Last Monday I began an 8 week online course that focuses on career growth and exploration; trying to discover what you really want to do, what truly makes you happy. I signed up for this because as I’ve made mention to before, I feel a little lost right now at work. It could be because of what I’m doing, it could be because I don’t have the flexibility or freedom I fantasize about, it could be because I’m still bitter from the demotion, or it could be because I don’t feel like I’m helping anyone or making a difference in the world. Either way, I’m restless and I don’t love the feeling. And although I don’t feel like I can actually make moves anytime soon, I decided I can take baby steps towards finding a career that’s meaningful and makes me happy on a daily basis. That career could be right where I am today (in an upward trajectory of course haha) but I need to clarify that in my mind so I can stop second guessing myself.
I’m only one week into this course but I’m already finding it more challenging than I would’ve expected. Only because there’s a lot of “self reflection” so far and reflecting on yourself (and trying to be unbiased) is REALLY hard. When it asked me to list things that make me the happiest, I answered with things like, riding waves in the ocean, singing out loud in the car, feeling the sunshine on my face, dancing around my living room, cuddling with Mike, going for long walks, doing yoga outside. Although these things are all wonderful, none of them are qualities that can point me in the right direction of a career. When asked for what people ask for my help on, I literally couldn’t think of one thing. When asked what I’m good at, I had a really hard time thinking of anything. I kept thinking, “well, I’m a people person” but that’s not a sellable quality. You can’t make a career out of being a people person.
So I’ve been feeling a little frustrated, I want so desperately to figure out what I’m supposed to do. I’m impatient, and I want to figure it out NOW. I overthink things and let my thoughts get the best of me. And this is one of the cases where I am overthinking the absolute crap out of everything. Honestly, it’s because I feel this overwhelming weight on my shoulders to make the most out of my life and since work is about 75% of your waking hours, that includes my job. I try to remind myself that I’m only 26, my whole life doesn’t need to be planned right now. But what I’ve also learned in the past year, is that life is short and it’s too short to be unhappy for too long. If you want a change, you have to make that change for yourself. Just like success in a job doesn’t come without effort, happiness doesn’t always come without effort either. You have to work for a promotion, work for a raise, and so forth you have to work for your happiness, you have to make a conscious effort to make changes to your life in order to be your happiest, most satisfied self.
Do you guys ever feel like this? What have you done to best optimize your work life? I’d love to hear from people!!
Now off to start my Week 2 packet…