Every choice we make is a tradeoff.
There is always a reason for choosing one thing over another.
That is the trade-off.
We do this daily.
A lot of times unconsciously.
An example of this is getting up early to bike before work. I know that I get benefits from biking. It clears my mind, it keeps me healthy and fit, the ride is always beautiful and I enjoy it. But there are days that sleeping later would be great. At that point I weigh the benefits of the tradeoff. Sometimes the sleep gets to be the winner. But most of the time I think about the gains I get and that helps my motivation to bike.
We all do this with every choice we make.
Trade offs happen because we do not have time to do everything. Our lives are full. The choices we make are the way we design our lives.
It is all about making deliberate decisions based on the trade offs.
Say you decide it is time to make a career change. You are probably thinking about how your job is no longer satisfying you. You are ready to be inspired and excited about your work again. You aren’t happy but you will only make the change, when the trade off is too great to stay. When you just can’t see yourself in that career any longer.
Only you can decide.
How do you decide? Look at the tradeoffs. Make a list. Really look at what you would be giving up if you left. Then look at what you would gain by doing the new thing. How do those lists compare? This is where you decide if the tradeoffs are worth it.
I hear people say they are afraid of the unknown. What if it doesn’t work?
My question is always What if it does? I think this is the question we need to remember when we are thinking about making a change.
Our monkey brains are there to protect us. Fight or flight are our first responses to stressful situations. Change isn’t something that our monkey brain does. It wants us to stay on the known path to keep us safe.
To start something new, we need to nurture ourselves through the change.
We need to think about our goals, what we are working toward. We need to remember why we want to do something new. The why will keep us on the new path. The why should be something you are passionate about, something you want and won’t stop until you get.
For me that took some time to find.
I wasn’t really thinking about my life when I picked my first career. Now my life is the important thing and the career needs to work with the life I want.
I had to start with figuring out who I really was and how I wanted to live. Once I knew what I wanted my life to look like, I found the career that aligned with it.
I didn’t do this when I was choosing a career in college or even when I got out of school. I was just thinking about work, money and how to get both.
Now I am consciously making choices that align with my values. And this has given me the opportunity to live the life I want.
My main motivator is living a great life. I do that by loving my career, being an active community member, helping others and choosing to be happy. It’s made me a better human, a better friend and a better coach.
I think, if everyone was satisfied with their careers and lives, people would be happier and the world would be a better place.