“Live as you will wish to have lived when you are dying.” – Christian Furchtegott Gellert
This is a pretty strong statement, isn’t it? I’m sure that this is a principle that isn’t new to most of you, but it’s likely one that doesn’t demand enough of your focus. I know that I don’t live my life with the end in mind as much as I should, but when I’m reminded of this principle, it’s a good way for me to evaluate my actions and behaviors and get a look at how far off the track I am.
I can probably write ten different themed articles (at least) on this quote alone (and may do so), but today I want to approach it from the angle of job / career. Meaning, are you earning your living today in a way that would be satisfying to you as you look back at the end of your life? From my coaching experience, I know that most people would answer that question with “no”. My job as a coach is to turn that “no” into a “not yet!”
When I challenge my clients with “Why not?”, the answer generally comes back to not having the financial resources to make the career change from earning their current stable income job to starting from scratch in their “passion job”. Of course this is a legitimate obstacle, but this should not stop you from pursuing your passion job. Guess what, there is no reason that you can’t pursue a dream while living in reality!
Listen, for most of us it’s just not realistic to drop what you’re doing full-time today and immediately begin doing what we should be doing full-time tomorrow. But, in no way does that mean that we should be standing still and pushing our dream / passion aside. The key is… start doing little things today (as much as you possibly can) that will drive you in the right direction and set you up for where you want to be tomorrow. You CAN do both at once!
So, how do you make the transition from what you are doing to what you should be doing? Here are some steps to get you started:
• DECIDE what your passion / calling job is (if you don’t already know).
• COMMIT to making the transition happen.
• ENLIST some help. Find an accountability partner who can offer unconditional support and an energized belief in you and your dreams. (Hire a coach!)
• EVALUATE the requirements for “flipping the switch”. Identify exactly what needs to be in place before your passion job can become your full-time job. (Income requirements, expense / debt reduction, personal behaviors, family support, etc.)
• SET a reasonable finish-line goal. (WHEN will you be “working” at your passion job full-time?)
• PLAN your roadmap. How are you going to make the transition happen? What are your steps?
• ACT on your plan! Start taking immediate action steps. Remember, small steps in the right direction are still steps that will move you forward!
• PERSIST until you get there. Do not give up. Keep moving forward at all costs.
• REMEMBER the “why” of what you are doing. Keep your reasons for pursuing this goal in the front of your mind. If your reasons for following your passion are strong enough and if they are consistently reinforced, your motivation will stay strong and you will reach the finish line!
The final thing that I really want you to understand is that you are never permanently trapped by your circumstances. You can always make a change for the better, even if only by taking small strides. Small strides are still strides! Do not allow your current circumstances to prevent you from someday living the life that is your dream. Just commit with all that you have to living / working that dream, then GO FOR IT!
For more articles like this one, please visit my blog, Gaining Ground.