Today, I’m happy to share a guest post from my business partner, Hallie Crawford. Do you know you need a career change, but you aren’t sure what path to take? Hallie specializes in helping recent college grads and boomerangs identify their ideal career paths and make it happen. Hallie recently published a book targeted to singles in transition, Flying Solo.
If you’re single and considering a transition, I recommend you read Flying Solo for many terrific tips about what can be an unsettling, albeit exciting transition!
This is an excerpt from Chapter 2: Getting Your Transition Started. Visit her site to learn more about Hallie!
by Hallie Crawford, MA, CPCC
Dream First, Dream Big
You know the traditional image of the American Dream: Work hard and you can have anything you want, regardless of where you came from, your socio-economic status or any other aspect of your life. Well, the American Dream has changed, and the traditional way to pursue that dream is quite different. No longer is there just one “work hard” ethic to achieve the American Dream. And, it’s no longer about sticking to one career path for the rest of your life.
[If you are] a single person you have even more freedom to set up your career, to break the mold, and figure out what will work for you. The process of “Dreaming First” will help you stay outside the box and think creatively about your career transition.
Why dream first? Why turn to the fanciful side of your brain when everyone keeps telling you that a practical plan is the key to success? Because it works. While a practical plan is one of the strongest keys to success, the best-laid plans always start with the dream-a dream that you can trim and shape later to fit your real-life situation.
One way to dream BIG is to use the technique of visualization.
Envision how you want your career transition to unfold, visualize the pieces you want to have in place to make it happen and “see” all the players you need to support you along the way. When you develop your vision first, you will not only become clearer about what you want to happen, you will also be more likely to make it happen in the way you’ve envisioned it, and therefore be successful.
Dreaming First enables you to brainstorm as many possibilities as you can imagine for living out your dream, and therefore, enables you to identify many more ways to make it happen.
Two great tools for Dreaming First are journaling and visualization.
Your Quick Start Tips on ‘Dreaming First’
- Start with a blank slate in your mind.
- Always act from the present and what you really want, not from past experience.
- Commit to making your choices as independently as possible from the voices of your past-your parents, the media, past experience, previous failures or successes, and assumptions.
- Throw away any preconceived notions you have about transition being hard, about not being able to have a job you love or whatever assumptions you have that hold you back.
- Jump into the realm of possibility. Think and act only from there.
Dream journaling involves writing out the process of your career transition in an ideal light, as if it has already happened.
Include in your dream journaling:
1. The time frame in which you achieved your goal-six months, one year?
2. How did you feel during this transition? Confident, clear, focused?
3. Make a list of those personal characteristics you tapped into and any new qualities you identified.
4. Where did you need extra support and where did you get it from?
Dreaming Visualization Guidelines
1. First, take a deep breath.
2. Include anything you want.
3. Have fun with it.
4. If you find yourself starting to doubt what you’re seeing or feeling, just let that image go.
5. Create a structure for your vision.
6. Imagine your transition complete.
Now come back to the real world and take a few minutes to think about what happened. How did it go? How did you act? Answer these questions in your Career Journal.
Dreaming First will continue to be an important part of your career transition. The more you use the Dream First process, the more fine-tuned your dreams become.
Reprinted from Flying Solo: Career Transition Tips for Singles, by Hallie Crawford, CPCC, by permission of the author. Â©2008 Hallie Crawford. All rights reserved.
If you need help with your search, contact KEPPIE CAREERS for everything you need to help you with your job hunt!