Many clients seek my help in designing their career path.
There are many reason they approach me, the common reasons are the the job they are in now is no longer satisfying, they feel like they are not growing (stagnation), the current job is not paying enough for them to support their life and one of the frequent reason the business has changed in direction and I’m redundant. No matter where you are in your career path, these 7 mindsets are prerequisites in designing your career progression and reaping the benefits of it in your life.
Before we start, let’s define a career path. My definition of a career path is the journey an individual takes in their professional life to fully actualize their potential, contribution and impact in their life. The purpose of designing your career path is to support your life dreams, and goals. You want your career to support your financial, family lifestyle goals and most importantly one of their ways of finding purpose and fulfillment in life as well.
While many factors contribute to a successful career, there are seven key mindsets you must embrace if you want to take control of your destiny and achieve your goals. Here are 7 mindsets required to adopt before you craft your career path:
1. You are the CEO of your life.
“As the CEO of your life, you have the power and responsibility to shape your career path. Even when faced with unexpected challenges or setbacks, it’s important to remember that you have the ability to respond and take control of your life. For instance, you may encounter difficult economic circumstances or experience restructuring within your company, but it’s essential to recognize that you always have a choice. By taking complete responsibility for your life and your current situation, you gain the personal power to change your destiny. Remember, you are not a victim of circumstance, but rather an active participant in your own life. As the CEO of your life You have the power to change, fire, and hire any behavior, attitude, or belief that is not serving you. So, don’t forget that you have the freedom to choose your attitude and shape your own way forward.”
2. What Got You Here, Won’t Get You There
Let me begin with a quote from Myles Munroe,
“The greatest enemy of progress is your last success. You could become so proud of what you’ve already accomplished that you stop moving ahead to what you can still accomplish.”
Isn’t that so true? We often get stuck in our ways and rely too heavily on what’s worked for us in the past. But the world is constantly changing, and if we don’t adapt, we risk becoming irrelevant. New problems require new solutions. Instead of resting on our laurels and sticking with the same old strategies, we need to be open to new ideas and willing to evolve. After all, if there’s a better and faster way to do things, why not embrace it? We don’t want to be like Kodak, who failed to adapt to changing technology and ultimately became obsolete. Instead, we want to be the ones who are always learning and growing, so that we can continue to succeed in a rapidly changing world.
3. No Limits on Your Potential
Many of us have heard the saying “the sky’s the limit,” but I’d like to encourage you to embrace a different mindset – “there are no limits, only the limits you set for yourself.” It’s crucial to recognize that your potential is not fixed, and you are capable of achieving more than you might think. For instance, you might want to double your sales or your salary. While this may seem like a daunting task, it’s possible and achievable. Don’t let fear or self-doubt hold you back from pursuing your dreams. Instead, focus on your strengths, set ambitious goals, and believe in your ability to succeed.However, it’s important to note that commitment is a key factor in unlocking your potential. You may have unlimited potential, but if you lack commitment, it will be challenging to achieve your goals. So, how can you stay committed? Try setting daily or weekly targets, finding an accountability partner, or practicing self-reflection to stay on track. Remember, if you are struggling to reach an upper limit, be flexible in your approach and stay committed to your goals. By doing so, you’ll be able to tap into your potential and achieve what you once thought was impossible.
4. Lifelong Learning is Key to Personal & Professional Growth
How are you compensated today? You are compensated by your brain power. The faster you earn the faster you earn. You all have to do list, Do you have a to-learn list?Remember the faster your learn the faster you can earn, in this current age the half life of the information is getting shorter and shooter. What dose the mean? It means the information you learn today get outdate faster.
The key to staying relevant and successful in any career is a commitment to lifelong learning. It refers to the continuous process of acquiring new knowledge, skills, and experiences throughout one’s life. While formal education is a part of this, it’s important to take ownership of your own self-development and self-education beyond just college. For the average adult their education ends with their college degree. To be successful and relevant in your profession, you must create a unique curriculum for yourself in the areas of your desire to develop personally and professionally. This could be through attending workshops or conferences, reading industry publications, seeking coaching, or taking online courses. Making lifelong learning a daily habit will make you unstoppable because you will continuously seek out new knowledge, skills and thus increase your value.
5. Focus on Building Knowledge & Skills:
Let me share a story that illustrates the importance of knowledge and skill in any profession. A skilled machinist was called into a factory because a machine had stopped and wouldn’t run. When the job was completed, the mechanic sent in a bill for $2000.00 for only a few minutes’ work. This charge impressed the president as being excessive, so he ordered the bill sent back to be itemized. Upon its return, it read this way: “Turning one bolt, $1.00; knowing which bolt to turn, $1999.00.”
This story highlights the critical role that knowledge and expertise play in any profession. To truly excel in your career, you must develop a deep understanding of your industry and the skills necessary to succeed. This means staying up-to-date on the latest trends and developments, seeking out opportunities to hone your skills and gain new experiences, and taking concrete steps to build your expertise. For example, you might attend conferences, read industry publications, or take online courses.
Let me end with a quote from Alexander the Great that captures the essence of this message:
“Without knowledge, skill cannot be focused. Without skill, strength cannot be brought to bear, and without strength, knowledge may not be applied.” By focusing on building your knowledge and skills, you’ll be better equipped to tackle any challenge and achieve your goals.
6. Make a Decision and Stick to It
Making decisions can be challenging, especially when we’re faced with conflicting values or uncertain outcomes. However, indecision can be just as damaging as making the wrong choice. To make decisions that align with our long-term goals and aspirations, we need to recognize and exercise our core values. For example, if one of your core values is work-life balance, you might prioritize job offers that offer flexible hours or remote work options. When it comes to making decisions about our careers, it’s essential to give ourselves time to evaluate our options and weigh the potential consequences. However, we must also be mindful of limited thinking and fear of the unknown, which can hold us back from making meaningful changes. Once we’ve made a decision, it’s crucial to commit to it and take action to make it happen. This might mean setting specific goals and deadlines, seeking out support from a mentor or accountability partner, or breaking down large tasks into smaller, more manageable steps. Remember, making decisions is an essential part of success, and with practice, we can develop the skills and confidence needed to make informed choices and achieve our goals.
7. Embrace Mistakes as a Learning Opportunity
“There is no such thing as failure, only results.-Tony Robbins”
Very few people succeed in the first attempt, and when we label the result as a failure, things get ugly. Mistakes are an inevitable part of any career path, but how we respond to them can make all the difference. By adopting the mindset that there is no such thing as failure, only results, we can shift our focus onto our actions and use mistakes as an opportunity to learn and grow. If we are not getting the result we want, then we should work on our actions. Use them as an opportunity to learn, grow, and improve. For example, if you missed a deadline on a project, you might reflect on what went wrong, identify areas for improvement (such as better time management or more effective communication), and apply those lessons to future projects.
Crafting your own career requires a combination of mindset and action. By embracing these 7 mindsets – You are the CEO of your life, What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, No Limits on Your Potential, Lifelong Learning is Key to Personal & Professional Growth, Focus on Building Knowledge & Skills, Make a Decision and Stick to It, and Embrace Mistakes as a Learning Opportunity – you’ll be well-equipped to take control of your career path and achieve your goals. Remember, your career is what you make of it, so take charge and create the future you want. The first step is to determined how you want your career to support your life. Embrace the 7 mindset and start crafting your career path.
Let me end this article with a speech from the former Coca-Cola’s former CEO
“Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling some five balls in the air. You name them work, family, health, friends, and spirit and you’re keeping all of these in the air.
You will soon understand that ‘work’ is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four balls – family, health, friends and spirit – are made of glass. If you drop one of these, they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for balance in your life.
Don’t undermine your worth by comparing yourself with others. It is because we are different that each of us is special.
Don’t set your goals by what other people deem important. Only you know what is best for you.
Don’t take for granted the things closest to your heart. Cling to them as you would your life, for without them, life is meaningless.
Don’t let your life slip through your fingers by living in the past or for the future. By living your life one day at a time, you live ALL the days of your life.
Don’t give up when you still have something to give. Nothing is really over until the moment you stop trying.
Don’t be afraid to admit that you are less than perfect. It is this fragile thread that binds us to each other.
Don’t be afraid to encounter risks. It is by taking chances that we learn how to be brave.
Don’t shut love out of your life by saying it’s impossible to find. The quickest way to receive love is to give it; the fastest way to lose love is to hold it too tightly: and the best way to keep love is to give it wings.
Don’t run through life so fast that you forget not only where you’ve been, but also where you are going.
Don’t forget, a person’s greatest emotional need is to feel appreciated.
Don’t be afraid to learn. Knowledge is weightless, a treasure you can always carry easily.
Don’t use time or words carelessly. Neither can be retrieved.
Life is not a race, but a journey to be savored each step of the way. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a Mystery and Today is a gift: that’s why we call it ‘The Present’.”
Georgia Tech – Sept. 6th, 1996