Do you need a career boost? Looking back to move forward is a 4 step method. Your career boost framework for positive change leads to motivation, purpose and an action plan. We tend to look back and highlight perceived failures, stressful life events, and career bumps. What if you instead were to tweak the focus from the negative and see what you learned, captured, saw and liked? This different way of assessing your past years, months and days can trigger a reality check that makes you see that you can, will and shall move forward. Read on to explore how you can set goals for work and life by acknowledging what you have already. This will give you a path to tackle what you need to reach your destination.
Career Boost: Self-assessment
Change doesn’t come all by itself. Before you decide to take a given course, take a moment and think about where you are at, and how you arrived there.
Whether you want to start a career or move in or out of your professional field you need to assess the ‘now’. A career boost comes from change and this has to start with you.
Change is a journey in forwarding motion. By looking back, you find events, things or behaviors that you can identify as comparators in a future date. Moving forward you will be able to determine if the ‘new you’ is different from that comparator.
You can’t afford to cherry pick the past, deciding that it was all success or all failure or expect the future to be one or the other. In reality, life isn’t a success-only journey, but it becomes a success if you choose to look at the challenges not as the barriers they appear to be — but how you can, and did, handle them and what you have learned along the way. It’s time for an attitude check.
When looking back it is easy to dwell on what did not go right, and cling on to the ‘what if’ and the ‘if only’ statements. This drills into the negative, and opens the door to the dark side. You leave little room for moving onwards by staying in this frame of mind.
Looking back – with new eyes – allows you to take stock and move on with new purpose. You set goals where you can utilize lessons learned, and propel change by adapting to who and what you are now. You are a composite of what your past has provided for and how you accept, deal with and move on from there.
For instance – take a copy of the CV you used last time you applied for a job. What has happened since then? I think you will agree that is it time to completely overhaul the old version. You will want to reflect the professional you have become, right?
When you think of applying to jobs or promotion possibilities – do your previous experiences hold you back or propel you forward?
There is undoubtedly room for reflection when you are in a change mode – but your attitude needs to be one of acceptance, kindness, and realization that you have learned something. Turning your career events into positive experiences – even if some may not have felt so at the time – takes courage and a bit of work. How can you move on without knowing where you came from?
The same goes for the successes, fun and boosting experiences you have had – along with the people who have supported you. You tend to forget positive experiences once they are over, as the chapter is over. Yet – it is vital to realize what your highlights included so you can bring these with you on your new journey.
This is especially important when you’re in a professional frame as networking ethically is a crucial ingredient to a career success recipe.
Career Boost: Career Change
As a career coach, I talk to many who want to change, progress or start a career in an international organization. The whole process of looking for jobs, applying and interviewing can seem challenging and almost impossible at first glance.
Career decisions can seem confusing because people don’t see a way out of where they are now, or how to assess what to make of past jobs and experiences or don’t know which is the right path forward or just don’t know how to get to where they want to go.
Talking to a coach can help you untangle some of these brain mazes and create a sense of order that propels away onwards and forwards. If you manage your career, actively and concisely, you make it work better for you. How can you do that?
Instead of making new promises, create a plan where you set a starting point. You are already on your career and life journey, but this time you will purposefully identify where you came from to enable a plan to go forward.
Looking back will highlight successes. You will also see where you may have been surprised, perceived inadequacies and things that did not go according to plan. Start with finding the good in each challenge and get into the change frame of mind with an easy method.
Career Boost: A Method For Change
Self-evaluation is a method that is often used in performance management. If you are an employee, you have probably gone through an assessment of your accomplishments and needs for improvement. This is an exercise between two: manager and employee. The same method can be used for career growth but this time you do it just for yourself in 4 easy steps.:
Self Evaluation for Career Change
To get started on a career boost there is no time like now. This self-assessment is for you, yourself and your eyes only. It is a method for you to look at your past year to enable a plan for the coming 12 months. The self-evaluation will allow you to move onwards – a bit wiser, and more motivated to change.
- List your academic / school certifications and each job you had in chronological order. Then – highlight each accomplishment, lesson learned and the positive outcome you enjoyed in each of the jobs/experiences.
- Locate the events or things that surprised you, or unexpected encounters. List each challenge, and identify how you dealt with them. What have you learned from each career event, experience, and surprise? Look at how you enhanced your skills; coped with pressure; dealt with challenges and the support you’ve received.
- Re-label so-called issues, problems, and sad events. This shift will mentally gear you towards identifying something good in each challenge. You need to be open to how each event affected you, and how you responded to it. It’s an opportunity for some humility and kindness towards yourself, and a realization of how you can move forward when things happen. By accepting the past, you open the door for tomorrow.
- Be honest. Don’t embellish your successes, accomplishments or challenges. Think hard about what you want to take with you into your new career move. Recognize that you are not going to change what has happened, but how you can move forward to set achievable goals that you can live with. Realize how the people in your network appreciate and support you. This will make you see the bigger picture and not sweat the small stuff.
Career Boost: Assessment Analysis
Take time to do the assessment well. After all, your self-appraisal is all about you, and you’re worth it! You will gain clarity and a sense of direction by giving yourself the gift of reflection.
Once you have your list of successes and challenges, you will see what you want to keep, how to take small steps to change and most of all why happiness matters in all that we do. By opening the door to positive thinking and embracing the big picture, we move forward genuinely.
Don’t attempt to complete it in one go. Treat your self-appraisal like a work of art that builds over time. Start a journal where you write down where you are going, and how you tackle challenges. When looking back, you find a way forward by listing events, appreciating the good, realizing the difficulties and how you have coped.
Career Boost: Change Plan
With your assessment in hand, you can now see what you want to keep and change.
Now you can set a career plan and be smart about it. Working with a career coach can be helpful as you can brainstorm, get new ideas and get hands-on information about the particular career goal/job you’re targetting. Give yourself small, achievable tasks that bring you to mini goals such as adding a certification, language training or apply to jobs.
Changing career track, or getting a new job takes patience, systematic application, and tweaking of application tools. Set a time each month to review the good, positive and challenging events.
Reassess and don’t beat yourself up if something is not as expected. Get over the emotions, and adjust to keep moving forward.
Career Boost: Finding Your Way
You can always change what you aspire, but you cannot undo what has happened. Each event will give you something positive if you accept, forgive yourself and assert yourself towards forwarding movement.
If you need an injection to why you should keep at it read John Lees. He is an inspiration as he makes all previous ‘career improvement’ books look like lectures. In his book Getting a Job You Love, he takes us down the road of ‘all solutions are not the same’ and how you need to find your way to your career goal in a way that suits you. If you want resources and career coaching for an international job and other tips check out the resources below for more tips.
When you can say that: Yes! This is different – then you have changed. Change is the outcome after a transition or transformation. With careers, the long game wins. Every journey starts with one small step, and your evaluation will help you to set the roadmap by looking back to identify where you want to go.
Recommended and Related
- Tips for a Successful Mid-Career Change – the balance careers
- 8 Steps to an Utterly Successful Career Change – The Muse
- Jobs in the UN, NGOs, EU and Coaching Services – impactpool.org
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