Here at TNM, we seek to inspire the community and help others create positive changes in their lives. Recently, to go along with this, our founder Kevin O’Connell taught a monthly course at General Assembly titled Career Shifts: Find the Work You Love focused on helping a variety of professionals realize a career transition is possible and where to start. The truth is, there are so many people in the same boat who don’t realize others share these struggles and doubts, particularly in their professional career. The second truth is that there is a way to overcome it. This is why TNM continues to share these stories. The following is an anonymous letter, from a young professional in the D.C. area to Kevin who attended his class and is in the process of switching jobs and seeking change. It is both honest, transparent, and relatable, as well as reassuring in away. A “dream job” or perfect “work-life balance” may not be in your life right now, and that’s okay.
In my youth I feared failure. I feared failing tests, losing games, or simply being denied something. I knew what I wanted and how I could get it, but my mind was constantly focused on the failures that could result. I rarely envisioned the possible successes but rather the embarrassment of a failure. When I studied for a test it was to avoid failure. In sports, I practiced to not lose in front of my friends and family. I was motivated by fear. My success was directly linked to a negative premise of failure. I used this mindset to propel me to excell at times but when I experienced a loss the negative mindset appeared. I was a sore loser but I was also a questionable winner. As I matured I began to see things differently. I saw that losing is opportunity to self evaluate and tweak some things to be better prepared for my next test. I learned that I had to be willing to take a risk to grow. Take a chance with change or simply to fall down, in order to truly learn how to stand properly.