I am always fascinated when I hear people complain about being in a job that they hate, or when they are in the same job since high school, not because they love it - or even enjoy it - but because they feel it's the only thing they are capable of doing. Or when people dream of having a particular job in a far-away land, but it stays a dream.
Most of us stay in theses jobs because we are afraid of change. Change is inevitable. You have encountered many changes in your life already. And you have survived. Maybe even thrived!
We spend one-third of our lives at work. Even if we have a 9-5, many of us bring work home with us. If we are going to spend so much time working, why not let it be doing something we really enjoy?
Personally, I have gone through many careers transitions and each one has brought new experiences, relationships, skills and opportunities to grow! Without change and challenges, we would never grow personally nor professionally!
Below are six reasons why people don't take the leap from the job they're in to the job they WANT.
The timing isn't right. If not now, then when?
We are so good at making excuses to avoid that which scares us: Let's wait until the kids are in college; I'll start after the New Year; I need to finish this project first; I'm too busy. The thing is, life will always be getting in the way. When something is really important to us, we find the time. We make the time.
You are important. Being happy is important. Make the time. Start taking action.
I have met many people who are afraid to apply for a job because they don't have 100% of the qualifications listed on the job requirements. Chances are you didn't have 100% of the skills needed for the job you are in. Where's the challenge if you already have the skillset?
There are two factors that I ask my clients to consider:
a. You can always learn new skills. You didn't know how to ride a bike before you learned to ride a bike; and
b. Your soft skills are much more valuable than hard skills. Being able to influence people is a valuable skill. Leadership skills. Diplomacy. Being strategic. Being organized. Having vision.
Take stock in what you have accomplished and understand what your inherent skills are and how you can leverage them to stand out.
Yes, knowing people certainly makes a career transition easier. Along the way of your personal and professional life, you have made connections. You probably have a bigger network than you realize. And your connections have connections.
A humbling realization is that people want to help. People want to be a part of your reinvention, your success. People want to share their experiences with you to make your journey easier.
But they aren't going to do the work for you.
You just need to KNOW what you want and you need to put it out there. Don't be afraid to let people know that you are considering a change. Don't be afraid to ask for help. People will help you and they will be happy to help you.
4. Not knowing what you want
So, you are miserable in your job, but you don't know what you want to do. This is not uncommon.
What drives you? What motivates you to get up in the morning? What do you make time for? What legacy do you want to leave?
Consider your answers, sit with them and note how you feel.
Research careers associated with whichever answer generated the most positive feelings.
Hire a Career Coach. A Coach will help you articulate your goals, create a plan, address the things that hold you back, and will be your personal accountability partner and cheering squad!
You may have a voice in your head that pops up to remind you that you aren't good enough, smart enough, pretty enough. Those voices are there to protect you from getting your feelings hurt. But they have zero credibility.
Would you tell your son or daughter that he is not good enough? That she is not pretty enough? That they are not smart enough? No? Then why would you tell yourself these things?
Practicing daily affirmations is a great way to rid yourself of those voices. You do not need protection. You need your alter-ego super power by your side reminding you that you are a rock star.
Remind yourself of all your accomplishments, big or small, and how you came to achieve them.
Keep a POSITIVE mindset! Envision what your life would be like if you had the perfect job, your dream job.
Oh, so many things to be afraid of...
FEAR of FAILURE: Do yourself a favor. Google "failure stories of most successful persons", or just click on the link. Failure is part of the journey to success. Besides, how do you know you are going to fail?
FEAR of What Others Will Say: We only have control over what we do, what we say, how we feel, how we react. For a reminder, check this out. We cannot let what others think of us dictate what happens in our future. Surround yourself with those who support you, who lift you up. If your friends aren't encouraging you or don't believe in you, find new friends. Real friends want you to succeed.
Fear of SUCCESS: This is actually a thing. What if I make too much money? What if I grow too big? What if I get too many clients? What if I lose too much weight? What if my product takes off like hotcakes??
Remind yourself of all the positive things that success will bring you. You will have more freedom, more security and the ability to do whatever it is you want to do.
Yeah. What IF? Ask those questions again, but put your hands on your hips and put the accent on the "IF". Tell me you don't feel different. :)
Fear of Losing Money: When you think of a career transition, do you fear that you will make less money than in your current job? Two trains of thought come to mind:
Which is more important: Money or Happiness? If you are in your dream job, and it provided you with significantly more satisfaction, more time to do the things you want, would you be OK with making less?
If money is part of the motivation to make a change, then make it part of your criteria and set your sights on what it is you want, and don't accept anything less. This is YOUR goal, your dream. You want it? Dream it. Believe it. Plan it. Act on it. Achieve it.
Career transitions are not easy. It takes courage and confidence, networking and planning, and action. Only YOU have the ability to make the change to get the job you want and deserve.
The greatest opportunities are on the other side of change.
What's holding YOU back?
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