From time to time, we seek fresh perspective and desire a new light in our lives. Just as sunsets lead to sunrises, we hope for another new day full of possibilities and promise. However, sometimes it’s hard to see beyond any darkness and the unknown of what lies in store for us next. When excitement, passion and euphoria is absent in our lives, we can hit a wall or just stop cold in our tracks without knowing which direction to go.
We unwittingly arrive at plateaus in our careers and lives. These should provide to us reflection points for growth, but we need to be prepared to leverage them. How do we use these places to sling us forward onto our next path?
I remember many years ago, my first real job after college landed me at one of the largest computer companies in the world. They were known at the time for having one of the best corporate video departments in the industry. I was excited to have gotten my foot in the door as a project manager in creative services. My plan was to work hard, learn everything I could, be open to challenges, and climb the ladder with great hopes of eventually joining the corporate video team. My ultimate goal was to put my Television and Film degree to use and someday produce and direct corporate videos.
The next 4 years were filled with exciting projects, challenging opportunities, and collaboration with some of the most creative, artistic, and imaginative people I had ever come across. Our creative services department was like a family and together we created amazing work. Each day I strived to get closer and closer to my goal of joining the corporate video department. Suddenly I began hearing the word “outsourcing”. This was a new concept at the time, and it took me a moment to understand exactly what it meant for me and our department. My company decided it made sense to downsize and outsource creative services to external agencies. I was stunned and almost paralyzed by this new reality. I came to this company for the creative prospects it offered me where even in the world of high tech, my sassy, expressive, creative spirit was fulfilled. And in a flash, that was all vanishing.
I was at crossroads. Do I stay at this company? It was safe, offering security and benefits, yet I’d be ignoring my craving for creativity and expression. Or do I step away and entertain other less secure options that line up with what I value the most? Where was my compass pointing? These were the questions I asked myself. Finally, with great consternation and soul searching I pulled the plug and made the decision to leave in search of what I valued most. This was the very first time I learned to listen to my inner wisdom.
That first transition, years ago, taught me a valuable lesson. I had to be clear about what motivated and excited me. That clarity helped me recognize that the job was no longer compatible with my aspirations and passion. I have applied that lesson many times since. And, each time I’m thankful for the wisdom of it.
So often we abdicate and even suppress our inner voice to fit into what others have defined or labeled us as. Then, suddenly we are itching for change!
What change are you looking for?