When was the last time you asked yourself, “Do I really want to keep doing this?”
You might have been feeling exhausted, overwhelmed, depressed, or exasperated, but I have a secret. That moment, when you are deciding if you are in or out — that’s a powerful moment! It’s a spiritual moment!
When you decide whether to keep going or quit, you are exercising your creative power to form your own identity.
There are a ton of factors involved in deciding if you are in or out.
- You have to look at the energy, time, and money you’ve invested so far (even if all of that is a ‘sunk cost,’ meaning you can’t get it back no matter what you do, so there’s no real difference between sticking with it or moving on).
- You have to consider how much time, energy, and money it will take to get you from that point of frustration and exhaustion to a point where it all feels worthwhile (what Seth Godin calls climbing out of “The Dip”).
- Most of all, you have to figure out what you WANT. That could be easy, but that’s usually the tough part, because often we want the rewards of sticking with “it” AND the rewards of getting out while it’s so freaking hard.
One of my coaching programs (Career Clarity & Direction) is designed for folks who think they are ready to walk away from their current job or career but don’t know what they’re moving to. My program helps them to make both decisions: To leave or not, and where to go. We do this by first addressing this question of what they want.
Whether you are thinking about leaving your job, your marriage, or cable television, it matters what you really want.
What is your ideal life? If you can imagine a future self who is fulfilled, relaxed, happy, fully engaged, and loving life — can you also imagine making each decision according to what would take you one step closer to realizing that vision?
This kind of approach takes deep self-awareness. How can you tell what you really want if you don’t know who you are?
I take my clients through a process of exploration and spiritual practices that connect their overworked left brains to their deep sense of self, and after only four months my clients come out knowing who they are and what they value. (Four months will pass whether you change something or not. Will you still be facing this question then?)
If you know who you are, who you are becoming & want to be, and what you value, the decision about whether to stay or go becomes much clearer. It helps you to make sense out of what you have experienced before getting to this place of exhaustion and exasperation, and it helps you decide whether or not you have it in you to succeed if you stay. Without self-awareness, you can’t really make that decision, can you?
Take a moment right now to consider that question: “Do I really want to keep doing this?”
Are you in? Just let that question sit in your chest for a moment. As soon as you’re done reading this paragraph, take a minute with your eyes closed just to consider what is in your heart. Do you know how you came to this point of frustration? Do you know what do you need that you aren’t getting? What tendencies do you have that have kept those needs from getting met? What strengths do you have that you could leverage in order to get your needs met? What steps could you take (that might be a stretch but won’t break you) to climb out of the hole? What resources could you take advantage of?
Are you in?
If your job was the first thing that came to mind for the question “Do I really want to keep doing this?” you might be interested in learning more about the Career Clarity & Direction program. Just enter your name & email below, and I’ll get you some info.