Risk & Business Magazine Cooke Insurance Risk & Business Magazine Fall 2017 | Page 23


If you stop and look back over your career so far , you ’ ll see how much you ’ ve changed , even if you ’ ve stayed in the same career path for years .

Over time , our perspective changes . We learn from positive and negative experiences . Sometimes we have to stop and reflect on our path to see how far we ’ ve come !
Career reinvention can be something you take on as a project , either because you ’ re bored in your current career or because you want to bring your work and your passions closer together .
Sometimes career reinvention is forced on us by circumstances – like your company closing its doors or maybe the arrival of an evil boss whose nasty attitude makes it clear that it ’ s time for you to move on .
We don ’ t always know when Mother Nature is going to give us a push – a nudge that says “ You could be doing more with your career – why not investigate ?”
Career reinvention is a much bigger prospect than just a change of office location or a new job title . It ’ s a physical change in you , no different from a snake shedding its skin or a hermit crab moving out of a cramped shell to venture out and find a new home .
Reinvention is hard work . Reinvention can cause us to feel strong emotions like anxiety , fear , loneliness , and confusion . At the same time , reinvention can feel exciting and exhilarating . Your emotions may go up and down like waves .
That ’ s normal ! You are in reinvention . Get ready to ride with Mother Nature for a while !
How can you make the most of your reinvention , whether it was your choice to reinvent yourself or someone else ’ s decision ?
The first step is to get a journal and write in it every day , or as often as you can .
Write about your career and life so far .
Write about what you loved to do when you were little .
Write about what you ’ re good at – you are good at many different things !
Undoubtedly you ’ ve had the chance to use some of your gifts in your work already .
Maybe you have other talents that want to come out and show themselves to the world !
Don ’ t rush your reinvention process . If you need to take a survival job to pay the bills while your reinvention plays out , do it . Don ’ t feel that you are diminished just because you have a job that isn ’ t as lofty or impressive as jobs you ’ ve held before . So what ?
You are stepping out into new territory . That can feel scary . Keep breathing and remember that every living thing changes . Change is part of life !


Spend time with friends who get your quirks and your sense of humor . Limit the time you spend with people who criticize you or bring you down . You don ’ t need that energy around you when you ’ re shedding an old skin and stepping into your next adventure !
Take time for yourself . If working in your garden gets you out of your busy mind , then work in your garden whenever you can . Dance to songs on the radio or YouTube . Read your favorite books . Organize your spice cabinet . Do what makes you feel good . Reinvention is exhausting .
Don ’ t feel that you have to solve your reinvention in your head . You couldn ’ t do that even if you tried . Reinvention is not a logical problem . It is not a Sudoku puzzle . It ’ s you opening up to your own possibilities – something that many or most of us have never done before .
Apply for jobs if you want to , but don ’ t feel that you have to choose a formal , final , and concrete career direction that will carry you through from here to retirement . Your goal in reinvention is to experience new things , not to make arbitrary rules for yourself and then feel bound to follow them !
You may settle on a career direction that you like at first but learn over time that it isn ’ t your cup of tea . You may explore a career path you never thought you ’ d like and find that it speaks to you like no job you ’ ve ever had before . Don ’ t judge anything you feel in reinvention – just be aware of your feelings .
You will have dreams in reinvention , even crazy dreams that seem to make no sense . Pay attention to signals you get during this time of confusion and openness to new ideas . You may hear a song that reminds you of something you cared about when you were a kid . Notice that ! Write about it in your journal .
Get some business cards that include your name and the word Consulting on them . You are consultant now – not a needy job-seeker ! You can work here and there on a consulting basis . When you meet with people for networking coffees or lunches , give out your consulting business card . You are stepping into your power . You are running your own career – not letting anyone else run it for you .
Reinvention can feel like a hike through the desert . One day you think “ I know exactly what I ’ ll do next !” and the next day , you think “ No – I have no idea what to do .” Don ’ t stress about the fact that you don ’ t have the answers . How boring would our lives be if we always had the answers !
Little by little , streams will appear in the desert of reinvention and the way will become much clearer . Trust yourself and the universe , put one foot in front of the other and remember that you are amazing and always have been and always will be . Your reinvention will take you to the next place you ’ re meant to be ! +
Liz Ryan is the CEO and Founder of Human Workplace , a publishing and consulting firm whose mission is to reinvent work for people . Liz is a former Fortune 500 HR SVP and the world ’ s most widely-read career adviser . Liz is a LinkedIn Influencer with over 2 million followers and a columnist for Forbes . com . Liz is the author of Reinvention Roadmap : Break the Rules to Get the Job You Want and Career You Deserve , published by BenBella Books in December 2016 .