7 Shifts to Start Loving What You DoSep 01, 2021
Is This You?
Are you a high-achiever who is bored and unfulfilled? I get it. I was in the same place ten years ago. One of the challenges we face as high-achievers is we become bored with the status quo. We want to be learning and growing. The moment our career becomes routine, we are ready for something else.
As I have pivoted my career, I have spoken to so many people who are high-achievers, but unfulfilled in their current career. The lack of fulfillment causes frustration, stress, and burnout. At these same time, many high-achievers are stuck and paralyzed in moving forward to shirt into a more fulfilling path. They take the stress home, impacting their relationships and their family.
For me, I just wanted to come home after work and crash on the couch. My little children would want me to read them a book or go outside to play, but I was too frustrated to move. It is challenging to be fully present to anyone since our minds are spinning trying to figure out this problem.
My career shift was long, arduous, and scary. To start, it took me years of unfulfilling work to realize that I needed to change. I came up with excuse after excuse. It was the stress. It was being a working mom. If I could learn to relax, things would get better. When I faced life-threatening stage 3 cancer, I realized I had to get out of my corporate product management position and start finding joy at work. The universe was whispering in my ear for so many years, and I was ignoring her out of fear.
I wish I had understood my resistance to change before I was diagnosed with cancer. I would have started to reclaim my career so much sooner. I missed out of years of joy due to an unfulfilling career.
My mission is to help high-achievers discover fulfillment at work. I want to help you listen to that inner voice and start moving forward into something you love.
Let’s go through some of the points of resistance many of you may be facing as you think about pivoting careers. Then, we’ll walk through how to overcome these resistance points.
- We Don’t Want to Throw It Away – Many of us have invested so many years into our career. We have become successful and are considered experts. It seems crazy to throw it all away.
- Our Ego Gets In the Way – Our ego’s keep us safe by telling us that we worked so hard to achieve success, we don’t want to step back and become a ‘beginner’ at something.
- Our Job Defines Us – We are leaders and experts in our field. We are proud of our titles. It defines us. Many of us believe if we were to get rid of this professional identity, we would be lost and not important?
- Now What - If I were to do something different, what would it be? For me, I looked at opening a bakery business, a daycare center, and I even went back to graduate school. I was in analysis paralysis.
- I Need the Money – I earned an excellent salary, and I was worried about paying the bills. Yes, I had plenty of money, but I was still concerned. I knew bills were going to increase since my children were heading off to college in a few years, and I did not want my family to have to sacrifice. I assumed my salary would decrease if I changed careers.
- What Will Others Think– My father worked at an unfulfilling job for this entire career. I had friends who were unfulfilled, but they were okay with being bored at work. I assumed that people would think less of me if I changed careers.
- I Kept Hoping–I desperately wanted to figure out how to love being a product manager again, despite the overwhelming that I no longer liked it. Even when I was promoted, I still did not enjoy the work. I loved my career for so many years. I could not understand why I was unfulfilled. I was terrified to leap into the unknown.
I am now five years into my career pivot, my only regret is waiting so long. What I can tell you is none of these reasons are strong enough to keep you stuck in a career that leaves your empty and bored.
You deserve more. You deserve to love what you do. And you do not have to sacrifice to pivot your career to something you love.
The only way to move forward is to start. Only then will find the courage and energy to begin to change your career, and change your life.
Reframe the Resistance
The best way to loosen the grip of fear is to reframe the resistance points which keep you stuck.
- You Don’t Have to Throw It Away- Every day that goes by when you are bored at work is a day you spend stress and frustrating, impacting your health and relationships. Once you start moving forward to something that aligns with what you want, your stress decreases as you see a path forward. You will embrace the fact that you can leverage your skills, talents, and success to create something new. The goal is to reuse those fabulous skills into something new and exciting.
- Put the Ego On the Back Burner - Our success does matter if it does not resonate with our heart. Period. We could have the position at work we dreamed of, but if we are unhappy, it doesn’t matter. Do not let your ego take control of you. If you let your ego drive your career choices, you will find that you will remain empty and spend the rest of your career wondering ‘what if.’
- So Many Fabulous Options- There are so many interesting career options. But you are unsure of where to start. Yes, it is challenging to start, but possible. Make sure to find a coach to help and support you on this journey. They will help you get clear on what you want, manage the fear, and help you move into something you love, without risking your financial security or success.
- Experiment and Learn - The largest mistake is to assume that we have the answer to what’s next. It is only when you start moving forward that you will discover what lights you up. Chances are, what you think you want now will change as you start to move forward. But you will not know until you start.
- You Will Make Money- Yes, we all need money. However, how much money do you need to have a happy and fulfilled life? What is your history with money? Many of us grew up in the time of recessions. Is your relationship with money happy and balanced? As you work with a coach, they will work with you on your relationship with money.
- Everyone Will Be So Proud - Who cares. Seriously, this is about you and your joy. And to be frank, your friends and family will love the new joy. The one who is not stressed out all of the time. Your children will be so proud of you and stand up for yourself. Think of the role model you will be to everyone as someone who did not settle for something they did not like.
- Life is Full of Unknowns- Life is all about change. We never know what will happen from moment to moment. The universe is whispering in your ear. Just take a moment and listen. Your heart knows what you do. She is telling you to get off the block and starting loving what you do. She is telling you not to settle.
Are You Ready?
You have a choice. The problem is not going to go away. It can be solved. I have done it. My clients have done it. You can continue to read self-help books to figure out to do. You can continue to feel frustrated with work. You can continue to work so trying to find excitement and fulfillment in your current job.
You can continue to put everything important to you at risk since you are so anxious and stressed about work.
You can start to love what you do. You can get your life and career back. Starting now. You can have meaning and fulfillment at work. You can rekindle your relationship with your spouse. You can start being part of the moments that matter. Once you start moving forward, the stress will immediately decrease. You will not have to give up on the success you have had. You’ll end up in a career journey where you love what you do. You can start feeling joy again. You will do what you love and love what you do. You will reclaim your career!