The average American spends 90,000 hours of their life working. That’s one-third of your life!
And, studies have shown that over half of the American workforce does not feel engaged and fulfilled in their jobs. So, dear reader, you are not alone. Many people are struggling to find a career path that they enjoy.
I get it. I had a very “successful” career for over 15 years, but on the inside I knew I wasn’t fulfilled. I knew I was meant for more and that I was not utilizing my gifts and talents in the way I wanted. I stayed much longer than I should have due to fear. Making the choice to pursue a career that was aligned with my passion and interests was the best(and the scariest) thing I have ever done.
It can be terrifying to think about a career change, but I am here to tell you it is possible! I know you may feel stuck in the wrong career, but you are never stuck. You always have a choice. I’m not saying it will be easy or that it won’t require effort, but you can make a career change if you are determined and strategic.
Here are 3 things you can do right now to get started on finding your purpose and passion in life:
1.Get Clear On Your Values
Many people haven’t really taken the time to identify their values when it comes to their professional pursuits. Often times, when we are asked what our values are we simply regurgitate what we think we are supposed to say--family, faith, kindness etc. Sure, these are great values! But, do they really capture what we want out of our work?
In many of my workshops, I lead the participants through what I call a “sneak attack” values assessment. Most people are a bit surprised by what values they uncover through this exercise because it strips away what we should say and gets to the truth about what is really going to motivate and excite us in life and work. Download this exercise for free by clicking here.
2. Get A (Financial) Reality Check
When I am working with clients, I often hear that there is “no way” that they can make a career change due to monetary needs. They swear that they cannot financially afford to make a change.
First, it’s an inaccurate, limiting belief that you must take a vow of poverty to pursue work that you will enjoy. It is completely possible to make a career change that will replace the income of your previous job-- heck, maybe you’ll make even more money!
But, even if your new path does require a pay cut (at least in the near-term) this does not need to stop you in your tracks. How much money do you really need to make? All too often, my clients don’t know what they truly need to pay their bills. You need to do the math. Crunch the numbers.
Get an intimate understanding of where your money is going. Many times, there is more room to cut back and make tweaks in your lifestyle than you might think. You owe it to yourself to know what your options are. If you are truly committed to moving towards a career that will make you happier in the long-run, you may have to make a few sacrifices in the short-term.
But, I can tell you from personal experience that it is worth it.
3. Get Moving
Get out of your head and into action. I always tell my career coaching clients that they are not going to find the career or job of their dreams in my office or over the phone during our sessions. You cannot think your way into a more rewarding career.
Action brings clarity.
Take the initiative to research jobs and careers that sound interesting to you. Identify people who have careers that intrigue you and ask them if they would be willing to have a cup of coffee or jump on a quick phone call with you (most people love to be helpful and I do this all of the time for aspiring coaches, by the way). Look for opportunities to have micro-learning opportunities about jobs in a different industry, such as volunteering or joining networking groups in the career arenas in which you have interest. Learn how to write a resume that highlights your transferable skills.
Listen, making a change- especially a career change-is not for the faint of heart. That’s why many people don’t do it. But, if you are serious about living your values and are ready to go all in on living your purpose, you can make it happen. It’s not out of reach.
Are you in need of a career change? The first step is to get clear on your values. Click here for a free and quick exercise that will get you crystal clear on your values.