The distance between where you are now and where you want to be with your career goals can seem insurmountable. In fact, in some instances, it can be tempting to say “Why try? If I work hard, I still won’t reach my career target until I am 90 years old.” Even if there are more steps to the end than you can count or you are hung up on a major step, the great news is there are some surefire actions you can take today to move you forward. "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." - Eleanor Roosevelt
1. Clarify Your Goals
Remember when you were asked as a kid, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Some of us never move past this game. We hold our childlike answers near and dear to our hearts, but we never break those dreams down into real, achievable goals.
As the motivational speaker and leadership coach Tony Robbins says, "Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible." Being a famous author is a dream. Starting a blog, writing an e-book, self-publishing a book, selling 1,000 copies, drafting the second book: these are all goals. They can be broken down into the steps it takes to get there and then crossed off a list.
Sometimes shaking your dreams out into achievable goals can be challenging, but it always worth it and can be a ton of fun! I share more about it in a few other posts.
2. Read Articles, Books & Blogs
Seems like a simple idea, but how many of us truly take advantage of the expanse of information available today. Find articles, books, and blogs related to your career goals. What have others done to pave their way to success? What works? What doesn’t? What foundational skills and knowledge did they need along the way? Research. Research. Research.
The notable playwright, poet, and politician Joseph Addison said it this way, "Reading is to the mind as what exercise is to the body,"
As an added benefit, the very act of reading is mentally stimulating and reduces anxiety or stress. You will strengthen your analytical thinking and recollection skills. The more you read, the more relaxed you can feel, helping make you a more confident and happy human.
3. Learn the Necessary Skills
Even if your dream career seems eons away, you are not without movement in that direction. What skills must you master to succeed? Do you need to learn a new language? Type faster? Manage social media marketing?
Maybe it is leadership skills you need to hone. Perhaps you can volunteer in an organization where you oversee other volunteers. Step up and take the lead. Conquer the skills you will need now. They are the foundation of your dream.
4. Find a Trusted Mentor
A mentor is one who is several steps ahead of you. It is someone who has “been there-done that” and can share their experiences with you. They are the flashlight on your path to success. While your mentor is not required to be older and wiser, they should have expertise in the particular field you are pursuing, because you will need specific advice on specific steps.
If you are not sure where to start to find a mentor, here's a Forbes article to get you started.
5. Work With a Certified Coach
A coach is one who may not know details of your field, but they understand the human process of journeying toward a prize. They will be the one who can help you through the bumps and twists and turns. They facilitate a process and hold you to it.
If you would like more information on the roles of a coach and how coaching could be beneficial to you, I would invite you to schedule a call with me.