Successful careers do not just happen. They wax and wane, move forward and experience setbacks, grow and adjust. We learn from our mistakes and build on losses. We accept that change is constant and give advice that we cannot “cry over split milk”. We examine and analyze what has gone wrong. We mourn what we will never have again. Sometimes we just survive. We get so caught up in the past and the challenges of the present that we often forget that our future always lies ahead and all our possibilities are in front of us!
Success is not just a stroke of luck, something that falls from the sky or seeks you out. It is the result of hard work – diligence and persistence – something you fight for and carefully build. It is the product of your ambition and your attitude, the belief that you can and will have what is right for you. There was never a promise that success would be easy.
Some of my most talented and educated clients find it difficult to muster self-confidence today, at a time when many people have experienced professional and financial set-backs resulting in damaged self-esteem and even a sense of hopelessness. Feelings of disappointment, sadness and frustration (at set-backs) can create the opportunity for growth through focusing on areas that can be improved. At these times in particular, it is also critically important to maintain perspective and to remember that each person is shaped by their experiences and every one of those experiences is useful in building a strong foundation for a better future.
A personal or professional set-back can make it more difficult to focus on possibility. Here are some ways to help to shift your focus:
List Your Goals: Put your life and career goals down on paper. This list should reflect your ideal personal and professional scenario, as you envision it now. Be careful not to limit your goals based upon past experiences. Reach for the stars!
Think and Act in Positive Terms: Positive talk leads to positive actions. Pay special attention to what you say to yourself and others about your work, your company and your situation. Remove words from your vocabulary that do not reflect a positive vision and support a positive outcome.
Think About Your Life and Work Mission: This is a great time to ask the question, “Why am I here?” What do you want from life and what do you think life expects of you? Are you on the right track or is this a good time to shift to a more satisfying direction?
Accept the Challenge: See your circumstances, past and present, as a learning opportunity that leads you to create the personal and professional life you want.
Keep a Schedule: Take action every day toward your goals. Have a plan to do something every day. Put it on your calendar. Make a schedule. Review that list you have had in your head of “if I only had time I would…..” and do some of those things.
Invest in Yourself: YOU are your most valuable resource! Invest in this irreplaceable asset through training and education, coaching and other personal and professional development opportunities. When you invest in yourself, you invest in your business.
Finally, remember that everything in life is temporary. The only thing we can truly count on is change. In life and in business, we are all constantly adjusting to the “new normal”. We live in a dynamic universe filled with opportunity and intrigue. Your commitment to living a full, rich life is what will also lead to the realization of a rich and satisfying career. Seize the day!
Your partner in success,
Sherry B. Jordan