We have this interesting phenomenon in my house. It starts with my husband, Dreamy, wants to find something. It could be anything…a shirt, jar of pickles, a kid’s backpack. He’ll try his best for a good 4 or 5 minutes, and then he’ll inevitably turn to me (the Number One Finder) for help.
Did you look right in front of you? I’ll ask sweetly. And we laugh and laugh, but seriously…it’s always RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIM (okay, maybe the pickles are behind the mayo…but you can still see them!!).The thing is, Dreamy is not the only person who can’t see what’s right in front of him, and the phenomenon is not limited to missing pickles.Our brains are hard-wired to filter out 99% of the stimulus around us. It’s a good feature, because it keeps us from going crazy. But like all strengths, it comes with a fatal flaw, and this one could actually cost you your dream job.We literally don’t see things that aren’t in alignment with your beliefs…even if seeing them is in our best interest.There are volumes of scientific studies supporting these psychological blind spots of ours, going back to the 1950’s, but here’s what it means for you, today.If your mind is not open to new and different possibilities when it comes to your career success, you’ll fall back into old neurological patterns, which will cause you to seek out and find only those opportunities very similar to what you’ve had in the past.Here’s why this is a problem for so many of us. Because we’re not really wired for ‘change’, ‘new’, or ‘different’, we settle in the same old comfort/discomfort zone. We allow ourselves to dream of ‘a little better’, but in our brains, this means the same thing minus some of the more blatant ‘bad things’.This doesn’t usually bring fulfillment, as I’m sure you’ve noticed.To really maximize your chance for happiness and fulfillment in your career, the first step is to overcome the roadblock of preconceived notions. Don’t assume that just because you’ve been an accounting manager for ten years, you need to be an accounting manager or director next. Yes, maybe you will, but maybe you can leverage all that experience and skill into a whole new field, sub-field, or industry.Overcoming limiting beliefs takes some work, but here are five things you can do to get started.
• Write down 3 to 5 activities that you really enjoy. Things that, when you’re doing them, time stands still. They can be job related, or just hobbies.• Write how you feel when you’re doing these tasks.• Write down what strengths of yours you’re using when you do these things .
• Now, write down what other skills or gifts you have that are related to those strengths.• Now write down 3-5 jobs where these skills might be used that are NOT the jobs you’ve been applying for. Use google if need be.What comes up for you? What possibilities have been opened? Are there any jobs on your radar now that weren’t before?Looking for new jobs isn’t for the faint of heart, but when you’re intentionally keeping new possibilities on your radar, it can be much more exciting – and rewarding!
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