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Stop Asking for Career Advice

This lesson is a part of an audio course What to Do When You Hate Your Job by Lindsay Hanson

How did you get into a job you hate in the first place? Likely by listening to other people telling you it would be a great career path, or a stable job, or that it pays well.

Maybe you didn’t know what you wanted to do, so you looked to other people for answers. When I was 18 years old, I felt like I didn’t have any real passions and I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. All I knew was that I was good at math, and that every adult I knew was telling me accounting would be a great career path, that I’d always have a job, and that it pays well. And that’s how I ended up in my quarter life crisis.

It’s important to look at who you’re asking for career advice. Like we talked about in Lesson 2, the majority of people hate their job. Or at least, the majority of people are not doing work that brings them a sense of purpose & fulfillment. And the reason they’re settling in their career is that they don’t believe that dream job is realistic or attainable for them. So what do you think their advice is going to be if you ask them what they think about your career change?

Don’t take advice from people who aren’t living the life you want to be living.

There are two main reasons why we seek out advice from others:

  1. Validation – we want to get validation that it’s a good idea for us to pursue a certain career path or make a change in our lives. Maybe you have doubts about whether you can trust yourself to make the right decision, and so you ask others for advice. Maybe you’re afraid of what people will think if you quit your job or change careers or launch your business, and so you’re seeking out that approval from others.
  2. Certainty – we want to make sure we’ve considered all the options and that we’re certain we’re making the right decision.

There are two problems with this.

  1. There’s no objective right or wrong decision. We are the ones deciding whether we’ve made the wrong choice.
  2. If you’re looking for external validation of your ideas, then you’ll always limit yourself to someone else’s story of what’s possible for your life.

Let me give you some examples:

  • JK Rowling got rejected by 12 publishers before she published Harry Potter
  • Kobe Bryant’s guidance counselor told him it was a bad idea to pursue basketball

So what would have happened if these people listened to those who were telling them they were making the wrong decision?

If you want to live an extraordinary life, it’s not going to make sense to other people. It won’t seem realistic or logical. You are the only one responsible for believing in your dream – other people’s approval is not required.

And if no one’s ever called you crazy, maybe you’re not dreaming big enough. And that’s why you’re feeling like you’re not fulfilling your true potential.

If you’re seeking the approval of others, you’re likely living a very small, practical, average life. And you’re probably not feeling fulfilled – which is why you find yourself listening to this course.

Looking for the answers externally is what got you here, so the key to creating the life you want is silencing all the noise & turning inward; getting clear on what you truly desire. You don’t need any other information. You already have the answers inside of you. Trust your desires, even if they feel a little bit crazy.

I want you to answer the question I asked in Lesson 1: if you knew you’d succeed at whatever career path you chose, what would you want to do?

Coming from someone who quit her accounting job to start an online coaching business with no prior experience in coaching or business – your dream might not be as crazy as you think.

In the next lesson, we’re gonna talk about how to find happiness while you’re still in a job that you hate.

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Written by

Lindsay Hanson