing and anxiety. However, overdiagnosis remains a potential issue with this method.
Other tests such as ultrasounds and MRIs are not routinely recommended unless there is a high risk of developing breast cancer due to genetic mutations or other factors.
The frequency and type of breast cancer screenings recommended depend on individual risk factors, age, health status, etc., so it’s important to discuss options with your doctor. Different organizations have varying recommendations regarding when women should start getting screened for breast cancer as well as how often they should receive these tests.
It’s worth noting that while clinical breast examinations (CBEs) are included in some guidelines along with mammography, others do not recommend them for women who are not at an increased risk of developing breast cancer. Breast self-examination is also not proven to lower mortality rates but can help people become familiar with their bodies in order to better identify changes that could indicate a problem.
Latest Research on Breast Cancer
Researchers are studying various aspects of early-stage and locally advanced breast cancer to find ways to prevent the disease, provide better care, and improve treatments. This includes identifying causes such as environmental factors, lifestyle choices, and endocrine disruptors. Additionally, they are developing new methods for evaluating genes and proteins in order to determine the best treatment options for each individual patient.
Other areas of research include finding more effective ways to prevent breast cancer or detect it at an earlier stage; determining whether ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) should always be treated with surgery; identifying which molecular subtypes of cancer require chemotherapy; testing new drug therapies for different types of breast cancer; exploring approaches like targeted radiation therapy schedules and reconstructive surgery techniques; improving hormonal therapies for ER-positive breast cancer patients; managing symptoms associated with treatments that affect the quality of life.
In conclusion, breast cancer is a serious disease that affects many women worldwide. While there are steps to reduce risk factors and early detection through screening, ongoing research is necessary to improve treatment options and overall outcomes for patients. Recommendations include maintaining a healthy lifestyle, regular screenings based on individualized assessments by healthcare professionals, and staying informed about the latest research developments in breast cancer. It’s important for individuals to discuss any concerns or questions with their doctor and follow recommended guidelines for prevention and care.
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