Greetings from the Polar Vortex

Last week I was in sunny San Diego where it was 65 degrees and sunny. This week I'm back in Chicago where it's -22 with a windchill of -50.

It's an apt metaphor for the career transition process. Some days you're at the beach with the sun on your face. Other days you're in the Polar Vortex questioning your life choices.

I loved reading your AMAZING responses to my last post. I felt your enthusiasm and commitment.

For those who haven't yet responded, I'd like to tell you a story that took place in a Beyoncé-less conference room a little over five years ago.

I had impulse-enrolled in a coach training program.

Their marketing talked about possibilities and potential. Not interested. I was there to hone my coaching skills and get that certification.

At that point in my career, I was stuck in the swamp of boredom and low expectations. I was suspicious of anyone who seemed happy or peaceful about their career.

If some brazen career coach had asked me about my purpose then, I wouldn't have known the answer.

I was super clear on what my purpose was NOT. I knew I couldn't continue the same soul-crushing path of least resistance. Beyond that, it was pretty fuzzy.

If I had answered based on how I was actually living my life at the time, it would have gone something like, "I'm Caroline Adams, and I'm here to settle!"

This was my headspace as I entered the conference room. Had I made a bold, intuitive career decision? Or had I accidentally joined a cult?

I scanned for the person who looked least likely to drink the cool-aid and most able to carry me if we needed to run. I plunked down next to a strapping dude with cool glasses and reliable tennis shoes.

The training started. Thirty minutes in, I knew I wanted to be a coach. I knew I had to leave corporate. I knew I needed to start a business.

I had NO idea how any of this was going to happen.

I didn't have plans to change the world. I wasn't thinking about the impact I could make. I just wanted to coach.

So if you're not crystal clear on a blazin' "I am here to..." statement that lights you up, fear not.

If you're not trying to save the animals or the forests or the children, that's cool.

If you're wading around in the muck like I was, just start with what you think you want. Maybe it's...

...coming home at night with enough energy to give your family what they need.

...working at a place that feels like family.

...focusing less on everyone else's needs and a little more on your own.

It doesn't need to be lofty. You don't need to know how it will happen.

You wouldn’t be on my email list if you didn’t have an inkling that there’s something better out there for you.

Give it a voice. I can't wait to hear it.

Email me here and tell me what you want for yourself.

There’s power in public proclamations. If you’re so inclined, feel free to post in the comments as well. Take a stand for yourself. Put it out there. You’ll be amazed at what comes back to you.

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Author Bio: 

Before becoming a coach, Caroline spent 20 years in management consulting and financial services. She's made it her mission to help people grow, contribute, and get wherever they want to go.

Caroline wants women to recognize how much power they truly have to define their careers. The life and career you want really is possible once you have the roadmap. Take the first step by downloading her free guide.

She’s also a tennis fanatic, aspiring Minimalist, FIRE (Financial Independence and Retire Early) enthusiast, and Aloha Spirit seeker 🤙. She loves to share stories from her unconventional life and career focused on freedom, creativity, fun, health, family, and community. If she can do it, you can, too.