Is your head getting crowded with lots of thoughts about career options and you can’t seem to find the answers? You don’t have space or the energy to make decisions? What could I do? Would I be happier? How can I make a move without having to take a massive pay cut?

Sometimes though we can get stuck in our own heads, we find ourselves going round and round in circles. Trust me I know, I had exactly this for a good couple of years. When I was trying to figure out what else I could do when I was working in Human Resources (HR) I tended to pivot between these three scenarios; 1) Move to another organisation but stay in HR. 2) Set up my own HR consulting business. 3) Try a different part of HR within the same organisation. And because I wasn’t getting any answers I fell into scenario 4) Did nothing and stayed stuck.

Having all these different thoughts with no answers can be overwhelming and when we get overwhelmed we can have a tendency to procrastinate because to take action can seem too difficult, too frightening.

Now when I say take action I don’t mean march into your bosses office with your resignation letter (even though you fantasise about the day you do). The type of action I’m referring to is about small steps that take you out of your head and start to give you answers and clarity. This type of action is about exploring, fact-finding and testing assumptions.

Using my own example and the different scenarios I was struggling with I needed to get clear how much HR varied in different industries so I would know if moving to another organisation could work.  I needed to understand the realities of setting up an HR Consultancy business, what would be the type of work I could attract and did this align with what I was interested in.  I needed to understand if there was an appetite in my own organisation to carve out a role that allowed me to focus on the elements of HR I was passionate about.

To get answers I needed the help and insight of others. Keeping these thoughts to myself would not give me the confidence or the clarity to move forward.  So I did exactly that. I talked to people in industries that interested me and realised that HR was largely HR.  I tested ideas with my boss around increasing happiness at work and whilst they understood the power of increasing engagement levels the company was not ready and I knew that I would get pulled back into firefighting and my old role. Through talking to HR Consultants I realised that the type of work I wanted to do was not likely to go to small businesses but I also knew I didn’t want to work for a big consultancy firm.

But more importantly, through taking these small steps it became clear that HR wasn’t what I wanted anymore, and for you reading this being remote and not in my head this may be very clear. But I was trapped in the fog and only through action did it start to clear.

So if you are suffering from brain fog when it comes to the next stage of your career try these steps:

  1. Get clear on the different scenarios in your head - write them down. This alone starts to declutter the brain.
  2. Consider who can you talk to to find out more about the realities of these different scenarios.  
  3. As you get answers assess how this will give you what you want for yourself. Will it enable you to work on what interests you, to use skills that you enjoy, to give you the lifestyle you want.

Getting clarity will give you the confidence to know if a specific career move is the right option for you.

Every day I help women find answers to questions such as what else can I do? How will I know this will work for me? What’s the best way to make my transition?  If you need help to clear your brain fog then you may be interested in my upcoming 12-week program Kick Start Your Career Change - The Retreat or my intensive one on one program Career Capture. To find out more just take one small action and send me a message.

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