Musings About the Value of Connections.
A key element of an upcoming online course offer I have produced for individuals approaching or going through a career transition centers on a somewhat different way to think about your connections. As you approach a career transition – thinking about connections in a way that is less opportunistic and more authentic can help you really optimize your transition and improve the long term trajectory of your chosen career path. Connections are the lifeblood of our lives and our careers. Real connections are not derived from a conquest to achieve quantity, but a recognition of what makes for quality connections. When we are authentic and show a willingness to share our vulnerability with others, real connections are made. Vulnerability leads to greater connection. If you are interested in finding out more about the course, you can go here. The course is designed to be of value to individuals at any stage in their lives or careers. I have decided to market his course free for now as it feels like nearly everyone is actually going through a career transition at some level during these crazy times. For bite-sized updates and inspiration related to the course, follow me on Instagram @lumenstrategies.
Sometimes the universe speaks to you in random ways. For whatever reason, as I go through my #WFH in the pandemic day, the theme of connection has been more present than usual. This particular experiment we are going through on a global scale has highlighted many things for me, but this one thing stands out. Vulnerability leads to greater connection.
Let me say that again, out loud.
Vulnerability leads to greater connection.
Over the last month(s) (time losing definition), I’ve sheltered in place with my beloved golden retriever, Doppler (oblivious to any changes in the world and as loyal and needy and lovable as ever), and my husband (life partner for more years than many reading this may have been on earth, we’ll leave it at that), and for a brief part of the stint, my youngest adult daughter after she was laid off in Philly and found herself living in a tiny urban space. During this time, I have felt compelled to reach out to a number of my own connections and have been the recipient of moments of joy when I have been the target of outreach by someone in my connections network. There has been something unique about connections during this time when we are reminded of how fragile life is as the pandemic rages among us. It is a shared feeling of vulnerability for most of us.
Some of the connections have been family, but others have been those that I made in my communities and my work. It has been interesting to observe that the intentional connections, both those initiated by me and those initiated by others to me, have shared a characteristic. It is the people with whom I’ve shared the most of my own authentic self and yes, even my vulnerabilities and fears and dreams, and those that have shared the same with me at the other end of the connection equation. I value those people and recognize that it is with and through them that I’ve learned more about myself and felt the most joy when I was able to genuinely help them in some small way.
But there have been times of late that I’ve reached out to check in or connect with someone who did not return the message or take me up on the meeting or call. And, in these cases, I do not become paranoid or feel rejection, I am simply reminded of wise advice from a mentor from my past. When I was starting my own business back in 2011, he said to me, “Sometimes you will reach out to colleagues for advice or to share the good news about your new business and they will not respond. Never ever take it personally. Life gets busy and complicated. They have stuff going on. It is not personal. And for every person that does not respond, you may be surprised at the ones that do. Cherish and embrace them and their advice and support.”
Who have you connected with or felt compelled to reach out to during this very different time we are living through? What is the common element of those connections for you? I would love the opportunity to help you map out and navigate your own career transition in the upcoming months. Consider investing in yourself and checking out my online course. It is completely free. You are worth so much more!