So, you finally got the phone call and you are scheduled for an interview. Yea! This is a good thing, so congratulations. I have sat for a few interviews myself, some turned out successful and some, not so successful. I have learned a lot about job interviewing thought my years in graduate school for professional counseling. After all, what better place to learn about the human condition and how to move throughout life than being in a human services field especially one that focuses on the mind. Here are a few tips from a mental health professional on job interviewing.
Take a breath before answering a question
When you are asked to answer a question, formulate your answer and then open your mouth to speak. It is okay if you do this because it shows that you take time to think before you speak or act. Often times, people think that if they don’t answer a question as soon as the other person is done speaking that they’ll look like they don’t even have an answer.
Know your audience
Pay attention to who you are talking to, remember what they’re positions is in the work place. Why are you even in the interview? Do you know about the company?
Breath throughout your interview
I know that you might be nervous, but you have to remember to breath throughout the whole interview. This is not only important for not looking like a goof, but it will keep your body calm. A calm person will have a great ability think and respond. If you have to, tell yourself to breath (silently of course).
Smile a little, but don’t be overly happy.
Keep a pleasant smile, but don’t be cheesy. Let folks know that you are looking forward for the opportunity to work at such and such company, but please keep the smile at bay. Don’t let your fear show through either. The folks in front of you already know that you are going to be slightly nervous, but they do want to see how you are going to handle pressure.
Look over interview questions and get an idea of some answers before they are asked.
I am not going to reinvent the wheel here. There are tons of websites with great bits of information on interview questions and how to answer these. I do, however, stress that you read these questions and contemplate your own answers in order to be prepared. Below is a link to a site that has some great examples of questions and answers.
What if this is not your dream job, what kind of worker are you going to be?
I once had to work at a factory. I am not putting down factory workers AT ALL, but it was not where I wanted to be. I had an undergraduate degree in Psychology, and I had to wake up before the crack of dawn to work in a factory. I asked my husband, “how do I make it through this?” My husband gave me some of the wisest advice that I have ever heard and keep it with me till this day. He told me, “no matter what you do, be the best at it that you can be.” I was just that. I made a decision that while I was working at a factory that manufactured car parts that I was going to be the best I could be. I learned what I could, when I could. I was prepared to move up the ranks, yet I kept chipping away at the job board, applying for job after job. I found my fit and left said factory after about two months.
Make your choice on where you baseline is
So even as a teenager, I made a decision that there were some fields that I did not want to work in. For me, it was the food industry. I was fortunate enough to never have had to work in the food service industry, and it’s okay if I made this decision. I am not talking about filling a need in your life and being desperate to get a job. As I mentioned above, I had to work at a manufacturing factory for a few months after my husband separated from the Army. I made peace with this despite crying every morning before I went to work. I gave myself a baseline and a game plan. I knew that if I had to go below my baseline that I was going to work my A#$ off to get back above the line.
So, this may seem like a no brainier, but you cannot and should not tell an interviewer what they want to hear. If your values do not align with the companies, you need to say so. I know that you might be desperate for a job, but you cannot be a people pleaser either. This could cause massive conflict down the road later as you could find yourself in a compromising situation. I’m not expecting you to apply for a position with the mob as an enforcer, but it is vital to keep your values and morals. Sure, you will not always agree with your boss’ or co-workers’ values and morals, but if your mission and values do not align with the company, it is best to be honest from the start.
Life is what you make it. I am not saying that you are going to be able to fulfill every dream simply because you are prepared, but you have to know your own limits and take job interviews seriously. You may fail the first or second time, but that does not mean you should give up.
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So, I plan to address a very sensitive topic, one that I know many Christians rally against, although I'm not exactly sure they know why they're rallying against it. What am I talking about, the sex industry? Yup, here’s another Christian talking about how bad the sex industry is. On no, gasp! What I am addressing is pornographic materials as well as prostitution. I hope that I am talking about it from a little bit of different perspective than anyone has taken before. I am not talking about the sex industry because I am on some moral high ground, but because I want to try to help you to understand why this post is such a big deal.
**I am also going to preface that I am gearing this towards males, but don’t think for a second that this in not an equal opportunity post. I am just using pronouns and nouns that describe females because the sex industry is geared towards men.
I know many of you have asked this in your own mind and maybe out loud. What is the big deal, I am just admiring the female body? I know I've had this experience with family members, "a woman’s body is just absolutely beautiful, and I like looking at it". See, I agree with this, the female body is beautiful and should be admired, but not this way. Think of all this in terms of your own daughter, grandmother, mother, your dear and loving Aunt. Imagine if you will, somebody peering into their window, imagine them “admiring” how they look and the thoughts they have and the feelings that run through their body. Of course, you might counter with, “well that's completely different”, they're clearly not giving their permission. Ah, but you don't realize what foundation you are building, sex trafficking is real, and these kids, girls and women are not giving their permission, it is being taken.
I am a mother of three daughters, and I couldn't imagine my beautiful children traded as objects for their body. You say a grown woman should be admired and that it's no big deal. Many women would say that they feel “liberated” and have entered into the sex industry on purpose because it was a sensible way for them to make money. Perhaps it fuels their own sex addictions. Still, this post is a big deal.
What made me think of this post. It was the news story about the New England Patriots owner and the charges brought against him for solicitation of sex. No matter how you look at it, selling the human body for sex in exchange for a monetary value is bad. Whether you're talking about the places in Las Vegas, Nevada where prostitution is legal or the scandals images in magazines that portray women as sex objects. An argument can be made that these women enjoy having the control to exchange money for sexual favors, but the question is why? You’re telling me that a woman selling her body for the highest dollar is creating a well-rounded and grounded woman.
It took a while for my husband to understand why I felt the way I did when he looked at dirty pictures or hung calendars up in his barn that had women in scandals poses and very little clothing. Before, he did not understand. If figured that if he was "being faithful" and never had an intention of cheating, what was the big deal about looking at women via pictures? I tried to get my point across to him numerous times, but it wasn't until he got more into his relationship with God that he began to understand.
Again, you might say that these women and men go willingly into the sex industry, so why are you being such a prude about the whole issue. First, I am certainly not a prude, I like sex. I think it’s a wonderful thing to share within a solidified relationship. However, the sex industry does not bolster this nor does it foster a committed and beautiful relationship. I have heard of individuals using their porn addiction to fulfill their sex addition by coercing their significant other to have sex. "I could go look at pictures instead, isn't it better to have sex than for me to do that?" Unfortunately, there is an epidemic that has been taking over the world, and it has shown up on our streets and it is closer to you than you think.
The sex industry that includes prostitution and porn is an issue because it breeds the need for sex at a low cost, to fill a sex niche of young boys and girls, women at low cost, or sex in a trade for drugs. It breeds the need for sick and disgusting individuals to take advantage of those who need help, who are lost in the world, it takes advantage of the weak. Sex trafficking, women do not go into it willingly. Stop and think of your daughter, sister, your aunt, your mother or any other person you care of, being sold like they are a product and not a human. Ladies and gentlemen, it is happening near you whether you realize it or not, and we have to educate ourselves. The issue with sex trafficking is greater than a moral issue it is a human right issue.
Stop and think for a moment, just take a moment to think about your life, think about those who are nearby and don't be so sure it's not near your own home.
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I will make this a regular part of my Bibliotherapy series because I think that it is pertinent information. Hoopla is a free app that you can download on a mobile device and perhaps on some computers, depending of what version you have of Window or Mac. I am familiar with using it on my phone because I always have it with me and can read or listen to books if I am on the go or waiting at one of the various appointments we have in our family. Hoopla connects to your local library and you can check books, movies as well as television series and other goodies for free. You have a set amount of time that you can read, listen or watch the items on your mobile device until they are returned. I think it is such a great option to not only utilize one’s local library, but to take advantage of what our mobile devices can do for us in a positive manner.
So, I mentioned a while ago that I wanted to review books that could be useful for not only personal use, but that would work great for a therapeutic method psychotherapist/counselor call Bibliotherapy. This is when we give a client a book and suggest that they read all or portion of the book because it would be beneficial to their mental, emotional, physical or spiritual needs. I feel that this is not only important for the everyday reader, but I would like to give myself and clients an idea of why I recommend a book to read. I want to provide information that is useful to therapist and the average individual on why mental is not only important, but what reading can be truly helpful.
Song of Songs 1:1-7 New International Version (NIV)
Today, I'm going to be talking about the book “Sheet Music: Uncovering the Secrets of Sexual Intimacy in Marriage” by Dr. Kevin Leman. I can say that I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I thought it was informative, not only in regard to a sexual relationship within a marriage but a sexual relationship within a marriage from a Christian point of view. The interesting thing about this book, and what I would definitely use in counseling, is that it does break different sexual related topics. Dr. Leman covers not only how to Garner sexual intimacy, but he covers orgasms for women and what men look for in sexual relationship. Dr. Leman also covers intimacy topics, including women look for in a sexual relationship, sex’s greatest enemy and how to avoid pitfalls in a marriage regarding the sexual relationships. He talks about male and female sexual dysfunctions and he doesn't shy away from giving advice about how to work through sexual dysfunctions.
Dr. Leman also covers sexual pleasure in a married in an open and honest dialogue, giving Christians permission to be intimate with each other and to enjoy that intimacy. I would recommend this book to secular clients because it does break down a lot of information that is useful regarding the aforementioned sexual dysfunctions. For couples, I would recommend they read the book together. I would, if needed, break down certain chapters to fit a specific need or issue, but I think the book as a whole could be really useful in your marriage. There is a useful question and answer section that can be useful in gaining additional information about couples during therapy. If not in therapy, it would be a great place to start for couples who feel that they are not connecting sexually. “Sheet Music” does well to take the pressure off of the expectations when it comes to sex, marriage as well as maintains Christian values. The information in the book allows you to learn what the freedom of sex in a marriage looks like.
Lastly, Dr. Leman also talks about sexual intimacy in a premarital setting, covering sexual intimacy from virginity standpoint and though one may not be a virgin, Dr. Leman doesn't talk down to people or shame them. This is really great especially seeing as how it does have that Christian element woven into the prose. The church has treated sex as a taboo topic, which I believe makes this book a must for couples. God did not just design sexual relationships for making children, but to also gives his beautiful creations another way to express their love for one another.
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On the Wrong Foot