Creating Meaning in Your Career (New year, new career!)
Have you promised yourself to not let another year go by stuck in an unfulfilling career?
Change is the order of the day, and so we are blessed with the opportunity to stop and reflect on our future personal and professional goals. Many people like you have made New Year’s resolutions to make some changes in their career path, either by altering it, finding another place to work, or veering off in another direction completely. The questions raised are how and when do I make these career changes?
A better question may be why. Why create more meaning in your career? Why make changes? Rest assured, there are many ways to find meaning in your career, but before you can make corrections to your career plan, you must first consider what you are looking for in a career. Are you looking for something more in the position that you currently hold? Are you looking for a change in environment within the same field? Or are you looking to discover a totally new career field? If you are seeking meaning, you are no doubt seeking something that is missing, something that perhaps your soul intends and needs to express to the world.
What kind of gold digger are you? The digger, the jumper, or the intuitive?
Planning for a career can be likened to panning for gold. There are three styles of “gold diggers.” The first style is the person who picks one spot and digs and digs. This person may or may not find gold, and often does not know when to stop digging. They often are so focused on the perceived value of the gold that they hardly take notice of how boring their job has become. The second kind of gold digger jumps around from spot to spot, panning on the surface, never venturing deeper to see what may be below. Sometime they may find a nugget here and there, but most of the time they never hit the jackpot. The third kind of gold digger uses her intuition to lead her to the gold. S/he use a variety of approaches, depending on what their inner guidance is saying. S/he may sometimes dig deeper, try another location, and even change directions entirely by ditching the pan in favor of the mine. This person often hits the jackpot!
Real Gold vs Fool’s Gold
In terms of your own career development, consider whether you choose a job or company and dig in deep, hoping to one day find a sense of meaning? Or do you jump from job to job, position to position, and company to company hoping to finally feel fulfilled? How about planning your career in accordance with your inner guidance, the small voice that tells you when to stay, when to go, and when to try something completely different?
Most people who lack meaning in their professional lives, also lack clarity. You must know what you are looking for and why you are looking. You must also know what you want from a career— money, prestige, creativity, a sense of pride, security, or happiness, etc. In order to create meaning in your career, you must decide what makes a “golden opportunity ” and one that is nothing more than a golden stone.
Using Your Internal Career Map
To create more meaning in your career this year, you must commit to finding your gold by following your intuition. You must listen to what your inner voice is saying. Does it say “stay where you are, reinvest yourself, and find the meaning.” Does it say “seek out another environment, rejuvenate yourself, and find the meaning.” Or does it say “explore another trade, reengineer yourself, and find the meaning.”
Each of these career transitions require courage. Courage is the ability to face difficulty or danger without fear. Courage requires listening to yourself and believing that there is a higher self that sees what is best for you, and acting on what you know needs to be done. At times, staying in your comfort zone can be exactly what is needed, and other times taking a risk can create the confidence needed to strike out and find a new environment or path.
By becoming a courageous, intuitive gold digger, you can create meaning in your career and discover the professional riches that were waiting for you all these years.
***Excerpt from Michelle’s new book, Get Your Career on the Fast Track