Sunday, July 25th, 2010
Do you wish that you had the ability to find a career that uses your superpowers? What can you do to make your dream career a reality?
Creating a career that you love doesn’t magically happen. It takes work. I refuse to blow smoke up your butt and tell you how easy it is, because then you’ll curse my name all around the internet.
I would rather focus on helping you build a career based on your core needs. This takes time.
You have to know what truly makes you happy, so you can create the career that fits your needs as well as the market.
Too many people will say that if you just follow your dream then the money will flow into your life. This can be partially true. What most people fail to recognize is the importance of aligning your needs with other people’s needs.
I wanted a more dynamic career. I was working in jobs that didn’t interest me. That’s when I went out and started trying out different interests on the side. I tested out various careers in marketing, teaching, Yoga, writing, massage, career development, professional speaking, and a few others.
I didn’t just quit my job and jump right in, which was a good thing. If I would have gone into Yoga or massage I wouldn’t have found a career that I loved.
I dabbled in research, blogging about these topics, working part-time in certain industries, and talking with professionals. I never had a problem talking to professional Yoga teachers, professional speakers, or coaches. The more I talked with these people the more I began to understand what I wanted out of my career.
I knew I wanted many levels of interaction, so pure writing was out. I realized that I loved to teach and I was good at it, but didn’t want to teach Math to kids that didn’t enjoy learning. I also wanted to speak to large groups of people. I loved the rush. The rush of happiness from my work as a big part of why I do what I do.
Watch the Signs
There are signs everywhere you are. Notice what advice people seek from you. Notice what gets you excited. Notice what you love to do at work and away from it. I still remember when I did my first Superpower Coaching session I felt a rush of happiness. I was good at it. The best part is during my last coaching session I felt that same rush. The feeling hasn’t died off.
I did lack core skills as I built my career and it was all trial and error. Hopefully this article helps fast forwards you past my errors and encourages you to build on your core skills that will help you develop a career that you love.
Here are 7 skills that you can develop in order to help you succeed:
1. Help others
Relationships are vital to your success. You’ve seen people get jobs because they know other people. You’ve seen people make deals because both sides trusted each other. You need to figure out how you can help people, so that they will learn to trust you. Once you’ve gained trust, the relationships will come.
Building relationships can help you discover what you love because you’ll be able to see how people react to your help. If they are excited, then you’ve made a good impression. You know that you have connected with the other people’s needs. Now notice how you feel about the work. Did you get lost in the process of creation? Was it drudgery? If you dreaded the process then you aren’t in the right field.
Seems pretty simple, right? For many reason it’s a lot harder than it looks. Just don’t be afraid to reach out 95% of the time people will love that you did.
Offer to help people in your industry of choice. Offer to help out online. Offer to help your friends in this certain area. Then practice, build, practice, build, practice and build some more.
2. Stop worrying about the time
When you are doing something you love, time ceases to matter. You’ll notice that an hour of work feels like only five minutes went by. This is a great indication that you are finding the work flow.
If you aren’t finding the work flow then you have to find the root cause. You probably aren’t connecting to the work. If you can’t find meaning in what you do, then the work will never be enjoyable.
We’ll talk more about how to build your skills of working in the moment in #7.
3. Find meaning
You must believe in something greater than yourself. It’s a simple equation.
Your work is more important than doing things to just pass the time. Your work should be more important than watching TV or sleeping in late or hanging out with friends for extended periods of time.
If you aren’t doing this work then you aren’t making other people’s lives better. People who actually feel a little pain when they are not doing the work are the ones who totally connect with their work. They feel this gravitational pull to do work that will make other people happy.
If you are at work and you would rather be doing something else then you have an obvious message. I’m not talking about when you just feel frustrated during a tedious task. We all have work that we don’t like doing. I’m talking about hating your job all the time. If this is how you feel, then you know you are in the wrong career.
4. Understand your goals
Down deep you have aspirations. Your goal may be to make people laugh. It may be to teach people the importance of saving the environment. It may be to remake your company into a “eco friendly” organization. Whatever it is, you must have a crystal clear understanding of what your goals are because only then can you make a plan to make your goals a reality.
A lot of people make the mistake of imagining themselves at the top of the mountain. They don’t actually see themselves doing the hard work to reach their goals.
You must visualize yourself enjoying the process of the work. When you can see yourself feeling good and accomplishing tasks to reach your goal, your goals will be attainable.
5. Connect with your heart
Your heart knows when each action is a vibrational match with your true desires. If you are procrastinating and you know your heart isn’t in it then why continue? Why suffer?
Let go of what you think you should be doing and actually do work that fits with your strengths and passions.
Try sitting down in a quiet room and listen to what your heart needs. If you’ve never tried this before your heart won’t want to talk right away, but just keep at it. Eventually it will give in and tell you what passions to follow.
6. Make friends, not allies
Many people try to make allies instead of creating friendships. The short term relationships (allies) are good for a little while, but the friendships that you make will help you last through the long haul.
Every great career is based on the long haul. We don’t remember the CEO of a big company that only lasts for 18 months. We remember Jack Welch because he ran GE for over 20 years. That’s leadership based on friendships and trust.
You need to develop friendships and let the business deal happen naturally. Not all friendships will close deals, but that’s ok because you have something even better: someone to talk to when you need help making a tough decision.
7. Follow the joy
You’ve probably worked on projects that feels like pure bliss. You are creative problem solving and before you know it four hours have gone by and you can’t believe you’ve had so much fun. This is that place of joy where work doesn’t feel tedious.
This flow is a great indicator that you are working with your strengths and passions.
Notice when your flow state happens and why. This is your sweet spot. You need to be able to access this sweet spot as much as you can. If you hit your flow state during a certain time of day, then try to do your difficult tasks during this time. If you hit your flow state with certain types of work then keep track of this. The better you can understand your flow state, the more often you can reach it.
How about you?
What skill would you add that has helped you build a career that you love?
What skill would you most like to have so you can transition into a career that you love?
What do you think is the most important skill to doing work that you love?
* Need help leveraging your superpowers in your career? Then check out my Superpower Coaching to see how I can help you.
* Kristi over at Kikolani has a great guest post about the Pros and Cons of a Home Based Business.
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