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Michael Gardon

  • Writer's pictureMichael Gardon

8 Keys to an UnBREAKable Career - The Break Issue 59

Updated: Mar 13

#59: Don't get caught with your pants down

I heard this from a former colleague yesterday. Let me know if this sounds familiar:

"After the events of last fall, I've adopted an "always on" career search mindset. I'm doing a lot of shameless self-promotion to attract people to my brand, in case my current gig goes to crap like the last one did. Not going to get caught with my pants down again."

This feeling is what I'm on a mission to banish.

I believe the way we can "always be ready" is to learn the principles of adaptability and resilience, and then apply those in our lives.

As someone who has changed careers 6 times, I know how to stay on my toes, and I have a lot to teach on this topic which I'll share below.

But first, A big announcement!

I built a community to help support YOUR career journey, and make sure you're "always ready."

The BREAK Community is LIVE! We have networking, bi-weekly presentations on career topics like how to be left alone at work, risk, networking and side hustles and exclusive content and opportunities.

PLUS you get the Advantage Mapping Course free with your annual membership.

Right now use the code ​THEBREAK100OFF​ and get a year membership for only $149.

When you do, you'll also get a free 1:1 call with me ($400 value)!

Join this community if you never want to get caught with your pants down!

Back to the Newsletter --> 8 Principles of an unbreakable career

These are the types of concepts we discuss in our BREAK Community. Come join us to make your career unbreakable!

1. Advantage over skill

Skills are commodities. Yes, we need them, but the intersection of your most critical skills is your unique advantage. That advantage makes you unbreakable when applied in the right context.

The ​Advantage Mapping program​ I teach to my clients identifies their unique Advantage Stack, and positions them to hunt for the right opportunities, where they can thrive.

The next time you're scrolling the next post on "X skills for the future" think about spending some time finding your intersection of advantage and growing that.

2. Always have another option

In finance, an option has immediate benefit and value. The whole idea is you can do something, but you aren't compelled to do that thing.

In your career, imagine the feeling of freedom at work you'd have if you knew you could leave and do something else at any moment!

In our community we teach people how to set up another option. It's not a plan B - that's a reactive mindset. This is a plan for you whenever YOU choose.

3. Build your trampoline

Personal finance gurus all talk about "a safety net." I hate that. A safety net only helps you when you're in trouble. A proper savings system can also be an offensive strategy to propel your growth.

Aim to have 6 months of cash in the bank. If you can't do that, start figuring out how to generate side income and use that as your savings vehicle.

4. Be so good they can't ignore you (but at things you might not expect)

Being the smartest, most skilled person may help you climb the ladder, but no one likes an asshole no matter how good you are.

So be great at just being a good human.

Be on time.

Be prepared.

Be communicative.

Be seen and heard.

Be a listener.

Be energy.

Be action.

Be you.

The bar is very low to succeed here.

5. ABN

Always. Be. Networking. But networking implies some tit for tat transaction. My networking is about building real relationships, showing value, and being there with your skills, talents and abilities for others. When you do that, the opportunities come to you.

Talk and share online. Take those conversations offline. Have coffee (or tea like me). Invest in relationships. Not when you need them, but all the time. Do this and you'll be shocked at how opportunities find you.

6. Stay in the Gain not the Gap

The most pivotal book I read this year is ​The Gap and The Gain​ by Dan Sullivan and Dr. Ben Hardy. I highly recommend it.

The premise is that when we measure ourself against our ideal and discount our progress, that 's living in the Gap - and it's a dangerous place to be that leads to negativity and harm.

But we can create positive momentum, gratitude and progress by measuring ourself against where we were 1 year ago, 6 months ago, 1 month ago or even 1 day ago. If we continuously reorient to the Gain, we are much more likely to overcome and succeed. Added bonus: you'll be way happier too!

7. Live on Purpose

You must decide on your purpose, or one will be assigned to you, and you won't like it. By figuring out your purpose, choosing it and following it, you can't be broken.

We create purpose statements in ​The Break Community​ for anyone who wants to. It's also part of the ​Advantage Mapping System​ because we believe it so powerfully.

8. Curate a resilient mind

Resilience is an attitude of "I can handle anything." To get there, we have to undo a lot of our societal programming that tells us to optimize for one outcome or be efficient and productive all the time.

Here's the truth: optimized systems break easily when any uncertainty is introduced.

So here are some helpful mindset shifts to consider on your way to building a resilient mind:

  1. One → Many

  2. Narrow → Wide

  3. Scared → Excited

  4. Skill → Advantage

  5. Thinking → Feeling

  6. Knower → Explorer

  7. Passion → Purpose

  8. Outcome → Process

  9. Optimized → Resilient

  10. Productive → Selective

  11. Perfectionist → Experimentalist

You made it to the end, so if any of this resonated with you, I'd love to see you as a member of ​The Break Community​. It will be one of the best decisions you will make, and don't forget to use the code THEBREAK100OFF.

Here’s to breaking your old habits and becoming the best version of yourself!



P.S. ​My Advantage Map Coaching Program​ is all about systematically building a "high odds" path to your version of success. In order to build high odds we first need to break our low odds habits and scripts about work. This is hard work, but I personally guarantee you will find your path that aligns who you are with what you do. I'd love to hear from you.


Whenever you're ready, there are 3 ways I can help you:

2. Get in the Breaking Work conversation on Linkedin. Messages are open - anyone can say hi here.

3. Promote your brand/business to 14k+ subscribers by sponsoring our newsletter contact (Booked out 4 weeks)

Resources To Make Your BREAK

  • Curated Job Board​: I teamed up with Pallet to create a tech focused, remote first board. I’d love it if you joined 20+ followers. Maybe, just maybe you’ll find your next big opportunity here.

  • Career Quiz: Take the Advantage Mapping step of learning how you're wired and for what roles!

  • Recommended Reading​: My list of must reads to BREAK your view of the world and what's possible for you.

  • Side Hustle Database: Over 200+ ideas to bring out your creative side as you explore your path. Maybe it will end up being your BREAK!

  • LinkedIn Headline Analyzer: See how your LinkedIn headline stacks up and how you can improve it to attract better opportunities.

The Latest Conversation on THE BREAK Pod

We're about to dive into the remarkable journey of a man who's no stranger to carving his own unique path in the world of technology, entrepreneurship, and creativity.

But before we get started, I'd like to extend a warm 'thank you' to all our listeners for tuning in. Your support and enthusiasm mean the world to us, and it's what keeps 'The Break' going strong.

Now, let's talk about our guest today. His name is Tim Noetzel, and he's not your average entrepreneur. Tim's story is a testament to the power of following your passions, embracing creativity, and never shying away from change and self-discovery.

In our conversation today, we'll take a deep dive into Tim's fascinating journey. From his humble beginnings scooping ice cream at Baskin Robbins to founding and eventually selling a marketing company in the beer industry, Tim's story is one of resilience, determination, and a relentless pursuit of his passions.

We'll explore his early influences, including struggles with reading and writing that ultimately led him to discover his love for both coding and literature. It's a story of how seemingly unrelated interests can converge to shape a one-of-a-kind career.

But that's not all. Tim's journey also highlights the importance of taking a portfolio approach to your career. Whether it's exploring various industries in consulting or taking the plunge into entrepreneurship, Tim's willingness to adapt, learn, and grow has been instrumental in his success.

So, without further ado, let's jump into this engaging discussion with Tim Noetzel. Get ready to be inspired and gain valuable insights into freelancing, entrepreneurship, and much more. Stay with us as we embark on another exciting episode of The Break Podcast.

You made it to the end! Hopefully you learned something about breaking your career today! If so, please share this with someone you care about.

P.S. What did you think of today's email? Click one of the ratings below to send us your feedback. We'd love to know what you think!

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ ​This was super helpful!​

⭐️⭐️⭐️ ​Could be better.​

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