Sometimes you have a dream that doesn't define your career.
I met someone a few years ago who used his redundancy payment to set up a windsurfing school. His new career went OK for a while but it didn't last.
I asked him why he gave up his dream career and he answered, "I love windsurfing and I am good at it but teaching people to windsurf on a cold, rainy day is nothing like windsurfing for fun in the sunshine."
A career dream for player, groundskeeper and architect all in one photo :)
It seemed a hard way to make the distinction but like most tough lessons it was memorable too. You can have the dream and the genuine talent for something but if the work involved doesn't also connect fundamentally with your values and goals, it won't feel fulfilling for long.
Understanding your values, talents and goals is career dreaming but in a pragmatic way because it helps us to make informed choices. You move your career in a direction that keeps it growing and developing over time. There are still challenges but maybe there are fewer freezing cold lakes on a grey Monday morning!
Knowing our values, talents and goals also helps us to manage opportunities and potential career decisions before we commit. Apart from keeping us dreaming, this also gives us more of a chance to deal with the tough lessons that can't be avoided :)
Now I'd like you opinion:
Have you ever escaped a tough career lesson?
Has anyone you know ever changed careers, then realised they needed to change again?
What do you want to test more rigourously for its work/life potential?
What is the best career lesson you ever learned?
Comment your answers or send me an email!
All the best for now,