It’s 2017! The New Year is finally here! All of the New Year’s resolutions you made on December 31st only made it until January 2nd … or is that just me???  Regardless, now is a great time to re-evaluate your career and assess if you are where you want to be in your life. Are you working in a position you are passionate about? What have you done lately to realistically assess your career and where it is going?

Last week a good friend of mine, Gina Rizzi, posted an article on LinkedIn that provided us with her suggestions on how we can realize our own potential. I loved what she wrote and I would encourage anyone to read it, even if they aren’t searching for a job. (Find It Here.) Building on her suggestions, I wanted to specifically look at your career choices as it relates to realizing your fullest potential.

As a recruiter, I get a ringside seat to the internal struggle some candidates have when they are faced with an offer to leave their current position and jump into an opportunity with new challenges and new expectations. All of a sudden their knees get a bit wobbly and they second guess why they are job searching in the first place. We start hearing questions like: Should I go back to my current employer to see if there will be a counter offer? I don’t know if my current position is really that boring or unfulfilling? Is this jump really worth it? Can I do it?  Quite frankly, it’s a question I shouldn’t answer because I am not living your life and 20 years from now I shouldn’t be the reason you have any regrets if you did or did not change jobs. Instead, you have to stay focused on WHY you started your job search in the first place and figure out which position will help push you to reach your goals and fullest potential.

This is why I think Gina’s post really hit home for me. Too often I believe candidates are approaching the decision making process backwards because they approach the decision by being afraid of making the wrong choice as opposed to looking at which position has the most realistic chance of helping you step towards your goals.  As John C Maxwell said, “Life is a matter of choices, and every choice you make makes you.” 

From my perspective, I want to see you making choices based from a position of strength and belief in yourself, not fear. Do I want to make a sale for my client to benefit my business? Absolutely. But not at the risk of hurting my reputation.  I have no interest in talking you into a position.  If we do our jobs right, it should be a fairly easy decision to make based on your career aspirations versus the realities of where you are today.  Make no mistake about it, I want you to be successful and happy with whatever path you choose, even if it means saying no to the new opportunity. But I think Gina is right, every day we have to make a choice to do what is routine or we can challenge ourselves to reach the dreams we have. You can’t reach dreams if you don’t push yourself to new experiences and expose yourself to new challenges.  If this is what you want, start making those changes today!

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