There are many people who are struggling with this very issue right now – some of them are my friends. Some are probably your friends or family, as well. All around us, people are still being downsized, furloughed, laid off, and their jobs eliminated. No matter how you choose to spin it, the truth is that people are losing jobs, taking massive pay cuts, or have been unsuccessful in finding new employment. I heard someone remark recently that the new definition of an optimist is someone who takes their lunch to work!
What are they (or we) to do? Let me share some of my story of personal transformation with you, in the hope that it may inspire you to see yourself differently, reexamine your assumptions about who you are, and maybe even start you on the path to reinventing yourself.
Prior to becoming a sought-after coach, trainer, and speaker, I spent more than 25 years working for a world-class manufacturing company. I was accomplished, well known, respected, liked, and – dare I say – comfortable. I figured this was my end-game, and that I would work there until retirement, enjoying the perks of the job and living a very contented lifestyle.
Well, all that came to an abrupt end in November of 2008 when I was told my services were no longer required. 25 years. Gone. Suddenly everything I knew was thrust into uncertainty. What would I do? So much of who I thought I was, my internal sense of identity, was tied to what I had been doing for all those years. Who am I without my job? How will I support my family? How will I recover from this massive blow?
I had some hard choices to make. The first one was, what will I do with the rest of my work life? I had for many years joked, “I hope I never lose this job, because I don’t know how to do anything else.” Well, now it was time to figure it out. I had to ask myself some powerful questions and determine what was next for me – I had to reinvent myself. Here are some strategies I used to find my way, discover the previously unseen path, and eventually find not only a new career path, but also my true passion in life.
Find Your Strengths
Look to Your Values
Don’t let Circumstances Control Your Thoughts and Feeling
Self Care is Important
What do You Need?
Reach for Support
What is Your “Why?”
Overcome Self-Limiting Beliefs
Play All Out
What Would You do if You Knew You Couldn’t Fail?
Remember to Laugh!
Why Would I Look for Fulfillment in my Work?
Now I’m not saying that if you do all of these things, your life will magically become better, you’ll find that dream job you’ve been looking for, and all your worries will cease. But what I am saying is that if you do these things, you stand a far better chance of that happening than if you don’t. There are many choices you will make as you continue to live your life. Think about the impact that this decision will make on your quality of life.
Maybe you don’t need to reinvent yourself professionally. What about personally? Sometimes the transformation we need the most, is the one we fear the most. These strategies will hold true whether the change you seek is personal or professional.