Lance Armstrong is being stripped of his seven Tour De France Titles. He's going to be banned from participating in pro sports. He is in a firestorm of controversy. Everything he has worked for is being taken away. Yet, instead of fighting back, Lance Armstrong is walking away. Is this wise? As a career coach, I say "yes."Here's why...
1. Pick your battles.
In this case, no measurable good will come from Armstrong fighting back. There will never be a clear answer here of "right" or "wrong." At this point, he will never be vindicated. Instead,he would be faced with a long, expensive and stressful battle that would take immense physical and mental toll on his body. He has five children, is a cancer survivor, and has a new area of career focus running the foundation that he started. This battle isn't worth it to Armstrong. In short, he's decided to redirect his goals. Which means fighting for something in his past that isn't his concern anymore is a waste of his time and energy.
2. Releasing yourself of a fight diminishes the power of the other side.
Saying he doesn't care about what happens to his titles or what they do to him from a professional standpoint takes away the control those driving the charges feel they have over Armstrong. Removing himself from the argument leaves them with nothing left to do. Yes, they can take the titles away and ban him from pro sports, but after that, it's done. They gain nothing else from it and will not have anything else to fight about.
3. Time will tell.
Armstrong knows that there is more to him as a person and a professional than this controversy. He understands that the sooner the drama around this situation dies down, the quicker he can get back to a productive life. As a career athlete, he's learned how to weather both mental and physical adversity. He's reserving his energy and knows that time will allow him to move forward ... on his own terms. All that training has paid off by preparing him for this day.
Where The Jobs Are
3 Reasons Lance Armstrong Is Making a Good Career Move
Got data? Loudoun County does. Lots of it. With its expansive fiber networks and a swarm of tech workers, it's a major traffic hub on the East Coast.
Major employers include Verizon Business and AOL, but the latest boom to hit this pocket of Northern Virginia's high-tech economy? Data centers, which now occupy 4.3 million square feet in the county, earning Loudoun the nickname "Data Center Alley."
Easy access to the nation's capital and Dulles International Airport also creates opportunities for government and the airline and freight servicing industries. The planned extension of the Washington Metro into Loudoun, which recently got a green light for funding, is expected to lure more young professionals to the region.
Fort Bend County has come a long way from its farming days. Now it's better known for growing jobs than for growing crops.
A favorable tax structure, strong school system and easy access to Houston make the county a triple threat when it comes to attracting -- and keeping businesses. Engineering firm Fluor Enterprises, a major employer, is buying new land for a facility that is expected to add 2,000 jobs when completed.
This is Texas, so energy is naturally a key sector. Oil services firm Schlumberger maintains a sprawling 240-acre campus, and CVR Energy is headquartered here. Team Industrial Services, which provides repair and inspection services to heavy industry, recently announced plans to relocate its headquarters -- and 100 jobs -- to the area.
Central Texas' Williamson County hits the bull's eye when it comes to offering incentives for big business. Corporate tax breaks and low property taxes have attracted the likes of top-flight companies such as Dell, which employs 13,000 at its headquarters in Round Rock.
The rapid development of nearby Austin has spurred the growth of so-called "super suburbs" like Williamson County's Round Rock and Cedar Park, where affordable housing, cultural offerings and numerous parks and trails win points with young families.
In a tough economy, the county's incentives are looking particularly enticing to companies. Health care equipment maker Thermo Fisher Scientific said in December it's planning to move some of its production from Wisconsin, bringing 150 new jobs.
Business in Montgomery County is soaring. Anadarko Petroleum is constructing a massive new 31-story tower at its headquarters in the commercial hub of the East Texas Woodlands. When completed in 2014, the skyscraper will accommodate 1,700.
Companies here aren't just building up, they're building out. Exxon Mobil is constructing a 385-acre campus that will house employees currently working in Houston. The oil giant is expected to relocate an additional 2,000 jobs from out of state to the new complex.
Those new workers will find a great place to live in the Woodlands, with its acres of green space and a 1.4-mile-long waterway. The area is also attracting a mix of companies in energy, health care and professional services. A location north of downtown Houston and proximity to George Bush Intercontinental Airport help.
Douglas County is on a Rocky Mountain High. The area is chalking up job gains, as companies choose to relocate and expand existing operations here.
With Denver to its north and Colorado Springs to the south, the county has the enviable position of being located between the state's two biggest cities. Its natural beauty and abundant sunshine don't hurt either.
Major firms like Dish Network, Sprint Nextel and Western Union all operate here. Health care IT firm TriZetto is constructing a new headquarters in the county's Meridian International Business Center, which is expected to add up to 750 jobs over the next five years.
Collin County is no longer just the country cousin of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. With an influx of young families -- overall population is up 59% since 2000 -- its vast pool of workers is helping the area develop its own business base.
A few area companies have been hit hard by the sluggish economy. Big employers J.C. Penney and HP both recently streamlined operations. But others are growing fast. Oil and gas firm Denbury Resources is expanding its corporate campus in Plano, which is expected to add hundreds of jobs.
Collin County is keeping its eye on the long term and shoring up infrastructure. Its airport just opened a new runway, and the county is investing millions in road improvement projects.
Manufacturing is Peerless in Denton County. Earlier this month, PMFG's Peerless Mfg. Co. broke ground on an 80,000-square-foot facility that will employ more than 150 when fully operational.
In addition to manufacturing, retail is important to the local economy. The presence of the University of North Texas, a major research school, also helps drive the medical services sector.
Like many booming areas in North Texas, a business-friendly climate, combined with the lure of small-town Americana and an affordable way of life, has helped fuel Denton's popularity. Retail and commercial construction are on the upswing. The area's latest development is Belmont, a $1 billion, mixed-use construction project that will add an estimated 3,500 homes when completed.
Prince William County takes the crown when it comes to offering enticing perks to businesses. Expedited permits for companies in "targeted" industries that promise high-paying jobs and capital investment is just one of the ways it rolls out the red carpet.
Also behind the job boom: proximity to the D.C. Beltway, a smart workforce and competitive tax rates. Some 770 new jobs were announced last year, a nearly 14% increase from the previous year.
The jewel of Prince William County is Innovation Technology Park, a 1,600-acre corporate district whose tenants include the FBI, Comcast and George Mason University's Life Sciences Campus. One of the newest additions is Vector Security, which last year announced it was moving into the park and bringing 130 new jobs with it.
It's smooth sailing for job growth in Suffolk, thanks to the Navy's recent decision to relocate four commands here. The move will add nearly 1,000 jobs -- which is about the total number of new jobs added to the area in all of 2011.
The Navy found a solid berth. Suffolk is located close to the Port of Virginia, and like many of the places on our list, quality of life is a big selling point here. Schools, transportation and community are all strong in this city with historic charm.
Those strengths have lured a variety of businesses. The retail sector is growing, as are manufacturing and warehousing. Planters, now owned by Kraft, was started here a century ago and still operates a major peanut processing center.
Williamson County likes to treat companies to a good dose of Southern hospitality. Businesses choosing it as a base can be eligible for "concierge permitting," which assigns them a dedicated staff member from the local codes department who helps speed up zoning and permitting issues.
The charm offensive, combined with the county's highly skilled workforce and easy access to downtown Nashville, is paying off. Corporate giants like Verizon Wireless, Nissan Americas and United Health Group have flocked to the region.
The latest major player to join the 6,000 corporations that have outfits here is Viacom, which launched a services center this year that is expected to create more than 100 new jobs.
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For anyone who has ever been in an employment situation where it was you against them, I'm sure you can see why walking away, letting it go, and moving on is the best for your health. Unfortunately, most of us don't have the training that Armstrong has had to enable us to do that. As result, we either fight the battle and lose, or give up and get depressed. Armstrong isn't doing either. He's taking control. And that will get him the results he wants.
At the end of the day, the only person in our lives we need to impress is ourselves. Armstrong is doing what is best for him. He doesn't care what others think -- and he'll be happier and healthier for it.
Could you do the same? Have you ever walked away? Did you fight and win? Did you fight and lose? Tell us your story!