The Anxious Achiever: Turn Your Biggest Fears into Your Leadership Superpower

Title: The Anxious Achiever: Turn Your Biggest Fears into Your Leadership Superpower  

Author: Morra Aarong-Mele

Hardcover: 272 pages

Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press

Publishing Date: April 11, 2023

Who is this book for? 

  • Anyone in a leadership position who’s ever stressed about feeling anxious in the workplace. 
  • Readers looking to turn their anxiety into success in their career. 

What’s inside this book?

  • A compelling guide to managing the anxiety that accompanies success and leadership from a top-rated podcaster, entrepreneur and mental health advocate.
  • Morra’s personal stories, research-based insights into mental health and practical advice culled through her years in the field of workplace mental health.

3 lessons you’ll learn from this book:  

  1. Anxiety is built into the nature of leadership.
  2. Anxiety should be harnessed into a force for good.
  3. You can learn to resist perfectionism, manage social anxiety and set boundaries to prevent burnout.

4 questions this book will answer for you:  

  1. How can I confront my bad habits and unhealthy coping mechanisms?
  2. How do I deal with feedback, criticism and impostor syndrome?
  3. How do I model and communicate healthy behavior as a leader?
  4. How do I figure out my own anxiety profile so I can recognize and avoid common thought traps and triggers?

What people are saying about this book: 

“Aarons-Mele has written an astonishing book. This is not a book for just anxious achievers–it’s a book for any human being who wants to transform their mental health.” – Andy Dunn

“Armed with the concepts in this well-researched, raw and vulnerable work, you will learn how to take anxiety and channel it toward a powerful purpose.” — Rita McGrath

“Great leaders take their mental health seriously. The Anxious Achiever gives you the skills to do it.” – Dorie Clark

TikTok Inspo: What did you think of The Anxious Achiever? Share your own review with us in a 15-second video. 

A Review of the Most Popular Workplace Communication Platforms

There are so many popular workplace communication platforms available today, each of them offering a range of features to support team collaboration and communication. Here are some of the most popular platforms, along with a brief overview of their key features.


Slack is a cloud-based communication platform that allows teams to communicate and collaborate in real-time. It offers a range of features including direct messaging, group channels, file sharing and integration with other tools. Slack also offers a mobile app for iOS and Android, which makes it easy to stay in contact with the team while on the go. 

Users love Slack’s screen share and video conferencing, claiming it’s quicker than competitors, but they don’t love the lack of customizable backgrounds or the minimal storage capacity on the platform. 

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams is a unified communication and collaboration platform that integrates with other Microsoft services, including Exchange, SharePoint and OneDrive. Teams offers real-time messaging, video and audio calls, file sharing and integration with a wide range of other tools and services. 

Microsoft Teams offers benefits like advanced chat features with badges, GIFs and stickers, which always make workplace communications more fun. Also, many companies will not need to make an additional purchase to use Microsoft Teams, as it’s included in Microsoft 365, which they may already have. However, there are some disadvantages to this platform as well, such as limited capability for internal communications, challenging navigation and a complicated search interface. 


The video conferencing platform that exploded during the coronavirus pandemic is still a favorite among businesses across the world. The cloud-based platform allows teams to hold virtual meetings and webinars at no cost, with extra features and unlimited meetings available through subscription. Zoombombs are an unwelcome part of this platform, but virtual backgrounds are a favorite among users, because who doesn’t love attending a work meeting from outer space? 

Google Workspace (formerly G Suite)

Google Workspace is a suite of cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools that includes Gmail, Google Drive and Google Meet. Workspace offers real-time collaboration on documents, spreadsheets and presentations, along with video and audio calling, making it a popular choice for remote teams. The live Docs and Sheets, which can be reviewed, edited and updated by any team member who’s been granted access, make teamwork easy. However, some users complain of integration issues with Google Meet. 


Asana is a project management and team collaboration platform that allows teams to track their work, set and manage tasks and share files. Asana offers integration with other tools and services, as well as a mobile app for iOS and Android. Users find the task calendar to be super-convenient and user-friendly, though some complain that the mobile app is too limited and that too many emails result from use of the product.

Each of these platforms has its strengths and weaknesses, so the right choice for your team will depend on your specific needs and requirements. 

Your Turn: Do you use one of these platforms at work? Tell us what you love about it in the comments.

The Art of Bouncing Back: Find Your Flow to Thrive at Work and in Life ― Any Time You’re Off Your Game

Title: The Art of Bouncing Back: Find Your Flow to Thrive at Work and in Life ― Any Time You’re Off Your Game 

Author: Darleen “Coach Dar” Santore

Hardcover: 208 pages

Publisher: McGraw Hill

Publishing date: Feb. 28, 2023

Who is this book for? 

  • Anyone struggling through a rough patch with their finances or another area in life.
  • Anyone looking to build a stronger emotional foundation to help them survive – and thrive – when life throws them curveballs.

What’s inside this book?

  • Coach Dar’s proven strategies and techniques as a mental skills coach to help others with bouncing back when life gets them down. 
  • Coach Dar’s stories of how she and her clients rebounded after financial devastation and other setbacks throughout her 25+ year career.

4 lessons you’ll learn from this book:  

  1. Any adversity you face in life can create new opportunities for growth. 
  2. Pour a strong emotional foundation now to prepare yourself for future challenges.
  3. When you connect with your “Why-Power,” you can create your own bounce-back environment.
  4. Every setback you encounter in life can be instantly reframed. 

4 questions this book will answer for you:  

  1. How do world-class athletes suffer through defeat and come back stronger; and how can I do the same?
  2. How can I increase my confidence, emotional intelligence, agility and resilience to build my business or career?
  3. What’s the right way to accept feedback?
  4. How can I identify the exact pivot I need to push myself forward?

What people are saying about this book: 

“In The Art of Bouncing Back, Coach Dar shares 9 simple and practical ways to not only bounce back but thrive again. A must-have guide in everyone’s home.”— Bob Goff

“This book is an essential road map for those needing hope, tools for change, and a vision for their lives.” — J. Douglas Holladay

“Anyone who has had the privilege of learning from Coach Dar knows she offers sage counsel and guidance, and as a person she is truly one of a kind. When applying her leadership principles, our executive team was able to successfully lead a Fortune 500 Company through the uncharted waters of a global pandemic and come out on the other side stronger and more aligned than ever.” — Sheryl Palmer

“The Art of Bouncing Back is a must-read!..There is something in it for everyone.” — John H. Dalton

Your Turn: What did you think of The Art of Bouncing Back? Share your opinion in the comments.

5 Ways to Communicate More Effectively at Work

Knowing how to effectively communicate with your coworkers is essential for ongoing success. Effective communication helps reduce misunderstandings, fosters a positive workplace vibe, encourages productive collaboration and helps prepare team members for challenging situations the company may experience. Here are five ways to communicate more effectively at work.

Be clear and concise

The fewer words you use to communicate, the better. Try to keep your written and verbal communications while at work as short and direct as possible. This is not the time to show off your high-level vocabulary. Use simple, clear language, avoid technical terms and keep it brief for more effective communication. 

Actively listen 

In our screen-addicted world, active listening is a lost art. Be the team member who is known to really listen and pay close attention to the message someone is sharing. When a coworker is talking to you, or you’re reading an email from a colleague, don’t do anything else. Try to hear them out without jumping in to offer your own solutions or an outrageous story that tops theirs. Listen, validate, ask clarifying questions and then respond.

Watch your body language

Effective communication isn’t only about what you say – it’s also how you say it. Your body language speaks volumes; when communicating with coworkers, make sure it’s sending the same message as your words. Avoid crossing your arms or tapping your foot. Both behaviors communicate impatience and an eagerness for the conversation to end. Make sure you’re facing the person you’re speaking with and maintain eye contact throughout the conversation. Try to relax your facial muscles so you don’t look angry or tense, even if you’re feeling particularly stressed at the time. Positive body language can help keep the conversation smooth and productive for everyone.

There’s an app for that

While there’s no tech that can replace a face-to-face conversation, a communication app can help team members share workplace updates and developments in real-time. Apps like Slack, Microsoft Teams, Asana and Google Hangouts offer features like chat rooms, video and audio calls, task management and more.

Upgrade your emails

Most people shoot out emails mindlessly throughout the workday. Follow these tips to ensure you’re hitting all the right bases with your online missives:

  • Write descriptive subject lines. This will grab the attention of the recipient and let them know you aren’t wasting their time. 
  • Start with a great greeting. According to a survey from Perkbox, the most popular email greeting lines are “Hi,” “Hello” and “Good morning/afternoon”. The most annoying? Overly pompous greetings like “To Whom it May Concern”.
  • Break up your text to make it more readable. Use bullet points, numbered lists and paragraph breaks to keep the text flowing.
  • Don’t bury the lead. Make sure the most important point of your email isn’t buried at the end of a long paragraph the recipient may not even read. 
  • Sign off politely. End with a “Thanks” or “Have a great day”.

Effective communication makes the nine-to-five life smoother and more productive. Use these tips to improve your workplace communication.

Your Turn: Are you an effective communicator at work? Or are you still a work in progress. Share your best tips and experiences in the comments.

Two Weeks Notice: Find the Courage to Quit Your Job, Make More Money, Work Where You Want, and Change the World

Title: Two Weeks Notice: Find the Courage to Quit Your Job, Make More Money, Work Where You Want, and Change the World

Author: Amy Porterfield

Hardcover: 304 pages

Publisher: Hay House Business

Publishing date: Feb. 21, 2023

Who is this book for? 

  • Frustrated, overworked or under-stimulated employees who are looking for more time, flexibility, recognition, income and impact. 
  • Employees seeking a way to leave their job and start their own business.

What’s inside this book?

  • A step-by-step blueprint for financial freedom through business ownership.
  • Three revenue-generating strategies.
  • Porterfield’s strategies, stories and mindset shifts as a 9-5 escapee who built an 8-figure online business on her own terms. 

4 lessons you’ll learn from this book:  

  1. How to use your 10-percent edge to build a foolproof marketing plan.
  2. How to give notice and “unboss”.
  3. How to set your business up for success.
  4. How to build your company website and a social media following.

4 questions this book will answer for you:  

  1. How do I build up the courage to leave my job?
  2. How do I navigate the most common boss traps, like self-sabotage and “superwoman syndrome”?
  3. What do I need to know before I start my own business?
  4. How do I identify my ideal customer avatar?

What people are saying about this book: 

“…Amy does a remarkable job breaking down the steps for creating a passion-filled life and business. If you’re a woman dreaming of breaking through the glass ceiling to create a life on your terms and enjoy the process along the way, this book is exactly what you need.”

— Mel Robbins

“Ready to ditch your 9–5 and follow your dreams? Then get this book now! In her signature step-by-step style, Amy delivers a practical and inspiring blueprint to becoming your own boss.”

— Marie Forleo

“Amy unveils the mindset, skill set, and grit required to quit your job and unboss with clarity. Not only will you find the courage to give your two weeks’ notice, but this book will guide you step by step through navigating entrepreneurship with a greater sense of peace, purpose, and freedom.”

— Patrice Washington

“If you’ve been daydreaming of starting your own business and being your own boss but have no idea where to start, this book is just the motivation you need. Entertaining and incredibly inspiring, it’s packed with actual practical advice that will set you up for major success.”

— Alli Webb

Your Turn: Have you read “Two Weeks Notice” or plan to do so? Share your thoughts in the comments. 

5 Ways to Save on Workplace Lunches

Did you know that spending $10 to buy lunch at work each day will cost you $2,600 a year? And if you spend $20 each day, well … that number doubles! That’s a lot of money that could be better spent toward a vacation, a luxury purchase you’ve been dreaming of, paying down existing debts or just sitting in an investment fund or savings account. Here’s how to save on workplace lunches by brown-bagging it and beyond. 

Check out your workplace kitchen

If you’ve been buying your lunch every day, you may not even know what space and appliances are available to you in the office kitchen. Check out what your workplace provides for its employees in the way of food storage and prep so you can be better prepared when planning and packing your lunches. Is there a microwave, toaster or another appliance at the office? Do you have access to cabinet space and/or a fridge? Are there spice packets and condiments for the taking? 

Love those leftovers

Don’t just use the bit of leftover dinner proteins to add to your work lunch salads; cook dinner with the next day’s lunch in mind. Add a bit of extra protein to your entree, and then slice it or shred it for your workday sandwich or salad. If you’re cooking up pasta, set some aside to take to work the next day before you add any sauces or cheese. Homemade pizza is great the next day, too. Pack some condiments, cheese and your favorite salad add-ons to add life to your leftovers at work.

Jar it

Mason jars are the perfect food storage solution, and they’re pretty, too! Pack a tight salad, layered meal or anything at all in small Mason jars and it’ll stay fresh for several days in your home or work fridge. Jarring your lunch is a great solution for the employee who finds it challenging to carve out time for lunch prep each evening or morning. All you need is one marathon food prep session over the weekend, and you’ll be set for the week.

Freeze it

If your office provides freezer space for its employees, you may want to load up on some frozen meal options. You can find some delicious and healthful frozen lunches at Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods and other grocery stores. Keep them at work for those days when you didn’t plan ahead for lunch but don’t want to blow a twenty on takeout. 

Partner up with a colleague

If you still want to spring for takeout at work, consider partnering up with a friend to bring down the price. You can split a lunch special, share a personal pie or even take turns sponsoring a lunch so you don’t have to pay for your meal each day. 

Use these hacks to brown-bag it like a pro and save on workplace lunches. 

Your Turn: How do you save on workplace lunches? Share your best hacks in the comments. 

5 Workplace Resolutions for the New Year

It’s that time of year again: the time when you draw up a list of New Year’s resolutions looking awfully similar to last year’s list. This year, why not go beyond the usual weight-related goals and resolving to spend less time on social media by setting some resolutions for the workplace? It’s time to turn yourself into a star employee! Here are five workplace resolutions for the New Year.

  1. Acquire a new skill 

You may be a dedicated worker, but you’re only as good as your skills. Are they up-to-date? Make a commitment to learn a new skill in your field this year or to significantly expand your current skill set. Broadening your range of knowledge and expertise can help you advance in your career.

  1. Improve your sleeping habits

If you’re yawning your way through your workday and checking items off your to-do list in between too many cups of coffee, you may want to rethink your sleeping habits. Getting enough shut-eye each night will help you power through your workday while at your best, instead of slogging through it bleary-eyed and half-asleep. In addition to boosting your productivity, sleeping better can strengthen your immune system, improve your mood, make your memory stronger and help keep those extra pounds off. 

Follow these tips from the CDC for a better night’s sleep:

  • Be consistent with your bedtime and wake time.
  • Make sure your bedroom is dark and quiet when you’re ready for bed.
  • Keep your phone and other electronic devices out of reach or remove them from your bedroom. 
  • Avoid caffeine, alcohol and large meals before bedtime. 
  • Be physically active during the day.
  1. Rethink your work-life balance

A healthy work-life balance is crucial for success at work and further career growth. It isn’t easy to strike that perfect balance between absolute workaholic and careless employee, but you can do it! Take stock of your daily and weekly schedule now, at year’s end, to ensure you aren’t neglecting the parts of your life outside work, such as your family, friends, hobbies and more. If you’re overdoing it with work responsibilities, resolve to take some time each week to unplug from your job and tune into the rest of your life. 

  1. Improve your social media profiles

If you’re considering a career change within the next year or so, you may want to take a good look at your social media profiles. Most recruiters look up potential new employees online before moving ahead with the hiring, and if your social media profiles are in any way embarrassing and/or unprofessional, they can cost you a job. Spend some time now updating each of your profiles and ensuring that you’d be comfortable with any future boss checking them out.

  1. Create opportunities for engagement

Start the year off right by looking for ways to increase your engagement with other workers in your field. You can collaborate on present and future projects, share new insights and developments in your line of work and bounce ideas off each other for honest and productive feedback. Look for like-minded individuals on online forums and workspaces geared toward employees in your field. 

Let these workplace resolutions help you become the indispensable employee you’ve always wanted to be.

Your Turn: What are your workplace resolutions for the new year? Share them with us in the comments. 

What to Do Next: Taking Your Best Step When Life Is Uncertain

Title: What to Do Next: Taking Your Best Step When Life Is Uncertain 

Author: Jeff Henderson

Hardcover: 240 pages

Publisher: Zondervan

Publishing date: August 23, 2022

Who is this book for? 

  • Anyone interested in changing their career or life circumstances, but unsure of how to take that first step.

What’s inside this book?

  • A practical guide toward reevaluating your purpose and determining your next step in your life and in your career.
  • Jeff’s personal story and insights he’s learned along his own journey from marketer to church-founder and beyond.
  • The “Career Risk Calculator” to help you determine if you’re ready for change.

4 lessons you’ll learn from this book:  

  1. How to identify what to do, and what not to do when making decisions about change.
  2. How to exchange fear and confusion for confidence, freedom and purpose.
  3. How to cultivate optimal options in your life to guide you toward better decision-making.
  4. How to prepare for changes, both planned and unplanned.

4 questions this book will answer for you:  

  1. How can I pursue more meaning in my life?
  2. How do I know if I need a change?
  3. Is who I am right now as important as who I am becoming?
  4. I know I’m ready for change, so what’s my best next step?

What people are saying about this book: 

“The Great Resignation has resulted in millions of people wondering what’s next for them. It’s one of the reasons I’m excited about Jeff Henderson’s book. His practical and winsome approach will have you highlighting, laughing, and enjoying the story. All the while, he’ll help you take important steps toward figuring out what’s next for you.”–Michael Hyatt

“As a fellow restless traveler who took a career leap of faith in my fifties, I found comfort in Jeff Henderson’s journey … Change is hard. But Jeff Henderson helps make it easier.”–Stephanie Stuckey

“In an era when millions of people are facing a seemingly infinite set of career options and rethinking their futures, Jeff Henderson arrives with a thoughtful, highly practical and generous book. If you’re looking for actionable strategies and wise counsel, pull up a chair and let Jeff coach you.”–Carey Nieuwhof

“Reading this book is like having a million-dollar coach in your corner helping you navigate your next move confidently.”–Sangram Vajre

“Authentic. Helpful. Freeing….What to Do Next is a must-read resource for anyone looking for clarity, empowerment, and vision for what’s ahead.” –Shelley Giglio

Your Turn: What did you think of What to Do Next? Share your opinion in the comments. 

How to Prepare Your Business for the Holiday Season

The holidays may be a few months away, but it’s never too early to start planning. The more advance prep you do to get your business ready for the holidays, the easier it will be to sail through these months hitting all the right bases with lower stress levels.

Here are some tips to get you started. 

Plan your marketing and promotions

Before the season officially starts, set aside time to strategize about your holiday marketing. Use data and metrics from last year’s holiday season, as well as current trends, to come up with a plan that will drive the best results. The earlier you start laying out your plan, the more time you’ll have to reach your target audience before the holidays.

At this time, you may want to plan for promotions and giveaways, too. Research popular freebies that align with your industry and company values and price them at various sources to get the biggest bang for your buck. Place your order early to avoid paying top dollar for a rush job and to ensure you have what you need well in advance. 

Stay organized

For many businesses, the holiday season is characterized by a general sense of chaos. This can translate into lower productivity levels and compromised service. Avoid this by maximizing the organization level at your business before the holiday madness sets in.

Brainstorm with your team for ways you can improve the organization of your business during super-busy times of year. For example, make sure you have all the supplies you’ll need for the holiday season. If there are multiple projects planned for the coming months, consider using a collaboration app, like Asana or Lionscribe, to ensure everyone is always on the same page. Finally, if you have a storefront, consider rearranging the layout to allow for an easier flow of traffic in popular areas. 

Hire and train seasonal workers 

If your business typically hires extra workers for the holiday season, get a head start on this year’s hiring. You can start meeting with potential seasonal employees and working out their hours now. Things will only get crazier, and crossing one task off your to-do list and having those extra hands available as soon as you need them will help to keep things calm as the outside flurry begins. 

Review vacation policies

It won’t work to have half your team out at the same time, or to have some employees feeling resentful because they weren’t granted their desired time off. Avoid these kinds of issues by reviewing and tweaking your vacation policies now, well in advance of the holidays. Once you’ve come up with a reasonable policy, be sure to share it with your employees with enough time for them to work out their vacation schedules in advance.

Plan ways to boost employee morale

The crunch time leading up to the holidays can be stressful for many people. There are social obligations to attend, lists of gifts to buy and the other preparations to tend to before the holidays. Add the pressure of finishing up the year at work during the busiest season, and you’ve got a recipe for a stressed-out team.

Head off the problem of burnt-out employees in the holiday season by pre-planning ways to boost morale on a group and individual level. Get staff input on how to celebrate the season in ways that go beyond the obligatory office party. Consider supporting a charitable organization by partnering with the charity of your choice throughout the holiday season. Ask your team to help you choose the charity, which will spread good feelings and buy-in all around. You can also make a point of increasing your positive feedback to your employees during the holiday season.

It’s never too early to start preparing for the holidays! Use these tips to get your business ready for the busiest season of the year.

Your Turn: How does your business prepare for and thrive during the holidays? Share your best tips with us in the comments. 

How to Stay Up-to-Date in Your Field

Whatever your chosen field or level of training, it’s crucial to stay up-to-date on the latest developments, trends and discoveries in your line of work. The world is constantly evolving, and what worked a decade ago, last year or even last month may be considered passé or even damaging in today’s world. Here’s how you can ensure you’re always current within your field. 

Pair up with a work buddy

Experience is truly the best teacher. If you don’t have enough of your own, why not piggyback on someone else’s experience to help you learn? Find a mentor, or work buddy, in your chosen industry by teaming up with a friend in your field. You can share ideas, ask questions about new developments in your industry and open a dialogue about valuable lessons each of you have learned while on the job. Ask your work buddy to provide feedback on any big projects you’ve completed, and serve as a sounding board for them as well. The partnership will help both of you stay updated and knowledgeable about all recent happenings in your field. 

Pursue further education 

Education in any subject is a lifelong pursuit. Broadening your knowledge in your field will help you up your game and advance your career. You can accomplish this by signing up for an online or in-person course, or reading a new book that covers topics in your field. 

In 2022, though, there are so many more ways to learn about any topic you can dream up. Tap into the powerful reach of social media by following accounts of experts in your field on platforms like Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. You’ll likely pick up a tremendous amount of insight and helpful tips for your line of work. You can also tune into one of the many podcasts on almost every line of work to stay up-to-date in your industry.

Attend networking events

Meeting with other professionals in your field will help you stay connected and aware of every new development. You can seek out networking events on your own or ask your employer to send you to events on behalf of the company. At the actual events, work on forging relationships with other experts in your line of work. 

Utilize Google Alerts

Take advantage of Google Alerts to stay current in your field. You can do this by signing up to be notified when specific keywords are trending on the Google search engine. This will negate the need for you to constantly seek out industry news; instead, the news will be delivered directly to you.

Your Turn: How do you ensure you are always up-to-date in your chosen field? Share your best tips in the comments.