Article by Dawn Crossingham – Associate at Appleby Associates

In the midst of a busy life, it is hard to take time aside to analyse career or business direction, yet allocating quality time regularly ensures that you are in control of life’s events, rather than events controlling you.

For many of us, we only start to look at career options when life changes and we are forced to analyse our direction when faced with redundancy, ill-health or family pressures.

How exciting therefore to be employed, happy and healthy, CHOOSING to make some fundamental changes to your life. Mark a turning point in how you live your life and make the future a decision YOU MAKE rather than a default. Give yourself the chance to ponder, reflect and undertake some soul-searching to extend mental horizons and delve deeper into what matters to you with regards to your motivations and dreams for your whole life. Take the opportunity to wrestle with the questions; why am I here? What is my mission in life? And CHOOSE to find THE unique work that only YOU can accomplish.

Maybe you want more than to plod through life, going to work and coming home from work and want to recapture the joy of younger years.

For many of us finding our vocation in life is something we postpone until near retirement, unless we have had an epiphany which has forged our career path. But even then we become jaded with age and politics and maybe need to redefine our goals and ambitions.

Fear is often a contributory factor in changing career, yet fear is often what keeps us tied to a job we have held for years. As the title of this piece implies and Joan of Arc also said “I am not afraid…I was born to do this.”, and this is the essence of my writing.

When you take the time to find what you are excited about, and when you allow yourself to do what you; your skills, gifting, motivation, personality and charisma are designed to do, then your work is your passion, you awake to live your life not exist, you do not need to surrender WHO YOU ARE but you can be the person you want to be.

I have met many disaffected mature adults, who were so often told as a child that they were not good enough, or shouldn’t aspire to be something great, indeed were often told they were difficult, disruptive, too loud or too quiet, you get the picture. Yet we are all different and can fulfil different roles in society.

For every difficult child, who won’t take your word for things and is socially ‘difficult’ as a child, there is possibly a philosopher, architect or logician budding, 3% of the country (may be an INTP © MBTI) such as Albert Einstein or Charles Darwin.

For every loud, extrovert child who has lots of friends, a ‘strong’ personality and is sensitive, ‘wearing his heart on his sleeve’ there is possibly a natural mentor who radiates authenticity, concern and is socially popular, (an ENFJ ©MBTI) such as Maslow, Oprah Winfrey and Nelson Mandela.

And what of dreamers such as Shakespeare (INFP ©MBTI) or individuals such as Stephen Hawking, Bill Gates, Richard Branson, (ENTJ ©MBTI)?

Each person has their own personality type combined uniquely with their upbringing, likes, dislikes, beliefs and skills, and let’s be honest we all have our own strengths and weaknesses. Yet this combination of who we inherently are designed to be is often neglected and we fulfil roles often being described as a ‘square peg in a round hole’.

If you feel this perfectly describes you, then maybe you need to start the career path again. Employ a career consultant’s time to assist you and ensure you spend the rest of your working life, being who you could be.