This week I started a wonderful new job working with some phenomenally talented people, managing a complex, statewide, volunteer-driven policy initiative. It would probably fill up my heart and soul no matter the timing, but I’m back on the job after two years of time away from the office. Its significance at this point in my life is big.
It’s always advised to “take some time between jobs,” but often this means a couple of weeks. These past two years have been a great luxury, and helped me sort out the goals and objectives I want most to achieve in my work. In a sense, I have been working during the time away from the office, but the project was myself. The whole process got me thinking about two types of reflection.
There is the looking at the past, and analyzing and evaulating the decisions and results; there is also what we see of ourselves in other people around us. They may be clients or colleagues, but those closest to us eventually have a significant impact on our sense of self, and our ability to bring our dreams from thoughts to realities. The length of time I had away from my own old patterns made it impossible for me to deny the changes I needed to make. While it is surely easier to wish others would change, in the end it is always us who needs to alter what is happening in our own lives.
If you are struggling with needing to make a change, you might not need the extensive time I took to get there. You might just need encouragement and validation! Below are some questions that may help you get there more quickly:
Where do you see your reflection? In evaluation by others, in your own ability to steer your professional ship, in the kinds of clients you attract, in your paycheck, in your relationships with your co-workers? When you pinpoint your most common reflection, does it ring true, or do you want to see yourself somewhere else?
What one change could you make within yourself to see more of the person you want to be?
This post first appeared on www.corporateidealist.com on August 14, 2009. Photo credit: