Is your career still a good fit for you today? Some people have a dream very early on in life of what they want to do as a career which provides a single focus to make that dream a reality. Others don’t. I certainly wasn’t one of them.
Sometimes you figure out what you do want and other times on your way to that point you find a career that fits. One that lights you up, interests you, gives you a sense of purpose, provides the professional growth you were striving for and hopefully allows you to impact a cause that is important to you.
We don’t stay the same as we grow, we learn and change. Even over the course of 5-10 years. And we don’t always reflect enough on whether where we are in our career is meeting who we are today. Particularly when we fall into a career or find an area that did spark a light in us. As we grow and progress we tend to find out more about ourselves, we definitely strengthen our professional offering and skill set which can transfer across vocations. We can find ourselves in a stronger position professionally than the first time around when we were trying to figure out the right path.
However, if we don’t check in on who we are today, how we’ve changed and what we want now, not 5-10 years ago, we can stay in careers and companies that we may well have outgrown or just don’t fit as well as they used to. Life gets busier, we get tired and we get comfortable with knowing an industry, a company or a role which we are good at. If we’re not careful we could ignore the signs and sounds telling us we want something else, we can push them down because of fear, discomfort or busy-ness. We can ignore the growth another direction could give us, the challenge a different environment could provide us, or the new energy, sense of purpose and innovation that could come from contributing to something different.
One way to check in with yourself is through these 3 steps:
- Look back: What did you used to dream of 5-10 years ago? How clear were you on what you wanted? What was important to you then?
- Growth and change: What have you learned over the last 5-10 years? What skills and knowledge have you developed? What distance have you travelled? How much of your growth was driven by you and what lit you up? How much of your growth was driven by areas you didn’t enjoy as much? How has your career direction been shaped by expectations from others? How has your lifestyle changed over the last 5-10 years
- Check where you are now: does your current career light you up? What is your next dream? Whats important to you? What skills and knowledge do you have which you love to use? Are you using them regularly? Is where you are still where you want to be? Does your career suit the lifestyle you have today?
What is your story? Where you have come from? What have you gained? And how does your career today fit with who you are, what you want and what feels good for you?
We change a lot over a decade. Life changes a lot over a decade.
Where do you want to be in 10 years time?
Are you on track?
If you’re not, if you don’t know what you want and if you want to change that then make a commitment to figuring it out. That could be through self reflection, a supportive manager and good PDR process, through the support of a trusted friend or network or through coaching.
Just remember, comfort isn’t always your best friend, after a while it can start causing discomfort that gets louder and louder until you confront it and make a decision.
If you need help working through what the next best step is for you contact me for a chat or visit www.nicolaclemmitconsultancy.com.