Career success by following your North Star and NOT focusing on your direction
One of the concepts we share with our clients is the concept of following your North Star. The concept isn’t ours, and isn’t new, but our take on it might be different than most.
What is your North Star?
The concept of the North Star comes from the age of sailing ships where there was no GPS. In the darkness of the night, sailors would use the stars to navigate. They picked a star, often the North Star and set course based on where the North Star was. Inevitably, the winds blew them East or West, taking them slightly off-course, headed to a different direction. Without careful course corrections, slightly, could turn to significantly, especially if the direction wasn’t changed early.
Unlike the North Star used for navigation, your North Star might be different than mine. And some people’s stars seem to shine more brightly than others. Still having a North Star for your career is a useful tool to help guide your actions.
Direction towards your star
Most people are focused on which star to follow. Out of high school, you are asked to pick a star that you’ll supposedly follow for the next 3-5 years. And that star will seemingly guide you for the rest of your career.
Steering versus direction
If we continue with the naval example, then while most people are focused on which star to follow, we are most concerned with whether or not you are in control of the ship? The realization often opens people’s eyes to the fact that the direction they’ve been following for however many years, wasn’t set by them. Parents, family, friends or other influences of society are often the one setting the direction. Then it’s no wonder that many never reach their career potential.
Now if you were to spend your take on making sure that you were steering the ship, then you are far more likely to reach your career potential. Plus it is also a realization that some people may change directions multiple times throughout their careers. I myself went from computer science, to business, to career coaching, which seems like an odd path, but makes perfect sense when I explain.
So what is your North Star and are you in control of your ship?Follow: