Because ALL I knew was this:
1) I wanted to help people.
2) I wanted to be able to get a job.
3) I like a demanding atmosphere with lots to do.
It seemed like a sound list of criteria at the time. You know how long I lasted as a teacher? One year. As a matter of fact, technically, ten months.
Unlike some countries, in the United States, many of us have the luxury of waiting until our early twenties to pick a possible career. And it’s still not long enough to have any clue what our hearts really long for and what that would actually translate into as a job/career. In fact, for many of us, when we’re in our twenties, the thing we really want to do might not even exist yet, or we might not know it exists.
I remember when I sat down with my coach, at age 29, to figure out what I REALLY wanted to do with my life. I was pretty happy as an entrepreneur, running a tutoring company with my brother, because it fit all of my three original criteria above, plus it allowed a flexible schedule so I could take part in raising my kids. The problem was, I wanted to make a bigger difference. I didn’t think helping already smart kids get even better math scores was quite enough, if that was going to be all I had to show for myself on my deathbed. Note, my heart had always felt strongest about Number #1 on my list.
Lauren Zander, co-founder of the Handel Group® had just started coaching me and she sent me on a hunt for all the possibilities of what I might do. I put everything on the list from rabbi, writer, head of an education non-profit, yoga teacher, to parenting facilitator to life coach. And I spent real quality time researching and talking to people about all aspects of each of these possible paths. She had me write all my impressions and rate each option for “juiciness” and for “practicality of preparation.” Looking back, I laugh hard at what I wrote under “life coach.” Here is a quote from my assignment:
Life coach- don’t really know what this is or how it works, but I think I’d be darn good at it and it would be fun and fulfilling. But I think it’s trendy and cliché right now and I’d be a little embarrassed to say I do it. When I hear people say they are “life coaches,” I have negative judgements about it, probably because I compare them to what I am doing with Lauren and find them lacking. Can’t imagine paying for training.After a little more research and soul-searching, I was pretty discouraged. My juiciest option seemed a dead end. That’s when Lauren offered me a job with her. Let me tell you, I was not expecting that, but looking back, I was manifesting it hardcore. I was putting myself in a heart-felt inquiry about what I really wanted, surrounding myself with people and input that impressed and inspired me and continuing to articulate what I could see for myself. And the Uni-verse responded. Turns out my training to be a coach was still an obstacle, but now I believed something would unfold. And it did. I bartered for further training and continued to pay Lauren to help me plan a graceful exit from my other company. Then one day the person who was running the Life Coaching arm of Handel left and there was a huge job available for a leader/manager. Essentially, this was the role I had been playing in the educational company, but now teaching “designing your life” instead of math. PERFECT. UNEXPECTED. SCARY. I took it and I’ve loved it ever since. Criteria 1-2 were met in the richest ways ever and #3 followed closely behind.
I could never have predicted what manifesting guru, Neville Goddard, calls the “bridge of incident” that led me from where I was to where I dreamed to be. It seems almost to be coincidence or magic, if you don’t look closely. The truth is, I used all the skills I learned from Lauren, that now I teach.
It’s highly possible that what you really want to do when you grow up, whether it’s in your company/field or not, doesn’t have a name, or you do not know of its existence. This is a pickle of spiritual proportions that I solved with Lauren’s guidance. Here is what I learned works:
1) Put yourself in an official inquiry.
2) Give it a deadline.
3) Do the exercises that force you to deal with what you really think and feel about different options.
4) Do your homework/research.
5) Have someone who cares deeply about your dreams oversee and support the process.
6) Cultivate the deep belief that your dream career exists and that you can have it, even if you don’t see it now.
I had a coach and mentor along the way and I strongly recommend you reach out to get guidance, too.