I hope you and your family are healthy in body, heart, and mind. I’m writing this email with the intention to offer a supportive perspective and practical ideas about how to navigate your life and career in this crisis.
We have all been deeply affected. Our lives and careers have been radically changed if not worse. We are all concerned, wondering what to do, how to live and work in this great challenge, and what is to come. It is a scary, intense, tragic, and vulnerable time. And, in times of great challenge, there is also opportunity.
I want to share a message written by White Eagle, a Hopi indigenous person, that offers a poignant perspective on the challenge and opportunity we all face:
“This moment humanity is going through can now be seen as a portal and as a hole. The decision to fall into the hole or go through the portal is up to you. If they repent of the problem and consume the news 24 hours a day, with little energy, nervous all the time, with pessimism, they will fall into the hole. But if you take this opportunity to look at yourself, rethink life and death, take care of yourself and others, you will cross the portal.”
I don’t know about you, but when the harsh reality of the pandemic was hitting me, it was easy to see the hole and hard to see the portal. I was scared, and I still am. While I don’t for a second discount the tragedy of the pandemic and mourn the immeasurable suffering, I feel it’s important to also see the portal.
What is the opportunity?
In the most immediate context, there is an opportunity to focus on our health and wellbeing, and to care for the health and wellbeing of those around us—especially those in the greatest need. Our health is something that we often take for granted and this crisis of health is highlighting the need to attend to our health and wellbeing.
In addition to caring for our physical health, our emotional health and the holistic health of our lives and careers need care. We have an opportunity to do the inner work to reimagine our lives and careers so that we live in deeper alignment with our true selves and what we most deeply care about. Doing so supports the health and wellbeing of all.
Do you want to go back to the way things were or forward to a more purposeful and healthy life?
Upon a deeper examination, you may find that you were out of balance, unfulfilled, and you don’t want to go back to the same way of living and working. What is the life and career that you want to create? I completely acknowledge that this is not the right time to quit your job to wildly follow your passion but it is a fertile time to be engaging the question, “What do I really want to do with my life?” I’ll offer some ideas about how to do this in just a moment.
Our external lives are more restricted than ever. But our inner lives are ablaze with activity and open for exploration.
The best thing we can do for the wellbeing of all is to stay at home. While we can’t move in the external world, it is a poignant time to invest in our inner lives. I want to offer a few ideas about how to invest in your inner life.
1. Journaling is a simple way to support your emotional wellbeing.
You may find that the first thing your inner life needs is emotional support. I know that I feel anxious about the physical and economic health of my family and the rest of the world. It is overwhelming. One thing you can easily do to care for your emotional wellbeing is to sit down and journal about what you are feeling. The power of journaling is that no one ever reads it so you don’t have to filter anything. Give yourself full permission to express whatever you are feeling with the knowledge that you will burn it, shred it, or simply hit the “delete” button as soon as you are finished.
If you want more support, reach out to a friend. This is a time to stay connected. We are also available to support you in being with the intensity of the emotional overwhelm during this time. It’s a big part of what we are now doing in our sessions with clients.
2. Your true self is the most accurate compass you’ll ever find to navigate uncertainty.
You may also find that your inner life is hungry for more meaning and you want to use this time to address some of the underlying questions you’ve been holding about what you really want to be doing with your life. If so, I always encourage people to start that exploration not with the question, “What should I do?” but instead with the question, “Who am I?” Who you are IS the most accurate compass you will ever find to navigate uncertainty. The more you know about who you are, the better you can make choices that support your deepest wellbeing.
As you more clearly discover and see the truth of who you are, it is easier to see what you are meant to do. The career options that we help you identify in our coaching programs are expressions of who you are, what you’re good at, and what you enjoy doing.
Clients always tell us how grounding it is to reconnect to their true selves, how empowering it is to clarify their strengths and passions, and what a relief it is to finally discover the work that they are meant to do. It brings purpose to life, hope in dark times, and a way to contribute to the larger whole. Even if you aren’t planning to make a career change in the short-term, the process of discovering more of who you are and finding your calling brings fulfillment in the present moment.
How do you connect with your true self?
I recorded a short guided meditation to help you connect with a part of you called your “Deeper Self.” Your Deeper Self is the fullest expression of your potential. Imagine that you lived for 10,000 years, learning and growing everyday, and then were able to integrate all of the lessons and wisdom into every fiber of your being. That is your Deeper Self. They are powerful. They are wise. They are free. They are whole. They are your truest, purest, fullest, highest self. That version of you is who we will be meeting in this meditation.
Doing this type of inner work helps ensure that the next step you take in your life and work are born out of connection to your depths and full potential.
This meditation is one of many activities in the Career Pathfinder Coaching Program. It’s more esoteric than many of the other activities like the career assessments, case studies, and job search templates but I think it’s a gem. Let me know what you think of it and if you have any questions about it.
Want more support?
If you want to talk to one of our coaches about how to navigate your career amidst the crisis or any of the challenges or questions you are facing, we are available for complimentary 30-minute consultations.
The Career Pathfinder Online Coaching Program has always been virtual, it’s accessible 24/7, and provides a much more productive break from the news than Netflix:)
Our one-on-one career coaching and life coaching is now also 100% virtual via Zoom. One of our primary roles as coaches has always been to help people navigate uncertainty. We are available to help you:
- manage the multitude of stressors in this crisis from uncertainty about your career to financial concerns and relationships challenges
- find a new career if you’ve been laid off
- work from home effectively by developing time management practices and a daily routine that enables you to get sh*t done
- make yourself indispensable at work
- use this time of social isolation to reconnect to your passions, learn new things, and develop yourself in new ways
- maintain your health in mind, body, and spirit
- use this opportunity to do the groundwork to discover your calling and create a longer-term plan to transition into that new career path when the time is right
I pray that humanity can collaborate effectively to move through this global crisis with as little suffering as possible. I hope that we also take the opportunity to prioritize our health and wellbeing, support the health and wellbeing of others, and do the inner work to realign our lives with who we are, what we care most deeply about, in alignment with the good of all. May you find the portal in your life and work, and may humanity find it as a whole.
— Adrian, Daniel, Gracie, Iris, Matti and the rest of the team at A Path That Fits