Looking back, there have been clues that I didn’t choose my ideal career. The fact that I was roused from a deep sleep (not study-induced) by an invigilator during a microeconomics exam should have been the first indicator that commerce may not have been my true love.
Determined to make my way in the world, I took my commerce degree and spent the next 13 years in financial-services marketing. The early years were fun and exciting, but the higher up the ladder I went, the more urgently flashed Stephen Covey’s warning that my ladder might be up against the wrong wall. I dismissed it as an after-image indelibly burned on my retinas from all those eighties nightclub strobes. (Steps, anyone? Rogues?)
That was until I got married and things became more skewed – I discovered that my husband (the betrayal still smarts) enjoyed his work. Clearly, something was very wrong with one of us. Probably him, I rationalized.
Then one day I was chatting to a friend. I said, ‘You know when you’re heading back from lunch and you see a truck and you think: How cool would it be to get run over – not seriously hurt, just enough to spend a couple of weeks in hospital…’
Well, I never got to finish the thought – my friend was so alarmed I had to pretend it was a joke and change the subject. That’s when I knew it was time for financial-services marketing and I to part ways.
It took several months to work out what I wanted to do, and when I did it was so blindingly obvious that you’d think I had been hit by that truck and suffered several unsuccessful rounds of remedial frontal lobe work.
Three books were immeasurably helpful – both to me and to the many friends and family members who’ve since sought guidance in navigating their own career crossroads. Each book fills a different role, and together they make a fantastic set of resources for finding your passion – even if it turns out to be blindingly obvious.
Do What You Love, The Money Will Follow
by Marsha Sinetar
Do What you Love is like a long conversation with a wonderfully wise friend. It goes the deepest of the three books, encouraging you to think about who you are and to explore the importance of finding a way to express yourself. Don’t be scared though – I’m not a touchy-feely person and I wasn’t freaked out at all. The insights are well worth the journey.
The Money or Your Life
by John Clark
The Money or Your Life is more of a practical workbook.
It’s filled with fun cartoons, motivating quotes, thought-provoking diagrams and good common sense.
Follow Your Heart by Andrew Matthews
Andrew Matthews writes delightful books that he illustrates with great warmth, wisdom and humor. Follow your Heart is encouraging, motivating and charming. This book is the most ‘lightweight’ of the three, but is still loaded with helpful insights for the career-challenged soul.
Note: The first two are a little hard to find, so I’ve included the best links I could ferret out. The last one is easily available on Amazon or through my Happy Store.