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Igniting Possibilities: A Journey of Clarity, Resilience, and Finding Passion
Episode 3213th September 2023 • The Fire Inside Her; Authenticity, Self Care, and Wisdom for Life Transitions • Diane Schroeder
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What if you could unlock your true potential and ignite your career? In this episode of The Fire Inside Her our host Diane Schroeder sits down with guest Jennifer Anne Garcia, an accomplished entrepreneur and resume coach, to delve into the secrets of finding clarity and expanding your career options. From her early passion for writing to helping veterans transition from military to civilian life, Jennifer shares her valuable insights and strategies for building a strong presence on LinkedIn. Stretching from important tips about resume building to the importance of self-reflection in career decisions, and how to embrace change, even when it's uncomfortable, there is a lot to cover. Don't miss this dynamic episode as Jennifer shares how resume building can be part of your journey towards authenticity as you lean into your success and ignite your own fire within.

Jennifer Anne Garcia is a writer, career coach, and the founder of Best Resume Coach. She specializes in job transition to help talented professionals make meaningful and lasting career change.

For more than 15 years, Jennifer has helped experienced job seekers across various industries move into new career paths, increase their income, realize their own professional confidence, and improve their quality of life.

Jennifer grew up in rural Arizona and was passionate about writing poetry and stories from an early age. In high school, she began her career as a freelance journalist for local and national publications. In 2004, she received a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism & Mass Communication from Arizona State University where she graduated with Honors. Her most favorite jobs and treasured experiences were in magazine writing and editing.  

As a military spouse, Jennifer enjoyed helping service members and their families with their job search and resumes when her husband was an active-duty Marine. She continues to assist veterans transition from military service to become leaders in the civilian workforce.

In helping others find their way, Jennifer found her true passion and developed a unique process that helps people gain clarity and achieve greater success more quickly. 

Now, Jennifer is living out her dream job while helping others find theirs!

She currently lives in Central Texas with her husband and their two kids. Jennifer is a stepmom to an incredible son and mom to a fantastic daughter—they are the lights of her life!

Jennifer also enjoys practicing yoga and energetic mindfulness; appreciating and walking in nature; being engaged in the local business community; and baking healthy yet delicious tasty treats.

Referenced in this episode:

Leadership Evolution: Empowering and Training the Next Generation of Leaders with Gretchen Reid https://thefireinsideher.com/podcast/25/

How to connect with Jennifer

www.bestresumecoach.com

Email

hello@bestresumecoach.com

LinkedIn

www.linkedin.com/in/jenniferannegarcia/

How to connect with Diane

www.thefireinsideher.com 

Diane@Thefireinsideher.com 

Instagram

@TheRealFireInHer 

LinkedIn

www.linkedin.com/in/dianeschroeder5/

Are you excited to get a copy of the workbook that Diane mentioned?

FREE Value Workbook: TheFireInsideHer.com/value

You can also get Self Care Audio download HERE –TheFireInsideHer.com/audio

If you enjoyed this episode, take a minute and share it with someone you know who will find

value in it as well. You can share directly from this platform or send them to:

https://TheFireInsideHer.com/podcast

Transcripts

We feel it is important to make our podcast transcripts available for accessibility. We use quality artificial intelligence tools to make it possible for us to provide this resource to our audience. We do have human eyes reviewing this, but they will rarely be 100% accurate. We appreciate your patience with the occasional errors you will find in our transcriptions. If you find an error in our transcription, or if you would like to use a quote, or verify what was said, please feel free to reach out to us at connect@37by27.com.

Diane Schroeder [:

and national publications. In:

Jennifer Garcia [:

Yes, thank you so much, Diane. I'm thrilled to be here. I'm so excited. Thank you for having me.

Diane Schroeder [:

Absolutely. And our random question of the day is, can you tell me which show you recently binge watched or are currently binge watching?

Jennifer Garcia [:

So good. The marvelous Miss Maisel on Amazon.

Diane Schroeder [:

Okay.

Jennifer Garcia [:

If you haven't seen it, it's hilarious and very girl power. So I like that one. And then the big brunch on Max, HBO Max. It's like cooking and competition. Brunch is my favorite meal ever of the day.

Diane Schroeder [:

Okay, I'm going to have to check that out. Both of them, I have not watched them, and I'm always looking for shows to binge in my very limited spare time.

Jennifer Garcia [:

How about you?

Diane Schroeder [:

We are currently finishing up succession on Max, which oh, my gosh, so many things with that show and the Bear on Hulu, which is a cooking show, and it is fantastic. It's not really a cooking show. It's about a restaurant, and it's just a great leadership show. So those are kind of the two at the forefront right now in my life.

Jennifer Garcia [:

Sounds good. I'll check them out.

Diane Schroeder [:

So brunch. I absolutely love brunch, too, and I think we should just get right into this because it ties in perfectly to your best resume cookbook. And I guess let's back up a little bit and share with the audience a little bit about your story and how you've become the best resume coach and what prompted you to write a book about it.

Jennifer Garcia [:

and there, helping people. In:

Diane Schroeder [:

first connected during COVID:

Jennifer Garcia [:

Oh, such a good question. It is so important because a lot of times we're on autopilot, right. You are already on this path from years ago when you had decided you wanted to be on that path, right? And so when things change in life or your interests change, you kind of get burned out on something, or maybe not burnt out, but even just realize that that's not your true passion anymore, right? Like, you want to move on and do some bigger and better things, greater things. And so that Clarity piece is really important. And so the questions that we went through before we worked together. And when what comes out in the consultation call, it's almost like, wow, you kind of realize, I actually want to do this, and you give yourself that freedom. But you have to ask those questions of yourself before you start applying for any jobs, before you put anything out there, because you might be banging your head against the wall, feeling frustrated. Oh, I didn't get the fire chief, but when it's great, you didn't get fire chief because that's not what you wanted or needed at the time. Right. And I remember after we got off the call, and I remember thinking to myself, I really hope she doesn't get that job. I really hope she'll do the speaking and the coaching and go down this road that sounds so much more exciting and fun and where you're at in your life. So I felt kind of like a bad place because I'm like, oh, I don't want her to get the job.

Diane Schroeder [:

But actually, you were a great coach because you encouraged me, and you walked me through all the steps, and it's like, all right, you're going to go down this road, and now you have tools to decide, is it really what you want or not want? And I just kept falling back on that. Like, what is it I really want to be? And I think you're right. We start a career path, and I wouldn't say we get stuck. Sometimes we get stuck, but I think people just are like, okay, this is the next I've got to make this much time, or, I've been here this long, I don't want to start over. And they're scared. Would you agree with that? That it's really? To find that clarity, you have to be brutally honest with yourself and really kind of tap into it. What is it you want? Not what your partner wants, not what your parents want, not what you think the world wants, but what do you want?

Jennifer Garcia [:

Exactly? It's so true because we have all these external factors, and we want to do good by our family. We want to do the right thing. But if we're not happy and going to a job 40 hours plus a week, if you're not happy, the majority of your waking hours, that's not doing your family any favor. So really considering what you actually want, but you do have to take the time to ask the question and then answer it honestly, because even if you tell me something that's not all the way true, I'm going to help you find a job that isn't a good fit in the end. So it's like, you're right. You have to have that brutal honesty, and it's so much better in the long run.

Diane Schroeder [:

It is. I mean, it's a little bumpy. And it was and this has been almost three years since that I really kind of kept inching along the path, and I think it also is part of that brutal honesty and taking the time is a great part of self care, right? It's a different part of self care. I talk a lot about you have to build capacity in your life in order to really take care of yourself. And that's like the first step. So to build capacity in your life, you have to be brutally honest and make a list of everything you're responsible for and what brings you joy in that list. Like, what are the things you have to do personally and professionally? What are the things that you want to do? What are the things that would be nice to have? And I think that we kind of get backwards. Like once you create that list and you look at it, you're like, wait a minute, I'm spending all my time on this one thing that I don't even really want to do, and everything that I really want to do is kind of nice to have and it's kind of turning it upside down on its head.

Jennifer Garcia [:

Yes. And then also having that belief and sort of building the confidence from all the way as you're answering those questions to know that it's possible for you. It's not just a complete pie in the sky thing. Like, you can have the things that you want in life and in career, and it can happen. And I think that's one of the gifts, if there are any gifts that came out of COVID was that, is this remote world how we're all so much more connected now, and that employers and companies are seeing that it's okay to work from home and we're saying it's okay to have a different kind of lifestyle.

Diane Schroeder [:

Absolutely. There's a lot of freedom in it. So I don't want to give all the tips from your book, but would you mind sharing one question that you can ask yourself to really focus on that clarity piece of are you getting clear? Do you have clarity, the foundation? What's one kind of starter question to let people chew on?

Jennifer Garcia [:

Okay, this is a good one. What would you do if you could do anything and get paid for it? Right. So if you will wake up in the morning and what would you do first thing if you're on vacation? But what do you do that you would do anyway even if you weren't getting paid? And it's fun and it's exciting and it lights you up. Follow that. Think about what you would want to do in that case. Right? Or if someone said, here, I'm going to pay you your top salary request and all benefits, everything, and all you have to do is the one thing that you'd really enjoy, what would you pick?

Diane Schroeder [:

That's good? I like that because it really taps into someone's creativity. And I had a guest on the show recently, and she is a leadership facilitator and runs her own business. And she it's that's when the gremlins and the fear really pops up. And that's Gretchen Reed and I'll put her episode in the show. You know, when you start exploring your security detail in your brain might be like, oh, wait a minute. You need to just put a pin in it, lady. And this is not safe. It is outside of our bubble. And I assume that's natural for everyone when you push the boundaries.

Jennifer Garcia [:

Yes, definitely. When you said that security detail, I was thinking of the movie Inception. But I think everybody has that naturally. It's like you want to do what's safe, and people want you to stick with what's safe. That's the advice that well meaning friends and family and coworkers will give you. It's like, you have a good job, it pays you decently. Why are you looking around? Why are you trying to ruffle the feathers or rock the boat? But for you, if you're going there every day and you're feeling like, stuck in a cubicle or filtered or stifled in any way, that is not a way to live. So it's really important. And you might have been doing something on the side. Like, for example, you right. You're very passionate about fire and safety and all the things that you're doing in your life, and then you built that bridge to connect it. How can I raise awareness? Do this public speaking, and you're doing that on your own time. That's your passion project. And now I've watched you grow and watched your journey, and you have excelled and just shined. It's just so beautiful what you've done, because you're able to bring your passion to the world in a way that is relatable and makes sense and actually helps people. I hope that makes sense.

Diane Schroeder [:

It does. Thank you so much. That's very kind. As you're talking about this, and I think I do have quite a few listeners that are first responders. And so when you're in as a spouse of a former Marine because they're never not a Marine anymore, right? Once a Marine, always a Marine. Working with military and first responders, what can you say to my listeners who are kind of in that thinking that, you know what? Maybe I want to transition into either entrepreneurship or into the private sector? Do you see common themes that kind of pop up, that kind of keep them held back from doing it? And do you have advice to tell them, okay, look, this is what you can do? And to the spouses, because that's wear and tear on the partner, too, of making those transitions so true.

Jennifer Garcia [:

f that cannot be taught. Your:

Diane Schroeder [:

You gave me goosebumps when you said that because as I can relate to that so much and I've just realized it in the three months that I've left the fire service that I'm like, all right, it used to be really cool. People would be like, oh, what do you do? I'm like, oh, I'm a firefighter. I work for the fire service. And it was like puff my chest out. This is really cool. And now I'm like, well, I kind of do a few things. I know that's not my identity anymore. And I really worked hard consciously to kind of break up with that identity and be very grateful that the fire service gave me everything that it did, the good, the bad and the ugly. Because it's made me who I am. And I think that transitioning that to I used to tell myself I don't have any employable job skills outside of the fire service. I used to say that all the time. That was the self talk.

Jennifer Garcia [:

My jaw just dropped. That you would even say that I.

Diane Schroeder [:

Did for the longest time because you're just in that world and that's the world, you know. And so it really again, I go back to our conversation several years ago and I was like, oh, maybe I can do more and kind of stepping out of that bubble. And I guess if I could offer any advice to people listening into spouses, it is going to be a little bumpy and a little scary, but every reason you just said there is so much to offer from first responders and I mean problem solvers and all the things. I think the caveat I would give to that, as anyone is considering transitioning out is to really do some internal work and do some mental health work and really kind of get in touch with yourself, seek a professional and really kind of heal some of that trauma. Because while we do a lot of amazing things for the community and ourselves, it has its toll and it has its toll on us personally. It has its toll on our families. So really being aware of that and I think talking about that, it will also help give you courage and confidence and focus your clarity on what you want to do.

Jennifer Garcia [:

Oh, yes. And filling your own cup, doing the self care. And self care, I think you said it before and it was so clever. You said self care is more than just taking a bubble bath. It is actually feeding yourself, getting enough sleep, taking time to rest, to rejuvenate, being with your kids, being with your family and friends, having time alone. So I think, yeah, that's so important. I'm glad you mentioned that.

Diane Schroeder [:

Absolutely. And part of that self care is for some people, it's really hard to sit alone and be with yourself because that's when the demons kind of creep in, right? That's when the mind starts spinning. So knowing that and there's no shame in that and really being able to talk about it and talk about it with your spouse, your partner, therapist, there's a lot of resources to kind of help heal that. Before you take that leap into the next step, the universe conspires to help and will start illuminating the path for you. Once you put that confidence in yourself. So it's clarity and following the truth.

Jennifer Garcia [:

Of it, following the little nugget that you find, whatever you uncover of, like, oh yeah, maybe I could do wood carving and sell it on Etsy or whatever random thing that you want to do. Or maybe I could do speaking or helping out and volunteering with kids, whatever that is, lean into that because the opportunities will come. Like you said, the universe will align you with the people and places that need to be.

Diane Schroeder [:

Absolutely. Now that we know you need a good resume. Another thing that you talk a lot about, and this I find to be true as well, is leveraging the power of LinkedIn. So can you tell us a little bit about why LinkedIn is so important and how people can leverage LinkedIn and that platform to network and find opportunities?

Jennifer Garcia [:

Yes. So LinkedIn is my favorite platform, providing jobs and for building connections and networking, but not in the gross way that we think of networking. Right. Rubbing elbows at a mixer, like not that kind of network, but actually people who you've worked with, who you enjoyed working with, people you've worked with in the past, maybe someone you went to school with former supervisors, former colleagues and peers. It's so important you'll connect with them as you go along the way. Right. And then you might go, oh, yeah, I forgot about so and so. Let me look them up right. And see they're on there. But it's a great place to connect and then share. Share what's important to you about your industry. Share things that are going on in your life and your professional life. People really do care, and so it's a great place for sharing, that kind of thing. And you are a perfect example, Diane, of using LinkedIn to the Max. You are just so inspiring and you're also informative. And the things that you share, you just do it so naturally, and it seems effortless. I know that there's a lot that goes behind thinking about what you're going to say. Right. I want to compliment you on that because you have really taken it to the next level where you should be. Well, thanks.

Diane Schroeder [:

I'm trying. My struggle is consistency. Oh, my gosh. I'm like shiny object. Shiny object. And I'm trying to manage my time to where I'm like, all right, I just need to be consistent. And I think that's really good career advice, too. Is it's? That you have to be consistent in whatever you're doing? So if trying to get a new profession or get a promotion or whatever it is, you have to be consistent in the actions that you take to get you to that spot.

Jennifer Garcia [:

Yes. And LinkedIn rewards consistency. So I've learned that the hard way, where if I got some false starts, oh, yeah, I'll post like three times a week and then you don't hear from me for a month. Right. That's not the way to go. You post once a week at minimum, and then more than that, if you can and you can share articles, you can write articles, you can post them on LinkedIn, you can just share, even record a video of yourself. It depends on what your purpose is on there. Right. Like for coaches and consultant groups going to be different than someone who's building their network as an employee, but it still is important to be active and engaged on there and then ask for recommendations. That's one thing. We have this wealth of however many hundreds of people that we know on there in our life, in real life, and who are also on LinkedIn. It's as easy as sending them a message saying, hey, would you write me a recommendation about the time that we worked on this project together? I really enjoyed working with you. And then they'll write you this paragraph or more about how amazing you are. And then other people can see that and choose, wow, I really want to work with Diane. She's got great recommendations. So it is for that, it is for learning, and it is just a way to express yourself as a professional and it's a great outlet for that.

Diane Schroeder [:

That's awesome. So a little bit of your we've talked about your book and we know now the importance of LinkedIn. How do you help as a career resume coach? What is your process if someone wants.

Jennifer Garcia [:

To work with you? Oh, thank you. Well, go to my website, Bestresumecoach.com, or you can reach out to me on LinkedIn because that works too. And I do mostly one on one coaching, so the way that it works with me is a little bit different. It's not like many years ago. When I first got my start 15 years ago, right, I was doing resumes in there, doing the dirty work myself. But now I have realized that my clients who have the most success, it's a collaboration. Like when we work together, right? It was a draft that we work together on so that you have ownership of what's in your resume. You know, when someone asks you in the interview, well, what about this bullet point? You're not going to go, what? I don't know what someone else wrote for me. So you actually know every word, what's in there. You feel good about it. And that's also the key part, is feeling good about what you're presenting. You're going to get so many more callbacks, so many more job interviews, so many more job offers, multiple job offers in the instance that you feel confident about what's on your resume. So it is a collaboration. I teach a person to fish as far as a resume goes, and then that way they can ask down the line, two, three years later, they might say, hey, I'm ready for an update, and I help them again. Or, oh, look, I updated it myself and I got this. It's just it's really cool. It's a collaborative process, and I really enjoy it's. A lot of fun for me.

Diane Schroeder [:

And beyond doing the resume, you also will help with a LinkedIn profile too, is that correct?

Jennifer Garcia [:

Yes, I help with LinkedIn. And that is also about just there's minor things with LinkedIn that can be changed so easily if you know where to go to change them. And that's the thing that I have. I can just easily point it out to you. There's always that like the link, right? You can customize your link so it doesn't have all those random letters and numbers, like faux palm number one that people just don't know where to go to change that. And then also the about summary, just writing it as if you're meeting someone in an elevator, you're meeting someone at a conference, right? You want to tell them the bare minimum, but also kind of intrigue them about what you do and how they can work with you or hire you.

Diane Schroeder [:

That is great advice. So how do you find time for yourself between running your own business and being a mom and a wife and just busy? What are some of the. Self care tools that you have in your toolbox.

Jennifer Garcia [:

Wow. I have found that yoga is my anchor. It's the thing that I feel better every time I do it. If I can do it every day, I do because it just helps me so much to feel grounded. And if I can do it before or after breakfast, like right around that morning time, my day goes so much better because it's just mind, body. And I don't really exercise. I'll go for nature walks or something like that for exercise. So yoga is my exercise, right? So I do yoga. I drink tea and I limit sugar as much as I can. That's like my weakness, is bread and sugar. So if I can do less of that and more things that make me feel good. I enjoy writing and music. I like being out in nature. And then with my family, we like to do karaoke just at home, and we practice, we sing together, we do karaoke.

Diane Schroeder [:

I love it. We are totally twinning. That's exactly how I would describe a lot of my self care routine. Yoga changed my life. I talk about yoga all the time. Probably exhaustively because you never leave a yoga session going, man, I really wish I didn't spend an hour doing that. I've never done that ever. In fact, just this morning I was like, I really need to get to yoga, but I have so much to do. And my partner was like, just go to yoga. Because if you don't go to yoga, the rest of your day will be like, I really wish I went to yoga. So I agree, and there's no like, yoga is just it really helps, makes my soul happy. Well, and it gives you a great butt. I mean, let's be honest, the yoga booty is real. I love the and I love it. I'm not going to lie. I never had a butt before until I really started doing yoga, and now I'm pretty happy. Wow.

Jennifer Garcia [:

And it's kind of like you don't even have to do much. You have to do a bunch of squats or donkey kicks or anything to do that. It's really nice.

Diane Schroeder [:

Exactly. It's like just all of a sudden you're like, whoa, where'd that come from? Hello. Anyway, if there was one thing that you could tell anyone who wants to listen to one piece of wisdom from you, what would that be?

Jennifer Garcia [:

I would say is to not be afraid because what you consider is your weakness is actually your strength.

Diane Schroeder [:

That's perfect. Absolutely. Wonderful advice. So thank you so much. And I will make sure all of your information is in the show notes.

Jennifer Garcia [:

Okay. And I just have to say that you inspire me and you inspire others by what you're doing. Thank you.

Diane Schroeder [:

I really appreciate that. Another great conversation. Thank you for giving the valuable gift of your time and listening to the Fire inside her podcast. Speaking of value, one of the most common potholes we fall into on the journey to authenticity is not recognizing our value. So I created a workbook. It's all about value. Head on over to the fireinsideher.com value to get your free workbook. That will help you remember your value. Until next time, my friend.

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