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Another Option – Clarity

A mentor of mine once told me that when you’re frustrated you have three options:

  1. Stay frustrated & worry
  2. Quit/ leave or
  3. Make a request.

At the beginning of each new year, many people get frustrated and think about changing jobs or careers. Most assume that the best way to get a better career is to quit where they are and move on to another organization or start their own business. Sometimes leaving is the best option, but not always.

Twenty-five years ago, I found myself in a situation where I had good job and made good money with a reputable company that was growing, but I was frustrated and bored in my work. So I decided to option #3. I wrote down what I wanted in my ideal career. I thought about sharing it with someone inside the organization, but I was not sure how my manager would respond. Instead I shared it with an outside colleague who helped me make it more realistic and, of course, kept it confidential as he was looking around outside for me. Amazingly in less than two months, the job profile scribbled out on one sheet paper was created in the organization I was already in, and I was offered the job.

I stayed at this organization for another two years and enjoyed it, plus staying also gave me time to affirm what I wanted. Then I left and started my own practice, which I’m in today. But I learned a great lesson. Moving outside is not always the best option at the time you think it is.

I shared the story with a friend of mine last week at breakfast. He said if you had a great mentor inside, you could probably share your plan with them and they would help you find something new inside. We agreed that might have worked better, but the point was I wrote down what I wanted, and amazing things happen when you have clarity.

Journal Entry: Are you frustrated at work? Which option will you choose and what action will you take to get clarity about what you really want from your leadership and life?

Resource: If someone you know needs a guide for getting clear on what he or she wants, my new book “The White Shirt – Find Your Life-giving Career at Any Stage of Life” might help them. It is available on Amazon or you may suggest they go to the book website and watch at 3-minute video about the book and/or a take a 30 second career direction quiz. Website: www.whiteshirtbook.com.

Today is one of those days that even my coffee needs a coffee.

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. ~Steve Jobs

I’d rather be a failure at something I love than successful at something I hate. ~George Burns

My mother said to me, ‘If you become a soldier, you’ll be a general. If you become a monk, you’ll end up as the pope.’ Instead, I became a painter and wound up as Picasso. ~Pablo Picasso

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own ~The Bible’s New Testament – Matthew 6:34

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