Are you looking for that perfect job that exists somewhere out there? Or are you hopeful about creating your own dream career? This article will help you lay down the foundation for your path. The trick is to really understand and know what you want, what it is that will make you happy to get out of bed and off to work. That way you are better able to attract the life you want instead of trying to stuff yourself into a mold that is simply the wrong fit.
A career transition can be overwhelming, confusing and scary. It can also be a time of self-discovery, opportunity and excitement. The good news? You get to decide which it is.
Grab a piece of paper, something to write with and open up your mind! Go through each point below, making notes and answering the questions.
1. Your Passions:
What do you absolutely love doing that you could get lost in for hours? When you consider this very important factor, leave your logical brain out of it. If reading at bedtime is something you wait all day long to do, don’t talk yourself out of considering this because ‘there’s no job out there that requires you to read romance novels all day long’. (First of all, there is…it’s called an editor. Second of all, keep reading to see how you can tie this in to a potential career.)
2. Your Talents:
What can you do really well? What is your skillset? Are you organized, methodical, able to think outside the box, a great communicator? If you’re not sure, think back to what previous employers, school teachers, friends or family have said about you. Has anyone commented on your ability to do a million things at once? Great! Add multi-tasker to your list.
3. Your Quirks:
This is a fun one! What is it about you that makes you unique? What’s your signature, if you will? What do you do that people who know you well say, “Oh yeah, that’s totally her/him“? Do you like to dress up for every single occasion including grocery shopping? Do you turn every event into a full-blown party? Do you have a charitable heart and support any organization that you come across? Do you read the obituary section of the newspaper, and then cut out your favourites? (I do that last one. Seriously.)
4. Your Legacy:
Very important. What do you want to leave behind for this world when you are gone? This is huge though often overlooked. I think it’s probably the most fulfilling factor to consider when looking at potential careers; imagine doing something every day that is contributing to what others will remember about you when you’re gone. Or even more exciting – imagine doing something every day that will change the lives of people you’ll never know.
It doesn’t matter what kind of occupation you are looking at, in every thing you do, you have the ability to make a lasting impact. You can do this by changing the environment in the office – maybe bring your charitable heart into the picture and encourage your company to support a charity on an ongoing basis.
The first step is to ask yourself what it is that you want to leave behind. Are you passionate about literacy and want to ensure all children have access to books, or their cultural equivalent of literal expression? Note that down. It’s important and you can tie it in to your life even if your 9-5 day job isn’t centred around it.
5. Time and Space
What kind of space do you want to give this work in your life? Do you need to de-clutter your physical space and/or schedule to make room for something big and beautiful? Do you like working Monday-Friday from 9-5? Would it be helpful to work from home? While it may seem like a luxury to be able to choose how much you work and from where, it’s important to acknowledge your needs and your dream work space. If you’re not clear on what you want, then the perfect opportunity may slip right by, unnoticed.
So, what do you have on that piece of paper? Anything jumping out at you? Let’s work through an example.
Let’s create something from some of my answers to the above questions.
Talent: Networking/creating bridges between people
Quirk: I love giving people prizes (I even did this recently when I had my hemoglobin levels tested. Whoever was closest to the number without going over won a prize. I know, weird.)
Legacy: I’d like to leave behind the message that it’s important to follow your dreams.
Space: I like being my own boss, but enjoy partnering up with others on projects. Working a variable schedule is important and can include the occasional weekend.
Tying that all together, I could do some event planning with small bookstores: bring in local authors and plan all the details for book signings, author readings, and literacy contests. This may not be a full-time job, but something I could do on the side. In fact, I’ll be writing about multiple income streams in the new year. It may change the way you look at “a job.”
Do you see how when you start with WHO you are, and then tap into that limitless creative potential of yours, you can come up with something viable, fun and incredibly fulfilling? This also pertains to existing jobs. You need to know the environment in which you thrive before you start dumping resumes off all around town. This will ensure that your interviews are successful and that you land a job in which you will be intrinsically happy.
Now YOU try. Look over your notes and come up with possibilities of work you would love to do. If you like you can share your experience with this exercise in the comments below.
One of my greatest pleasures as a creative life coach is walking with people through their career transitions and being amazed by what they self-discover. I’d love to hear from you if you have specific questions. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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P.S. Make space and time for more laughter, love, abundance…whatever else you need…in 2013! I’ve downloaded my business and life calendar/workbooks from Leonie Dawson and they are fabulous! Everything I need to organize and dream in a brightly coloured, creative package. Check them out here if you’re looking for that extra-something that will help you take 2013 to another level!