The toughest career decision you'll ever have
Many of us are influenced by the sports ethic: Never give
up! When a basketball team is down by 20 with 30 seconds on
the clock, the players never stop working. The spectators
might be filing out, and the winning team might be playing
the reserves, but the game goes on.
If your game is a business or a job,you won't hear a whistle
to signal the end of the game. If you keep going and win,
you may gain a lifelong prize. If you keep throwing good money
and energy into a losing cause, the whistle can blow for unemployment
"Should I keep going?" is one of the most difficult
questions for anyone, including career counselors and coaches.
There is no single answer, but here are some ways to focus
1. How did you get into the situation? Were you encouraged
by a spouse, parent, friend or mentor? You have a better chance
of fulfilling your own dream than someone else's.
2. Is there a little voice in your head that whispers, "Maybe
you should be doing X instead?" Listen up, as the sports
coaches say, especially if you can put a name on "X"
,and if you've been playing this game awhile. That "little
voice" may be your
3. Does your new venture refuse to go away? If you try to
leave your job, do you find yourself getting caught up in
a new project or rewarded with a new promotion?
One speaker, accepting a local "Entrepreneur of the
Year" award, told the audience, "I hated this business.
I tried to sell it but nobody would buy me out. I was forced
to fix it up and, in the process, found success."
4. What is the universe telling you?
Are you getting customers?
Is your progress considerably faster or slower than your peers
Has anything clicked into place for you, seemingly without
To interpret these messages, tune
in to your own intuition.
5. What is your own historical trend?
Do you tend to give up too easily or hang on too long? Often
coaching can help you identify career patterns and decide
if you want to make changes.
6. Are you still having fun?
A loss of enthusiasm can be temporary, especially if you're
fatigued or have just experienced a setback. Long-term discouragement
will create negative energy and ultimately destroy your career
7. Must your decision be either-or?
Can you continue a business part-time with a manager? Can
you look for a new job but also start a business? Multi-tasking
can fragment energies but also offer unparalleled opportunities.
It's a key transition
|Cathy Goodwin, Ph.D. is an author, career coach, and
speaker. She works with mid-career professionals who want to make a fast
move to career freedom. Visit her site http://www.movinglady.com
or call 505-534-4294.