Want to Make a Career Change? Ask These Questions High-Achieving Women Ask

Welcome to the final issue of the Women-In-Action series. In the previous two issues, we discussed:

While everyone else is planning where to have Christmas fun as the end of 2016 approaches; as a driven woman, you are probably planning ahead to 2017. You don’t want to settle for less than you can be. You’re ready to embark on your journey with a one-way ticket to the future. You know all the uncertainties that are waiting for you, but you know you can mitigate the risk by reading an article like this. You’re setting the stage for long-term growth.

Today we’ll cover:

  • Lean In: Overcome the Imposter Syndrome to Unlock Your Potential
  • Go All-in with Vulnerability
  • Be Happy
  • Replace Wantrapreneur with Intrapreneur or Entrepreneur

Lean In: Overcome the Imposter Syndrome to Unlock Your Potential

Imposter Syndrome is not a new topic. High-achieving women experience it all the time.

Prior to serving as Facebook Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg served as Vice President for Google, where she led global online sales and operations. She also served as Chief of Staff at the Treasury Department of the United States, after graduating from Harvard.

But, “There are still days when I wake up feeling like a fraud, not sure I should be where I am,” she admitted.

When a woman like her has faced the same challenges as you, learn from her!

Her book, Lean In, is a must-read for high-achieving women. The first chapter - The Leadership Ambition Gap - goes into: What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

Go All-in with Vulnerability

She writes: “This is vulnerability. Everything I’ve learned from over a decade of research on vulnerability has taught me this exact lesson. Vulnerability is not knowing victory or defeat, it’s understanding the necessity of both; it’s engaging. It’s being all-in.”

Brene Brown’s Daring Greatly is the next must-read for high-achieving women.

She writes, “Rather than sitting on the sidelines and hurling judgment and advice, we must dare to show up and let ourselves be seen. This is vulnerability. This is daring greatly.”

Being vulnerable and daring greatly sound beautiful. How can you apply these to your life? Learn from her.

She walks onto the stage, about to give a talk. As she waits her turn, she takes a deep breath and recites her vulnerability prayer: Give me the courage to show up and let myself be seen. Then, seconds before she is introduced, she thinks about the paperweight on her desk that reads, “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?” She pushes that question out of her head to make room for a new question. As she walks up to the stage, she whispers aloud: “What’s worth doing even if I fail?”

Be Happy

I’m grateful to be writing the Women-In-Action series for The Neon Life Society. I spend days and nights researching driven women. Every now and then, I have to hold back tears when I’m writing. I don’t know what or who I’m thinking about. Maybe it’s my mother. My wife. My sister. Or you. During the research, I spot a trait most driven women have: they’re givers, and they don’t know how to get selfish.

On a morning just like any other, Gretchen Rubin had a sudden realization: she was in danger of wasting her life. As she stared out the rain-spattered window of a city bus, she saw that the years were slipping by. “What do I want from life, anyway?”

She woke up in the middle of the night, and walked from one room to another to gaze at her sleeping husband tangled in the sheets and her daughters surrounded by their stuffed animals, all safe. She had everything she wanted - yet she was failing to appreciate it. Something was missing. She wanted to give.

Gretchen wrote The Happiness Project to discipline herself to feel grateful for her ordinary life.

She spent a year practicing singing in the morning, cleaning her closets, fighting for right, reading Aristotle, and generally having more fun. In her note to the reader:

“I hope that reading the account of my happiness project will encourage you to start your own. Whenever you read this, and wherever you are, you are in the right place to start.”

This is the third must-read for high-achieving women.

Enjoy that something burning inside of you, but also be grateful and happy for your life.

Replace Wantrapreneur with Intrapreneur or Entrepreneur

One day, sitting in a beautiful five-star hotel room in Mumbai (paid for by her company), Siobhan Barnes had a particularly challenging conference call ahead of her at 5am. She asked herself, “What am I working so hard for?”

While everything about her career and life looked great on the outside, she was miserable on the inside. She had completely lost the sense of who she was and what mattered to her.

She made a leap. In her quest to figure out her calling, she let go of her respectable job with a famous investment bank, a six-figure salary, a great job the title and credentials. She got married, had two children, embarked on her own natural skincare business, became a freelance consultant, and almost went into a business partnership. Throughout that time she failed forward into her calling.

Which brings her to where she is today: helping other women find purpose and meaning in their careers, to do work that actually matters - to them and to others.

She failed forward into her calling, from a high-paid corporate job to a freelance business; she made all the mistakes so you don’t have to.

No matter which route you’re going, either an intrapreneur or entrepreneur, Siobhan has you covered.

“I’m glad that you’re not a wantrapreneur reading this article. The journey you’re about to embark upon can be exhilarating, magical, and fun. You don’t have to go it alone,” she encourages you with love.

Ignite your calling with her guidance HERE.

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