So you want some career change advice about getting out of the rat race, eh? Many people want career change advice because they want to leave behind the hassle and stress or dissatisfaction that they experience in their current job.
But they don't really have something to move towards. Or they haven't really committed themselves to a particular direction. Which means that they never really go anywhere.
So here we will discuss the direction that is most appropriate for you, not based on your skills or past experience, but based on who you really are.
This is the decision-making model I used when I made the decision to leave my job as a Plastic Surgeon to change career and follow my own fascination.
But first, let's consider how you got to where you are. You're in your current career or occupation because at some point in time it was the best choice available to you. You have had varying degrees of success which allowed you to stay in your job. If you're reading this, you probably consider that staying there is not going to give you the degree of success that you want.
What does success mean to you? How will you know if you're successful... or not?
A more interesting and useful question is who's definition of success are you using? Is it the definition of society where success equals comfort equals money? Because if it is then you simply need to find an efficient way to make money, and do that.
And it's this very thing that generates the rat race. Millions upon millions of people scrambling to make ever more and more money. And spending the money to buy time-saving gadgets. Everything from things to cook our food faster, to time-saving gadgets that supposedly organise our time more effectively. And to be able to afford these gadgets we need to earn more.
So we end up spending that saved time on thinking about, and trying to make, more money. And in order to make more time, these gadgets become more desirable. And the cycle continues.
We are driven to consume more, and it leaves us exhausted. We end up spending most of our waking life with people other than our friends and family!
Why do people stay in this never-ending cycle of hopelessness?
Because it's what they've learnt in school. Our education system is designed to create a workforce. We even have online universities and online colleges to make it easier for people to get their online degrees to get 'better' jobs. See Career Advice for more information on this idea.
I like this idea.
A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do.
- Bob Dylan
There is a general move in the so-called developed countries away from the idea of money as the number-one driving force. More and more people are concerned about self growth and are considering themselves and their family as the number-one priority. For some it takes a crisis for them to realize this. A divorce, loss of the job, death of a loved one, or some such event. The tragedy is that some people wait until this occurs before they make the change.
What would you rather do instead?
Career change advice and assistance is typically oriented around picking things that you are good at, leveraging your skills in a different direction, or shifting into something where you have a better chance of being successful. Huge emphasis is placed on research, learning and understanding.
So it's important that you spend plenty of time checking things out, gathering information, learning about something so that you know it'll be right for you and you understand what it will be like. Current career change advice has lots of these ideas which can actually hold you back.
There are career change advice sites offering online tests, change career assessments, aptitude tests and so on and so forth for assessing what you might be good at doing.
However, The reason you're getting the results you are today is that you are 'you'. 'Who' you are determines your thinking and behaviors. Stay the way you are and you will get the same results. Not until you make the shift at the level of 'who' you are, will you begin to think and act differently.
To receive free monthly tips and ideas about decision making and changing careers, sign up for the newsletter here
Of course, it is possible to do it the other way around (which is the usual career change advice - Doing this job will allow you to express yourself...). It's just incredibly more difficult.
The trick is to organise yourself to be who you most want to be. Like this, you're ready for decision-making. And the question you have to answer is 'What is aligned with me when I'm like this?' or 'What are the things that I can do that will allow me to more so be myself?'
And what happens is that, by being yourself, you choose very particular things to do. And doing these things strengthens who you are. Generating an even stronger sense of yourself then generates more possibilities for you. More possibilities means you get to do even more things. And so on.
So you build a loop between who you are and what you do. And the things that you do become a manifestation of who you are. And who you are generates the things to be doing.
This kind of career change advice considers and includes every aspect of your life.
When you consider heroes, experts, people who were magnificent in their chosen field, a phrase that comes up is 'their life's work'. For many of these folks, their work was their lives. There was no separation or distinction for them between who they were and what they were doing. The family typically was also so intertwined in this that they remained an intimate part of everything else that was going on. For these people there was no difference between their life and their work.
Contrast this with the emphasis and importance placed on work-life balance today. People are seeking career change advice to try and sort their work out so that they have time to have a life. And they want some kind of work that does not interfere with their personal life.
This is another one of the things that has been broken down into separate parts in an effort to understand and have life be a particular way. I think this is a move in the wrong direction. Integration and operating as a unit is the only way to have a life that works and a life that is worth living.
There are many accepted ideas in conventional career change advice that are less than useful. Read on for more about these misleading myths and little known 'secrets' that you should know about...