After years of working in an office, you're craving something 'more'. Maybe you want an outlet for your creativity, a contribution to a more philanthropic mission, or a better balance across the many passions you have in your life. You want to write a book and do a Ted talk and start a business and and and... The thing is: you don't have to choose just one path. You can truly redefine success and design a completely unique 'portfolio career' that includes your very own constellation of roles and fields. As a 'Renaissance (wo)man' you can piece together your perfect puzzle of passions and skills.
Here's what you'll need to get to where you want to be:
1. A clear definition of success
The first step is to get crystal clear on what your ideal portfolio career might look like, from a 'big picture' perspective where you consider all different areas of your life and not just work. It's important to get clear on WHAT it is you want to do and WHY before you get caught up in the HOW. Make sure you also don't succumb to black-and-white thinking and give up before you've even started because your vision just seems so far off - there are lots of scenarios that lie between that big ideal vision and where you are today.
2. A re-framing of your beliefs
Creating a portfolio career is such a new way of working that you may well be holding yourself back with a set of assumptions about what is and isn't possible. "You can only have one calling." "You can’t earn a lot of money doing work that you love." "I could never make this work because of [fill in the blank here]." Questioning these assumptions will help you to think differently about work and how it fits into the rest of your life and allow yourself to imagine a scenario where you really can bring all your ideas to life.
3. Choose your model
Once you've established that you want to combine different ideas and interests, you still have the choice of how you do this. You might be able to find, or create, a multifaceted role or business that somehow brings all these things together. You might focus on one thing at a time and then reinvent yourself and shift in a different direction to focus on another. Or you might choose a 'slash career' where you are a photographer / project manager, business coach / yoga instructor, property developer / freelance writer. It's up to you to choose the model that best fits with your definition of success.
"You don't have to be just one thing, but you have to start with something."
- Clare Bowditch
In the meantime, I recommend getting started with these resources...
I've selected these specific podcast episodes to help you get started:
- Why redefine 'success'? Listen on Apple podcasts >>
- 3 exercises to help you find out what 'success' means to you Listen on Apple podcasts >>
- How not to lose sight of your big picture vision Listen on Apple podcasts >>
- Making the right decision Listen on Apple podcasts >>
- How to build credibility and authority in a new field Listen on Apple podcasts >>
When you start questioning what you're currently doing, you may discover that the people around you don't 'get it'. It will be very helpful to 'find your tribe', the people who understand exactly what you're going through.
The One Step Outside Facebook group is a community of like-minded professionals who are similarly working on reimagining what ‘success’ looks like for them in their careers and their lives.
Celebrate your wins and frustrations, get advice from others who have done what you want to do, and vote for your favourite topics for the monthly live training where you can get answers to your questions when you get stuck!
After interviewing 50 people who have left the corporate 9 to 5, I've collected their stories in a book that will inspire you with the possibilities that are out there and reassure you that you’re not alone in looking for an alternative.
The stories include those who have moved into a different sector; gone freelance; launched their own business; created a portfolio career; or taken a leap of faith, not yet knowing what the next step will be.
I also share my own experience and those of my clients, drawing out key insights to help you create your own career transition story.
When you're thinking about changing career or launching your own business, it's easy to get lost in all your day-to-day tasks or get caught up in worrying about money or how you're going to get people to buy from you. The first step, however, has to be understanding what's important to you, what your overall vision is for your life and work, and how that fits into your personal lifestyle and priorities.
Together, we'll get you from a position of confusion, feeling stuck and endlessly procrastinating, towards a place of clarity, conviction - and taking confident steps in the new direction that you choose.