Financial Health
Your Career Is A Trip
May 21, 2013 - 9:43:26 AM

( - There is no mystery to reaching goals. You say what you want and then you do the work to get there. If you do the work on a consistent basis, your chances of being successful increase. If you are not doing the work, your chances of being successful decrease. If you are doing the work, here and there, starting and stopping, your chances go back and forth.

Many people ask me if goal achievement can be that straight forward. I tell them YES.  When you are focusing on something, putting time and energy behind it, that's when things happen. Focus and desire is what makes career goals come true.

The process for reaching goals is similar to planning a trip. You choose a destination and then you get ready to go. You decide where you will stay and you book your hotel. You take out a map and decide on the best route to take. You decide what clothes to bring and you pack your suitcase. One step at a time; one step after another. That's how you get there.

Your career works the same way. How can you arrive at a destination unless you know where you are going? How can you reach a goal unless you know how you will arrive? How about taking this step by step approach and use it in your career? If this methodology works in one area of your life, why not apply it to another that is not working as well?

So How Do You Apply The Same Principles of Trip Planning To Your Career? Follow These 3 Steps Below.

1. Decide Where You Are Going

You cannot get to your destination unless you know where you are going. So, ask yourself, "Where am I going?" "Am I going to a new job or a new career?" Or, "Am I staying put and going to do something different where I am currently?"  (Even a stay-cation requires some planning.) These are important questions to answer. Many of my clients want to know what to do. Before we can get into logistics, I ask them what they want. You can't do what you can't see, so your first priority is to be clear about where you will end up. Do not skip this step or rush through it. All goals are reached in the mind first. You see yourself achieving your goal and that picture in your mind drives everything else.

2. Map Out Your Trip

This way you can break your goal into smaller achievable pieces. What steps or routes will you take to achieve your goal? If you want a new job, start listing what you need to do. For example, do you need an updated resume? Do you need to make changes to your social media profiles? Do you have all of your contacts in one place? If you want a new career, do you know where you will go to get additional training if needed? What are the costs of that training and how long will it take? What is the market outlook for this profession and the salary you can realistically expect? How many people do you want to talk to in the field to get a sense of what it is really like? If you want to do something differently where you are such as proposing a new idea or strategy, do you have the benefits or costs savings/revenue potential figured out? Do you have an idea of the resources needed to accept your idea? How long will implementation take? The clearer the steps, the easier they are to take.

3. Get Going (And Be Prepared For Delays)

Now that you have everything mapped out, it's time to take your trip.  Take one step every day, no matter what. That's how you will reach your goal.

Hopefully everything on your trip (and your journey) will run smoothly. It is ok if it does not. For example, if you were driving in your car and got lost, you would eventually stop and ask for directions. The same principle applies here. If you get stuck, ask for help. No man (or woman) is an island and goals are not meant to be reached alone. Sometimes there are delays (either internal or external). Figure out what's needed then get back on the road and keep going. As long as you keep driving, you will get there. The reward for your perseverance is a wonderful career filled with memories that will last a lifetime.

So, what do you say? You only have one life to live, so it might as well be a life you love!

***Deborah Brown-Volkman, PCC, is the President of Surpass Your Dreams, Inc. a successful career, life, and mentor coaching company that works with Senior Executives,  Vice Presidents, and Managers who are looking for new career opportunities or seek to become more productive  in their current role. She is the author of "Coach Yourself To A New Career", "Don't Blow It! The Right Words For The Right Job" and "How To Feel Great At Work Everyday."  Deborah can be reached at or at(631) 874-2877.***


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