Fragment of art journal, Carol Michalski

“If you limit your choices only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is compromise. The way to activate the seeds of your creation is by making choices about the results you want to create.” Robert Fritz

A Gallup poll conducted several years ago found that 85% of workers worldwide admit to “hating” their jobs when surveyed anonymously. The rate is slightly better in the United States, where “only” 70% of people hate their jobs.

It’s no surprise then that a good deal of my practice is devoted to clients who want to reinvent their careers! So what is career reinvention and what does it take to accomplish this change?

Career reinvention can take several forms:

·      Making a radical career change

·      Finding a similar job in a new company

·      Transitioning to a different job with a current employer

·      Starting a business

·      Designing a portfolio career

·      Redesigning a current career

When clients arrange for a consultation, they are concerned whether it is possible to make this change. Although anything is possible, I think it’s important to have a few pieces of information in order to make an informed decision about starting the process of reinvention!

What it takes:

·      Willingness to take action.

Taking action is the most important thing you can do to launch your reinvention process. When I decided it was time to reinvent myself and begin my own business, everything started to take shape when I took 2 important action steps; I found an accountability partner and revealed my plans and I found an affordable space, took a chance and rented it. These two moves really lit a fire after months of thinking, analyzing and planning. Not to say I wasn’t scared! I didn’t sleep for 3 nights after signing that lease! Feel the fear and do it anyway!

·      Willingness to make mistakes.

You must move past thinking and planning and take concrete steps. When I rented my space I figured out the worst case scenario; that I could not earn enough to pay the rent for the year’s lease. I calculated what it would cost me to pay it out of personal cash flow. When I realized I could do it even if I never generated a penny, making a “mistake “did not feel quite so terrifying!

·      Don’t expect one profound insight.

Reinvention is not a linear process with an upward trajectory. As you take action, you collect ideas and information and reject ideas and information.

·      Recognize and reward baby steps, action, working the process.

Don’t wait for a specific result or outcome to give yourself a high 5!

·      Get out of your own way!

Allow the creative part of your brain, your intuition, to take over. Start a journal, a vision board. What speaks to you? What excites you?

You can see a fragment of my art journal above , expressing my value of having time to enjoy life, personal freedom and autonomy. It is also a reminder and celebration that I actually attained this seemingly distant and impossible goal!

·      An understanding that it takes the time it takes.

For example finding a new job in your current field probably takes less time than making a radical career change.

·      Willingness to learn new skills and tolerate not being very proficient in the beginning.

You will probably discover career reinvention to be an exciting, exhilarating, terrifying, frustrating process ! Hopefully you will decide that you are up to the challenge. It is the way forward to designing the life you truly want.

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