I Challenge You to Design a Career of Freedom and Fun
Too often we leave our dreams behind somewhere in our teenage years, setting off on a path to please or a path of rebellion, not necessarily checking in to listen to what we really want.
Society has programmed us to believe that we are not enough, just as we are, that we need to BE somebody.
The result, it’s often hard to accept or believe that we are enough. As we grow the outside world is loud and our own inner voice harshly judgemental.
In reality, we know ourselves best, but all that outside noise and our inner critic make us afraid to listen to our inner wisdom.
When we come up with an idea or path a bit off the “beaten” career path, we often move straight from excitement into assuming “the worst-case scenario.”
When we take our ideas to our friends and family, it is all too easy to listen to external doubters, giving more weight to their opinions than our personal values, insights, and needs.
Add in unexpected events, challenging relationships or economic situations, and it’s no wonder that sometimes we find ourselves with a total lack of career direction.
If you sometimes feel like a sailboat lost at sea jostled to and fro, never knowing when life might bring the next big wave or storm, you are not alone.
Does Your Career Lack Direction?
A few years after the birth of my first son in 2007, I was lost in a sea of career confusion. My first big breakthrough came when I learned to make a distinction between activities I did because I believed “I should” versus because “I valued.”
I recognized that many of my career and life choices, even relationships, I’d made because society had “told” me that I should do them and I’d listened.
The moment that I started to let go of “I should” and get reacquainted with “I value” I suddenly rediscovered a childlike enthusiasm for life and a sense of freedom that I’d not felt since I was maybe 8 or 9 years old.
Following my values led me back to school and into an experimental cohort with 6 other graduate students. Our “coach” as I’ll call him, Rich Male, led us through many interesting discussions and activities, but the one with the most significant long-term impact, was having us take the Gallup StrengthsFinder test (no affiliation, only respect).
Own Your Story
I’d always been told that my “short attention span” for effectively solving problems and then moving on was a weakness. My parents wanted me to get a secure job and stick with it. When I did the Strengthsfinder, Rich said,
“Alison, you have the profile of an entrepreneur! You generate ideas and identify opportunities, you see the big picture and understand what strategy to implement. Don’t let anyone underestimate you!”
My life changed that day. Suddenly, what society told me was a weakness became a strength. I understood why I was so good at what I did and how to make that even better.
Knowing and understanding your strengths is crucial to long-term job satisfaction, as is doing work that lets you exercise your strengths, doing what you do best.
Do the Challenge
31 Days to Career Freedom & Fun
I’ve designed a challenge to address many of the most common pitfalls of career confusion.
The desired outcome of this challenge is to guide you through building stronger sails for your boat; possibly even putting down an anchor so that you can choose your course.
Indeed, I like to equate knowing your strengths to
Each day of the challenge will take you through short exercises or activities that will help you to identify and engage your inner wisdom and celebrate your personal brilliance.
You will clarify your values, desires, curiosities, passions, and needs. You will align these with your skills, strengths, and experiences.
You will finally feel the experience of confidence and faith in who you are and what you do.
Your life compass will be under our control — you will orient your path to head in the direction of a career that provides a sense of purpose and meets your needs.
The final days of the challenge will guide you to the best tools and outlets for you to maximize this inner wisdom so that you can take action, see real movement and find personal accountability. We’ll also look at how you can build a network to help with external accountability, growing community and a sense of belonging with those that belong to our tribe.
Meaningful work and a sense of purpose take effort, aligning your work with what gives the satisfaction of being useful and having a self-selected direction, may not be easy, but it is immensely rewarding.
What is your goal?
My personal self-work first started with a Buddhist Retreat led by Thich Nhat Hanh, the insights of the StrengthsFinder, reading Brene Brown, and working with some fantastic programs. Each of these experiences helped me to clarify my values and strengths, to see my own brilliance and to have the courage to follow my passions.
The material for the 31-Day Challenge takes its inspiration from diverse sources with a particular emphasis on the science of flourishing as described by the school of Positive Psychology, the practice of Mindfulness, and research into resilience and strengths-based career coaching.
This is a coaching-based program, so no one will TELL you what to do, but you will get a mix of deep questioning, exercises, guided actions and more!
HOW DOES it Work?
This challenge is based upon the successful work of many life and career coaches. Its researched based, yummy chunks of self-awareness and action broke into digestible daily chunks of 5 to 20 minutes.
A short intro lesson will be sent to you each day via email. Each email will have a link to my MemberVault, where deeper lesson and any activity links from worksheets to videos will be shared.
MemberVault is an incredible free platform for you to access not only the challenge but other free and paid career coaching tools and resources.
If you are ready for a work-life worth living, sign-up today for the 31-DAYS TO CAREER FREEDOM AND FUN and set your course.
Learn from the shared experiences of those who flourish and listen to your inner wisdom.