Most people spend an average of 50% of their waking hours in the workplace, this sent cold shivers down me knowing just how many people share how unhappy they are in their careers. 1 in 6 people struggle with mental health conditions due to stress in the workplace. If this is you, or your craving a change of career, but don’t know where to start - here are a few (non-traditional!) steps to consider, before jumping ship to a new job, or career. I better start by saying hold that train! Scrap the idea of scrolling through hundreds of jobs on employment and agency sites, and keep your fingers away from LinkedIn (for now!).
Starting there tends to lead to you thinking:
What would I be good at? This keeps your mind focused safely on what your background is, and what you’re familiar with. Hello, comfort zone, goodbye fulfilment zone. If you’re not happy now, the grass may not always be greener next door.
What am I qualified in? Again, keeps you thinking within the box.
What am I able to get paid? If you’re basing your search on your current reality (if you’re reading this far, I’m guessing there’s something about your job or career that you want to change!) then you will find it very similar to what you are currently paid. Not much room for expansion when you’ve narrowed your horizon to what’s familiar.
So, the approach I’m about to share with you takes an open mind, an open heart, and the belief that there are other ways you could be living your life, in particular, in your career!
Here it goes – one of the secret weapons I use with my private clients:
Reverse engineer – with no limitations or expectations, picture or visualise how you would love to start your day! From there, let your imagination take you on a journey of discovery. Bit by bit, go through your day. After you’ve woke up at x time, you’d then do what? After you’ve showered, meditated and had your breakfast – then what? Do you leave the house to go to work? Are you staying home? What’s the commute like if so? What’s your work environment like?
What we are looking for here is being guided by your intuition (some may say higher self) and noticing how you are feeling as you go through your day, ie does it feel exciting, calm, fired up, passionate, in control? Rather than trying to logically think about your ideal job, you are letting all your senses guide you and reveal itself as you go.
Keep going right through to how you spend your evenings, and what are you most looking forward to the next day.
This exercise has created HUGE transitions in careers, and transformations in many of my clients live who are now living out their dream careers and days.
Get clear on what makes you tick, and what makes you sick. When you think about the bigger picture of how you work as a person, your values and experiences – what is it in a career or job that makes you tick? You can refer back to past experiences, and also dream into the future! What are you a stand for? What do you enjoy as a person?
Then get clear on what your hell no’s are. The things that may have made you (mentally, physically or hypothetically!) sick in past careers, and what you know you don’t want in the future. These are going to share your future boundaries and help weed out the things that aren’t aligned with you.
If you can’t find a new career path, create one. What you feel called to do may not have a particular job title or vacancy right now. And that’s okay. From personal experience, I knew I wanted to create movements in the mental health and spiritual space, but there weren’t any particular jobs that fit me. So I took some time to learn, become an expert in what I felt called to do, and shaped my own career. I started doing this whilst still working in my old jobs! I didn’t jump ship until I felt confident not only in my abilities as a Mindset Coach, but until I built a solid reputation in this field. I did a lot of give-back (and still do!) I travelled sharing free talks in schools, women’s and entrepreneurial meet up’s, plus tons of webinars and lives on social media. I knew deep within where I was going, even when doubted by others. I now get paid to share talks and deliver workshops and create self-help tools and methods of my own. If I can, you certainly can!
Given the time and energy we give to our careers, it’s only right you put yourself first when it comes to transitioning into a new space. Trust the process!