As I went hiking for the first time in 2015, I was completely unprepared for the trip. I woke up late, I didn’t bring any snacks (just water), and I didn’t mentally prepare to climb a mountain. We climbed a little over 1500FT (1.5 Miles in distance) up Bluff Mountain in North Carolina and the first 100FT I was ready to quit.
I couldn’t breathe, my legs were hurting, and all I wanted to do was go back to the car. If it wasn’t for the guide and some encouraging friends I would not have seen nature’s beauty at the top. On the way down, I thought of the how making any transition in our careers is similar to climbing a mountain. Making a transition does not have to be difficult.
Here are 5 questions to ask yourself prior to making a transition:
How are you preparing to this transition?
I was completely unprepared for the hike. I didn’t bring the right supplies, I didn’t know how far we would be going, I didn’t even realize the nature of the terrain. If I did a little preparation, I could have prepared my mind for my first hike. Are you bringing the correct mindset, tools, and skills with you as you make your transition? Many times we want to tackle a career change but aren’t completely prepared for the transition. If we take some of the same bad habit into a new job, we will run into some of the same bad problems.
Are you willing to go all the way?
Are you prepared to go all the way? When we say want to be our own boss, want to have more time to ourselves, but are we willing to put in the work to get there? Initially I thought I was prepared to make it to the top but I missed opportunities to put my best foot forward.
Are you willing to stay focused on the goal?
The entire way up the mountain I was focused on quitting and holding the group up. I couldn’t enjoy the beauty around me. We allow our mindset and negative thoughts to take our focus away from what we want to accomplish. When we focused on the negative we lose sight of the task at hand.
Are you able to identify distractions?
Are you looking at the wrong things? Are you listening to the negative gossip? Can you identify your distractions when you are tackling your goals? As I was going up the mountain all I could focus on was the negative thoughts of turning around. Each step and the pain shooting through my legs were all distractions.
Are you willing to accept help when needed?
I wouldn’t have made it up the mountain without the support of the guide and my dear friends. It is important to have someone that is positive and can encourage you when you get off task and the negativity is overpowering the positive.
If you don’t have an individual in your life to help, maybe hiring a coach is right for you. Coaching assists with many challenges and lifestyle changes. Coaching can increase productivity, self-confidence, and work/life balance. Remember that accepting help is not a bad thing. Don’t allow your mountain to defeat you!