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Optimum Talks Blog

What Eulogies and Careers Have in Common

by Optimum Talent
March 31, 2016

According to Common Last Words of Dying People in the Huffington Post, over 56% of dying people talked about their careers and how important they were in their lives.  Yet, careers are easily dismissed as not important, especially as people step into retirement or during the later stages of our life.  How many times have we heard “your career won’t be mentioned on your grave stone or Eulogy, nor will the number of hours you spent at the office”.  Why not?   I want my career to be mentioned on my gravestone and in my Eulogy…

‘Here lies Sandra Boyd Career Consultant’

I am proud of the work I have done and how I have supported so many people in their career.  I am proud of the fact that I have only done work I am passionate about and guided my children to find work they enjoy.

We spend such a large portion of our waking hours working and we should at the very least like what we do and the people we work with.  I have spent my career coaching and supporting other people in their careers, and I am saddened when people tell me they are “waiting for a package”, which in some cases they wait years in silent misery.  People tell me they hate their job, the people they worked with and the company they work for, yet they will not even consider writing a resume to at least explore finding an opportunity more fulfilling.

We get one life, but we can have multiple career or job opportunities.  So why not actively manage your career?  I don’t believe that every person is meant to jump out of bed each morning excited to go to work, but if you feel like you are going to throw up every Sunday night dreading Monday morning, it may be time to at least consider looking at the job market.

Passion is not only for work.  Some enjoy their jobs but save their passion for other aspects of life.  My husband is passionate about golf, music and his family.  Work is not his top priority but he has a job where he respects his colleagues and likes the work he does.  He has been able to find that balance.  I, on the other hand, have no hobbies.  I can’t play golf, and a good time for me is reading a book that directly relates to my work. You don’t have to want your work to be the focus of your Eulogy, but you want to ensure you are not stuck in a job you hate with no way out.

Always ensure you are familiar with your options:

  • Have an up to date resume
  • Network with someone outside your company at least once a week
  • Ask for feedback to understand from your peers how they value their work environment
  • Research the job market on a regular basis
  • Understand the market trends inside and outside your industry
  • Know your skills, attributes, strengths and gaps, and recent accomplishments so you know how relevant they are to what employers are looking for
  • If you don’t want to leave your current company, explore internal opportunities
  • Never have a mindset of “waiting for the package”. Your colleagues will know or feel that you have given up and don’t care – find the positive side of your work
  • Spend at least a few hours a month reviewing your career and ask yourself if you are satisfied or if you need to make changes
  • Seek a professional career coach if you are confused and need to think through your next step – invest in your career

Be willing to step outside your comfort zone so you can at least feel comfortable in the job you are in.

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