What completely engages you in your work?

imagesWhat is it you find yourself doing when you’re completely engrossed and the time just passes by and you have to remind yourself to stop to eat and before you know it the morning has turned into evening and you can still continue with what you’re doing into the night. For me, lately it’s writing and I say lately as I suppose part of me wonders if this is just a passing phase and if my thought process will dry up soon.

Why do I want to write? Because as Colin Firth said in his role as George V1 in the ‘Kings Speech’ ‘I have a voice’ and I’m discovering writing to be a great expression of that, and being the reflective soul I am, writing is a more natural medium for me to get my thinking out there, as opposed to impromptu speaking– as Mark Twain once said ‘it takes me three weeks to prepare for an impromptu speech’

My professional/personal development is important to me, as I expect it is for many people and for some of you it will be an important perk of the job, i.e. you’re fortunate that support to continue to progress and develop your career is part of your reward package. However what do you do if the training budget has been frozen, or like me you need to fund your own learning and development or you want to develop skills for something you aspire to do in the future and can’t get buy in from your HR department to approve this because they can’t see how it will support you in your current role and actually you don’t really want them to know about it anyway.

The good news is there are ways to gain skills that will serve you in progressing your career path in the direction of your choice and this can be done in a manner that fits into your life/work and is cost effective.

For example once I knew I wanted my next career to be about supporting individuals in their career learning and development (In a previous life I worked in Investment Banking) I undertook studies in Career Coaching and Career Management at Birbeck University. This was a significant investment but knowing the work I aspired to do, I knew to be able to support others I needed a good theoretical foundation that I could then personalise to my client needs. This has led me to where I am and I’m thoroughly enjoying my client work and learn so much through my clients.

And so to continue my own learning and development and move my career in the direction I want to, I’ve identified that I want to develop my research and development skills along with my writing skills and for the moment I’m not going to invest in any specific training to do this but instead I’m adapting a hands on approach of just getting stuck in and building a little of this into my day/week .

The purpose of this is to become a specialist in my area by staying up to date with what’s going on in my industry and discovering new ways of doing things and as a result be able to support my clients in a manner that draws on expertise, is fresh, interesting, creative, innovative and fun.

Other areas I want to develop are my technical ability, and my marketing skills – in the past I have to admit to being a little phobic about technology. So, to facilitate this development need, I built my first websites and I’m learning all about social media and I have to say I’m really enjoying it and of course it’s a double whammy because along the way I’m developing my business and my business skills – so a win/win really.

If I can do it so can you, just think about what you’re doing when you’re completely engaged and build more of this into your day and think about the skills you want to develop and you’ll find ways to take a hands on approach to make this happen.

And what if as an aspiring writer my thought process does dry up and I develop writer’s block as they say, well that’s when the romantic side of me kicks in and I think I’ll take myself off to a beautiful location, perhaps a French or Italian home that  has a vineyard for a backyard… My creative juices are sure to flow once more – or it might just seem that way a vintage or two later!

Evolving Careers Players can help you manage and develop your career. We deliver 121 career coaching, group learning and development, and outplacement services. We devise community forum theatre, corporate drama workshops and role-play scenarios. http://www.evolvingcareerslayers.com Get in touch to discuss your needs: carmel@evolvingcareersplayers.com

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