Believe us: We understand the allure of your comfy sofa at the end of a long workday.
But when you’re collapsing into the cushions full of frustration over a job that isn’t suiting your needs—or is just plain making you miserable—you’re going to need to make a bigger change than the channel you’re watching.
No one knows more about creating the momentum needed to launch yourself off that sofa and into the right career than Christie Mims, founder of The Revolutionary Club, a career-coaching destination, featuring advice, international retreats and one-on-sessions with Mims.
Before founding her site, Mims was stuck in a job she didn’t love (which just so happened to be managing million-dollar portfolios as a consultant). In her search for something that truly made her happy, she earned a B.A., an M.A., certifications as a mediator and counselor … as well as applied to shoe design school and planned a potential leadership institute with the Marines. But her path, however twisted, led her to her dream job.
So we asked Mims to share her five best tips to get off the couch and onto the right career path for you.
1. Get Ready to Listen
Where do you even start zeroing in on a new career? When Mims felt trapped, she says, “I told everyone close to me. Constantly. That habit made me really fun at parties—if you define ‘really fun’ as boring, annoying and sarcastic.” It wasn’t until she started listening instead of talking that she started feeling energized.
“I told myself that I didn’t need to have all of the answers now—all I had to do was take people out for coffee and listen, and the answers would slowly come,” Mims remembers. “It seems obvious, but it was a real ‘eureka’ moment for me.” She found that she left her meetings feeling like she was moving forward; learning about new industries and jobs made her worry less about finding the “right” job and more like exploring a wider range of opportunities.
To Do Right Now: Invite one or two people you don’t see often for coffee to chat about their work. Instead of expressing your dissatisfaction, take advantage of the opportunity to hear more about their jobs, career paths and advice. Ask them: “What is it that you love about your job? How did you end up in your position or at your company? What advice do you have for someone looking to work in the same field? What do you wish someone had told you about your job before you started?”
2. Find a Career Co-Conspirator
There’s a reason that workout buddies exist: If you’ve ever sauntered right past the gym while whistling Dixie and looking the other way, when you’d promised yourself you’d sweat your butt off that night, you know it’s easy to let yourself down … and a lot harder to let a friend down.
Now here’s the career version: Take advantage of that built-in motivator and grab a like-minded friend (or co-worker) to encourage you to find your next job. “It’s the good old buddy system in action,” explains Mims. “And it could be just the push you need to get off the couch.” The idea? Between the two of you, you have double the amount of eyes, double the LinkedIn connections and a built-in partner next time you don’t want to head to a networking event alone.
To Do Right Now: Make a mental inventory of everyone you know who might be the right career buddy for you. Then, before you ask if they’re willing, find the perfect networking event for you both to attend, and shoot off an email saying, “So, are you up for this?”