When I look back at my career – actually, even my life – I reflect on two things that I find quietly reassuring.
Firstly, the best things that have happened to me – were not intended and mostly by mistake!
Secondly, the things that I thought would work – absolutely bombed!
Why is that reassuring?
Because, to me, it means that I can let go of control, focus on personal and professional development and keep a truly open mind about what the future holds for me, without the dreaded ‘shoulds’, ‘coulds’ and ‘woulds’.
We can be easily conditioned into only searching for one type of job or even chasing one dream – without even questioning it.
Two examples that spring to mind instantly;
For the longest time, if someone asked me what I wanted to achieve in my career – it was to own a factory; it made widgets, run by lots of blue-collar workers, it had mahogany desks, mahogany walls, spinney leather chairs – the works!
It was only when I stopped to question why I wanted this – did I only then realise that this wasn’t my dream.
My family business – which was a factory; it made widgets, run by lots of blue-collar workers, it had mahogany desks, mahogany walls, spinney leather chairs… – went bust many years ago.
I had set out on a crusade to correct this – without even questioning it once.
That’s how easy it is to pick up baggage, someone else’s crusade or even worse go without any direction at all.
The second example was for 15 years I worked in the Office Supplies industry as a Sales Executive then a Sales Manager.
At any point, if I started to look around, I only looked for Sales roles in the Office Supplies industry!
The blinkers were on.
They were for me, maybe they are for you too.
I owe ‘thanks’ to my Mental Health challenges for allowing me the headspace to truly think ‘if nothing were impossible, what would my life look like right now…what would I do…who would I be?’.
It granted me freedom; it broke all of my pre-set rules.
As I say to my audiences all over the world ‘we have all the answers, we just don’t ask ourselves the right questions. If we do ask ourselves the right questions, most times we are scared of the truth.’
To pave a clear way forward, shake off the conditioning of the past.
In business, we are all bigger picture players – we start with the end in mind.
Right now, with lockdown and COVID-19, more than ever – it’s difficult to do that.
We cannot control the uncontrollable and the pursuit of doing so will only create more anxiety and stress.
We don’t need to know where we are going to be able to bust a move.
It simply takes the acknowledgement that we are somewhere that we don’t want to be.
In life, in business – the rules are the same.
Once you move past that acknowledgment, you can shift into survival mode.
Survival mode is where you have accepted where you are – now you can work a plan on how to survive – emotionally, spiritually, mentally, physically & financially – we have what we hold.
How long do you have to create the conditions where you secure your new direction, your new career – or maybe sometimes – just a job.
What do I mean by that?
When I first went self-employed – I worked for Tesco, 36 hours a week, delivering groceries.
I didn’t want to be there, it’s not what I wanted to be – but the truth is that the mortgage doesn’t get paid on dreams and missions!
Sometimes in life – we may be doing just a ‘job’ to pay your way to a better future.
Not every step along the way has to be done with the end in mind – that final move.
After a year, I learned loads, I paid the bills, I grew as a person and worked harder than I ever had done.
That set me free – to do what I do today – without it, I couldn’t have got here.
Reframe your current situation as an evolution, not a revolution – ease that pressure you are putting on yourself and know that the next step along the way may just be that – a steppingstone.
For every step – we learn, we adapt, we evolve, and we go again stronger, smarter and happier.
Focus your anxiety and your stress-based energy on immersing yourself in positive distractions such as self-care, accept every rejection as an opportunity of a better way forward and know that your secret weapon is ‘resilience’.
When we struggle with Mental Health challenges, low self-esteem, low self-confidence, rejection – all the things that job hunting can bring up – the first thing we sacrifice is choice.
Reclaim your right to choose – proactively go into each and every day with everything you have – don’t ruminate on yesterday, don’t look too far ahead – say it with me ‘just for today!’.
Go get ‘em, tiger!
Inspirational Speaker: www.nickelston.com
Speaking Coach: www.forgingpeople.com
Speaking Academies: https://forgingpeople.eventbritestudio.com/