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Career tip: Stop Staring at Your Alligators

CAREER TIP: Stop Staring at Your Alligators
Do you keep threatening to pursue your truest passions – but can’t seem to find the time, energy and courage to motivate?

I relate. Truly! I wasn’t always a full-time writer. Over a decade ago I was a Sr. Vice President Creative Director in advertising, who was always threatening to quit my high-paying, high-stressing, low-free-time job to pursue my passion for writing.

But I was like the girl who cried wolf. Always saying I was gonna quit—but not doing it.

Admittedly there was a huge part of me that was afraid.

Not just about the money angle. I was afraid to let go of a lovely fantasy about a parallel universe in which I existed as “Happy-Go-Lucky Author Girl.”

I was afraid to potentially risk giving up this fantasy – in case my fantasy didn’t come true.

Chogyam Trungpa wrote:

“True fearlessness is not the reduction of fear; but going BEYOND fear…by fear-less we don’t mean ‘less fear’ but ‘beyond fear.'”

I knew I needed to get to this beyond-fear place.

Here’s how I did did my fear busting.

You know how it’s easier to walk a plank that’s on solid ground, instead of one that’s plunked above an alligator-infested lagoon — because the fear of those yapping hungry alligators makes you less focused on what you desire?

The same is true with your career.

You must avoid staring at your metaphorical alligators, and instead stay focused on your supporting plank, which in careerland is composed of two strong fibers:

(1) Your confidence — what you know you have going for you

(2) Your passion — what know you really want

When I finally did quit my ad career, it was because I finally stopped staring at my metaphorical alligators – which for me were:

“I’ll never be a published book author! Heck, I’ve never even written one itty bitty magazine piece! Geez, what will I do for income if I fail – afterall, I have a child to support… MYSELF!”

Instead I focused on my supporting plank:

my confidence (in my writing-skills, discipline, persistence, resilience, optimism, meeting people, learning quickly, following-through) and my passion (my excitement to be a writer in a BIGtime way!)

YOUR ASSIGNMENT:

If you’re stuck in a job you hate it’s probably because you’re staring at your metaphorical-alligators.

Today re-focus on your supporting plank.

Make a list of your areas of high self esteem and reasons for high passion.

Whenever fear strikes, strike back with these lists!


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Karen Salmansohn (Founder)

Hi I’m Karen Salmansohn, founder of NotSalmon. My mission is to offer you easy-to-understand insights and tools to empower you to bloom into your happiest, highest potential self. I use playful analogies, feisty humor, and stylish graphics to distill big ideas – going as far back as ancient wisdom from Aristotle, Buddhism and Darwin to the latest research studies from Cognitive Therapy, Neuro Linquistic Programming, Neuroscience, Positive Psychology, Quantum Physics, Nutritional Studies – and then some.

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