Is Your Frowny Face Affecting Your Career?

These days, women have become concerned about their naturally serious expressions—and with good reason. Not only can they add permanent age lines and wrinkles to your face (think about those annoying “elevens” etched between a woman’s brows), they can also negatively impact your career.

Whether it be during a job interview, company meeting, or daily interactions with your boss or coworkers, showing signs of disinterest, annoyance, or disengagement can be particularly destructive. Even if it’s not your intention, an accidental frown could send the wrong message—in effect, projecting an unhappy persona even if you’re completely content.

“Be aware of it,” says career coach Sarah Hathorn, who notes that even a blank face may come off as negative. “Are you looking down, frowning or scowling with the forehead?” asks Hathorn. If so, she suggests holding a very slight smile so that you look like you have energy and are paying attention, instead of coming off as distracted or indifferent. Facial expressions are a part of everyday living that send vital messages to those around us.

Here are some useful tips that should help you stop frowning.

Start Inside
Dr. Richard Fried, a clinical psychologist and dermatologist, advises patients to take part in any activity that promotes relaxation.Try deep breathing, yoga, or guided imagery, which all “lead to a net response of decreased muscle tension, which can make meaningful differences” to a face that looks stressed, worried, angry, or tired. If the feelings prove hard to come by naturally, fake them, Dr. Fried said.

Arch Your Brows
Beauty therapist Damone Roberts recommends giving your brows a full, gently rounded arch. Arching your brows will not only give you the softest, friendliest look, it will also give better shape to your face. You can achieve this at home or by visiting a brow-centric salon. Be sure to pluck stray hairs, and use brow gel to keep hairs from hanging into your eyes.

Smooth Frown Lines
The corrugator muscle, also known as the frowning muscle, contain long, narrow fibers that run across the eyebrows and extend to the temples. M.J. Saffon, author of The 15 Minute a Day Natural Face Lift, suggests performing a forehead smoother exercise on a daily basis over several weeks for noticeable improvement.

Firmly press your fingertips on your corrugations and massage that area vertically for 30 seconds, then horizontally over the eyebrows and toward the temples. This will help alleviate some of the strain between your brows, as well as smooth out  those lines.

Be Surprised
According to Annelise Hage, a New York City-based yoga instructor and author of The Yoga Face, practicing “surprise me” facial expressions have multiple benefits. Not only can they smooth out the brow area, these exercises also de-wrinkle the forehead. Open your eyes wide in surprise, but do not wrinkle your forehead. Then, look at a point in the horizon for 10 seconds. Repeat the exercise five times.

Whether you meditate to relax your facial muscles, or exercise daily to smooth your forehead lines, awareness of your expression is an important starting point. Your coworkers are watching you, and even though you may not feel angry or stressed, unknowingly your face may be sending a message you’re not aware of–one that may end up affecting your paycheck or job opportunities.


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Where the Good Jobs Are and How to Get Them

While the overall economy may be bad, the truth is, there are certain types of jobs that are in huge demand, and for which there is a severe shortage of skilled workers.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has identified a number of professions expected to experience above-average growth over the next decade. Most of these positions fall within the top 25 percent of earnings for workers overall, and most require a bachelor’s or technical degree.

These in-demand jobs include medical information administrators and other skilled health care workers, web programmers and designers, accountants and financial administrators, to name just a few.

But how do you become eligible for a job in one of these fields if your work experience or degree is in a completely unrelated field.  What if you don’t have a degree at all?  For most us, family, financial and other obligations mean we cant go back to college for a traditional degree.

One of the most best options for people looking to land a job in these fast growing fields is to get a Specialized Online Degree.

Why an online degree?

Flexibility – Online degrees allow you to complete the required coursework from home as you have the time. Be it in the morning before work, at night before bed, or even on your lunch breaks, being able to bring the classroom to you allows you to learn when and where you can, on your schedule.

Financial Aid and Tuition Assistance – Many online degree programs provide tuition assistance and will help you get financial aid to help offset the costs of the program.

Ability to Specialize – Online degrees offer specialized training in a wide variety of fields that are in high demand by employers. With these skills, your chances of quickly landing a job are greatly increased.

Today there are many, many options for getting an online degree.  The process of choosing the right program can be daunting. Fortunately, a new free service from a company called NextAdvisor has been designed to help you do just that.

NextAdvisor has created an easy to use web site where you can quickly research a wide range of Online Degrees. It gives you the facts about costs, degree offerings, job placement help, time commitments, faculty and other important information you need before choosing the right program for you.

While there aren’t many safe investments on today’s market, training and a degree in a growing field is a safe bet. A degree can open up all kinds of doors for greater earning power, better hours, and a better quality of life. And, if you want to find the best program for you, NextAdvisor is the place to start.


Medical Assistants are in Great Demand

While most industries face cutbacks and layoffs as a result of the current economic climate, there is one career that is projected to grow steadily in the future: Medical Assistants. Experts predict that medical assistant jobs will grow as much as 35% by 2016, due mostly to the aging of the population and major advances in medical technology.

The field of medical assisting offers many options and medical assistants can tailor their careers to their lifestyle. Medical assistants can be part-time, full-time, even work only evenings and weekends.  Working conditions and benefits tend to be excellent.

There is demand for medical assistants in many different areas of medicine.  As a medical assistant you can choose to specialize in a particular type of medicine such as podiatry, ophthalmology or chiropractic care

Some of the duties performed by medical assistants include:

  • Handling both administrative and clinical duties and reporting directly to an office manager, physician, or other health practitioner
  • Taking medical histories and recording vital signs
  • Explaining treatment procedures to patients
  • Assisting physicians during examinations.

Accreditation programs are often be the best way to get into this exciting and dynamic field. These programs  teach you everything you will need to work in a medical office, from clerical skills such as filing, transcription and recordkeeping, to anatomy, physiology and medical law and ethics. Often these programs also provide internship opportunities and placement services for graduates. Certifications will help you stand out and make you more desirable to potential employers.

Medical assistants usually are able to move up from their initial position with a little additional training down the road. Many take additional classes to become nurses and health care practitioners. Some take on additional administrative training and become office managers for larger practices. Your first job as a medical assistant is more of a jumping off point for a bigger, more rewarding career in the health care industry.

As with any training or educational course, always research any program thoroughly before beginning. Find out exactly what kind of training you will be receiving through your program and what kind of assistance and placement programs are in place to help you. Working in the health care industry can be extremely rewarding and a medical assisting training course can be the first step to a long and satisfying career in the health care field.