If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading. –Lao Tzu
The other day I was talking with a friend of mine who is looking for a new job. She has been working in the IT industry ever since she graduated from college and has never had a problem to find a job. “It has always been easy”, she says. “When I was confident about my candidacy for the job, I always got it. This time I was also very confident for the jobs I interviewed. I felt I was a perfect fit for them. But I wasn’t chosen for any of them. I don’t understand why. It is very strange and frustrating.”
I have known her since I came to Paris, which is now almost 4 years ago. So, I am also aware of her longing for getting out of the IT industry and doing something related to what she is naturally attracted to: nutrition and yoga. She even studied nutrition in college but dropped it as she felt that computer science was a more financially secure future.
Quite a lot of us take the path in life that appears to have been chosen, suppressing our real interests. We are either influenced by our parents, our social circles or the life circumstances which put us there. We often feel that we can follow our real interests “on the side” of having a good and secure job. It’s great when people manage to do that! But I see that most people get tangled into their daily lives, responsibilities, and often end up not having the time or the energy to pursue those real interests which were left “on the side” . This keeps on building frustration, dissatisfaction; we resort to self-destructive coping methods to release or forget our frustration. This often leads nowhere, doesn’t it? It just brings more misery which we try to cover up with excuses.
It is not that easy to just wrap things up and take a new turn. We have to keep “growing up” until we are ready and it also has to be the right time. That ‘suffering time’ until we come to the point when we are ready to make the turn often teaches us a lot of good lessons and prepares us for that moment when we’ll be able to make the confident and assured decision to change things. So we can move on without looking back, charged up again with new energy. Ah, that’s a great liberating feeling! Although a scary one too… but that’s just the nature of making a significant change. It’s normal.
So, going back to my friend’s situation… The situation in which she is probably not the only one. I’d say: when things don’t click anymore and the old directions don’t work – it’s time to change them!
At this point, we have a choice : to either keep on repeating our old patterns and search for the “gold old” job that does not bring personal satisfaction, or to start planting the seeds for the change. We don’t need to just quit our job and start a new career blindly. No need for extremism here :). Staying at the current job and just refocusing our energy to prepare for the new direction is a perfect start. The most important thing is to drop all excuses (there will always be something that we need to overcome), to make that choice and then to move forwards without looking back. To move towards creating the new YOU, the YOU you’ve always dreamed to be! Which is most likely your true nature anyways :).
So that’s what I’d wish for everyone… Life is too short – go for it!
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