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What to do, when you don’t know what to do

Updated: Apr 8

2 in 5 people in the UK are planning to leave their jobs within the next 12 months*. Are you one of them?

Feeling dissatisfied in your job, when you spend so much of your time at work, can take its toll on you emotionally and physically.

One of the things that keeps people in jobs in which they’re unhappy, is that they’re not sure what they’d do instead.

Here are 3 common mistakes I see people make when they don’t know what they want to do. Are you making one (or all of them) right now?

  1. Getting advice from the “wrong” people

  2. Spending lots of time on job search platforms

  3. Thinking inside the box

Instead, try these things if any of the above ring true for you:

1. Everyone will approach your “issue” with their own experiences, set of beliefs, and opinions. Be super picky about whose opinions you chose to listen to. Talk to more people who are living the life you would like, and less to those who mean well but don’t totally get you and your desires. Who is working the hours they want, earning the money they want, getting real joy from their work etc?

2. Spending time on job search platforms like Indeed is great, but only once you’ve invested the time and effort it takes to get really clear about what you really want to be doing. Otherwise the whole experience can be extremely time consuming and a little bit soul destroying. It’s easy to get distracted by jobs that look attractive, go down a rabbit hole and end up applying for a load of jobs that tick all the boxes on paper, but aren’t right for you. Instead spend that time getting to know yourself again. Ask yourself

these powerful questions before you start the job search. I guarantee it will shave hours off your search!

3. When you’ve been doing the same job, in the same industry for a few years, it’s hard to see the wood for the trees. You forget that there is another world out there. Another world that’s full of exciting opportunities.

If you’ve ever heard of the Elephant Rope story, you’ll know about the elephant trainer who explains that baby elephants are tied up with a small rope, which they could easily break away from as they get older. However, even when they’re older they believe the rope can still hold them, so they never try to break free. Don't be an elephant!

There is work out there for you that’s much more aligned with your values, strengths and talents, that will feel more like ‘play’ and less like ‘work’. Do you have to stay in the same line of work? Do you have to stay in the same industry? It’s ok to take time and give yourself permission to think outside of the box.

Want to be inspired by other people who have changed careers successfully? Check out my podcast.

If you're ready to make a career change start by asking yourself these 10 super powerful questions to help you discover your next career.

Or read my book 'Ready to quit your job?' - 📚 

ps. Speaking of getting advice from the wrong might like this interview with Nigel Marsh, in which (amongst many other things) he talks about the advice some people gave him when he was made redundant from his job as CEO of an advertising firm...and why he chose to ignore it!

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