“Use this opportunity. Make this not only a hunt for a job, but a hunt for a life. A deeper life, a victorious life, a life you’re prouder of.”What color is your parachute, Richard N Bolles
A few months ago I wrote about job hunting in a new world and the two books I planned to use as a guide as I explored what my next career step would be; What color is your parachute? by Richard N Bolles and Designing your life by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans.
What followed was some serious navel gazing on my part. I reflected on who I am, my life purpose, what engages and energises me, my skills and knowledge, what type of people I like to work with and my preferred workplace. Then I envisaged three different potential futures: Life 1 – That thing I do; Life 2 – That thing I do if that one thing was suddenly gone; and Life 3 – That thing I do if money or image where no object. All of which was quite fun but nothing that created a life changing epiphany.
What came next was much more difficult. Sharing these findings with a small group of close friends. Opening myself and my innermost thoughts up to others.
“If you’re the sole architect of your brilliant future, then you think the whole thing up and you heroically bring it into being – it’s all about you. Life design is about your life, but it’s not all about you – it’s all about us.”Designing your life, Bill Burnett & Dave Evans
So I shared my findings with my co-collaborators. And their responses were enlightening, encouraging, enthusing. They helped me to see patterns in what I had presented and identified strengths that I (most likely out of modesty) didn’t see in myself. Rather than sticking to what I know they encouraged me to challenge myself with new directions. And most importantly, they made me feel valued and valuable. (Having not been formally employed for some time can really make you doubt yourself.)
My next task is to talk to people who are in the careers I am considering. To visualise alternatives, ask questions, create experiences, to try before I buy.
What am I considering, you ask?
At the core is writing and educating. I am exploring whether I continue along the marketing, communications, philanthropy path or follow new paths as a freelance writer, author, bookstore owner or librarian. Central to this is maintaining my connection with mission-based organisations; organisations with a purpose for good rather than for profit.
To be continued…