Halloween is upon us and we think of scary things. During the rest of the year, many people are frightened by their failures lurking in the past ready to resurface and take over. They feel fear and when anyone is fearful, it is hard to take steps to move forward. You keep waiting for the next failure to happen, next thing to go wrong, until it consumes you and you can’t possibly be successful.
Don’t let the past fears take charge
I’ve had multiple conversations with clients recently where we discussed the danger of defining yourself by what went wrong. Learning from your mistakes is fine but if you are always looking over your shoulder, you can’t look forward at the same time. I know that I have had to reinvent myself multiple times throughout my life. When I was young, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do. I thought my interest in criminal law and experiences in psychology and sociology classes was propelling me to a career as a criminal attorney. But that didn’t fit and I came back home from college and landing in banking (savings and loan at the time).
You can reinvent yourself
Four years in that role with two different financial institutions in two different states was interesting but it wasn’t the right fit either so my new husband and I accepted a role we could do together as property managers of a new WHEDA or HUD project. It combined my financial and writing background with Bill’s construction and maintenance background. For five years in Wausau and another 9 months in Naperville, IL with a luxury complex under development, it worked but wasn’t really the right fit.
We came home and I looked at opportunities but the right fit seemed to open my resume business once again. The sideline business that had emerged when we were in Wausau with the HUD project seemed like a good opportunity to combine my writing with my love of working with people. But family members didn’t think I could make it on resumes alone so non-profit contracts were added to the mix.
As much as I enjoyed helping people with the multiple non-profit organization’s projects, I found myself stuck both economically with contracts that were not a match for our financial needs and the inability to grow my business because there was no time outside of the non-profit work to learn and apply marketing concepts.
In December 2009, I reinvented me once again. With a primary and sole focus on the career industry, I grabbed hold of as many career industry resources as I could manage. I hired a wonderful marketing coach who taught me the basics of marketing and combined it with ways to make myself visible. I am still on this journey and it continues to evolve.
This is why I can confidently tell clients that you can’t let fears or failures take over. You just reinvent yourself and start over. There is no age limit to success unless you put it there. You take the talents God gave you, add additional study and learn, master new technologies, and step forward.
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