Ignite HQ Weekly Vlog
Does your work week feel stressful? Jacqueline’s got you covered! Check out these tips on how to survive a stressful week at work!
It’s September. Fall has started. Soon it will start to get cooler in the mornings. We will want to stay in bed sipping on cider or hot chocolate. It’s been a long year and we want to take a 3-month vacation. However, this is unrealistic (for most of us at least) and we know that deadlines are approaching and work is as busy as ever. What do you do when you don’t want to, but have to? Here are a couple reasons people become unmotivated and how to overcome them.
You’re only seeing the bad/negative
When someone is only seeing negative scenarios around them or the bad things that may have happened this week, it’s easy to lack motivation. Okay, you didn’t seal the deal with the large corporation you were hoping for. That doesn’t mean there aren’t other large corporations who you can go after. Okay, you didn’t get that job you were hoping for. That doesn’t mean there isn’t another job that could be even better. Don’t give up just because one scenario didn’t work out; life has endless opportunities.
You’ve set unrealistic goals
When life is not happening the way you expected or planned for, it’s easy to get discouraged. Maybe it’s time to reevaluate your goals and consider if they are realistic for the current state of your business or personal being. When setting goals it is important to stay SMART… Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-oriented. By doing so, you will be able to work towards a specific end result and will be able to measure whether or not you achieved the goal at the end of a designated time period. Modifying a goal will make it achievable and keeping the goal realistic will motivate you to continue pushing after the designated time period when you see positive results.
You are impatient
It feels like you’ve been waiting… and waiting… and waiting. You’re becoming annoyed and increasingly agitated. You’ve been at your current employer for 2 years and believe you deserve a promotion. You spoke to your boss a month ago and he still hasn’t gotten back to you. Maybe, your boss is still going through the necessary steps to follow through with the promotion. Or, it’s been a slow season at the boutique you own. Maybe, people are saving money in preparation for the holiday season and then sales will pick up again. Either way, patience is a virtue and most things don’t happen exactly how we hope or plan, but all things happen as they should.
You aren’t using your time wisely
This one hits close to home because I am constantly distracted. Look at that picture perfect photo-op. Who just texted me? I wonder what I’m going to eat tonight. All of these take my mind away from what I’m supposed to be doing. After a three minute or one-hour lunch break, five minute walk at the top of every hour, chit-chat with your coworker in the break room, occasional phone call from your partner, in-laws, or kids, instead of working 8 am – 4 pm, you’re really only working 8 am – 2:30 or 3 pm. Not to say you’re not being productive during your work day, but maybe you aren’t getting your work done because you aren’t actually concentrating on work. Instead of walking for five minutes, walk to the end of the hall and back to cut that time in half. Give your coworker the “Hey, I hate to do this, but I need to finish this project, let’s chat later.” Maybe even put your phone on do not disturb and disable non-work related notifications on your computer.
No matter who you are, where you work, or what you do, there’s always times we lack drive and motivation to finish projects, study for exams, or host that weekly conference call. During these times, it’s important to keep in mind why you started and continue to pull from your inspiration. You started a non-profit because you wanted to help people. You’re going to law school to pursue your dream of prosecuting criminals. You opened a small business because you love fashion and wanted to employ those from less fortunate neighborhoods. Remember that motivation comes from within and radiates from your core.
When you’re bored, change your routine. Instead of exercising after a busy work day, wake up 30 minutes earlier to exercise before work and go to bed 30 minutes earlier. Rearrange your desk. Add a plant. Incorporate a pop of color. Frame a picture of your dog or family.
When you’re overwhelmed, schedule down time. Who says you have to go home, check emails, cook dinner and clean the house before you even take your shoes off? Come home from work, unwind and change your clothes. Read a book, watch an episode of your favorite show, or go for a walk. Take time to forget about your responsibilities and do something fun for yourself.
When things don’t work out, don’t dwell on the “what-ifs”. What’s done is done. Maybe, you would’ve gotten the job if you had said this. Maybe, you would’ve gotten this client if you had done this. If you have to alter who you are or what you believe then it’s not good for you or your business anyway. You will only attract what’s best by staying true to your values. Stay optimistic. Revamp your pitch, practice your interview skills and you’ll get the next one!
And when you’re successful, treat yourself! You lost the weight… splurge on a new outfit you love. You got the promotion… go to the fancy restaurant you’ve been eyeing for a year. Your small business grew 200% percent in revenue and foot traffic… buy the designer purse you’ve gotten 100 promotion emails about. Then, redefine your goals, write them down and evaluate what’s next. Nobody is perfect or has it all figured out. But no matter where you’re at personally or in your business, we are here to help. We’re cheering for you!
VNDE Poised to Disrupt Educational Financial Aid Industry
At a time when rising tuition costs have become a problem so large it is debated on the national stage, IgniteHQ member Kyle Cornelius is utilizing data to develop a solution. Kyle’s startup VNDE is a debt free, pay-it-forward system spring boarded by grantors and sustained by income sharing agreements amongst its beneficiaries.
What is VNDE
VNDE is in essence a service company providing a financial service in a revolutionary way. “We are leveraging big data to better understand customers and therefore better manage the risk from money providers,” explained Kyle. Unlike the traditional credit sector, VNDE focuses on both the borrower and the capitol making sure to match investors and students accordingly.
How it Works
VNDE’s services differ from other financial aid entities because “borrowers” receive funds for college and then promise to “pay forward” those funds once in the workforce. Each recipient enters into an Income Sharing Agreement (ISA) which will determine how much and how often to pay depending on earned income. The VNDE model depends on grants from initial grant makers and a tested algorithm determining the conditions of recipients’ Income Sharing Agreement (ISA).
VNDE’s website explains students can select between short & long term ISA options which promise to be affordable and interest and fee free. Kyle says its VNDE’s algorithm, which is based on collected data, that ensures his program will save students between 15% – 75% financing their education.
The company emphasizes that recipients never share more of their income than the amount of wherewithal afforded to them.
Inspired by Purdue
Kyle says it was his own experience paying for college that inspired him to find a solution to the growing problem of affordability. “While paying off my own student loans I realized I was just a grain of sand in this vast desert of student debt,” said Kyle. “I was lucky enough to have parents that helped me, but I understand many high school graduates don’t have that support. Student debt can seriously hinder one’s personal ambitions. Many can’t even afford a higher education.”
Kyle later read about a new funding concept initiated at Purdue University which involved ISAs. Purdue’s “Back A Boiler” program was initiated by the Purdue Research Foundation and offered an Income Share Agreement (ISA). The concept was new and the funding limited at first, but the system promised paid-for education with the commitment of students to pay a fixed percentage of income for a fixed number of years back to the fund.
“After reading about Purdue, I just knew I could turn this concept into a startup. My experience is in big data and how to leverage data. I saw a fit here,” explained Kyle.
Plans for the Future
VNDE is focused on helping to fund undergraduate degrees at public universities and is currently accepting applications for Spring 2020. According to Kyle, VNDE will be prepared to help 500 students this spring, giving $28,000 per undergraduate degree and $3500 per associate degree.
As far as the company’s growth, Kyle says he is working on establishing trust with grantors and is building his board of advisors to include people who can help him navigate the grant maker ecosystem.
For more information on VNDE visit: www.vnde.org
IgniteHQ mentor Tricia Whitlock is plugged into Atlanta’s entrepreneurial scene. Throughout her startup world tenure, Whitlock has penned more than 600 articles showcasing technology, entrepreneurship and innovation in Georgia, reported on Atlanta’s tech and startup sector for WSB-TV, and marketed the area’s top incubators and entrepreneurial spaces.
It’s no wonder Atlanta’s startup world begs for Tricia’s attention. Her resume boasts an impressive portfolio of universities, billion-dollar corporations and incubators – all entities she enhanced through her passion for bolstering other people’s startup dreams.
With her vast knowledge of startups in Metro Atlanta, Tricia points to the culture as something that is most special.
“The openness and friendliness of the people in Atlanta’s startup scene is exceptional,” said Tricia. “This is an incredibly welcoming and inclusive place.”
From Build to Improve
Currently, Tricia is spearheading marketing, public relations and operations at Startup Genome, a company dedicated to enhancing startup success by catalyzing the startup ecosystem in forward looking regions.
While she is directing her attention to other cities, Tricia remains proudly engaged in Atlanta.
“My job with Startup Genome has me working in startup scenes all over the world, but there’s no place like home! To stay in touch with the local ecosystem, I’m serving as Founding Co-chair of GSU’s Entrepreneurial Alumni Network.”
An IgniteHQ Asset
Tricia has been supporting IgniteHQ since it opened its doors off of the Marietta Square in 2017. She first worked to build IgniteHQ; now she helps its members do the same.
“IgniteHQ’s mix of members and tenants showcase the Atlanta area’s wide variety of talent and focus – creative agencies, social enterprises, high tech startups, religious groups, venture capitalists, students – there’s so much under one roof.”
Get to know Tricia and book time with her today! Email Tricia at Tricia@startupgenome.com to connect about startup ecosystem building and getting plugged into the local technology scene.