"Go for the cake and eat it in in your life. Go for the cupakes too; they're made of the same stuff as the cake. But don't ever settle for the crumbs. Life is far too short!" Therefore, FOLLOW YOUR CALLING!
And, with cake or cupcakes, many people enjoy a cup of coffee! A dear friend from my Hawaii days, Michael Murakoshi, sent me this wonderful video link that offers a meaningful message ..."the richest person is not the one who has the most but the one who needs the least" LIFE IS LIKE COFFEE-- Author Unknown
This post will give you a new way of looking at yourself, your life, the various choices that you are facing, and also provide you with a powerful tool, a new paradigm, that will be useful for the rest of your life. If you work with children or have young children, this paradigm will help to expand their world of possibilities.
** I will be posting a free six-part video series about all these topics in 2014, for adults and youth dealing with transitions.
At the end of this post I include MY CAREER-LIFE CHANGE 12-STEP CHECKLIST ©. I suggest you read this post first, and then answer the checklist and visit the PowerPoint.
This post is dedicated to the 14-15 women who were the inaugural participants in the "Women In Transtion (WIT)" program and who were in my "career planning" class in Hawaii at Windward Community College 1976-77. You were the first participants in the WIT program that eventually expanded throughout Hawaii's community colleges and influenced many women and across all their life roles, thus touchuing the lives of countless others. Early on during our first few classes, you inspired me with powerful stories about your many life challenges, as you embarked on your journey into higher education for the first time ever as participants in a new program initiated by the federal government for "displaced homemakers"~ women who experienced a divorce or whose husbands had passed on, and needed eduction to faciliate a fresh and competitive start in life. Through your stories I realized that the traditional view of "career" as "paid work", that is still prevalent, was far too limited, and even dangerous. It does not fully encompass the reality that ALL roles ALL people play, especially women, including paid work, are valuable means of self expression and living one's calling(s), in ways that promote wellness, and contribute an abundance of gifts to the rest of our world. It was at that time I created the Career-Life Paradigm and devoted my entire professional focus on this paradigm, including my workbook, Creating Careers with Confidence. Also to my dear colleagues who were part of Hawaii's first team dealing with Women in Transition, Kathy Damon and Helen McArdle. Mahalo nui loa! EdC
This post deals with concepts that are all contained in my self-paced workbook, Creating Careers with Confidence.
IN THE BEGINNING
Whether you believe in God, angels, guides, the Buddha within, Atman, universal love and energy that unites all life, the beauty and life-force of nature, none of this, all of this, part of this—or if you have no idea at all and feel clueless—welcome to the Life Journey. The truth is that you are here right now on this planet. I believe you are here for a reason. You might agree or disagree, or you might be unsure.
I have offered thousands of workshops and classes dealing with this topic, making career-life choices and “discovering your calling”. I have learned that people with different or no faith tradition still yearn for what the research now recognizes as spirituality, a desire for more meaning and purpose and a sense that they are somehow connected to something or someone or some aspect of life that binds us all in our humanity with all that is in the universe.
The POWER of this new paradigm, CAREER-LIFE, is that it recognizes ALL LIFE ROLES (including paid work), ALL PEOPLE (women, men, girls, boys, young children, teens, young adults, adults, seniors, even homeless folks), and the ENTIRE LIFE SPAN of each person--from birth to life's completion!
The career-life paradigm VALUES each person and all the life roles they are playing, have played, and want to play someday. Because playing a role means putting time and energy into various roles, every person is always playing at least four to five roles as they are on their life journey. The main nine career-life roles are described further on.
CAREER-LIFE CHOICES and WELLNESS
While living in Boston, MA in 2011, I further re-framed 'career-life' at the Society of Vocational Psychology Internantional Conference at Boston University to "how one gives and/or receives CARE, i.e., one's special talents, interests, and values via 'caring experiences' across life roles".
Imagine that "career" is really IS the way each person gives or receives "care" using ANY of the major life roles. Also imagine that each time a person gives or receives CARE, this "caring experience" can either ALLOW or BLOCK one's personality type from being expressed in the interactions that take place within the various career-life roles. If the roles provide a good "fit" for one's personality type, we call this a congruent fit vs an incongruent fit when the roles block the individual's personality type from being expressed.
The various life roles provide potential environments into which one's personality can be released, thus resulting in an Energy Release (ER) between that person and whatever other person(s) or situation(s) are involved in these life roles. Thus, putting CARE together with the ER (energy release that can either occur or be blocked whenever we interact within these life roles), we have CARE ER or "CAREER".
The energy release (ER) involves trillions of cells that constantly interact to keep us alive and alert, regulate our circulatory system, our digestion, our ability to cope with dangerous situations, and our ability to experience pleasure, joy and fulfillment. The ensuing physiological dynamics directly affect stress levels. Depending on the congruence or incongruence of oneself with any of the nine major career-life role environments, there will occur a release of either positive or negative hormones that alter gene activity. This means that the choices we make, even our beliefs about ourselves, our relationships with others across life roles, and our ensuing behavior, can alter what researches call gene-expression. It seems remarkable that behavior can alter gene expression, and research by Dr. Herbert Benson indicates such dynamics influence our health and wellness and constantly produce changes inside our bodies. All this seems to indicate we each have opportunities to change our beliefs, make wise choices, and then behave in ways that promote wellness vs illness.
So you see, career is NOT merely what one does for pay part-time or full-time, or a long-term job, even if one truly enjoys their work. This is really called one's "work" role, and is only one of nine major life roles. Career consists of the MULTIPLE LIFE ROLES and many transitions all people experience, expressed beautifully in this link, throughout their life journey, including their CALLING(S) in ANY of these nine life roles. Career-Life is a powerful paradigm for discovering opportunities for the sharing of "caring experiences", even the HUGS given and received in this inspiring music video from Italy.
AND, career-life can be further simplified to this paradigm of Re-Framing Career to CARE so K12, college, post-grad students, all workers, the unemployed, even the homeless and incarcerated people, and special needs populations, can easily understand and apply this concept to their life journey, wherever and whenever.
The following discussion can change your life and bring more meaning into all that you do with all your career-life roles, including opening up creative ways you can earn income in your work role. Finding purpose in all that you do is an important step to having some sense of happiness, satisfaction, fulfllment and joy, even when life doesn't seem to move in the direction you wanted or expected. Life
does happen! And, every person DOES MATTER and COUNT, including YOU! When you tap into this, you tap into an amazing power with YOU, The Power of ONE, which somehow contributes to everyone and everythingelse, ALWAYS and In All Ways.
Living life with a sense of purpose and meaning means you can experience passion in life, real, authentic, deep-seeded passion for living and being! This is good---actually this is GREAT! Why don't you deserve this!!
Ideally, discover this in your work. This IS possible. And, there are several life roles in which to experience purpose, meaning, and passion, when work is not able to provide you an appropriate outlet for your desire to make a difference, your way! Your work still provides income, and that's important.
Meanwhile, if you DO desire work that provides both income AND purpose, develop a Plan B that helps you actively seek work with more purpose, as you continue to earn income from your "bridge job", an important and useful bridge to someting better.
Earlier in this post I reference a free PowerPoint currently available, and in 2014, a free six-part video series about these topics, will be posted here and on other Internet sites, including YouTube.
Imagine a multi-colored rainbow in the sky, each of the colorful bands representing a different role you play throughout your life ranging from birth on the left and moving to the right as you go through early childhood, attend and finish school, go to work, change jobs, perhaps return to school, marry and have children, continue working, retire, and at some point, come to the end of your life.
If you find yourself being covered up by larger pyramids that don’t match you, such as the wrong college major, wrong friends, wrong leisure time activities, this means that these environments do not absorb YOU (your skills, interests, and values), YOUR ENERGY, and this represents an incongruent fit. You should consider eliminating them from your life, and making new choices, so they don’t stunt your growth and the continuing development of your very own self-knowledge pyramid. Blocked energy results in a lack of focus, confusion, stress, depression, and even burnout and compromised immunocompetence, and that's not healthy for you or others close to you about whom you deeply care!
Excellent research by John Holland has helped us understand that each of us is dominant in two or three of six major personality types. This means your self-knowledge pyramid can be represented by a two or three letter Holland Code.
(I will discuss this personality-job matching in another post, my PowerPoint, and free 2014 six-part video series)
It is critical to discover balance among the several career-life roles most people are playing simultaneously, manage and reduce stress, and feel valued in the various roles one plays, including receiving equal pay for equal work. This is especially important for women!
While work is important to most of us because we need income to help us with our needs and some of our wants, we all put time and energy into other roles, many of which are played at the same time. For example, one can be a parent, a spouse, a home manager, and a paid worker at a full time or part time job—all at the same time. This of course requires balance! Lack of balance results in anxiety, overwhelm, stress, lower functioning immunue systems, and a state of non-wellness we call "illness". This stress can lead to chronic stress which easily affects children. Creating balance is vital to wellness, and self care is something ALL people, especialy women, must make as a number one priority.
This is very challenging, especially for most women who are often devoting more hours than their spouses raising children and performing home managing activities, and also working in paid jobs. As I discuss in my workbook, unfortunately, most women earn only about 77 cents for every one dollar earned by men who work the same number of hours, are the same age, have the same education and union status, and live in the same region of the country.
Research indicates that if working women earned the same pay as men, their annual family incomes would rise and reduce poverty rates of working women by half - a noble goal for our nation AND other countries where women are paid much less than men. Trying to earn sufficient income while scheduling appropriate time and energy for other life roles is usually challenging for most people and significantly challenging for working women who often assume a majority of home manager and parenting responsibilities, especially for younger children.
The amount of education and training you obtain is directly related to earning more income over your lifetime. This is true for men and women, yet the wage gap still prevents women from earning equal pay for equal work.
This situation is especially challenging for the 42 million women, and the 28 million children who depend on these women, who "are living one single incident - a doctor's bill, a late paycheck, or a broken-down car - away from economic ruin", as described in The Shriver Report. This comprehensive report provides an excellent overview of many of the most pressing concerns facing women in America, including useful links for solutions, education, marriage and the family, teaching girls how to succeed, single parents, the chronic stress of poverty, and lots of graphs, facts, and figures.
USING AN "ATTITUDE OF ADAPTABILITY" THROUGH ONE'S JOURNEY
Imagine how events might occur in any of the career-life roles, such as the downsizing of your company, a car accident, someone quits their job and you are the next in line for that position, an illness, etc., all situations that affect our life journey. Some might be situations that simply existed, such as where we were born and raised. Super described these as "situational determinants" (society, family, school, peer groups, the economy) that can influence career-life decisions. He also described "personal determinants", especially one's personality (needs, values, interests, intelligence, and special aptitudes, etc.), what I call one's self-knowledge pyramid, as see as the most important and active agent in the process of career-life decision-making.
What if we had a secret tool to effectively deal with those situational determinants and uncertainties that always surrounds our life journey? Many times, life just happens, and we can't control the events of life-but we CAN control how we respond to those situations with our attitude.
I recently coined and started using the term "attitude of adaptability" that is rooted in the work of Super and a friend and colleague, Mark Savickas, who writes about career adaptability. Career adaptability is defined as the readiness to cope with both predictable and unpredictable tasks and changes in work and working conditions.
My term, "attitude of adaptability", is intended for youth and adults as they deal with ANY of their career-life roles, including work. Teaching this attitude to anyone will facilitate their ability and willingness to have an "openness to the unknown" as they encounter many career-life transitions throughout their lives.
This attitude (and matching skill-sets) can be learned and fostered inside our hearts and minds, and used whenever we need it. The more a person has this attitude, the more they are able to deal with all those situational determinants that might randomly occur during their journey, across their career-life roles.
** I introduced a NEW career-life role (Life-In-Transition, the near-death and dying process) at the 2011 Society for Vocational Psychology International Conference at Boston University. It is presented in a chapter on values called, DOVE (Depth-Oriented Values Extraction): Helping Clients Create Career-Life Choices, for a book, The Role of Values In Careers, published by the Society for Vocational Psychology via Information Age Publishing, Inc., available in 2014.
A brief discussion here on DOVE (Depth-Oriented Values Extraction) offers a useful overview of this powerful values clarification process.
Connecting with Ed
Please feel free to ask a question or make a comment. If you do not want to leave your name, you may simply make your comment as "anonymous". Also please share this website or post with friends or colleagues who might be interested.
* In March 2014, a worldwide launch was initiated, Re-Framing Career to CARE to continue this discussion and encourage people to collaborate in their various work or community settings and across cultures. Why? Because the reality is, most people worldwide are playing five to seven life roles simultaneously, and most fourth graders and homeless people are playing four to five of these same life roles. EACH of these roles are opportunities to give and/or receive CARE via "caring experiences". Please join this discussion about Re-Framing Career to CARE. Your participation is SO important!
* If you are interested in a special post and video I have on the Deepak Chopra Well World site, click The Power of ONESpirit Video to access a unique video inspired by the USA 911 experience that is free and can be used by anyone in any country as a resource for promoting greater understanding for youth and adults about multicultural differences and conflicts, including faith traditions.
* In mid 2014 I will be posting a free six-part video series called Creating Careers with Confidence, that provides an enjoyable and informative research-based discussion and PowerPoint covering The ABC's of Making Career-Life Choices, including a special video for parents and educators.
** Please visit this link for some year-round Gift-Tips under the Christmas Tree and enjoyable videos for adults and youth needing ideas and resources related to the job search including networking, resumes, job interviews, accepting and declining job offers, etc.
*** I am available for in-person or distance support and/or motivational presentations with adults and youth regarding topics in my posts, and offer a complimentary phone "mini-assessment" for those who might be interested in career-life counseling/coaching.
Please e-mail me and leave your best phone and time to call, and I will be happy to call you back if you are in the USA. Skype is also an option for anyone in the USA or abroad.
Contact me directly at (781) 721-1200 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Day, evening or weekend appointments are available.
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