Are you harbouring a dirty secret? You have this vision, this burning desire to do something else, something that will make your heart sing, that will give you the life you want, the flexibility you crave, the challenge and emotional connection you need… something different from your job now.
Maybe you know exactly what that next move is; maybe it’s within your organisation, but a different department or even your boss’s job. For others of us, it’s not always so clear, but we know it’s not what we are doing now; we are destined for something else. Whichever situation you find yourself in, why is it we don’t feel we can talk to other people about it, that we have to keep this idea, this dream to ourselves? Why do we feel embarrassed and shameful that we want something else, we want more for ourselves? Are we holding back from telling people, because we are worried about what they will think? Because we don’t have it all figured out yet and they might laugh at us? Maybe we are fearful of being seen as arrogant and ungrateful for what we have or we don’t want people to poo-poo our idea. These are legitimate and common reasons why we may keep our career dreams to ourselves, but in doing so we could be impeding our career transition.
Someone contemplating a career transition will have two main questions to work through. The WHAT and the HOW.
- WHAT shall I do that will make me happy?
- HOW can I make that dream become my reality?
To answer these questions though we need support, we need encouragement, we need to be inspired by others, and we need to tap into the minds of those we respect and those we haven’t even met yet.
When you are figuring out the ‘WHAT’, other people can be very insightful in helping us answer that question. You may have figured out which of your skills you enjoy using and you may have identified subject areas, industries of interest but you can’t always see how they connect together. Engaging the right people can help you find the answer to your ‘WHAT’. Going it alone can be limiting as you will only be able to think about jobs you have come into contact with. When you were young and people asked you want you wanted to do, a lot of us would mention jobs such as a teacher, a doctor, a football player because they were jobs we knew about, we knew people got paid to do this. In my own career search, I hadn’t appreciated that coaching was a profession and it wasn’t until I started to share my own dirty secret that this came onto my radar.
Once you know WHAT you want to do, you have to work out HOW you can make it a reality. You start to mentally list all the obstacles:" I don’t have the qualifications...", "I won’t be able to earn enough...", "I won’t be able to find a way into that company..". We make assumptions and we let our fears take over. Engage people and talk through these fears, ask your network to help you by making introductions to people in your ideal job or company. Talk to people about the skills and experience you need and you'll find your fears can be put into perspective. You'll start to find a way forward and that next career suddenly seems within reach.
The saying ‘People are Power’ is true when it comes to your career transition; the key is to involve the right people in your career journey, to be selective and find your cheerleaders. Those that can get excited with you, those that can reassure you, that you can use to bounce ideas off and help you find connections.
Be mindful of those that aren’t ready or able to support you, as their own personal story, fears and beliefs might be holding them back. For those that are risk-averse, they love you and want you to be happy, but their own insecurities may stop them truly being able to encourage you to explore your career dreams. My own dear Granddad fell into this category, having grown up during the Second World War in an environment of scarcity, of ration books, he struggled to understand why I would throw away a successful and financially secure job because I no longer enjoyed it. He would want to know what my back up plan was and needed reassurance that I had planned for this financially. What I found myself doing was dealing with his money fears. Unfortunately, he is no longer around to see the outcome, but I like to picture him on a cloud with a big proud smile shaking his head as he watches my business grow year on year.
By all means limit your career conversations with the risk- adverse, the glass half empty, and the negative nellies of the world. Find your cheerleaders who will support you on your career journey, give you the stage to share your ideas, your discoveries and help you connect the dots. People are power and people love to help people. I always feel very honoured when someone shares an idea with me, don’t you?
If you need a cheerleader to help you answer your WHAT and HOW then let’s get on the phone for a free breakthrough call and find out how we can start to move you forward.