As children our responsible adults nudge and occasionally shove us towards new activities. Depending on how adventurous we are by nature and by nurture, tackling our quota of great unknowns is part of growing up. We learn to face our fears and we figure out the things we love and loathe. I can thank my family two of my great loves - baking and singing. They also introduced me to orienteering and sailing - two items definitely on my ‘loathing list’.
Last week I listened to an Invisibilia podcast about a man who made an app that expanded his horizons. Every day he did something new based on the local Facebook events his app collated. He opened himself up to entirely fresh places and people and pursuits.
Every new thing we try reveals something about our abilities and our interests. These insights can be priceless career change clues. What does liking chess but hating scrabble say about you? Why are you attracted by a writing course but repelled by a painting workshop?
The more we try new things, the more open and courageous and cluey we become about where we might fit in a world full of possibilities. It can help us to add parts to the jigsaw of figuring out our next career change.
Recently I went to an ‘improv’ comedy workshop. While the blurb said ‘no experience necessary’ my ‘scaredy cat’ self was hunting for an excuse not to go. I had to summon up the courage to get there but ended up signing up for an 8 week course! Who knows? Perhaps I‘ll love it. Maybe I’ll let my inner comic loose at a gig near you – just joking (sort of).
By Jo Green, Career Change Coach
I know how it feels to be lost in your career. That’s why I coach, to create learnings, action and help others get stuff done! Changing your career can be lonely and confusing so I'll walk alongside you, be your cheerleader and help you figure out what meaningful work is for you.
Doing the following three big things, which are actually nine smaller things, lead me to career change coaching. They helped me create and test a successful career change process that’s at the heart of how I work with my clients.
The first thing I tell them is that you can’t change careers sitting behind a desk.
Then we talk about ways to switch your search technique to ‘finding people not jobs’. This conversation is about how to get out of your head and into action.
If you’re stuck for ways to start talking to real people working in jobs or areas you‘re keen to explore, here’s what I suggest.
Money. Sometimes the scary prospect of managing your finances can stop career change in its tracks. Will I earn less in my new career? If I take time off to figure out what next will I need to eat pot noddles for months?
When I was changing careers I wanted to wake up and know exactly what to do. Pretty quickly, I realised that my longed for lightning bolt wasn’t going to strike. I needed to create the right conditions for career change insights. I had to stop waiting expectantly for an epiphany to arrive.
Transitioning from 9-5 in an office to making my own hours was one of the toughest things about going solo. I’ve learned to balance the competing demands on my time and energy in (mostly) sane ways.
Amidst the many insights my clients have given me, these six things stand out. Each of them says something important and moving about our shared aims and experience at work and in life.
Sparky moments - we all have them. They happen when we cross paths with someone or something that connects us to what matters most. Sparky moments light up our eyes and prick up our ears.