Last week, I had my 19 year anniversary working for a Fortune 50 company. Nineteen YEARS!!! I can’t believe it. I’m 41 and when I started in 1992 I never expected to stay as long as I have – by luck or by choice. It just turned out that way. And with all the uncertainty at work, chaos in the economy and unpredictability of life, I have no way of truly knowing if I will be at this company for another few years.
But I think it might be time for me to do something different.
As I think about the possible paths I can take, the uncertainty and unpredictability of the economy and trying to figure out a career stresses me out. I get anxiety just thinking about it. You can’t count on anything anymore, much less “plan” a career. With so much career uncertainty, what always helps me think clearly is a conversation with a friend. So I sat with my friend Ben to catchup at a coffee shop outside Grand Central Station in New York City.
I told him that I was thinking of a number of career paths. All of which SEEM no better than the one of sitting still. Path 1 has these advantages but it doesn’t pay as well and who knows what will happen after the first year. Path 2 seems pretty good but will I really be satisfied? Path 3 is a big risk with a payoff years away…maybe. Path 4 is a radical shift and will require me to make a lot of sacrifices and should I be risking so much during a tough and an unpredictable economy when I have a mortgage to pay and a family to feed?
Did you ever feel like all the paths in front of you are all bad? [Read more…]