about your job and over 40?
By Craig Nathanson - The Vocational Coach
Look at the big picture of your life
This can be hard to do. The daily pressures of a thankless
job, a demanding commute, and mounting bills all lead to stress.
Worst of all is the nagging feeling that your life is out of
your control, and slowly slipping away.
I don’t have time to change
This is the typical sound-byte. While it’s normal, this
is just an excuse, and you know it. Most people don’t
fear change, but how the change might upset their dull and comfortable
Are you feeling alive about your work?
Do you go to bed with excitement and anticipation about your
work the next day? Do you have trouble sleeping because you
can’t wait to get up in the morning? Do you pinch yourself
because you can’t believe you’ve figured out a way
to actually do what you love AND make the income you need?
This is possible for you.
You need a plan. It starts with what you want. Most of us start
with what we don’t want, and that is exactly what we end
up with. Let’s say you have one of those corporate jobs.
You’re making good money, and your in-laws are proud of
But each day, it’s getting harder and harder to go to
work. Work pressures are rising; you constantly work under the
fear that you are not living up to THEIR expectations
It’s time to become a free agent
Whether you intend to work for yourself or someone else, the
steps are the same. What are the services and/or products you
could sell to someone else, and that you most want to deliver
or create. This is a helpful exercise even if you plan to work
for someone else.
For each service or product, write down the features.
For example, if you want to deliver customer service training,
one feature might be interactive or customer-driven education.
What are the benefits?
The next step is to identify—next to each feature—how
someone would benefit from your product or service. For example,
the benefit of customer driven classroom education might be
that it is real-time and instructor-lead, resulting in fast-paced,
Who would be your ideal niche audience?
This is the most important question. Who specifically do you
want to serve as your customer? Are they middle-aged men, college
Normally we take jobs, and then we have to live with the culture
we walk into. There is a better model. First YOU decide the
type of customer YOU most want to serve.
For example, if you really want to serve college students, going
to work for the social security administration might not be
the best choice!
You create your work
This is the mental shift you must make. You design exactly
what would be just perfect for you. Consider all the services
or products you could offer to others.
You deserve it
Now, over 40 and having worked 15-20 years, this is your time
to FINALLY design your life the way you want it.
What about the money?
A complicated subject, and unique to each person. Think about
how much you need vs. how much you want. There is a difference.
How can you lighten your backpack of life now? Can your spouse
work? Can you find a spouse who would work?
Can your family help you plan some cutbacks in the short term?
Can you cash in your retirement fund, since you won’t
need it? After all, the only people who retire are those who
don’t love what they do.
Can you live on less material happiness, and more internal bliss?
What about my responsibilities?
We all have responsibilities. Whether you are single and alone,
or married with three kids, if you are over 40, you know this
is the time to be selfish. You gather the team together, and
ask for their support. You don’t intend to stop being
responsible; you just need, at this time of your life, to be
more creative in how you earn the money so that you can be happier
and more fulfilled in your life. You just need a better way
to make YOUR life WORK for you.
The choice is always up to you
You can ignore this advice, and continue to waste your time
and energy on useless work while your life moves on.
Or instead, you can decide right now: enough is enough. You
can realize that the only thing holding you back is YOU. You
can decide and take action to change to work you are passionate
about, and that better aligns your natural abilities and interests.
Be a role model
The best role model you can provide for your kids, or those
you love, is to do the work you are passionate about.
This is the authentic life. It will be a lonely pursuit at first
(well, I’ll be cheering for you), but soon you will wonder
why you waited so long to change in the first place.
Stressed about your job?
No need—you have bigger plans now to WORK on.
As always, I’ll be cheering you on as you go- Craig Nathanson
Craig Nathanson is the author of P Is For Perfect: Your Perfect
Vocational Day and a coaching expert who works with people over
forty. Craig’s new E-book, Discover and live your passion
365 days a year is a workshop in a box designed to help busy
adults go insane with their work. Craig’s systematic approach,
the trademark "Ten P" process,’’ helps
people break free and move toward the work they love. Visit
Craig’s online community at http://www.thevocationalcoach.com
where you can take a class, get more ideas through Craig Nathanson’s
books and CD’s, get some private coaching over the phone
or read other stories of mid-life change and renewal.
Craig lives and works in Petaluma, California. His office is
located atP.O Box 2823, Petaluma Ca, 94953. You can reach him
at 707-775-4020 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Craig's Vocational Passion Newsletters are edited by Anita
Flegg at The Sharp Quill. The Sharp Quill -- www.sharpquill.com
-- specializes in writing and editing for small business. You
can see Anita's vocational story at http://www.thevocationalcoach.com/_vocational_community/_real_stories/story_anita.html
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