Newsletter Signup

  • NEWSLETTER SIGNUP

Banner3

Banner3

Tag Archives: breakthrough

Why You’ve Hit a Career Wall, and What To Do About It

 

Throughout the past ten years of career success coaching, I’ve become deeply committed to “scaling transformation” – finding new ways to help not just a handful of people each month, but thousands, and assist them in figuring out what they really want to do with their careers or businesses, and making it a reality.

I’ve learned that bringing about large scale transformation requires helping people complete the puzzle of their lives, assembling the pieces together so that they can honor all that has happened to them from birth on, and leverage exactly who they are and amplify those talents and abilities. When done right, the puzzle is truly beautiful – it becomes a unique, powerful and thrilling picture of why they’re on this planet now and what they’re longing to create and achieve.

The challenge to this, however, is unearthing exactly what holds them back from a happier life and more a satisfying professional focus, and offering practical, tailored, and realistic steps to get them unstuck. Another deeper challenge is helping individuals modify what’s necessary in their mindset and behavior to become more confident, courageous and capable of pursuing the direction of their dreams.

As a start, I’ve launched a 16-week online course, the Amazing Career Project, and we’re in Week 6 right now, with 75 courageous and committed members. What I’m seeing with members of this course validates everything I’ve learned in my 30-year career (and through my own career walls and reinventions) about why we stay stuck and miserable, and why so many millions of people won’t budge out of their unhappiness, ever.

I’ve observed six personal blocks that lead straight to a career wall.  These six personal blocks are:

1. Messages and experiences from your past keep you stuck.

Literally every single person I’ve worked with in some capacity (that’s over 10,000 people now) has had things happen in their lives that have ground them to a halt at some point. Whether it’s an abusive father, a controlling spouse, an alcoholic mother, a tragedy that shaped them, negative messages they received from authority figures or trauma from a painful work experience — everyone on this planet seems to have had extremely challenging experiences that altered them. The question then isn’t “Have you had deep challenges?” but “How have you processed these experiences and what have you interpreted about life and about yourself from them?” Most of us, sadly, don’t learn the right lessons from our experiences and come away feeling crushed, “less than” and defeated by these events.

Tip: If the lessons you’ve learned from your challenges suppress, limit and exhaust you, they’re the wrong lessons.

2. You don’t really believe that you’re worth more than this unhappiness.

Another personal block is a deep lack of a sense of worthiness. Women upon women I’ve worked with have shared that they really don’t feel worthy of an amazing life, and more than that, they don’t feel worthy of putting their needs and desires first.

The reality is that takes a good deal of time, effort, commitment (and in many cases an investment of money and resources) to build a fabulous life. If everyone else in your life is getting your love, energy and nurturing except you, you’ll never move forward. You’ll just never make it happen for yourself if you’re the last person on the planet who is getting your attention.

Tip: Start putting yourself first for a change and address your own needs and desires if you want an amazing career.

3. You don’t understand how to differentiate between the “essence” of what you want vs. the right “form.”

In my Career Path Self-Assessment survey (which offers deep and revealing clues as to where you’re stuck), I see over and over that what people fantasize about in terms of new careers are actually NOT the right roles for them because they don’t fit other key criteria necessary for success. For instance, they dream about being a:

  • Therapist or social worker
  • Restaurant owner
  • Dancer (or singer, actor, voiceover artist, painter, etc.)
  • Non-profit founder
  • Teacher
  • Massage therapist
  • Travel writer
  • Author

…etc.

Most people know nothing about the professional identity of their fantasy careers, and they‘re not able to distinguish between endeavors that will truly make them happy as a paying profession vs. hobbies that will bring them joy. For instance, launching a startup sounds glamorous, but it takes so much more work, grit and risk-tolerance than people understand.

They fantasize about these jobs because of the “essence” they believe these roles represent, such as helping others, moving the needle on an important cause, teaching and inspiring others, healing, etc. These are great goals in life, certainly, and meaningful ones, but not every dream of ours is the right professional direction for us.

We can find ways to bring the desired essence into our lives a million different ways other than assuming the professional identities listed above. You have to be able to figure out the right “form” (job and role) that will not only give you the essence of what you want, but also will fit your personality, your values and approach to living along with all the other needs and desires you have (including financial, spiritual and behavioral needs).

Tip: Look at your list of fantasy jobs. Identify the “essence” that these represent, then brainstorm 10 different ways to bring that essence into your life.

4. You don’t recognize that you’re depressed.

Additionally, so many people in unhappy careers are actually depressed. When you’re depressed, you don’t have the capacity to envision a happier direction, or find the energy to make it a reality. Or, often you’re looking for a quick fix or a magic bullet to feel better, and more fulfilled.  So many of the people I’ve spoken to this year who desperately want a new career are struggling with some form of depression, and they’re not alone. Nearly one in 12 Americans suffer from depression. Almost 8% of Americans aged 12 and older were moderately to severely depressed during 2009 to 2012 but only slightly more than one third of those suffering from severe depression seek treatment.

To know if this is you, read this list of symptoms. If these represent your state and your experience right now, it’s time for therapeutic support to help you navigate through your depression and feel better. (Visit the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy and find a therapist near you.)

Tip: As a trained therapist I can tell you that depression is real and not something to be ignored. Don’t just sweep it under the rug. Get help to feel better. And if traditional talk therapy doesn’t move you forward, explore alternative approaches to healing.

5. You don’t know how to leverage what you know and use that to launch to next level.

A fabulous career is created by leveraging all that you are, know and experienced. It’s not about running from pain and suppressing what you hate, or pretending it doesn’t exist. It requires that you marry up all the skills, talents, capabilities and passions you have, and find a new direction that will make great use of these abilities. When you’re looking for the best direction that will make you thrilled to be alive, start with a fearless inventory of who you are and what you have to offer the world.

Tip: The happiest careers use all that you are and all that you’ve learned. Don’t leap off the cliff trying to be someone you’re not.

6. You want everything right now, and aren’t willing to do the real, hard work of building a fabulous life.

Finally, I’ve seen thousands of people who want it all – an enormous salary, great flexibility, total control of their time, a fabulous lifestyle, and great meaning in their work, yet aren’t willing to change anything about themselves or their lives to get it. They want all the joys and passion of a calling, along with the stability and financial security of a job. Forget that.

Do you “deserve” everything you want? Yes, but you can’t have everything you want if you’re not committed to doing the work on yourself, and in the world, to make it a reality.

If you’re unhappy with your life now, but won’t change yourself, then nothing in your life will ever change.

Tip: If you think your new career will heal all that has gone wrong before and all that hurts in your life, you’re asking too much of a career. Your career is a natural outgrowth of all that you are, not a replacement for it. If you desperately want more happiness in your work, you first have to access more happiness in yourself, despite what’s around you.

(To build an exciting, rewarding and successful career, visit my Career Breakthrough Programs, The Amazing Career Project, and read my book Breakdown, Breakthrough.)

6 Ways to Identify What You Love, And Build a Rewarding, Lucrative Career Around It

The world around you will change only

 

June 2nd was my birthday, and when that day comes each year, I focus on doing a few things well: spend it with people I adore, reflect back on the year and see clearly the key lessons I need to learn from it, and finally, relish what’s appeared in my life and be grateful for it.

Towards that end, I’m deeply thankful for not only the achievements and happy experiences, but also the terribly hard pitfalls that tripped me up and pushed me to my knees, as these ultimately cleared the pathway to what I really enjoy doing in my life and work. Transforming from a very unhappy 18-year corporate career to a highly fulfilling life as a career coach, writer and business owner, and also figuring out how to make money pursuing my deepest passions, I’ve learned that it can be very hard to see things clearly for yourself – and take empowered action — when you’re lost in the muck and the mud.

Of all the questions I receive from folks desperately longing to change careers, the one that stumps them the most is this:

“Kathy, how do I figure out what my core passion, then build a lucrative career around it?”

After all, we all want to do what we’re passionate about, but we don’t want to go broke and lose everything pursuing it, right? (Here are what I believe are the top 8 reasons why people go broke pursuing their dreams.)

Personally speaking, years ago I faced deep financial challenges doing work I loved, and then figured out exactly why, and I teach those principles now. And I’ve answered this question in many other posts, videos, exercises and homework assignments (and in my Amazing Career Project online course). But I’d like to take a different tack today and offer six ways to identify what will make you happy to focus on in your career, then generate the great income you need and want from it.

To figure out what your mission and passion are:

Don’t just look at who you are today, but who you’ve always been.

I’ve seen through my clients’ revelations that who we are (what we care about, what we’re drawn to, what enlivens us) often emerges very early in life. For most of us, there were glaring signs and clues of our essential happiest selves in our teen and young adult years, and even earlier. Even if your parents suppressed your gifts and talents, you knew and felt they were there. But sadly, we don’t recognize these signs. We don’t see our own special talents, interests, gifts and exciting areas of focus as important or unique.

Tip: To tap into the awe-inspiring aspects of who you are and always will be, take some time over the next week to make a thorough inventory of everything you’ve ever loved and cared about when you were young and in your 20s. Then, spend some time thinking about what’s remained a constant in your life – what you still care about deeply and are drawn to – and develop new ideas for how to bring your gifts, talents or areas of passion forward more prominently in your life today.

Identify the skills you love to use.

One of the toughest lessons I’ve learned was the idea that just because you’re great at something doesn’t mean you should build a career around it. I realized late in life that I had become good at a number of tasks in my 18-year corporate career (such as presenting to a boardroom of senior executives on my programs’ P&L’s, or selling major bank clients on working with us in multimillion-dollar marketing campaigns) but I actually intensely disliked this work.

Tip: Think back on every job you’ve ever had – what you loved, hated, your biggest accomplishments, hardest lessons and, finally, what you want to bring forward from those experiences in a deeper way in your career now. Then do some critical research about jobs and careers that will allow you to draw on the specific skills and talents you love to use.

Figure out who you really want to help.

In my own business now, I use many of the same marketing and communications skills that I developed throughout my corporate career. But the biggest difference is that I’m using these skills and talents now for a completely different purpose and cause, one that I really care about — helping others who need support to build careers they love. In my previous corporate life, I felt that my talents and time were being utterly wasted on promoting meaningless products that contributed no real value to the world. Back then, it was all about the “bottom line,” and I wished the bottom line was focused on something more than just money.

You’ll find that if don’t believe in the outcomes you’re being asked to work toward, you’ll never enjoy your professional life. You’ll feel wasted, spent, lost and miserable.

Tip: Figure out as concretely and specifically as possible who you want to help, and the outcomes you wish to support in your work. Then, start networking extensively to help you land a role (or launch a business) that will give you the chance to support those causes and areas that most matter to you.

Now…how do you build a lucrative career around your passions?

Millions of people today believe that following your passions will break and ruin you. I’ve seen throughout my 10 years of career success coaching, however, that this is just a terribly misguided myth. Following your passions is not a recipe for failure, IF you do the right things (but so many people don’t). Here are three most powerful steps:

Learn how to monetize what you’re fabulous at.

My husband is a jazz percussionist, composer and music educator, and the world he’s immersed in is filled with an enormous array of incredible artists, creatives and highly gifted individuals. Some are extremely successful financially, but sadly, many others aren’t. I’ve seen that so many creatives (singers, filmmakers, painters, actors, jewelers, designers, sculptors, etc.) are amazing at their artistic talents, but aren’t clear on how to monetize their work and talents – how to promote and broadcast them, and create a fierce demand for what they do. Often, gifted individuals feel the world “owes” them because they’re so talented. But that’s not the way the world works. You have to identify what you’re fabulous at, illustrate why that’s important to the world, then find ways to be of service to others with your talents so that people (and organizations) are happy to pay richly for what you bring that enhances their goals and visions.

Tip: It’s not enough to be fabulous. Take the time to find new ways to be of service to others with your great talents. This week, brainstorm 30 new ways you can use and apply your immense talents to help others succeed and organizations grow and flourish. Then start sharing your vision for helping others with everyone you know, and asking people to connect you with others who might be helpful to speak with.

Build the necessary confidence to believe that you can earn great money.

I’ve seen firsthand that without confidence, you don’t make the right decisions and take the right actions to bring money and reward your way. And we’re not born with confidence – it’s BOLD action that generates confidence. To build a lucrative career, you have to be able to communicate confidently, and in compelling ways – not with arrogance and egotism, but in a way that illustrates clearly why people should hire you, and utilize your special skills. If you can’t speak and share with courage and confidence how you stand apart from the competition and why what you do is critical, you simply won’t move forward to earning sufficient income. And you won’t earn what you deserve.

Tip: As a start, read Peggy Klaus’ great book BRAG: The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn Without Blowing It, and develop your own “bragologues” so you can share with others why your work is powerful, needed, and important. And if you feel your work isn’t yet at the highest level, do something about it this year to reach the next level of expertise.

If you’re very stuck, get outside help (and it’s all around you).

Finally, if all of these steps are too challenging for you, or you’re still left feeling dazed, confused, and paralyzed, there’s likely more going on within you than you realize that is keeping you stuck. Among the thousands of folks I’ve worked with, a solid majority have some form of financial or emotional block, and/or trauma left over from past experiences that they haven’t yet healed or addressed. And these blocks do stop you in your tracks.

This describes me in my former life – I was stuck because my boundaries were insufficient, my understanding of my talents was poor, I was angry and resentful, and I was rudderless – unsure what I cared about and how to find work that mattered.  And I hadn’t recognized the need for inspiring role models, mentors and sponsors. Once I figured all that out, the path was cleared (but, of course, there is always internal and external work that needs to be done to continue to reach the level you long to). Therapy and coaching were essential for me to see what I couldn’t on my own.

Tip: If no matter what you do or what job you pursue, you’re unhappy and unsuccessful, it’s time to get some outside help – in some cases career coaching will help, in others it’s therapeutic support that’s needed (vist aamft.org for great therapeutic support in your area). And role models, mentors and sponsors are critical. As Einstein said so powerfully, “We cannot solve a problem on the level of consciousness that created it.” It’s very hard to see clearly what’s holding you back from the life you dream of, especially when the block is you.

What Is Powerfully Positive Thought Leadership To You?

 

I’m active on LinkedIn group discussions, and I find that sharing ideas, dialogue and conversation there is a powerfully enriching experience because of the diversity of thought that LinkedIn members offer. With 330+ million members, LinkedIn gives us all a global worldview that opens our eyes, minds and hearts to different ways to understand the world and our lives.

Just today, an individual asked a question in one of my discussions that made me stop in my tracks.  He asked, “What IS thought leadership?”

The term “thought leadership” is bantered around a million times a day online, but do we all know what we mean by it? I’ve been honored and thrilled to highlight the work of what I believe are top thought leaders in our world today, through my various blogs on Forbes, Huffington Post, LinkedIn, and this blog.  But I realized this morning that I’ve never sat down and actually defined for myself what I believe great “thought leadership” is, and what I see as the highest form of it.  So I took a stab.

Here’s my definition of the highest version of a thought leader:

“Thought leaders are informed opinion leaders and go-to experts in their field of expertise. Their perspectives, work and ideas move the understanding, implications and applications of their topic forward. They are trusted sources who — with integrity, authenticity and passion — move, educate, enliven and inspire people with innovative ideas that motivate positive change.  They help turn ideas into reality, and have done the work to develop a teachable point of view that shares with others how to replicate their success. They are motivated not by being “right” but by helping and being of service.”

I believe that the best thought leaders also possess the 9 core traits of people who positively impact the world:

But I’m interested in your interpretations and definitions of a thought leader.  How would you describe the best of the best thought leaders in the world? What do they do, inspire, and create for us? How do they impact the world in a positive way?

Please share your definitions below!

I know that putting a stake in the ground and defining the best thought leadership helps me create a vision for what I want to strive to offer and become. How about you?

(For more about developing your own authentic thought leadership, visit my new coaching program Build Your Authentic Thought Leadership.)

How To Tell When Your Gut Is Leading You Astray

 

Recently, I conducted an interview with Herminia Ibarra around the idea that being overly attached to your own authenticity may in fact be holding you back. A controversial idea for sure, it explores that if we’re too wedded to what we have been and who we think we are now, we’ll perhaps be too afraid of and resistant to stretch beyond that concept, because it doesn’t feel like the “real” us to stretch beyond our existing self-definition. I’m a huge fan of authenticity, because I was so constrained in my former corporate life and felt I simply couldn’t be real, transparent and honest, ever. But I see what Herminia means and have to agree.

In fact, I believe that the same problem exists with regard to following our “gut instincts.” I’m not talking here about hard-wired human survival instincts, but about the natural, intuitive way of acting or thinking that each of us has personally developed through the specific experiences of our lives. Other words for the type of instinct I’m talking about are: natural tendency, inclination, urge, drive, compulsion, hunches, and your gut “feeling.”

Regarding these instincts, there are times when our gut is right on, and tells us accurately what to avoid — or pursue — in order to grow and thrive. But often, our instincts are not the best signals to follow, in isolation. They may tell us to run like the wind away from new, stretching experiences and opportunities that are “perceived” threats but in fact would bring us to a higher level of success, satisfaction and reward. Sometimes, you experience the same level of fear and high alert when contemplating significant positive change as you would if you were in a potentially life-threatening situation. Our instincts try to keep us safe and secure, but “safe” in our lives and livelihoods can often bring misery, pain and suffering. My instincts told me to “tough it out, Kathy!” and “C’mon, be a survivor!” and “You’re weak if you give up too soon,” or “Don’t let them get the better of you,” during the very tough times in my corporate career. Sadly, those instincts guided me on a long detour that took years to recover from.

What should we do then? How can we know when we should we follow our instincts, disregard them completely, or balance them with other signals?

I’ve seen that when 6 conditions are present, you need to be extra vigilant to avoid blindly following what your gut tells you to do, and instead, weigh all the other important factors before you make a decision.

These 6 conditions are:

You’re deathly afraid to stretch beyond where you are today.

I’ve connected with literally thousands of professionals in the past 10 years as a coach and a therapist, and I cannot count the times I’ve heard people say “I’m scared to make change.” The “what if” syndrome keeps so many planted firmly in one place, paralyzed, until a crisis hits like a cosmic 2×4’ across their faces and wakes them up. Human beings naturally want to grow and become more, but our fears, insecurities and anxieties can thwart that process. If you want more in your life and livelihood, but find yourself afraid to move, then listen to your heart and your mind as well as your gut. Say “yes” to stretching.

You don’t know yourself or what you want, so your gut says “Stay put!”

If you don’t know yourself – what you want, what you care about, who you are uniquely and what you have to offer the world (in short, if you’re walking unconsciously through life), then your natural intuitive reactions aren’t going to help you, because they’re not based on the authentic you, but on some smaller version that you’ve been taught to see. You’ll miss the real clues about the real life you want to live. Once you open your mind up to the possibility that you deserve better than unhappiness, disrespect or lack of fulfillment, and then dimensionalize for yourself what a happier life and career would be, your instincts can start supporting you better. You have to understand more about what you value and care about, and what gives your life meaning and what you deserve. You need to create a map. But if you remain unconscious and oblivious, your instinctive way of behaving won’t take you in a positive direction.

You have an intense negative reaction to an individual, and think you know why (but actually you don’t).

I’ve had this experience numerous times recently, until I finally “got it.” Just because you have an intensely negative reaction to someone doesn’t necessarily mean you should run from them, or shun them. Sometimes it means that they’re “perturbing your system” – agitating you, clashing with your worldview or values, and threatening the way you think and feel. And sometimes you’re intimidated and jealous but you just don’t want to admit it. When this happens, it’s a sign that your worldview and thinking need some expansion or revision. Your discomfort and agitation with people who are very different from you – or with people who are 10 steps ahead of you in ways you’re envious of — need examining. In these cases, it’s helpful to look more deeply at what specifically threatens and disturbs you, to make sure your bruised and fragile ego isn’t getting in the way.

You’re driven to say “yes” to a terrible job or career move solely because of the money.

Many career professionals come to coaching confused about how to decide on a number of alternatives in front of them. They haven’t formulated a solid decision making process for themselves, so they’re thinking they’ll just go with their gut. The problem is, they’re so consumed with financial worries that their gut tells them to “Take the money!!” even when there are a million other signs that this next move or job would be a disaster, and even when they have other better options in front of them. If you’re in terrible financial straits, or have deep, long-standing fear and trauma over money, you need to address your money challenges in an empowered way, quickly. The answer isn’t to take a terrible job that you’ll fail at or lose. The answer is to strengthen your financial management skills and your overall relationship with money so that you can create more financial stability, which in turn will pave the way for more positive outcomes and opportunities.

You fear that “there will never be anything better than this, so I have to settle.”

I remember when I was a young adult, I was in a relationship I wasn’t happy with, but I was afraid to break up with my boyfriend for fear that no one would love me as he did.  I asked my beloved father what to do. He said something I’ll never forget: “Kathy, if you’re staying with him only because you think you’ll never experience a happier relationship, then it’s time to go. Don’t settle.” That was the best advice he ever gave me. If your gut is telling you to settle and compromise in your life or career because you’re afraid you don’t deserve something better or won’t ever get it, then your “instincts” have been programmed with the wrong input.

You’re driven to leap to new direction and run away – chucking everything because of the pain you’re in.

Finally, if you’re in a lot of pain and anguish over your current job, career or professional situation, you might be driven to just quit and run – chuck it all, walk away and never look back.  What I learned in my therapy training, however, is that this wish to run is called “emotional cutoff” – attempting to manage our unresolved emotional issues with family members and colleagues by reducing or totally cutting off emotional contact with them. The problem is, if you haven’t learned how to deal with these situations in a more positive way, they will very likely repeat themselves again and again, until you do. The better solution is to find new ways to improve your situation and relationships right now – today. Whether it’s a toxic boss, being passed over for a promotion, having your ideas ignored, or feeling undervalued – start behaving differently in your work and taking empowered, authoritative steps to rectify these situations in a strong, confident way. If you don’t, these painful situations will re-emerge in the next role.

What is your gut telling you to do now, and what other signals should you be heeding?

(To learn when NOT to listen to your gut but to stretch boldly instead, join me in my free webinar training Fast Track To Career Bliss.)

The Top 5 Life Lessons You Should Be Learning (But You’re Not)

 

Years ago, I launched a project that generated some interesting attention. It was called My 52 Mistakes, and it outlined what I believed were the worst 52 mistakes I’d made in my life. Even when I read these today, they all still ring true – these were the most serious missteps I took that led me on painful detours away from happiness, fulfillment and success. And they resonated with lots of other folks too.

While I use the word “mistakes,” I actually don’t believe in mistakes. I believe that if we can learn from our missteps, then we can make tremendous gains, and they are often blessings in disguise. If we commit to drawing on the powerful wisdom we’ve achieved from these momentary errors in judgment, behavior and thinking, then we’ll thrive.

How do we make the most of these missteps or detours so they help us thrive and don’t have to be repeated?

We all have life lessons to learn, but many of us miss these lessons (I sure did, years ago). Sadly, we often learn the wrong things, and internalize damaging, negative messages instead of positive, uplifting ones – messages that make us feel inferior, incapable, and unworthy. We don’t see what we should see. Instead, we end up feeling like losers or hapless victims of fate and circumstance. And when we feel like this, it’s very hard to move off the painful detour and get going in the right direction again.

The best way to turn this around is to learn the positive, empowering lessons that your life is trying to teach you – not lessons about how you blew it and how you’re a failure. The lessons that are essential to learn are about how you’re extremely talented, capable and worthy, and you deserve what you long for, but you’ve just been pointing in the wrong direction.

Here are the top 5 lessons I believe people need to be learning from what’s happening in their lives, but aren’t:

1. You are much more than what your current boss (or job) is telling you.

I’ve been so surprised lately at how intensely we humans focus only on what’s at the tip of our nose, what’s happening this very moment (especially if it’s bad), and forget all the good that we’ve achieved and created. So if you’re in a toxic job with a toxic boss, don’t let that be all you see. You’re better than what your boss thinks of you this very moment. You’re more than the paltry raise you just got, or the promotion you were just passed over for. Take some time to get off the hamster wheel, and take a thorough inventory of everything you’re fantastic at and everything you’ve created and achieved in your life. If you don’t focus on the good and the great, you’ll forget what you’re capable of. (Take my free Career Path Self- Assessment to remember who you really are and what you’ve accomplished that you’re proud of.)

2. Just because you failed terribly at one dream, doesn’t mean you’ll repeat that failure with the next.

I realized in working with thousands of people on their careers, that somehow we think that if we failed miserably at one important project or dream, we’ll inevitably fail at all our dreams and visions. Again this is the wrong lesson. Failure, as we all know, is a part of life and we learn much more from failure than from success. But if we all know this, why do we act as if we’re terrible losers, and won’t ever amount to anything, or achieve any dream we have? Remember that your failures are exactly what pave the way for your fantastic successes. Learn to love your failures.

3. Confidence comes from doing. No one is born with it.

Confidence is essential in life if you want to keep moving forward and reaching higher. But people ask me, “Kathy, how do I get confidence when I don’t having any?” They’re learning a mistaken lesson that you need confidence in order to achieve what you want. That’s a faulty way of looking at it.

You get confidence by moving through your fears, by taking action, even while your knees are clanging together with a deafening din. You gain confidence by getting in the arena – by risking, trying, stretching. That’s the only way confidence comes.

I remember, during my internship training as a therapist, after I’d conducted my very first session as a therapist with a severely depressed patient (in front of a whole panel of educators and colleagues critiquing me) saying to myself – “If I can get through that without throwing up or passing out, I can do anything.” My confidence level went up one hundredfold that day.

Confidence comes from doing, so get out there and starting doing what you’re most scared of doing.

4. How you feel and think about your work and your endeavors will powerfully shape what happens.

The more I test out new practices and strategies aimed at helping people build tremendous success, and the more heartfelt success I achieve in my own business, the more I realize this: how we think and feel about what we’re doing will dramatically shape the outcomes we get.

In other words, if you’re trying to build a successful business but your work exhausts and depresses you, then you’re not going to succeed. If you’re building a consulting practice, but are deathly afraid of business development and hate it, then you won’t succeed. Finally, if you’re in a helping profession but resent helping others, you’re not going to succeed or be happy in your work.

Take a very close look at your thoughts because they drive the outcomes you’re getting. You’ll be amazed at the degree to which what’s in front of you in life is directly related to what you’re thinking.

Then, actively revise your thoughts and/or change what you’re doing in some significant way so you can feel happier, and more positive and excited about what you’re engaged in.

5. The one best way to tell if you need a change in life is if you’re unhappy and unfulfilled.

Finally, I know so many people who are miserable in their lives and work, but don’t see that as a sign that anything needs to change. They’re skeptical, angry, resentful, confused – but they don’t realize that those emotions mean they have to make a change. They stay stuck forever in inertia.

They make a million excuses for staying where they are (I need the money, I won’t succeed in my dream, a mission-driven career isn’t for me, I’m too old, I’m too young, I didn’t finish school, I was raised poor, etc.).

There’s one key question that you need to ask in order to determine if you need a change in your life. That question is: “Am I happy with the person I’m becoming and am I fulfilled by my life as a whole?”

If not, it’s time to do something. Here’s more about how to learn the specific lessons your life is trying to teach you:

What’s the ONE biggest lesson your life has taught you, so far?


(For a happier, more rewarding career, take my 6-day Amazing Career Challenge today.)

Career Path Self-Assessment

6 Days to a Happier Career!

Subscribe and get my:

6-Day Amazing Career Email Challenge
+
Career Path
Self-Assessment Survey

quote

quote