The Path to Career Reinvention - after 24 Years in Corporate
I have been blessed with the opportunity, over 24 years, to work and succeed in 2 amazing companies. Yet about 7 years ago, in a discussion with an acquaintance, I was surprised to realize that my passion and excitement at describing what I did, were no longer the same. What could be going on?
After all, my career had enabled me to learn and grow, climb the Corporate ladder, travel and relocate to beautiful countries, and make a comfortable living & lifelong friends in the process. Not only that, but it also enabled me to nurture some of my key values, like Achievement, Accountability, and Connection, the latter through the relationships I built, as well as on-going collaboration that is at the heart of how successful big companies operate.
Of course not everything was smooth and easy, and there were big challenges and some very difficult periods. But each one of those brought with it a wealth of learning and opportunity, to take my growth to the next level.
A period of interrogation:
What could be wrong with that? Where did my passion go? This was the beginning of a period of interrogation and doubt: « is this all what it is about », « is this what I would like to do through the end of my career», “what is the meaning of it all”? The answers were coming more from my gut, rather than my mind, an uncomfortable situation for a very logic-based individual. Yes I wanted something different, perhaps more meaningful to me, at this stage of my life, but it took time, perseverance, and Coaching, to help me define what this was.
The journey to the solution:
Through the bulk of my career, my biggest strength was my ability to inspire and grow people, and build high performing teams. Over time, I also came to realize that this was by far, what I enjoyed and found most rewarding on the job. Was that the answer to my questions? Would focusing on this in my Corporate Career be enough to carry me through its second half? Was that even possible? My gut continued to be skeptical.
This is the point at which a dear friend introduced me to Coaching, and offered me some insightful practice sessions, which led me to the path of pursuing a Coaching curriculum myself. What an incredible growth experience this was, and continues to be! Not the least because a lot of the learning happens by working on yourself. This is how I learned that while some of my values were being honored in my career, some others, like Serenity & Harmony were less so. But it is the definition of my Life Mission: « I am a Buddha who inspires others to find their internal light », that helped drive final clarity on my questioning. Honoring this is what would give meaning to the 2nd part of my career, and this indeed does call for radical changes in career choices.
But how do you abandon a successful career, a very comfortable lifestyle, and the lifetime financial security that comes with it? Oh, and, did I mention that Security is another of my key values, which doesn’t make this any easier?… That was the beginning of a gradual process of defining an end point, grabbing opportunities with that end in mind, doing some financial planning, and trusting myself and the universe to help me progress gradually, but surely to that end point.
A few months back, I have left my Corporate career, not without some sadness at the company, people, and stimulation that I was leaving behind. But the excitement, sense of purpose, & joy of setting up my own business as an independent Consultant, Coach, and Speaker, focused on « Inspiring Women to Thrive » (the latter choice will be the subject of a future article), has been guiding my every step through the past months, leading me down to writing this first article in preparation for the launch of my business.
Are you experiencing dissatisfaction, uncertainty, or do you just have some questions hovering in your mind about some of your life choices? If this is so, take time to deep-dive into this, seek Coaching help if needed, and make sure you connect to the wisdom both in your gut and your mind to define the issue, as well as inspiring possible solutions. This in the end, may either comfort you that the choices you have made continue to be the right ones, thereby enhancing your joy & satisfaction, or open up the road to inspiring alternatives that play up to your passion, give more meaning, and step-up your degree of fulfillment.
“To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end of life.”
― Robert Louis Stevenson
Please share your comments. And for help in exploring your questioning or defining the path forward, please contact Roula on firstname.lastname@example.org