One of the toughest things to do is leave behind the familiar. Unless you have your own business, job change is, at some point, inevitable. Times are different. It’s not like it used to be years ago when people stayed at one job for a lifetime. Sometimes to get ahead, and to gain balance in your life, it’s necessary to make a change.
Intellectually, we know when it’s time for a change and we go through the motions to make it happen. We might even get excited about it because we know in our hearts it’s what’s best for us. There’s definitely something tantalizing when envisioning new possibilities. But when it comes right down to it, any type of job change can wreak havoc on our confidence and self-esteem.
How do we make peace with letting go and embracing new beginnings? Studies show that our subconscious is what controls absolutely everything in our lives. To truly let go and embrace change, we need to immediately tackle what our conscience mind is telling us because in reality, it’s our subconscious thoughts that are surfacing. Even though we may realize that change is necessary, those little voices are putting doubt in our minds and giving us reasons / excuses to hang back.
Let’s take a look at some of the most common thoughts and feelings that surface and how we can turn the real and “perceived” challenges and negative thoughts into something more positive.
- Culture – Yes, a company’s culture is very real. No matter how much we research a new company, they will have their own unique culture. Are they high energy and fast paced, quiet or bustling, employee driven, etc? Even if “similar” to your current culture, it’s going to be an adjustment since you’ve become such an integral part of your office. Cultures are no different than individuals having unique personalities … no two are alike! After you start your new job, be an observer. Different isn’t necessarily bad so take your time and don’t try to jump in all at once.
- People – Ah, the people. As in all facets of life, not just work, people can be a challenge. Having a multitude of personalities under the same roof for eight hours a day requires tolerance. The best you can do is “manage” the interaction. You will feel a connection with some people right off the bat but be careful, not all who appear to be your buddy will actually be buddy material. Don’t project, but don’t fall prey either! Remember, politics exist in EVERY environment.
- Policies & Procedures – Even if your new opportunity has you doing the same type of work, the policies and procedures are going to be different. Be gracious during your transition. You may know your stuff, and that’s good, but you need to learn how things are done in your new environment. There’s plenty of time down the road to introduce new ideas of your own. Your first priority is to learn! You never know, you may be introduced to a few ideas that improve upon what you’ve brought to the table.
- Feeling Inferior – I believe most people enter into any new position with the fear of looking like they don’t know what they’re doing. After all, you’re leaving a situation in which you could do your job blindfolded. It’s easy to be comfortable being the expert! But we all know, you can’t grow if you’re not being stretched. Now you find yourself in a new situation where no one knows you and you’re starting over. I can’t stress this enough … you wouldn’t have been hired if the hiring manager didn’t believe you’d add value to their team. Period! So, suck it up, embrace your training and STRETCH yourself right back into being an authority. Give it time, it WILL happen if you set your mind to it!
- Losing Relationships – Leaving your job means saying goodbye and that’s never easy. This is something I have to counsel people on a lot. The bottom line is that you are NOT losing relationships … you’re gaining new ones! Anyone you’ve met that is meant to stay in your life, will stay in your life. You now have a wonderful opportunity to forge new and lasting relationships that can be just as rewarding. Take it slow and observe those around you. Finding “good chemistry” is accomplished by initially allowing others to do most of the “revealing” talk. You will find people that are honestly welcoming in any new situation.
- Comfort Zone – Let’s face it, you’re accustomed to personal and professional routines and habits that are “comfortable” and familiar. For example, when do you confidently take initiative, with whom will you take your coffee break, who will be your go-to person when you need support, who stimulates and appreciates your creativity, etc. That “alone” feeling starts to surface just thinking about leaving and it can be frightening for the best of us. Again, relax and take it slow. Throw yourself into your training, and get to know who the people are that you’ll interact with most. A rewarding job offers challenges that are outside-your-comfort-zone. Being stimulated keeps you on your toes.
CONCLUSION: I have this discussion with everyone at some point, and I’m going to be frank. Chances are when you first start your new job, you may have buyer’s remorse and think to yourself, “this sucks.” Different people have different reasons for feeling this way! It happens. New jobs typically do suck, at least initially. But have patience because that feeling passes rather quickly. Once you’re in, develop a routine and regain confidence in what you’re doing, it will all start coming together. Give it a chance … it’s your opportunity to be a shining star!
Do you have career or life questions?
If so, comment below and I’ll be happy to respond!
Thanks for sharing your time with me and reading my BLOG!
Warm regards…. Debra
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