Posts in Goals and Career
Joining the dots of success

“Careers and businesses don’t develop along a straight line. If you plot their milestones or turning points most would resemble a child’s join-the-dot picture with scattered points and no clear pattern. The picture doesn’t begin to emerge until you start making connections between the points.

These connections can take many real-life forms. They could include personal and business networks or linking ideas and industry fields. Sometimes the connections don’t make sense at first or they may lead to dead-ends. However, they can also lead toward rich and innovative creations.”

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Success comes with risks: Are you willing to take them?

Have you ever stopped to reflect on what success looks like to you? Most of us have a dream of becoming ‘successful’, but our dreams can look very different. They could include a nice house and car, having a life-long partner and kids, becoming a CEO, joining a rock band or simply having the time and space to do what we want. Sometimes, we define our success by someone else’s standards. Whether this is done consciously or unconsciously, we end up living life by default and not design. Social norms can dictate what we ‘should’ or ‘shouldn’t’ be doing with our lives and we can end up fearing the consequences of not fitting in.

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How Small Steps Lead to Giant Leaps

“You’ve heard the saying, ‘If nothing changes, nothing changes”. It makes sense, doesn’t it? We can’t expect to improve something without changing it in some way. So why is it that many of us allow our careers (or our lives) to fall into monotonous patterns?

We don’t start out that way. Babies are fascinated by new things, even something as simple as the feel of grass. Toddlers spend whole days exploring and pushing their boundaries. Schoolchildren build up their knowledge year after year. If we go on to further study, the habit continues. However, many of us lose the habit of learning once we join the workforce. We may gain more knowledge or skills incidentally but not always as a result of deliberate or planned progression. Why not?”

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Is passion an essential job requirement?

“Do you remember the mix of job advice you were given when you left school? Were you encouraged to pursue your dreams, to look for traditionally ‘safe’ jobs or to apply for any job going until you worked out what you really wanted to do?

The chances are, you probably heard a mix of all three approaches, and maybe they were all partly right. Each has their advantages and disadvantages.

Following your dreams

Let’s look at the ‘follow your dreams’ approach as it’s the one that’s touted most often. This approach can work well for those who have a strong sense of direction, even if they don’t know the exact form it will take. Some kids change what they want to be when they grow up almost as often as they change their clothes, but for others, their career path looks more obvious. Think of the kids who build model planes or pull things apart to see how they work. They often go on to be the best engineers.

Being in the drivers’ seat of your career is very empowering. When you know what the end goal is, and you really want to achieve it, you’ll keep learning, you’ll put in the long hours, you’ll do whatever it takes to get there.”

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