Career – What do I do with my life?
“If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or things.” ― Albert Einstein.
Finding your passion in life without a doubt is one of the most important things in any soul’s journey. There are some people who just know from a very young age where their passion lies and what they want to do with their earthly journey. For others (a majority of people), this quest is a lot more adventurous. I am using the term adventurous because that’s what your career should be – full of enthusiasm and adventure. Of course, there will be several challenges along the way, but if your true happiness lies in a goal you are fully focused to achieve, then nothing will stop you.
This sort of a goal connects us to the ultimate source of energy – energy that is not derived from food, sleep or exercise, but energy that we get from simply being connected to the universe’s infinite intelligence, which leads us each step closer to our destiny, as long as we are aware and open. Sometimes this discovery can be extremely frustrating, especially if after a long time of investing in a career, you realize that this is far from what you are meant to do. However, in the end no experience or stint is a waste of time. All the little things add up along the way, when prepare you for your ultimate goal.
So if you hear about an 18 year old dropout, who became a self-made millionaire, then rejoice, because in the end we are all working with a universal mind. The gifts are accessible to us all; we just have to be bold enough to desire them.
Here are some steps to know what you are meant to do:
Know your strengths:
We are all special in our own unique ways. A thorough investigation is extremely crucial to know where your gifts lie. If a creative person is stuck in a number crunching job, then it is no surprise that it’s not going to give him / her so much joy on the professional front. If you have invested a number of years in the wrong field – by acquiring the wrong degree and being stuck in the wrong job, then it is imperative that you do something about it.
The logical side of your brain will always convince you that it is too late and the chances of failing or falling flat on your face at this stage are very high. The people around you too may express similar concerns. However, if in our heart you know that your joy lies in doing something radically different, then stop deceiving yourself. If you have a lot of responsibilities, then you may have to find some middle ground, instead of bailing out on your current life.
Something you are passionate about may start off as a hobby you pursue in your spare time, till you become so good at it, that it can actually give you the confidence to quit your day job.
Going to a career counsellor or taking career assessment tests are all great, but in the end it is only your own curiosity about yourself, which will lead you to your ultimate passion and goals.
Focusing on the big picture:
I strongly believe that the happiest people are the ones who have managed to get their paycheques and passions combined. What do I mean by passion? Passion is so much more than luxury holidays, the latest gadgets, haute couture and spa weekends. While you totally deserve all the above mentioned privileges and more, you still need to find something deeper to drive you – to wake you up in the morning. In the end, the value you are creating for those around you is what really matters. Whether you are a makeup artist, a singer, a real estate consultant, a stock broker, a surgeon or a ramp model; how your work affects those around you and the world at large will definitely be a source of your personal inspiration and joy.
If you are a makeup artist, then making others feel beautiful and confident should be your goal, and if you are a gym instructor, then giving others the inspiration they need to be in optimum shape and enjoy good health should be your goals. A real estate consultant should feel thrilled every time he makes the dream of owning a house come true for a family. The money you make and the material things you enjoy will be the by-products of this primary gusto you feel about your profession. There are no great professions and best careers; the greatness only lies in your commitment to excellence and in the dignity with which you perform your task.
So at any point don’t treat anything like an interim stint; give everything your 100% and your best shot.
Get rid of alibis and excuses:
There will always be some excuse or reason why you couldn’t follow your bliss or choose the right career. Your parents forced you into another career; you didn’t have enough funds for the right launch pad, you got married or had kids immediately after marriage and the responsibilities didn’t give you the opportunity to explore. You were scared of failure, you didn’t have the right encouragement, it’s too late to go back to school, what will people say, what if it doesn’t work out, blah, blah, blah.
Well, darling if you wait for so much clarity and perfection on the outside, then invariably you will be in no position to change your career or your circumstances. Get over the “yes, but” attitude and try to find a solution. Yes, all wrongs can be made right, only if you are willing to find a solution instead of just obsessing over the myriad problems.
People have gone in a completely different career direction and chosen a brand new life path even in their 50s and 60s, so whatever story you are telling yourself, quit doing that and plan your action steps.
*I strongly recommend reading Rodger Hamilton’s Millionaire Master plan book after taking the Genius U test, for anyone who is feeling lost and directionless right now.
The Winner’s Circle
Feeling and acting like a winner has so much to do with self-acceptance and self-love. It has nothing to do with making someone else feel less than or competing. When you are constantly working on yourself, doing your best, giving everything your 100% and being authentic, there is very little room for phoniness and proving a point to someone else. You know how you see some people who act all smug even about little things and achievements, and then there are those who work on mega inventions, which change the way we live and still prefer to be humble and approachable.
Here are things that you should practice if you want to be a winner in life:
Be true to who you are:
So many of us are constantly changing who we are, just to project a certain image on the outside! Unless the projection matches our authentic self, somewhere we will not feel comfortable with who we are, no matter how many branded clothes we wear or how many fancy dinner parties we attend. Being true to who you are may mean different things to different people. For some women being a diva may be a winning formula, for others being nurturing, giving and maternal may feel like the right thing to do. So don’t use fancy words just to impress someone, and don’t walk around in sky-high heels, if you feel confident and comfortable in flats. There are world renowned billionaires who participate in reality shows, and then there are some who haven’t given an interview till date. Some like being in the public eye, while others are notoriously private! Neither is right or wrong; they are just being who they are.
When you define who you are, not to others but to yourself, there comes a certain consistency in your behaviour. The whole idea is to be put together, not just act like it. Again, don’t get me wrong, I am not asking you to be totally predictable and choreographed. Please go ahead and reinvent your look, style, career and anything else, if you feel like it. But your moral compass, your value system, your principles, these are the things that have to be clearly defined – in your work, in your family life and in the social scenario.
Beat the procrastination:
Lack of ambition and severe procrastination are the main reasons we all find ourselves stuck from time to time. The thing is there will always be multiple reasons why it couldn’t be done. But if your drive, vision and ambition are strong, those reasons will not matter. Yes, there will be failures and uncalled for delays, but you will power through and get there eventually. Another thing to remember here is that we are never really done. We all are constant work in progress whether we are eight or 80. There is always that next level of learning, awareness and consciousness awaiting us. Beating procrastination also means knowing that while you should have gratitude and satisfaction for where you are, you should also be constantly motivated to move ahead, ask more out of life and be fearless.
I think there is a very deep connection between ambition, procrastination and fear. Fear and self-doubt often delude us and prevent us from aiming higher and bigger. Fear is often related to early messages and paradigms, as explained in the seven deadly sins section. But now, you know exactly how to combat it.
Talk less, do more:
These days, it’s all about over sharing – everything from holidays, to homes, to clothes to breakfast is shared on social media platforms. Things like mystery and privacy have been conveniently shown the door. We want everyone to know what we are up to, and of course we want to know what everyone is up to as well. While there is nothing wrong with sharing a movie review or a trending piece of news or an epiphany from time to time, some things should just be done without broadcasting – online or offline. Business plans should be discussed with your teams and potential investors, not just anyone at a dinner party. Let people witness the success of your plans instead of listening to your work in progress goals and ideas.
Somewhere a lot of us fear that if we don’t share, we will become socially irrelevant. But so much focus on sharing has definitely lead to more words and less action. However, if someone does approach you for genuine advice or asks you to share your views on a specific matter, by all means share what you really feel.
Refrain from loser behaviour:
Self-confidence and arrogance are two completely different things. Self-confidence is being yourself, being comfortable with whom you are and being in sync with your life’s purpose. Arrogance can come out in a number of different ways, when we suffer from low energy bouts, or low self-esteem. It can come in the form of passive aggressive behaviour, in the form of sarcasm and sometimes in the form of being highly opinionated on sensitive subjects like sexual orientation, marriage, motherhood, financial status, etc. If you have to make someone feel bad about their life choices and decisions just to feel superior, then you are definitely not being a winner.
Passive aggressive behaviour also arises because of not having the guts to have open, honest communication. It can stem in the form of bullying, name calling, ridiculing, and taking pot-shots in the name of jokes. The goal here is for everyone to do well and exercise their highest potential. And the world can definitely use more motivating, positive and encouraging people.
So stop nasty habits of discussing people and their decisions behind their backs, being mean, passing condescending remarks in the name of jokes, grunting and shrugging and projecting aggressive body language. Yes, sometimes we don’t even have to be mean or raise our voice, but our body language itself can repel people or alienate loved ones. And if you are genuinely concerned about a loved one – because they are in a toxic relationship, or because they have a substance abuse issue, you being nasty to them is only going to push them further away.
Remember the section on energy? When you are kind, loving, compassionate and when you radiate positive frequency, fewer and fewer people will misconstrue your actions and intensions. And even if you feel invalidated, it won’t bother you as much, because you know you are being authentic.
Recharge your batteries:
Whether you are a student, a new mom, an entrepreneur, a manager or all of these things – you need a break every now and then. When we are multitasking, performing multiple roles, trying to put our best foot forward every time, it is natural to feel exhausted, overwhelmed and lost from time to time. The trick is to not reach this stage often and recharge your batteries every now and then. Avoiding a burn out can save us so much financial, emotional and health trouble.
Recharging the batteries again may mean different things for different people. For some it may mean going for a trek to the Himalayas, for others it may mean simply practicing digital detox from time to time. Some may prefer to learn a new language and participate in an exchange program, while others may reinvent their look or participate in a philanthropic cause.
This should be your sacred thing, and you must do one thing every six months to completely recharge your batteries and take on life with a renewed gusto. Don’t let anything get in the way of this. Let it be your sacred practice. And remember, no alibis and excuses for winners, only action and enthusiasm. So go train for that half marathon or take up gardening or jump from a plane in the middle of nowhere (in case you are confused, I am talking about skydiving). Do something out of the box once every six months.
My self-discovery journey began about eight years ago, when my then boyfriend (now husband and father of our beautiful daughter) handed me Eckhart Tolle’s book – A New Earth. Ever since, I have read many books, consumed tons of video data and participated in many audio programmes. My being fills with gratitude when I think of these great teachers, coaches, healers and experts who have shared their journey and contributed to the world in such amazing ways.
I sincerely recommend going through their work:
- Phil Mcgraw
- Deepak Chopra
- Anthony Robbins
- Louise Hay
- Eckhart Tolle
- Ramit Sethi
- Marie Forleo
- Rhona Byrne
- Bob Proctor
Thank you for taking the time to read this book. I wish you all the luck in your journey from now on. Please share this with people who you feel will benefit from the LifeBook.