THE BLOG

Take Charge of Your Transitions

01/16/2014 11:57 am ET | Updated Mar 18, 2014

When you find yourself going through a transition in your professional or personal life, the successful outcome depends largely on how you take charge.

Jill worked steadily for years toward her goal of becoming global director of a pharmaceutical company. She started her new position with energy and enthusiasm, but then she began to realize that the company needed lots of work and the challenges were bigger than she had anticipated. Handling the global affairs of a business with more than 13,000 employees worldwide would be an enormous undertaking without functional leadership or a clear strategy. She was willing to tackle it but she didn't know where to begin. The problems in her new position were enormous.

Jack joined a prestigious law firm after finishing his degree. He knew when he started that he had a long road before him -- 60 to 80 hours a week to meet expectations for billable hours, and seven or eight years at that pace before he might be able to become a partner -- and he undertook it willingly. But one mishap, one bad decision cost him his candidacy after seven years, and he was now being deferred for at least another year or two. He felt deflated and depressed. He tried to remember why he'd even gone to law school in the first place. The problems in his professional life were not what he had envisioned for himself.

John had met all his life goals by the age of 38: a great wife, wonderful children, dream job, a perfect life. His colleagues called him the wonder man. He put in long hours, did his fair amount of travel, and enjoyed the challenge of his work. When he was served with divorce and child custody papers he was shocked and deeply confused. He'd considered all his ambition and success as something he was doing for his family. The problems in his personal life were destroying him.

Sometimes what we think we want turns out to be not what we need and what we work so hard for turns out to be not what we imagine.

Take charge of your transitions by following these directions:

Awareness and Insight: Achieve self awareness to gain new insight. You've always been what you are. That's not new. Our insights give us clarity on what is working and what is not working.

Inquire and Question: Ask as many questions as you need and stay open to the answers. Your old way of thinking is not going to take you in the new direction you are going.

Invest and Take Risks: Don't buy into other people's perceptions of who you are and what you are capable of. Invest in yourself and take a risk of who you can become.

Be Intentional and Persistent: Don't allow the transitions of your life to keep you stuck. Set an intention for what you want and work with persistence and personal discipline to develop your core values and vision.

The transitions in our professional and personal lives; make us take a second look at ourselves.

They uproot our patterns and they propel us towards more productive principles.

The struggle you are in today is developing the strength you need for tomorrow.

Are you taking charge of your transitions or is your transition in charge of you?

Lolly Daskal is the president and founder of Lead From Within a coaching and consultant firm that manages large scale corporate coaching and custom made leadership programs. Connect with Lolly Daskal

Lolly Daskal's Book: Thoughts Spoken From The Heart: Over 500 Thoughts that Bring Meaning to your life.

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