With a little over a year under my belt since making a significant career move, I’ve been reflecting on how I got here. I’m fortunate enough to say I’m in the exact place I dreamed of being someday. I’m a business owner. I have a really eclectic and beautiful journey, full of twists and turns, that has played an important and meaningful role in how I got to where I am today. This came from many calculated decisions, conversations, bold moves and strategic steps that all came together to form and direct my path.
Understand Who You Are
Early in life, I knew I had a passion for helping people and solving problems, which led me to pursue an education in social sciences. Just before graduating, I was working in the business world and realized my social science background gave me a unique perspective about leadership, cross-functional work and entrepreneurial aspirations. I took several skills and personality assessments to become familiar with my “why.” This step in self-discovery is often undervalued. It is incredibly important to choose the right tools that work together and provide a well-rounded viewpoint of yourself.
It’s also equally important to talk with those you know and have worked with. I took the time to ask questions that confirmed or challenged my self-perceptions. I would then compare the responses to my assessments and draw the connections between what I learned from each of these different approaches of self-discovery.
Finally, I created a vision of where I wanted to be. I thought about questions such as:
- What is my ultimate goal?
- What is the future role that aligns with who I am?
- When do I want to retire?
It always came back to owning my own business that would allow me to help others be successful in what they do. Early on, I didn’t know what all that meant or looked like. But I did know my self-discovery was in complete alignment with my pathway and ultimate destination.
Own Your Pathway
Self-discovery is an ongoing process, but once you begin it and have a solid understanding, you can write down your goals and assign realistic timelines. Connect the skills – soft and technical – to what’s required to reach your ultimate destination. Through this, you will also identify your gaps and see what you need to improve to reach your goals. Consider the various ways to fill those gaps, grow your experience, gain new opportunities and expand your network. When you have this visibility to your pathway, it allows you to navigate every career move, development opportunity and step that will lead you to where you want to be.
Dare to Leap
Once you’ve invested the time to know yourself and visualize your pathway, you will be more confident in making decisions to pivot when an opportunity presents itself. You are poised to know when it’s time to seize the moment and dare to leap.
I dared to leap from a successful career with an industry-leading corporation to become a co-owner and managing partner of a business consultant firm. I leaped from my corporate life into that next step of my desired pathway. That leap, however, wasn’t as scary as it might sound because I leapt confidently, knowing what my pathway held for me.
Do you want to position yourself to dare to leap? Do you need help working through your self-discovery and visualizing your pathway? Career path coaching is a passion of mine and something I’d love to help you with. Reach out today so you can be ready and know when it’s time to leap.