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Career Change and Puppies?! The 5 Minute Career Coach December 2009 Update
December 15, 2009

Helping Career Changers Around The World

December 2009 Update


One of the challenges of writing the 5 Minute Career Coach is coming up with ideas for articles twice a month. Initially I was a bit concerned that this might be a struggle, but I have found that by just getting into the habit of keeping my eyes and ears open, there are actually lots of sources of inspiration out there. I am constantly on the lookout for themes and ideas and it is amazing the range of things can crop up and set a line of thought in motion.

So what has been the trigger this month?

Try this one for size.

On December 13th we welcomed Bertie into our household. Bertie is a Welsh Springer Spaniel puppy. As you can imagine, our lives have become somewhat chaotic and we are currently being ruled by the needs of this tiny bundle of fur and energy. I am sure that those of you who have had puppies will know exactly how time consuming this can be. Not much mental space left for thinking about career changers, perhaps?

So how on earth can I make a link between puppies and career change?

Well actually it is not so difficult (or maybe my mind just happens to operate in convoluted ways!) and a couple of themes have already occurred to me.

Puppies love life

If there is one thing that a puppy represents above all others, it is unbridled enthusiasm for life. They absolutely live in and for the moment and everything they encounter is a great adventure. They never stop to think if they 'could' or 'should' chew that slipper – they just go ahead and do it!

Now I realise that this kind of puppyish enthusiasm is not appropriate for every occasion, but I often think we would be better off if we could allow ourselves to revisit it a bit more often. It can be a great way of helping you to think creatively about your career change options. What kind of work could you do that would make you feel a puppyish delight? What would you do if you just cast aside the words 'could' and 'should' and did it anyway – just like Bertie?

Changes take time to take root

And the other theme? For us, the next few weeks and months will be hard work as we gradually shape Bertie into the kind of dog who will be a pleasure to have around. We have done it before and we know it will be a while before he has learned how to fit into human society. Yes, it nearly always takes time to make the changes you want happen. There is no quick fix. It takes patience and perseverance, and there will be challenges and difficulties along the way (as well as chewed slippers!) – but it all pays off in the long run.

What will keep us going is the thought of the well trained and sociable adult dog who we will be able to take anywhere. And for you as a career changer, remember that this too takes time, but keep your mind fixed on how it will be for you when you have overcome the obstacles and created a working life that feels much more true to who you really are as a person. Don't you think it will be worth it?

Well, I hope that raised a smile if nothing else!

As this is the last edition of the 5 Minute Career Coach before Christmas, let me wish all of you a happy and peaceful festive season. I hope you are able to take some time to relax and recharge your batteries so that you are ready to face 2010 with the same kind of enthusiasm as Bertie!

With very best wishes

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