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Welcome to Mission #49 of our 52 Get Organized Missions.
In this mission we’re going to do some power career planning or business planning – depending on your goals.
If you want to change career or start a business then this mission is a great place to begin. By the end of these 30 minutes, you’ll have gained useful insights into finding your passion, and have created a mini career plan or business plan for realizing your career or business goals.
Remember: you only need 30 minutes for the basic mission. Extended Options are below.
If you’re new, you might like to start here -> 52 Organizing Missions.
Organizing Mission #49:
Find Your Business or Career Passion
Get yourself a pen and some paper, or open a new document on your computer, and get comfortable.
Step 1: What Is Your Passion? (15 minutes)
First up, create 5 columns, and give them these headings:
- Good at
- Gives meaning
- Always interested in
- Business or career opportunities.
Now for each of the following 5 questions, list your answers in the corresponding columns. Jot down single words or short phrases – no long-winded sentences or navel-gazing.
Answer quickly and don’t overanalyze.
1. What do you enjoy doing?
- Things you do in your spare time
- Hobbies and pastimes
- What you like doing at work
- Tasks that give you pleasure.
2. What are you good at?
- Things that people compliment you about
- Anything you’ve won awards or prizes for
- Jobs were you’ve excelled
- Skills that come naturally to you.
3. What gives you a sense of meaning in your life?
- Ideas that matter to you
- Anything without which your life feels empty
- Anything that makes you feel like you’re on a mission
- Anything that drives you.
4. What have you always been interested in?
- What’s common to the books you like to read
- What’s common to the movies you like to watch
- What you were interested in as a child
- What you love to talk about.
5. What business or career opportunities are you aware of?
- The people you know
- The changes you observe in the economy, technology, etc
- Ideas you’ve wondered about
- Ideas other people have stimulated.
When you’ve got your lists, take a good look at all the answers you’ve come up with. Search for common threads. Notice anything that comes up more than once, even if you’ve used different words to describe it.
You might find an ‘obvious’ (in retrospect) theme that recurs through many of these areas – like a love of teaching that’s been there since you were a kid and shows through in your favorite movies and sense of meaning.
Or you may identify several possibilities.
Either way, pick one or two areas that resonate with you for the next step.
Step 2: Your Passion Plan: Gathering Info (15 minutes)
Now we’ll create a plan for exploring your passion.
First, for each area you’ve tagged for further investigation, make a list of exploratory tasks you can do to learn more.
For instance, could you:
- Read books or articles on career change or starting a business in general
–> Visit Amazon, a good bookstore or your local library
- Read books or articles on your area of interest
–> Are there any trade magazines or publications?
- Take a part–time course in your area of interest
–> Contact your local college or see what’s available online
- Talk to people who work in your area of interest
–> If you don’t know anyone, ask friends if they know someone they can put you in touch with
- Talk to people who know a lot about your area of interest
–> Offer to take someone for coffee or lunch and have your questions prepared
- Talk to your family, friends or mentors about this potential career change or business idea
–> Make it clear that you’re only in the exploratory stage and simply information-gathering
- Talk to a career coach about career change or to a business coach about this business idea
–> A session or two with an experienced coach can help you gain clarity.
Next, make a list of questions you need to answer from the above sources. What do you need to know in order to decide whether/how to proceed?
For instance, you’ll probably want to find out:
- What skills and knowledge would you need that you don’t have?
–> Would you have to re-train? Go back to school? Complete a part-time program?
- What are the opportunities, realistically?
–> Do very few people succeed in this field? Does it take years before you earn an income?
- What financial resources would you need?
–> Would you need money to support yourself while an intern? Would you need a full-time or part-time job while starting a business?
Your plan of information-gathering tasks and questions to be answered is a great starting point for investigating your business idea or career change.
As you learn more, your information-gathering plan will change and perhaps take you in new directions. That’s great! The important thing is that you now have a point of entry into what you love, what you’re good at, and where opportunities lie.
You’re on the way!
Dos & Don’ts
- Don’t let a critical voice in your head stop you from listing anything you like in Step 1. The information-gathering plan will help you determine whether ideas are viable – so leave judgment until then.
- Do be prepared to do your research into potential business or career ideas. Step 2 helps you get specific and focused about what you need to know. It could save you a great deal of stress, time, money, and family drama.
Extended Organizing Mission Options
Want to go beyond this 30-minute organizing mission?
- Do this mission with a bunch of friends. Support and encourage each other in identifying potential business or career ideas in Step 1, and brainstorming exploratory tasks and questions in Step 2.
- If you feel it would be helpful, do this mission with your older high-school kids. Take your time with each of the steps, encouraging your kids to think about their answers in Step 1, and helping them to come up with ideas in Step 2.
Ready, Set, Go!
Remember – move quickly, act fast, don’t overthink.
Before You Go: Check In!
Please add a comment to say you’ve completed this week’s Get Organized Mission and you’re keeping your commitment.
And see you back here next week!
Did You Know
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Click here to sign up for 52 Organizing Missions.
[Image: by decafinata]