I wasn’t quite able to get my arms around the process of making a change. It’s one thing to know we need to make a change. It’s something else to do it. It’s the adage, “better the devil you know than the devil you don’t.” It takes a lot of internal motivation to make a change.
This was my challenge because of my concerns about getting the next steps right. I had been through failures and had just made a huge decision not to go back to school, which I was very confident about. Still, I had some huge choices in front of me and the path ahead seemed wide and unclear. I was ready and willing to put in the work to figure it out. I found myself wanting to pick things up and run with them, but I also really wanted to get my steps right.
The thing is, most of us get up every day and go to work. It’s not so much the end thing we’re fearing, but rather the nebulous process of change. It’s easy to accept the status quo, and think, “I don’t want to go after that even though I’m not crazy about where I am.” Change is hard because we all like to know what we’re doing in life. We’d like to know what we’re getting into, and where we are going. Nobody likes being lost.
I had confusion about my next steps. I was up in my head a lot. “What do I do?” “Where do I start?”
Finding My Guide
I had tried talking to people before, but people near us can’t always see or understand us. I wanted someone to bounce my thoughts off of who had walked the path before. Someone who could see me, see what I was thinking and either open me up to new possibilities or affirm where my thoughts were headed. I reached out for support with picking a path, not answers. Since change is so hard it’s crucial to have affirming voices close by. It’s too easy to pump the brakes and say, “I don’t want to continue”, when we really need to trudge forward. It’s easy to jump ship on goals that are important to us.
My coach was a great sounding board who cared and never judged me. She understood me and asked kind, gentle questions if she didn’t.
Coaching is helping people to transition out of roles they want to get out of and into roles they do. It’s helping navigate change and what comes up during that process. It’s getting good counsel from someone who knows that things are scary and uncomfortable, and that it’s okay.
Assurance in Myself and the Future
As a result of the coaching work, I felt much more confident with where I was at professionally, with what I was embarking on, and how I was going about it. I felt more equipped to take on challenges that were new to me, and take action in the face of the unknown. The coaching work equipped me for future changes in my career as well, since my career is going to change over time. We know the only thing that is constant is change.
It’s incredibly helpful to talk to someone who has walked this road before, who can navigate through change, and provide supportive tools. Coaching is helping people to create their path so that they have more purposeful working lives.