04/19/2022 by Kori Burkholder
6 Steps To Create a Career Vision To Reach Your Professional Goals
Missing from Wanda’s life and career was excitement, appreciation, and meaningful connections to people. When I first met Wanda she shared,” I've been where I am so long and never thought about how to articulate what skills I bring to the table or what environment I’d like to be in”.
As our work evolved, she could decipher how she wanted to grow at work and what she wanted to take on next in her life. She said,” It was good to go through that reflection. At work, I’ve taken on more of a leadership role. I’m more objective, anticipate the needs of others, and communicate non-intimidating way. I feel wiser!”
After we did the Future Self visualization, Wanda came out of it. She burst out with excitement and conviction,” I want to create an experience for children and adults that educates them on “life is a performance.” Then, she sat back and reflected on the words that had escaped from her mouth.
I told her,” I hear you! It’s so loud and clear.”
She laughed, and her shoulders relaxed, and said,” that thought is no longer held prisoner, but I’m also scared. This is real.” Her statement, “life is a performance," became her career vision, leading her through the following year's ups and downs of writing and producing an Off-Broadway show.
We explored the depths of where this desire came from and what it means to her. It was, in fact, REAL. The secret was out, and it was time to tell others about it. I encouraged her to start sharing it with her family and friends as much as possible.
Our words make it a reality, and opportunities show up as people hear us. So Wanda started declaring it to anyone who'd listen, and sure enough, she found a business partner. So that was it, game on!
And of course, she’s scared! She’s heading into new territory. Thoughts like, “how will I pull this off with my day job? I have to write it. I have to find a place to hold it, find the actors, do the readings, market it, make a website, fill the seats, etc.”
Her Inner critics automatically perked up and said,” RED ALERT!! Time to go on duty! A new experience is on the horizon. We don’t want Wanda to get hurt, embarrassed, and fail. We must keep her safe and find all the reasons in the book to keep her safe at her job. We can’t let her rock the boat.”And on and on they will go!
Having a plan and a career vision usually tames the Inner Critics. So Wanda and I got to work. First, we worked on the more tactile pieces of building a solid 12-month plan.
She wrote and produced, and successfully launched her first Off-Broadway play six months later. Six months after that, she left her 20+ year career in Sales and found a new, less demanding job so she could launch her 2nd Off-Broadway play to a sold-out audience!
Reflecting on the year, she shares, “Overall, I have a more positive mindset, and I learned how to work against a deadline in theatre with a whole new outlook on life. I have the confidence to make decisions, be ok with those decisions, and not be afraid that they won't work. I feel calmer and less stressed because now I’m fine with watching the process naturally unfold”.
For Wanda, there were times during the year when the venue fell through, an actor didn’t show up for rehearsal, or a producer pulled funding.
She said that she would frequently refer to her career vision,” I want to create an experience for children and adults that educates them on “life is a performance,” which inspired her to keep going despite the challenges.
“Before, doing theater just lived in my mind until I decided to do it. Of course, there was a fear, but I learned to work through it. The need to do theatre had finally been validated”.
Having a career vision lights the way, especially in times of doubt when the Inner Critics get loud, a place to come back to for inspiration, and when you need that extra burst of energy.
Declaring the career vision to others opens up new possibilities with whoever you share it with.
Wanda shares her journey,” I am so proud of myself, and I have a new life, and it’s not what I thought it would be a year ago!”
What would you like your career vision and success story to be in one year? Think about your biggest desires that you'd like to achieve in your career or even for a passion project like Wanda's Off-Broadway vision.
Now it's your turn to create your Career Vision Statement that inspires and guides you. Try this journaling exercise.
- Write down your goals and dreams: Ask yourself this question: if money wasn't an issue, what would I do career-wise? Don't hold back or worry about the how's at this point.
- Details and feelings: Spend some time with the details and emotions. What are you doing? Who are you with? What are you producing? What kind of impact are you making on others? What skills are you utilizing? Who do you get to be? What is the environment you are in? Where are you?
- Values check: Take some time to review your values and ensure this vision aligns with your values. Your values are the foundation of your life and help guide big decisions.
- Break this down into actionable steps: You may get overwhelmed and stop if you don't do this. Wanda's Inner Critic was consumed with the details, but she just started by simply sharing her vision with others, which attracted her business partner.
- Vision Statement: Create a cohesive statement or an affirmation that encaptures the essence of your journaling. Your Vision Statement will act as your guiding light moving forward.
- Declare it: Start sharing it with others. The sharing is where the magic and synchronicities happen. I can't tell you how many times I've heard success stories after sharing dreams and goals. So start by sharing it in the private Facebook group!
There you have it, your guiding light to lead you towards the direction of your dreams and goals. I can't wait to read yours in the Facebook group.
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