Career counseling is an opportunity to look at how one approaches or has approached her career and think about where these ideas, thoughts, and patterns have come from and how they are impacting one’s approach to making change. Career counseling differs from career coaching in that we have an opportunity to look at one’s internal world and motivations to create desired change on the outside.
My Approach to Career Counseling
No matter where someone is in their interest in working toward a career change, my approach is to attune to the individual and their unique challenges as they undertake this journey. Growing the ability to notice, reflect, and make changes that are coming out of self-knowledge and awareness is a critical part of the work we will do together to help you make the career change you are seeking for yourself.
Further, I hold space for the career change process to unfold. This can often be a long journey full of uncertainty, choices, and dwelling in a space that is not known, all the while often navigating one’s current job. This can often lead to stress and the added burden of navigating full-time work, alongside the full-time effort to find a new career or job. Being present to the emotions and physical stress this state can cause and working with mindfulness techniques to ground in the moment are ways we employ to manage your transition.
Common Feelings That Inspire a Career Change
It is rare today to stay in one career for the entirety of one’s professional life. More often than not, people are not only changing jobs, but also entire lines of work depending on where we are in our lives at any given time.
Common feelings that inspire a career change include:
- Lack of motivation in your current career. Your boss gives you what she considers an “exciting” project or an opportunity to advance yourself and you have no interest whatsoever.
- Boredom. What used to be fresh, interesting, and challenging is now something you can do in your sleep without as much as a thought.
- Dread of having to go to work on Monday — or any day. You know the feeling, but it’s not just the regular sadness that the weekend is over, but actual upset that you have to return to work for another week.
- When someone asks you what you do for a living, you feel hesitant to answer. You no longer find it interesting, so you may think to yourself, “Why would anyone else be interested in hearing about what I dread doing each day?”
- Your body tenses when you are headed to work and while at work. Your body often knows how you are feeling before your mind.
- Using substances or other distractions to ease the tension you feel in your career. Many people appreciate unwinding from the workday with a glass of wine, but do you find you are drinking excessively to forget your work?
- Staying for the money — and only the money. Of course, your job pays you, but is this the only reason you are staying in your career? If so, it may be time to find a career that not only pays in terms of money, but also professional challenge, growth, and happiness.
- Daydreaming about anything other than the work you are doing. Do you find your mind roaming to different areas of interest or creating a workday that looks entirely different from the one you live out each day? Take a clue — your daydreams may be giving you signs as to the right new career direction for you.
How Career Counseling Can Help
Unlike a Career Coach, career counseling is an opportunity to meet with someone who can look beneath the surface of these common feelings to see why you may be “stuck” in your current career. Although adults have agency over their professional paths, there are many messages we have been given about how our professional lives should play out. Some of these messages may include: stick to one path and never veer, take the job that pays the most, jobs are not for professional happiness, but to provide for one’s family, a job is what you do, your happiness lies outside of that, and more.
Working with a counselor to explore the messages you have been given and by whom can help to begin to unravel why you may be sticking with a career that is no longer serving you. Also, career counseling can help to explore what you feel and believe about your career path, creating discernment between what has been told to you by others and what you actually want for yourself. Being able to unravel and differentiate the two can help one forge a career path that is meaningful to you.
Who I Most Often Work With for Career Counseling
I offer career counseling to adults that is wide and expansive. Some people are looking to change their job position within the same industry. Others are looking to make a complete change in career. Many feel the morose of their current career, but are “stuck” in not knowing how to take steps to make changes.
One of my specialty areas is working with creatives, writers, dances, actors, and more, as they seek to meet the unique challenges of their paths, including criticism, money challenges, time challenges juggling other jobs to make ends meet, people’s judgment, and more. As a fellow creative, I have a unique ability to empathize and help the creative person discern what is best for herself.
Wherever you are along the path of career change and transition, I am able to be present with you as you take steps toward meaningful professional change for yourself. If you’re interested in scheduling time with me at my practice in Capitol Hill, please reach out directly. I look forward to hearing from you!