In my work I obviously talk to a lot of people with a lot of different fears.
One of the recurring fears that I hear a lot of, especially during career changes or when someone is looking for a new job, is “I'm afraid I'll choose the wrong thing.” So I'm here today to tell you what to do when you choose the wrong job.
First of all you need to take a breather and realize there is no wrong thing! There is no wrong job.
If you're interested in something enough - right now - to have chosen it at all, then it's not the wrong thing - it can’t be. If it's something that interests you enough that you are not making any sort of life decision based on it, it’s definitely not the wrong thing.
Just take a step back and let it sink in that there is no wrong thing. Whatever you choose next will be the right thing, right now. It’s, you know, not Mr. Right, it's Mr. Right Now... same idea. Clearly this doesn’t mean that this is your forever thing, but it’s the right thing right now.
Roll with it. Go feed your interests. Go grow your knowledge base. Go collect some more skills and then if you decide to pivot into something else…? Great!
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But yes, a lot of people do feel that whatever they choose next has to be the forever thing which is a strange concept to me because if you look back, very few people will look back in their job history or their Life Path and see that they've done the same thing all the time.
There are those few, you know, child prodigies that at 3 years old decided they wanted to be a lawyer and became a lawyer and have never done anything but lawyering but that's really rare.
Most of us work at the ice cream shop in high school and then we get a communications degree and we work at an ad agency and then we decide to go into the restaurant biz... or whatever. Most people have meandering paths, so the idea that your next thing has to be the THE thing is not true and a strange concept if you look at your past - so I'm here to tell you again there is no wrong thing.
I know that this fear is real and I'm not saying that the fear isn't valid, I’m just asking you to not let that fear keep you from choosing anything because you're afraid of choosing the wrong thing. In a lot of ways it’s just procrastination... “Well I don't want to take the wrong thing so I'm going to keep researching I'm going to keep applying and I'm going to keep interviewing until I find the perfect right thing.!”
Nine times out of ten, for most people, again except for that you know... weird three year old lawyer, there's never going to be a perfect position. There is never going to be the perfect role. There's always going to be something else better somewhere down the road - so just choose your next thing - that's all you need to do.
It doesn't have to be that forever thing. You're not marrying the next thing that comes along! And even if you do marry it, divorce is a thing. You can quit a job. People act as if quitting a job is one of life's major moral failings - it’s not.
Don't let this fear hold you back from learning, from growing, from making connections, from trying something out that yeah maybe it's not the right thing but it doesn't mean it's the wrong thing so go for it if there's something you're interested in enough right now to choose it at all even consider choosing it then it's not the wrong thing!
So...go for it.
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Yours in career goodness-