Being on my own time clock now with my human experiment endeavor in full swing, I can enjoy different styles of working environments from day to day. Today my environment was the comfort of my leather sofa, a view of the snowy San Juan Mountains with a movie on in the background while I pecked away at my computer fleshing out development ideas. The movie was called "Waffle Street." I had never heard of it, but in reading the description, my interest was piqued. "Shaken by his role in the 2008 financial crisis and desperate for a job, an ex-hedge fund manager rejoins the workforce as a server at a diner." I can strongly identify with the sentiments of working to find a new direction. I have counseled countless people on how to find their new direction. Now, I am taking my advice and putting my words to task.
One of the biggest concerns people have about finding a new direction are the potential obstacles they may face. Seeing obstacles as growth steps can help keep you on track. Obstacles seem like they are in our way to derail us, but they are there for us to earn the chance to move past them and learn of what we are capable. Finding our way often takes us stretching ourselves past our comfort zone and being willing to put ourselves through challenges and experiences that are uncomfortable. Through conquering the discomfort, growth will take place, and we will realize our potential.
When finding a new direction, we can feel cast aside and aimless. As employees of an organization, we get used to being told what to do and having our agenda set for us. Even for those in leadership roles, which requires autonomous functionality, the overall direction is frequently established by the organization. On our own, it is difficult to tap into the development of a path. The following principles can help guide the process.
Establishing beforehand how your day will be structured; e.g. when you will wake up, how you will dress, when you will begin to work and where you work all play a role in how you will function through this process.
Believing in yourself and having faith in you is crucial. Being confident in your skills in the face of the unknown will be the difference between your success and your failure. Look at obstacles as growth steps of opportunity rather than derailing walls.
3. Willingness To Try Something Different
Just like the main character in "Waffle Street," do something with which you are unfamiliar. Use the skills you developed doing what you were comfortable with and translate them to your new endeavor. You will grow, and your skills will strengthen.
4. Maximize On Your Strengths
Each of us has inherent character strengths. By identifying your top character strengths and applying them to each activity you do, you can ensure you will be more invested and have a more confident outcome. (Find your character strengths here).
Through the process of finding your direction, open your mind into your passions and your strengths (see #4) -- what drives you, what excites you. Enabling yourself to see YOU in a different light and identifying your character strengths can highlight new passions and show you new directions
As you embark on your new adventure, whether it is branching out on your own or a finding a new passion, remember to tap into the true you and into what excites you. Use these five tools to help guide you on your journey.
"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” – Henry David Thoreau