Friday, January 4, 2008

The Perfect Job

Many people start looking for a new job at this time of year. When a subscriber wrote to ask me how I would go about job seeking, I posed myself the question and realized that I'm not so much a job seeker as a job attractor.

When I need a job, I start visualizing what I want (including working with people I resonate with) and I wait for opportunities to present themselves that "feel" right. I follow up only with those and I find that, because the feel is right for me, I interview better--and people like me, cuz I like them. I know that most companies mostly hire people they like, people they feel will fit into the climate as it is.

That's why, for me, it's always best to look, first, at what I want. Then, I look for people I like and third, I look for a working environment that suits me. This is how I put together my current working life which is a balance of part-time paid writing work, several hours a week of counseling others, leaving the rest open as free-form writing time to devote to my books and blogs. This "job" i have didn't happen overnight. It's taken several years of observing myself, taking note of what I love and don't love about the world of work, of making the decision three years ago to refuse to compromise anymore and taking a carefully considered leap of faith in favor of myself. That leap of faith paid off (as most do) with increased self-knowledge and confidence. But notice I said the leap was "carefully considered". I thought about it for a long time, weighing the options, and feeling my way toward the choices that resonated most closely with who I really am.

Along the way, prayer has always helped me and also, trying, to the best of my ability, to remove from my consciousness the idea that "there's just no work out there", an idea that limits the chances of miraculous convergence of all the things that I want.

Now, keeping in mind that winter is not the time for leaping--but is, rather, the time for tending seeds, scan back over the past year or two and ask yourself: What seeds of intention have I planted that are sleeping under the snow? Ask yourself, if anything really were possible, if money wasn't a pressing need and I had all the time in the world, what would I choose to do with my life? Open the boundaries of your idea of what a job is--and let yourself imagine, instead, ideal work. What gift would you give to the world? What skill or craft or discipline might you take up, if you had time, money, and physical freedom? What kinds of work would support your values, your "ideal" vision of a balanced world, your physical and psychological health? Think... dream.

Let the seeds that you've planted, perhaps without even realizing it, speak to you now. Listen, in this quiet, winter time. What are your seeds telling you about you, about what would make you happy?

Try not to limit your idea of yourself either. If you could be anything at all, who and what would you be?
As a picture forms, ask yourself, if I was living that life, being that version of me, how would I act? Where would I live? What would I do?

Allow yourself to dream and observe yourself as you reach the edges of what you think is possible? DO you shrink away from certain thoughts or ideas because you're afraid you're not talented, credentialed or attractive enough? Do you think you're too old, too young, too shy, too big, too small? Notice the self-concepts that limit you from crossing thresholds EVEN IN YOUR MIND and, right then, take the risk of stepping into a new IDEA.

Practice this as often as you are drawn to it. Practice all winter. And as spring arrives, melting the snow, germinating the seeds, look for the things to which you are most strongly drawn and leap toward them.

And please, please, as always, let me know how things like this work for you. I want to hear about your life, your dreams, your seeds and, when you make them, your leaps toward joy.

No comments: