Warning: Ignore this career advice at your own peril.
Every day, I talk to clients who have given their everything to a career path.
You’ve given your all. You’ve sacrificed all your time, energy, focus, family, even your very soul until you accomplished the vision of what you want your career to be.
Then, it’s shocking find that you arrive at that aspirational place, yet, you feel like a failure at heart.
“What’s wrong with me?”
Did you ever ask that question?
How could this be? How can you be so accomplished, yet, feel like you’ve failed?
When you’re climbing the career ladder, you run on adrenaline. You become single-minded, focused on that financial and status goal.
Then, when you have the money and the status, you’re shocked to find out that having those things do not fix your deepest problems.
People think money and status will solve all their life problems and dissatisfactions. To get them, they distance themselves from experiencing joy, balance, and take time to build deep, healthy connections.
They arrive at “success,” and realize that the joy, love, acceptance, and connections are what they really want, only to find out that ironically, these are the exact things that money and status cannot buy for them.
This is how you get trapped in the box of success you built for yourself; crippled from freely living out your values, and cut off from making the kinds of contributions you deeply dream of.
The chase for money and status seem to die off, and now you feel empty.
You have a rock in the pit of your stomach when you realize that the chase was just about chasing your own tail… winning for the sake of winning, fixating on a goal without being aware of where that race is taking you.
“All This… For What?”
Once you ask yourself this question, you can no longer generate the energy and will power to move forward. Questions swirl around in your head.
You wonder how to change your life before it’s too late. Or is it already too late?
You ask yourself questions like ‘what is my purpose?” and “what is the best career for me?”
How do you follow your dreams when you’ve forgotten what they are?
Well, I’m here to help you answer those questions.
Finding your purpose is about leaving a legacy.
Legacy is a word that you don’t often think about in your 20’s, 30’s, and even in your 40’s.
When you hear the word “legacy,” and it reminds you of funeral homes and life insurance payouts that you never get to spend. Nobody wants that.
But the true meaning of ‘legacy’ couldn’t’ be more different.
Paying attention to this powerful word is a game changer.
It will save you decades of chasing and wins that in the end, come to feel like a loss.
It will save you decades of time, energy, and focus, that at the finish line, can suck you dry of your deepest joy and satisfaction.
No more career mistakes: The legacy you want to leave behind is your guiding compass
How we look at life as a society is creating a living hell, even for those of us who have it “good.” We think that retirement is the time when we can do what we really want. We spend 5 to 6 decades complying to a structure, shutting ourselves off from what we really want, all because we’ve never seen an extraordinary example of what is even possible.
“Is anyone truly happy in their career?”
And when we do witness an extraordinary character, we like to decide that they are un-relatable, and therefore, their achievements are not an example that can be followed.
There’s a saying that goes, ‘If you ask the right questions, you’ll get the right answers.’
It’s likely that you aren’t asking the right questions at all.
- “Can I really have a career that I absolutely love?”
- “Can I really earn a great living doing what I find the most enjoyable?”
- “Can I really influence thousands and millions of people in this particular area that I am passionate about?”
- “Do I have to be married with kids to be successful?”
- “What do I want to do with my life?”
- “Can I have an extraordinary career while spending lots of quality time as a wonderful parent?”
- How do you even know when you’re making a career mistake?
These are hard questions, because first, you need to see a. picture of what is possible, in order to pursue it.
Any desires that don’t meet your current definition of “possible” get ignored by your conscious brain.
And often, the biggest career mistakes often feel like a perfect fit when you start to pursue it.
Your deepest desires are swimming in the ocean of your subconscious. Once in a while, it comes up to the surface desperate for breath. It makes itself visible, and whispers in your ear to let you know what you really want.
Most of us are set in our ways of thinking about success and how life should play out. We believe we already know what is possible in this lifetime.
This voice of truth in our subconscious surfaces at the most inconvenient times, so you shove it back into the deep ocean. We violently shove it back down, as it gasps to be acknowledged.
You move on, continuing to chase, continuing to meet the next milestone, quota, position, income, even career changes based on the next chase target. The voice in your subconscious cries, like a helpless, lone and ignored baby, then goes into a deep, dormant sleep.
At the most inconvenient times, the voice wakes up again. These are times when the perfectly constructed life is no longer working for you. The masks of reality are falling off, much like an improperly secured movie set. The majestic, aspirational picture you’ve been chasing, you realize, is just a painting.
Hell on Earth looks like this:
- The money you acquired is the result of putting up with many messes and deep pains that betrays your values.
- You lose something important to you, like a spouse, a parent, a child, your health, a lifestyle or that dear job that you sacrificed for and put everything into.
- When the masks are peeled off and life as you know it is over, you realize that you’re alone with that quiet voice desiring something else, yet again. And dealing with that voice makes you angry and terrifies you at the same time.
“The idea is not to live forever, but to create something that will.” – Andy Warhol
This is the story of the majority of the population. This won’t be your story, however, if you continue to read on and take on what I have to say on nipping this issue in the bud.
You are free to “Have it all,” only if you would allow it.
Not to mention, only if you are willing to have the patience required.
The key is to pay attention to what kind of legacy you want to leave behind.
Ask yourself these questions:
- What do you want to be known for?
- Who do you want with you at the end of your life?
- What do you want them to say about you?
- How many people do you want to influence with this magical gift that you have?
- How do you change their life in a way no one else can?
When you use your legacy as a guiding compass to the decisions you make day to day, it enables you to find your passion, to choose how to live out, and tells you which values you must commit to daily.
From here, decisions become easy to make. You are free from obligations.
Instead, you’re choosing to honor your success and the legacy you wish to leave behind.
When you are on the path to leaving the most extraordinary legacy that makes you feel deeply satisfied, to feel so glad that you exist here right now, it doesn’t matter if you have another 10 years or 60 years to live.
Every moment is a contribution, and it charges you up, energizes you, and you create certainty in what you do, and what you’re building.
If everyone honestly listened to that quiet voice from the subconscious and made their decisions based on their legacy, meaning, their end-game-goal, all mid-life crisis would be eliminated.
Mental health issues would decrease exponentially.
And you wouldn’t be putting off happiness as something to experience some other time, while letting the opportunities of the present pass you by.
If you’d like to get started on this journey, you can download my free Legacy Accelerator to map out your current state, and to gain clarity on moving forward.
If you want more, reading my book “Am I There Yet” will help you understand the process of finding your path, and accelerating and thriving in it.