The Best Way To Find A New Career Direction That Fits And Fulfills You As A Leader (Without Starting From Scratch)
Without conscious effort, your career direction is going to be determined by your desires.
- Society standards
- The paths of least resistance
- Confused chemical signals in your body
A career and life worth living can’t be built on autopilot.
Here's a simple guide that's been used by 20k people over the last 3 decades:
#1 Learn to get unstuck - get off autopilot
Over the years you’ve collected a library of shoulds:
- “You should have reached Director or X level by now”;
- “You should be married and have X kids by Y age”;
- "The only way to find be accomplished is to have X salary".
We pick up shoulds... and without realising... we make them our own.
Another client discovered…
3 Steps to get off autopilot:
Think about it… if you don’t choose your feelings, beliefs, behaviours, labels, reactions, etc. – who does?
2) Identify the payoff for your (previously) unconscious choices
EXAMPLE: I chose to believe I’m not good enough so I won’t try to go after the career I want. The payoff: so I won't fail and get criticised.
3) Turn off autopilot: get the same payoff through a more conscious choice or let go of the need to have the payoff
You can find a more in-depth exercise on how to get unstuck in a previous issue of this newsletter.
“There comes a time in your life when you have to choose to turn the page, write another book or simply close it.” ― Shannon L. Alder
#2 Discover who you were before the world told you who you should be
A common mistake when trying to find a new career direction is… deciding what work you want before defining who you are.
I can now hear you say... "Ok Silviu, so who am I then?"
What you present to the world is your persona. Beneath your persona are your emotions. Beneath your emotions are your self-concept and self-esteem.
- Self-concept = how you chose to see yourself or the mental image you have created of yourself: e.g. failure, victim, impostor, perfectionist, a hero, etc.
- Self-esteem = how you chose to feel about yourself: e.g. ashamed that I’m a failure.
Beneath your self-concept… is the real you. The real you is what we call — Just Me or Essence. That's who you really are.
2) Get in touch with Just Me
When people judge you, they judge the perception (story) they have about your persona.
When you beat yourself down, you judge your self-concept.
The best way to remember who you used to be before the world told you who you should be is to come from your essence.
- how do you want to relate to work, money, family, fun, love?
- how do you want to show up at work, with friends, with family?
- what do you want to see and have in your life?
When who you are goes against what you do at work, that leads to => internal conflicts => mental health being impacted.
When you align your work with Just Me, you stop wearing a mask at work, choose work aligned with the real you and won't get to retire with regrets.
A few mistakes leaders make when defining themselves:
- Try to cover their insecurities
- Continue to borrow other people's standards and ideas of success
That’s why getting off autopilot (step #1) is a prerequisite before defining yourself. And step #2 is a prerequisite for step #3:
#3 Remember your Work Purpose (WP) - it'll help you find your career direction
Once you complete step #2 and have a direction in life, you also need direction in your career.
Not many people would disagree with the fact that the world would be a better place if we each of us contributed towards improving it through our work.
Working on Purpose ≠ working as a firefighter, nurse or monk.
Here's a simple way to think about Working on Purpose...
You have a significant contribution to make. The world needs you to deliver your WP.
Your WP = the contribution you choose to make through your work.
You’re already delivering a contribution in your job, otherwise, you wouldn’t get paid.
One of the reasons you don't enjoy your work is because you're asked to "add someone else's piece".
Your ego is trying to avoid getting hurt. And because that pain is deep (usually felt in your belly or stomach) — you think “ that’s my gut instinct”.
As a result, your Work Purpose becomes “do something in line with my gut feeling” = find work that doesn’t trigger my insecurities.
3) Be aware of any wounds you carry from earlier in life
Your Work Purpose is implicit — available to you but not apparent.
Reflect on what life trained you to do by looking at your wounds. This is the concept of Wounded Healer.
There's a beautiful moment when leaders look back and start to see their struggles as preparation to deliver their Work Purpose.
When you have a Work Purpose you:
- grow quicker, become more competent and get paid more
- feel like you belong as you play a useful part in the society
- feel more motivated, appreciated and fulfilled
Once you remember your WP, align it with your career trajectory. Here’s how…
#4: Identify the 1st stage of your purpose-driven career
Get a job. Make your boss happy. Climb the ladder. Retire.
With the arrival of the informational age, doesn't work anymore.
We need to stop thinking of our careers in terms of jobs.
- Contribute — work that feeds your soul and leaves you feeling filled up at the end of the day
- Grow — never feel as though you are wasting your talents or your potential
- Earn — work that generates enough income to support the lifestyle you truly desire
- Meet — you spend 1/3 of your life working so you deserve to have fun with colleagues and be happy doing it
- Enjoy — when your career fulfills your WP, it’s easier to stick with it, even on the tough days.
What vehicle will you use to deliver your WP while maximising your potential and living a life worth living?
- Define the skills you already have to deliver your WP (you will get paid for them).
- Define the skills you want to build (this will help you create your strategic plan).
- Define your financial situation.
1. Do you have savings?
2. How many months can you live without savings?
3. Can you afford education or a salary cut or is that completely out of the picture?
C. Career Development Spectrum (CDS):
All careers develop through 5 distinct stages:
- Craftsperson Stage: gain mastery of your skills & learn to have fun at work
- Managerial Stage: learn to sell your skills & develop discipline at work
- Leadership Stage: focus on serving others & develop passion for your work
- Expert Stage: develop a unique solution & gain courage to challenge old ways of thinking
5. Creator Stage: blissfully deliver your contribution.
Based on your skills, finances and the stage of the career development stage you're at in relation to your WP, the first vision stage in your career plan will be one of the following:
- Take a Seed Job© (a job that provides you the money, time, training, people to prepare to deliver your WP later)
- Complete further education or training
- Start a business
- Take a job delivering my WP in the same field
- Take a job in a completely different field (career change)
#5: Develop A Fulfilling Career Direction That Fits
"Once I successfully accomplish X stage, how can I continue to deliver my WP (or prepare to deliver my WP)?"
Strive to have about 3-5 vision stages through which you will deliver your WP.
At the end of this process, participants in The Aha! Moment Academy, find that do work that fits and fulfills them by doing one of the following:
- changing jobs in the same field
- changing fields or industries
- changing careers
- starting their own businesses
Example: a client remembered that her work purpose is to bring people together and share good music. She was working as an account manager. Her initial though when she remembered her WP was "I want to be a DJ". But that career change was risky and hard to accomplish.
And since her finances didn't allow her to take a long career break she decided to continue to use the skills she built (See step #4). Using the Career Development Spectrum we identified that the first vision stage for her was to get into Spotify. Then, to develop her leadership level skills she intended to start her own initiatives within Spotify - organise live events.
The next 3 steps of her career plan were: work in organising live festivals, continue to train as a DJ at bigger events and create her own festival (the final stage).
These stages may change with time, but having a longer vision and direction for her career helped her use the employers to prepare for the next stage.
TL:DR (too long didn’t read):
# 4 Identify the 1st stage of your purpose-driven career
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"I studied to be a lawyer. I worked as a lawyer for three years in India. I wanted to change my career from law to something else.
I wanted to
get into marketing which is why I went ahead and did my MBA in Marketing and
It didn't work out. So, I worked as an Operations Manager. Currently I work as an Assistant Operations Manager in a charity in UK.
I've moved countries over the past two years and I've moved roles and functions. Well, I had been applying to a lot of roles, and not really getting either any response, or even after interviewing, I was getting rejected.
I think one real problem I was facing was that I was an outsider and did not have any London experience. Another thing was also that I did not know how to navigate the London market.
And also, I myself was not very sure about where I wanted to be, what I wanted to do, my industry function, etc. I was very anxious.
[I was] anxious in the sense that I would start working on one work stream and then jump to another. And my mind was always in an overdrive and very unsettled.
The course was very expensive for me especially I had not been earning for two years. So that was one big obstacle. Another obstacle also was I had tried this career coaching with someone else.
I was in the
midst of it and it wasn't working well. It had been two, three weeks that I'd
been working with that person and I was not getting the support that I needed.
I'd had a
really bad experience.
When I spoke to Silviu, it was not just about working on my CV or to work on some techniques and tactics. It looks like Silviu could solve my problem of also answering what I want to do.
And also, I saw of course that you were carrying out the whole thing. But you were also associated with Steve. And I saw Steve's credentials and I saw that he has worked for 20 years or so in this field.
And he has
done a lot of work, written books, collaborated with a lot of people.
So that gave
me confidence that although I don't know you people, you guys have something
solid versus a random guy off the internet.
surprise me were a lot of personal qualities about Silviu. And by personal
qualities I mean the kind of support he was giving.
working very hard to support me. I saw that he also recognized that timelines
are tough when you're in the actual job market.
The program is
for people who are wanting to change, or do something and define what that
different for people who are very clear about what they want to do in the future.
It’s not just a career coaching. It is a mixture of life coaching and career
How I'm going to navigate myself through the rest of my life. Because I was feeling very lost at that moment.
I could feel that there is something and I've been feeling this call for some time prior to the program.
But I could never really sit down and put it into some frames or vocalize it or I didn't really know what that is.
I've been trying different things but not really getting the results.
And while I was doing the job, that was never really much time to focus on myself and figure out what I really want to do.
The results I had after three months in the program were:
(1) Now I know that I have a lot of control or at least I have a choice. And I'm motivated. I'm much more motivated.
Just getting to know myself and there's this strength inside me that I didn't see in myself before which is amazing.
Just like getting to know my skills, my abilities for all the tools that you've provided from the choice, from payoffs, from knowing that you start with a 10%.
(2) The big part was about the beliefs and assumptions that we tell ourselves. Whether there are career assumptions, money assumptions, lifestyle assumptions.
And then actually believing and started to see that you have the power to change them.
It's not to somebody else. It's not to external conditions. You make all the choices around that. That's why that gave me lots of strength.
(3) And also helping me to find the essence or basically reconnect with the essence with my core.
It was suddenly a change. When you're aware of it and that you can act from the core of yourself.
Suddenly anything is possible. It's like, wow, there must be an amazing feeling.
It is brilliant because that gives you this strength and belief that I can actually do it.
And even if those beliefs will come back again because it's like a work in progress, then you know that like once you've learned the tools. Once you kind of start applying them.
There's no way back because you have some compass and you can help yourself to navigate for this. At least that was my experience.
One word to describe the program was CLARITY.
Just like that program, it gave me a lot of clarity.
Why? I think because what I've just said with all the tools, with all the support and having the space to explore. It is also about the environment that you provide and with other people that are on the same path and journey.
I remember before the program, I have some visions or some dreams that would be like, ‘No, you don't want to go there. No, you don't want to try it. Don't go in there in the front row. Don't try too hard’.
But now it's like, ‘Yes, I can do this. I can actually do this and whatever.’
I was working really long hours, holding the teams through crisis, I was already thinking about changing the job but...
'What do I really want in life rather than just what's my next promotion or next job?'
I started to feel a little bit tired with where I was and kinda thinking 'Do I really want to continue doing this?'
I started to feel like – 'I want to enjoy my life, I don't want to just work.'
I certainly had really poor work-life balance when I started this.
I was just working and normally in leadership positions you often do, but it was even more so than normal because it was the crisis response.
And I think what was challenging was we didn't know how long it was going to last and I felt like, I don't think I can go on forever. I was starting to feel it.
I started to reassess, what are my values, what do I want in life?
I want spend more time with my family, friends, with my partner and I wasn't doing that because I was working in a great senior position, but I wasn't really that happy.
And I think my problem was as well that I get bored quite quickly and I think I was just jumping from one job to another because every time I achieved what I wanted to achieve, it was like, 'okay, time to move on to the next one'.
I wat in that kind of wheel - if there's a problem I'm up for it.
And then I realized that I just keep doing that and I don't actually think about the why am I doing this? Why do I always want a problem or a challenge?
I joined at the point where I was just thinking about what's my next big job? But knowing somewhere deep down that I actually probably didn't want the next big job, that I've done enough of that.
Every time I take a job I felt 'this is another mountain to climb' but I keep climbing these different mountains but none were MY mountain.
When I look at the mission statement I've written as part of the course of who I want to be and how I want to live my life, I look at it and say, 'This is what I'm doing'. I wanted to spend more time with my friends and my family. I wanted to have better work-life balance and not work sixty hours a week.
I wanted to do things that will fulfill me and where I feel that I really doing something meaningful.
And I do because I have coaching sessions with my clients and I leave a feeling like this was worth it. I'm making a difference. I have just made a difference to somebody's day, life, week, job, whatever it is.
To anyone who wanted to join the program, you shouldn't think about that - this is too much money to spend, because what you're going to get out of it is way more valuable than the investment that you're making.
I definitely say that the combo of the program, the fact that it's evidence-based and well researched, and that you've got Silviu who's the driving power behind this and Steve, it just works! I've certainly seen it work for me.
"I've always seen work as a tool to get money and then live and be happy kind of thing. And that's like how I grow up also in my country and my culture and everything. And now it's more like I'm not very happy with our landscaping job.
I have always been a fighter against myself like I don't find my purposes. I don't have a passion. I like a lot of things but I don't have one thing that I'm super passionate. That's super selfish actually because I'm just thinking about my happiness.
I really want to change that and have other career paths for myself and to come back to my background in Columbia. I need the mindset that I'm going to work this season with them. I am here because this is going to give me this opportunity to save some money and then I can pay for this study.
Now I have a better mindset that this is not forever. The other thing is learning how to appreciate work as a way to contribute to others.
It's a totally new concept for me and I'm learning a lot with that. And that helps me also with the mindset because that makes sense.
The whole mindset is giving me another view to come back. I'm going to keep going with all this adventure I guess of searching in myself and hopefully I will get a good plan at some point.
For now, just work and make money and serve people in their houses with their lawn and their gardens.
The best learning that I have had in this course is to rethink about what's my relationship with work or job."
"When we were having our conversations back in October, I was totally lost in my burnout. I always felt like I'm stupid. I'm like a five years old and I was telling myself 'what the heck'?
And now I think I'm doing really good. I’m really busy, but
it's my dream job. I've never been happier in my life. It's a perfect thing for
me. It's all everything I wanted to do.
I get paid well which is important for me, to feel that I'm not being taken advantage of whatever. It was good. I've never gotten so much money. It was almost double what I was making at G**** and it’s a good market price.
The team is great. They're very nice people, hardworking but they're also very supportive and collaborative. It's a team effort, has a very safe culture, gives feedback and people listen. They don't become defensive. We are contributing.
I feel like I fit in and I can contribute and it's totally aligned with what I wanted to do and where I want to go. I'm afraid but I'm really, really happy.
What I’ve learned in the program is, the magic is there inside of us. We just have to bring it out and believe in it. You just have to trust that, going after your passion makes sense in the adult world.
Now I can see the whole steps. I can see my steps, my career plan because I am on the right path.
Silviu and Steve help me on that path."
"I used to look at the problem as a logistical issue. It's
more about, I'm going to go back to London, and I need to find a job. And
what's the best way to apply for jobs, and how should I think about things like
travel, and should I just stay in my current lane?
The moment I decided to apply for the program, I definitely took into consideration the amount of experience which was being offered by Silviu and Steve. So I did a little bit of research about them.
I think that was the most important factor at the time I needed to decide before the deadline ran out.
Having someone like Steve with decades of experience, I know that he knows what he's talking about.
It was really good to have someone like Steve and Silviu on The Aha! Moment academy because this process has to be done using methods which are tried and tested.
I've had experiences with similar services previously, and I never got that feeling that the coaches were actually interested in my success.
When I began doing The Aha! Moment program, there were so many challenges while doing the exercises throughout the program. But at each of those moments, you have people on board who have seen it all.
Talking to Silviu, I really got the impression that you were there for your clients and you were really passionate about it.
What The Aha! Moment did for me was an understanding of how important it is to connect with your essence.
Number two was actually having a method, which I thought was tried and tested.
And since our last session, I've actually already landed one interview and that's just from one attempt I've made. That's quite a good breakthrough and it's in a role which I didn't think I'd get an interview for.
Anyone who is on the fence of joining this program, I would tell you of the importance of having people who have been through the process.
Steve and Silviu has so much experience applying and refining their method and have mastered the process and bring that depth of experience into coaching you and helping you.
They've set it up for me and I can't express how grateful I am. They have definitely over-delivered.
This is stuff was missing in my previous experience with coaching. All of this stuff which I paid the previous person for - The Aha! Moment Academy delivered 10 times more value."
After talking to him, I was able to identify my purpose and identify what I want to do at my next steps professionally and also personally.
Now I was able to apply all the knowledge given by these courses and officially have a new job now. I am going to start working for this new company following my purpose.
I already have three opportunities or four opportunities, and thanks to them I was able to have this clarity to distinguish between what I want. After this clarity came, I was able to define my job opportunity and literally go for it in a good way. And this was just crazy.
It was amazing to be able to present myself as I am and at the same time be efficient with my speaking and say what I have to say in the proper way. Because I was so bad at this.
Just to tell you guys that this definitely works. Just to give you a hint, I pass from $110,000 job to a $152,000 job. Additionally, I receive all the perks and benefits that I need. This is something amazing. I cannot describe how my family and I feel about this.
What Sylviu and Steve are doing is just amazing.
After all of this, I was able to align my brain, my ideas and go forward. Thanks to this program, I was able to easily identify my purpose.
I know that is a journey. It's not easy but thank God I was able to identify this. And that's why, for me, it was easy to now say – ‘this is my purpose’. "
"Before the program, I'd owned my own business for
about seven and a half years. It was just a small retail shop. I just felt like
it is time to move on for several reasons. I've been working hard at trying to
actually sell the business and get out of it, and then I finally got out of it
and I thought I would know what I was going to be doing. And it ended up that I
had no idea what I was doing.
The first couple of modules were probably the most challenging in the program.
Going out and talking to people and exploring a lot of those personal assumptions was very difficult. And it wasn't exactly the most fun. It was hard to get through, it was challenging.
And looking back, there were surprising
amount of things I didn't expect. Some of the actually smaller exercises that
we did like the five clicks for me was really weird but that was probably the
biggest AHA moment of the entire thing. It was like everything just snapped
By the end of it, I feel like I have a completely different outlook altogether with just how I approach things is dramatically different than before.
Before it felt like when I was applying for jobs, I've just got the kind of get this done and hurry up and just get whatever you can and just go for it.
Whereas now, I need to actually take the time and think about what jobs do I actually want.
And then it is a much more almost I get to the enjoyment of choosing now instead of being maybe they'll choose me. Now I get to go out. I can thoughtfully and very carefully plan my application and I have trust that I know what I'm doing now and that I can actually get the job done.
Also before, I thought I knew what I was doing and what
people were expecting of me, but now I have a much clearer understanding of
where I'm going, what I'm doing and getting rid of a lot of those personal
assumptions on this whole process.
So rather than trying to assume that I know what I'm doing or assume I know what they're looking for, I actually go out and actually explore and understand what they're looking for.
Having the clarity and having the tools to go through those assumptions feels awesome. The best word to describe it would be just freeing.
I recommend the program because it really does build on everything that was in the beginning and it's very difficult to see how it really comes all together at the end, but it's absolutely worth it. A hundred percent worth it, and it will be hard, but you should definitely do it."
I told you at the beginning, I was very confused. I had all these voices in my head telling me, ‘You can't do that. You will fail. It will never work.’
Now, I have none of these voices anymore in my head. And it's very clear what I want to do.
And I even talk to a lot of people now. I'm all out there talking to people and speaking about this.
And of course, I think 80% of the people tell me, ‘there's already so many coaches out there’.
But I don't care. They can tell me whatever they want but that's what I want to do.
During the program, the first part for me was more as a surprise and especially all the visualization exercises. Because people expect to go into 'these are my competencies' and try to identify a dream job based on the skills they already have.
I can't say the visualisation exercises were challenging because I like that. I like that type of exploration. But they were more of a surprise in that type of program.
For me, what I learned in the program was clarity and determination.
I needed to understand somehow where my career took the wrong turn. And why?
Because if I didn't, if I hadn't understood this, I would've run a big risk of going back and do the same mistake again.
Cause you know, when you have a big job, a big salary, I'm the bread-maker for my family. If I don't earn a good living, then it puts us under pressure.
There was a huge risk for me but...
The fact that we went through all this thinking process and I had this moment where I understood that THAT direction was wrong because it was not aligned with my values and with the life I wanted to live in the future with what I want.
To anyone who wants to join the program, I'd say go for it. But you need to be determined and motivated to change something in your professional life.
You need to have enough time to go through the modules. You need to have this willingness to go dig quite deep and go into areas where things that are not so nice. So be brave. For me, it was key to my transition."
I'm given a curriculum. I'm giving a pacing guide. I'm giving mandates by the state and the federal government. Of course, I have to follow those but something was missing. And the more I worked with children, I saw their struggles and their needs.
They have a lot of social and emotional needs that are not being met in the public school. We just sort of pushed the academics really hard and I was sort of losing my steam and feeling very stuck and dissatisfied.
One day I was scrolling around on Facebook just looking for something. And I just happened to see Silviu doing a little infomercial.
He said a lot of keywords that really resonated with me, like - being stuck in your career, being unhappy and unfulfilled and you don't have to be that way.
You can really find out who you truly are and what you want to contribute to the world. And I thought that is what I'm seeking.
Silviu and Steve helped me develop a Career Plan that is very doable and I know it will be successful because I intend to do it.
Even though I had this job that felt very dead and void to me, now I can have more passion about it because I can deliver my Work Purpose in that job until I get to different stages of my plan.
I have more confidence now. I have less fear. I have more direction, clarity.
One thing I learned in this journey is, I am starting to believe that if I mess up along the way, if I make mistakes, that's okay. I used to really shame myself and beat myself up when I would make mistakes.
I would feel not good enough and not competent enough and then I would just kind of, retreat back into a shell and stop, like I can't do that.
Now I'm beginning to work with those beliefs because I'm more conscious about them. And I'm like, 'I don't have to accept this as a truth.'
These beliefs are not truths, they're just habits and beliefs that we've picked up and they're programmed into our minds and we can change the programming in our mind and therefore our beliefs. And so I am learning to do that.
I'm a teacher and that's where I am but I intend to work my Work Purpose in my job. Now I'm more intentional about it. I know who I am in my essence. I know what I want to contribute to my students and I intend to implement that.
When I go back to school, I am going to be a different woman. So empowered, so confident, knows what she wants and watch out, it's all I can say.
I can see myself getting involved in groups that maybe go to different schools, public schools, and speak to young people, speak to educators, speak to parents that work with young people and then eventually evolve into a speaking career for young people and parents and educators.
The program has great resources. The coaches, Silviu and Steve are so accessible. I can send a message and Silviu respond immediately - 'Hey, let's have a coaching call' and they can steer me in the right direction. I've not experienced that before. The coaches I've had are not always so easily assessable.
Silviu and Steve truly invested in their clients and it is so worth the investment.
Any money that anybody pays to invest in their Personal Development and Career Development is so worth it. It is just worth it. It's priceless and I am so grateful to them. I really am.
It is one of the best, to this day, personal and career development programs I've ever taken and I've taken quite a few, and this is the golden ticket right here.”
But after just three years, I knew that I wouldn't stay that much in this domain and I knew that I wanted to become sales because I was attracted by sales in the consulting. And I felt that I would like to do the job that my business manager was doing. Let's say building teams of consulting.
I did the change from consultant to sales and also business management in the consulting domain. I enjoyed it very much. I became director in the consulting domain. And my next step that I was thinking I had to do was to open my company because I would say that was the next step.
And going to Silviu was the last brick to continue my career.
Being able to follow your coaching and being able to connect and to understand really who you are made the whole difference. You could go, I would say, to people who have very good connections, in a multinational company who will drop your CV to a good table. This is not the same.
Now that I'm purpose driven that I know that my calling is to be a pioneer, I'm much more peaceful. I know what I'm doing and I know why I'm here. And it gives me confidence.
Now I'm at Salesforce. Salesforce is an amazing company, a huge growth, unique product management.
It's an upgrade in every domain, in the salary, in the mission, in the client in the portfolio, in the team. This is an upgrade everywhere and I can say I'm blessed. I can say this. It was not easy but it's awesome.
And for me, now I know also my strength because we made this matrix of competencies.
You taught me that that's wrong. I had to hear my emotions in order to be able to be empathic to people. And the emotion has something to say.
And it's another Aha! moment that I brought home.
I would recommend this to anybody. For the tools that you provide and for all of those things that I was telling you before.”
"I've never had a clear idea of how I am professionally. I think that's why it's always been a matter of changing one course to another or one avenue to another.
I'm creative. I'm outgoing, I like talking to people. I feed up other people's energies but I've never had a clearer idea of what I want to do in my life.
And so that's why I think finding a career that really fits me has been a very hard to quantify thing. That's why when the pandemic hit, I did have a lot of questions in my mind.
Before I joined the academy, I was working for a sustainability consultancy. I was working as a senior consultant for a lot of hours. I was probably doing 50-60 hours a week.
A lot of pressure, getting in early trying to get ahead of deadlines. Working late, sometimes working through the night. A lot of pressure dealing with young trainees and junior consultants as a senior consultant trying to manage 10, 15 projects and a lot of pressure and feeling often overwhelmed.
I was doing a role that I wasn't really recruited for. I was meant to be out and about visiting and working with companies and those projects weren't coming through. I was doing primarily a project management role, writing a lot of reports, being very desk based, which I hate doing, and then being pressured into that role as well. Then I got furloughed.
I had so many limiting beliefs about what I could or couldn't do or what I should and shouldn't explore even to the point of who could or couldn't help me.
So I've done crazy career change of different things and then I was thinking about who I could approach to ask about lecturing.
Before joining the program, Silviu said, ‘Don't judge who can and can't help you or who will or won't be the people to open up the doors for you. You tell me what you're working on and we will see where we can support you. All I care about is that I will have enabled you to professionally flourish.’
After hearing his words ‘If you have professionally flourished, then I will have done my job.’,
Joining the program, I was afraid that the money I was paying for is not going to deliver. I had quite a lot of expectations. Whether it was going to be something that would really make a difference.
And looking back, I would say it was absolutely worth the investment. It was worth the investment on not just a get another job but an investment in terms of my mental health.
What was really important for me is to have a family and to have a support network to say that this was something I could use as a positivity.
And having an outside perspective and Silviu’s advice - ‘if you do the same thing, you get the same outcomes’, is a proof that taking alternative approach is definitely worth it.
I know what I can say yes to. I know what my manoeuvrability is meant that I was still hated doing the negotiation. I still found it really difficult. But I think I had confidence that I knew my worth and I knew what I was and wasn't willing to accept.
To do a 12-week course where the structure of it is far more about who you are and what you want to do and what makes you happy. And then the career element to that, you've got so much out of it.
I’ve got so much out of it that I think I realized what I needed to do. It was more of how would I really keep the motivation and the focus.
The best word I can about the program is energizing.
I've been so glad of the support and the network and the structure and the solidity. That's given me an energy to feel this is doable and I can work on this.
Also, it is empowering because it's gives you the ability to think I can do this. And so often it feels insurmountable.
There’s always reasons not to do something. But I think having someone who's an expert and is going to give you a hug when you need a hug, and also gives you a bit of a kick when you need a kick. And it's hard to do that on your own."
I just moved to the UK from the Philippines, and I was struggling a lot in terms of career. I had the career in sales and it was probably about three years I've been in sales already.
However, I was just feeling a little bit awkward with myself. This is what I want to do but why am I unhappy with what I'm doing? I was just trying to get a grasp of it.
It made me question myself a bit: ‘Am I going in the right direction?’ ‘Is this what I really want to do?’
I became comfortable in the position: 'I need to put money on the table' - the usual norms that we get from our parents or friends.
I’ve come so far from where I was originally.
But then when it came for me to write down my work purpose, I started second guessing myself wondering if I'm good enough.
When I finally discovered this course and I started doing it, I kept at it because I felt within myself that this is the direction I should have been going in to begin with. I have been doing the modules and it has been an eye-opener.
At first, I felt I was feeling so depressed. So out of place because I have been out of a job for over a year and when I found this course I'm like, ‘What the hell was I doing before? Where was this course?’.
All the while, I wasted so much time and so many opportunities to learn something.
And I kept telling myself, ‘You know what? This is for my benefit. This is for me.’
When I am done, I will be done. I will feel so much better.
And my time has been shifting in so many directions for the last couple of weeks. I'm applying for jobs. I'm trying to get in the hours for this. I'm trying to manage my home, life and trying to work out and keep my mental state in check.
Growth is happening.
And I'm almost done. It's just for me to just pack in the last 10% of that thing and get it done.
I appreciate this course. I have learned, and I have grown so much."
"Before the program, I just had a normal life as anybody else would think. You have a job. You go to your job. You earn your money. You pay your bills and then you have your holidays and days off for what you actually want to do and enjoy. So that's what I had.
I was working in customer service in hospitality and I was happy but not necessarily with the companies that I worked for. I was happy because of the people that I worked with.
I was never really into any company's vision or any company's long-term views. And I never really thought about purpose driven workplace or my contribution.
I was just going with the flow basically and not necessarily super happy but was just okay with it because everybody does this so I'll just do the same.
My original purpose was to help big cats to increase their numbers in the wild by improving their habitat. So that's still I would say the ultimate goal.
Obviously, the plan would change and I'm okay with it because I still rediscover new topics and new ways of doing my purpose and to contributing.
I know that this will be probably very challenging and difficult to do again, but it just shows how many different ways you can actually approach it.
Joining the course, the biggest Aha! moment for me was not on only during the program, but also after the program that I'm realizing even now is that it actually changes you as a person, your mindset.
Even though it's a career transitioning program, it's not just about career but it is about YOU and getting to know yourself and accepting yourself.
I think that's the biggest Aha! moment for me because I never would've thought that getting into a problem for career change, I would actually rediscover myself and even get emotional in some of the exercises.
Now, I started as a senior administrator and I have an administrative assistant as well. I just manage her and I report straight to the director of the department."
"Prior to joining the academy, I didn't know what I wanted to do. I was suffering from imposter syndrome, and couldn't see a clear path of progression because I never stopped to understand what elements of my work I actually enjoy and what brings me value.
This made me feel frustrated and anxious that I didn’t have a plan. It made me lose the feeling of value within myself. I had tried self-help / motivational / find your purpose books.
The initial interaction with Silviu was a moment where I felt a connection with him and that I’d be able to work with him.
I was debating and trying to work out which path of permanent employment / contract / consulting would be the best path for me, and through this academy I got there.
The academy doesn’t try to make you fit into a path, instead it enables you to understand your journey, and yourself and hone in on what feels good for you and where you as a person get value from the work you currently do or things your not doing yet.
I also felt I gained some clarity and perspective on myself, understood fully why my journey had taken me to where I was and felt empowered to be in control of my own future & destiny.
If I didn't have this as a starting point I wouldn't have made this decision and embarked on a new way of working which suits my lifestyle, allows me to give back and contribute to my purpose.
Had I taken this academy 10 years ago, I truly believe I would have had much more of an idea on how to approach my plan on how to get to where I want to, and would not have fallen into the trap of making some of the same mistakes over and over again.
To everyone who are on the fence of investing to this program, just do it.
Its gonna feel tough at times, but this is one of the best investments I've made in myself.
If you want to feel like your work in life and your purpose are connected and get to a point of clarity from chaos in your head this will definitely help you.
Best investment you are going to make is the one in you."
I worked for the same company for 21 years. That's quite a long time to be working for one company, but I just thought, there's something else that I want to do.
I wasn't sure whether I wanted to get out of law, because I'm a lawyer. Whether that was the right thing to do because you've done the law degree. You've done your professional qualification. Should you just leave it all behind?
So, there was that.
Because obviously we're in the middle of a pandemic. People were being furloughed at other companies, and people were losing their jobs, and there's more people out there looking for jobs. And I just thought, 'No, I'm just going to go with it.'
So, that's what I did.
You're in a comfortable route as it were. And it's easier to stay in that comfortable track, going down your little roots, rather than turning off the road somewhere, and just doing something completely different.
But speaking to Silviu and Steve, they were completely different to anything else. And I thought, no, this is going to work. Because it made sense when you were talking to me, and I thought, 'No, this makes sense.'
And it did make sense. It's the way someone puts it across to you. Somebody could tell me all this, and the other but you guys made it simple.
It is simple when you get down to it. But other than that, it's a real uphill struggle when you're trying to decide what you want to do. And you might say to people, 'What do they know? Or, What does he know?'.
During the program, I feel so liberated because Silviu and Steve told me, 'Okay, it's not difficult. This is what you have to do.' And I did all the coursework.
I think there's something missing somewhere, but no, this is it.
And I find it so eye-opening, if you like, to be able to say, 'Well yeah, I can do something else.' And so I just acted upon it.
The entire journey was awesome. Really awesome.
I'm one of the people that sit on the fence. I'm so skeptical, cause I'm a lawyer and I have to question things. But no, just go with it. Just trust your instinct and go with it.”
Agencies are such fun environments to work in. It attracts the outgoing and wildly creative people. Very stimulating environments to work in.
But I had begun to become discontent that there wasn't enough socially redeeming value in the work that I was doing and I wanted to be of more direct help.
And then boom… I got laid off due to Covid!
I thought this is my opportunity to make that change, to make that shift that I've been feeling coming on for a while.
Well, and it's too easy to do that when you're relatively happy. I was making very good money into six figures.
You know, I had nice benefit package. I had vacation. I was, um, at a managerial level. So I had a seat at the boardroom table in terms of the direction of the company. And I was training people, and I love to train and teach and mentor and pour into managing an administration.
All I knew was that I wanted to offer more direct help.
I can write a resume that I look good on paper, but to compensate for that lack of post-secondary, I need to get in front of someone.
Everything from computer skills to resume writing, to cover letter writing, and, and so on and so forth.
I'm not 25 anymore. That makes employers consider me a liability. I have to overcome the object, all the objections, and there's a whole list of them to being a mature worker. I'm in a market with 25% unemployment, and I don't have any post-secondary education.
I was trying to get happy about being a barista, and that wasn't working.
And then along comes the Academy and says, ‘Did you know about seed jobs? Did you know about purpose hacking?’
And then also gave the actual templates of the emails and the scripts of what to say when you connect.
And I really fear for short of a lucky bounce how they're going to succeed. Because they're not equipped, their eyes aren't opened, they don't have the tools, they don't have the strategies.