Reinvent Your Career: 4 Steps to Find Work That Doesn’t Suck Your Soul
I’m known as America’s Reinvention Warrior as I’m no stranger to reinvention. I’ve recreated myself in health, career, relationships and spiritual life from the ground up more times than I can count. It’s been a wild ride and I’ve learned that in order to reinvent our lives, sometimes we have to first look at our careers.
Now, I realize that it’s easy to suggest that we all “find work that doesn’t suck our souls,” and sometimes it’s not that simple. Duh, I get it. We all have to find a way to make a living in the world. Yet, looking at how we spend most of our time- day in and day out- is super important if we want to lead balanced, authentic and sustainable lives.
Why I gave up the hustle to save my own life
In 2015, I left my cushy six-figure income, my “dream job” with the fancy title and a 13-year corporate career to save my own life.
Why? Because the hustle, my friends, was killing me.
Yes, the stress and pressure was intense, the hours were long and the travel was disorienting, but more than that, my soul was just done. After years of ignoring my truth and allowing the fears and beliefs of our culture to rule my life, I began to have daily panic attacks and serious stress-related health problems. My body was telling me I had to teach myself a new way to live, if I was going to live at all.
For the first time in years, I decided to listen and I recreated my career. Read more about Why I Gave Up The Hustle to Save My Own Life.
Now, I’m not implying that you should quit your job and become an entrepreneur- that may not be your path. Yet, if you know that you’re not doing something that is in alignment with who you are or if you’re just plain miserable then it may be wise to take a look at what you are giving your energy to all day long. Here are 3 tips to help you get started:
4 Steps to Reinvent Your Career
1. Get clear on what is not working for you right now.
The first step to making any change in your life is to get clear on what is not working. This may be counter-intuitive and you may be thinking “isn’t that focusing on the negative?” Darling, it’s not. In order to make a change you need to know what you want to change first. Often we can’t know what we want until we see what we don’t want.
So, take out a piece of paper and make a list, free-write or journal the following question: What isn’t working for me in my career/job/work right now?
As a coach and life reinvention expert, I work with clients who often feel unsatisfied, yet they aren’t sure why. This first step helps you shine a light on the why of your unhappiness so you can move forward with new goals and take steps toward creating a better life.
2. Brainstorm your options.
Once you’ve taken time to get clear about what’s not working, start writing down insights about what you’d really like to be doing with your time. Make a list of all the different types of work you’d be interested in- this could be changes with your current job or a complete reinvention of your entire work life.
Brainstorm all of your options and allow yourself to see that there are choices for you- you’re not stuck. Ask yourself questions like: What is one baby step I could take right now to enjoy my work more? What is one aspect of my career that I’d love to keep? What do people tell me I am good at? Try not to censor yourself at this point- just brainstorm a little. It may help to do this step with a friend, partner, coach or mentor.
3. Make a plan.
Now it’s time to be realistic about your options. Now realistic doesn’t mean you don’t get to dream big, if you’re going to reinvent your career you have to dream bigger than you ever have before. Yet, I recommend that you look at what you could take on right now, given your energy, time, finances and personal responsibilities. I suggest making 3 potential paths or plans for yourself at this point. The high-risk plan, moderate-risk plan and low-risk plan then review them several times and see which one feels right for you right now.
Don’t try to figure out what your career will look like in 5 years or 10 years, but make a plan for what you’d like it to look like in a shorter term, like 2 years. Remember that plans often change, so make a plan that is your ideal situation and be open for how new information down the road may change your plans or your goals. All plans change yet we can’t take action without a plan.
4. Take Action.
Now it’s time to take action. Will you be taking the high, moderate or low-risk plan? Decide what is best for you and go with it knowing that each day new information may modify the plan. Start sharing your thoughts and goals with others. Enroll them in your dreams and bounce ideas off of them. Allow others to have different opinions, but stay strong in your conviction of what you need to do for you.
Choose wisely who you share your dreams and goals with. If possible, talk to your family, spouse, partner or boss about some of your options and see if there is wiggle room with your current situation. If appropriate, start your endeavor “on the side” and share your ideas and venture on social media. This can be a great way to test out your efforts to see what resonates with people.
Coaching Tip: If you still feel unsure about what to do at this point, start taking small steps toward your low or moderate-risk plan and see if it feels exciting and fun for you. If so, that may be a sign you are headed in the right direction.
Anytime we are making big shifts in your life it’s important to manage your expectations. It can be a difficult to find a balance between enthusiasm and realism, but you can do it. Take it one day at a time. These 3 steps will get you started on the path toward reinventing your career, but the real work is in what you do with this information.
You may find that contentment with your work is just one small change away and you don’t have to wipe the board clean and start over. Keep an open mind and see where your insights take you. Most of all, don’t shy away from calculated, thoughtful risk-taking. This is your life we’re talking about and no risk is too big when it comes to transforming your life (and thus your health) for the better.
If you’re going through a lot of change in your career and life, coaching can help. If you’d like individual support from a coach and life reinvention expert, look no further. I’d love to support you on this journey. I create a deep and transformative coaching experience for my clients who are ready to heal and move on with their lives–which, not surprisingly, may start with reinventing your career! To experience a powerful coaching conversation schedule with me here.
To Your Reinvention,
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Disclaimer: My blog provides general information and discussion about supplements, health and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately licensed physician or other health care worker.