You've embarked on a major career
transition and your enthusiasm is growing. Just when you get
a small fire going, someone comes along with a heavy wet blanket.
"You'll hate it."
"I turned down that job two years ago, but it's perfect
"Nobody makes a living that way."
to Transform Wet Blankets into Comfort Quilts.
"Calm under pressure"
is a skill you can learn, and it gives you power. I used to flinch when people were critical
until I worked with Rick, an Air Force veteran who had seen more
action than he cared to admit.
When a bullying administrator
yelled, Rick would laugh.
"It's just noise," he would say, "not enemy aircraft."
And he'd bounce right back into his next idea.
Recognize the champion in the critic. . By investing time
and energy to insult you, your critic acknowledges you have strength
and power. Be proud!
The universe just sent you
a coach! Dancers and
athletes learn that coaches do not waste time on losers. Dancers
get detailed "corrections" and researchers get vilified.
Pat Summitt, award-winning coach
of Tennessee's Lady Vols, warns recruits that she yells only
at the best players. It's when she stops yelling that you need
Use humor. When I told a colleague I was considering
jobs outside academia, he suggested I visit the campus psychiatrist.
Next, he recommended a career
guidance book designed for people seeking their very first full-time
position after completing a doctoral degree.
I was insulted. Then I decided
to have some fun. I surfed around and found reviews of half a
dozen books that he could read. One was a mentoring guide for
He got the message, I felt great and we're still friends.
Pay attention to your own
fears. "You'll hate
living there," your friend predicts. And, privately, you
wonder if he's right.
"What if there's nothing
to do in that tiny little town? Can I handle eighty degrees and
humid? What if I can't get another job?"
Your Inner Critic chimes in with,
"What makes you think you can run your own business?"
and your trusted advisors turn into wet blankets.
Finally, use imagery. . As you feel a wet blanket smother
your fire, replace it with a soft, light, warm quilt. Be warm,
comfortable and protected as you complete your journey.
Don't worry about saying "I
told you so!" to the wet blankets. By the time you've achieved
your dream, you'll have only dim memories of that soggy heap
in the corner.
Cathy Goodwin, Ph.D.
Author, Career Consultant, Speaker
*Fast Track to Career Freedom*