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An Open Letter to Gen Y – #JoinTheCommunity

#WhatTheySay, #DontSellURselfShort

Were you born after 1981? If so, you are a member of Generation Y; otherwise known as a Millennial. Whether you know it or not, there is a lot being said about your generation. If you believed the media buzz, you would think that aside from working at Starbucks, your prospects of career success are dismal at best.

“They” say you’re not the best employee, lazy and entitled, lacking the skills and maturity to properly fit into the box, the workplace structure. Do you believe this perception? Is this how you feel about yourself? I’m not buying it and neither should you. Perhaps you’ve been unfairly labeled or misunderstood.

#SoManyChoices, #WhoAreU, #URGPS

One thing that IS certain, you have more options and choices than any previous generation. That can be a problem in itself, too many choices. The possibility of making a wrong choice can be paralyzing. Not to mention with so many choices, you can spend a lot time going in circles if you don’t know how to narrow your focus. And even if you know the direction, there is the issue of how to get from where you are to where you want to go.

Let’s say you want to go to Seattle. There are many ways to get there. Your GPS will give you the most direct route. But once on you’re the road, you change your mind and decide you’d like to check out Chicago first. Now, the directions you originally got need to be adjusted to match your new choice.

If you look at your life and career as territory to be explored, then the directions someone else gives you might not take you to the destination where you want to go. The direct route may not be the best and you might need to take a detour or even get lost to find your way. And that’s all right, mistakes are okay.

The question to ask yourself is “what GPS are you using to navigate your life?” Is it the one society, your parents, or your friends gave you or the one inside of you? (See my last blog post for more about “Finding the Work Inside You”).

#TheScript, #Unleash, #BeReal

People have good intentions and want to help you, but often the “advice” they are giving you is what they want for themselves and that’s not helpful to you. Your parents, of course, want more for you than they had. That’s the way it’s been for many generations. So they have certain expectations for what you “should” do. But, you are different and your field of entry is different! The way to achieve your goals and overcome challenges has definitely changed. For example, your parents didn’t grow up in the socially interactive digital dimension that you live in.

Suppose your deepest desire doesn’t match the script your parents or society has in mind. Some of you already have a degree and have decided that you don’t like what you chose as your career. If you’re in debt from college, it can feel like you’re stuck with that choice and must live with it. I can assure you, there is a way to start over with a clean slate and regain momentum in a direction of your choosing.

No matter how much you want to please “them” or stick with it because that’s what you’re supposed to do or that’s what you’ve invested your time and money into, it may not be what’s best for you – it may not be an expression of the REAL you. Here’s the thing, the only script that matters is yours. It’s your life and it’s not over!

The career you choose should be the thing that feeds you rather than takes away from you. If you are doing what you love and you feel like you are contributing positively to your job, your family and your world, everything melds together. You’ll feel better for it, you will be empowered — and you’ll be expressing the unique you.

#PandoraURLife, #TakeControl

Your life CAN be like Pandora, where you are in control of choosing and putting together the channels that make up your individual lifestyle. But before you program it, you have to determine how you want your life to look and how to make that happen. You can’t choose your favorite music if you don’t know what you like.

How do you sort through all the daily digital distractions, what your parents are telling you, what your friends are telling you, what your coworkers are saying and the judgments society (does the phrase helicopter kids ring a bell?) has placed on you to find your own direction in life?

#URValues, #OwnIt, #CraftIt

The first step to crafting the direction for your life is to know yourself and your values. The word value can mean what you hold as right or wrong, and it can also mean what you place value on, as in the things you spend your time doing or desire to spend your time doing. What you value is what makes you come alive. If you are not coming alive every day, it’s possible that you are not living what you value and are not on purpose with what matters to you.

The idea behind following your passion is terrific, yet there is a difference between “blindly following your passion” and being on purpose about what you do, having a strategy to get better, upgrading your ability, and then using that as leverage to climb higher.

Let’s say a roadblock to doing what you love is that it isn’t going to yield a large sum of money. If that is your goal or purpose (a large sum of money) that is one thing, though what really gets most people out of bed every day is the opportunity to do what you enjoy and feel competent in that also makes a difference to others. Making good money doing it is a bonus.

Many of us are still figuring out how to live within our own reality and making the lifestyle choices that support what we do. Once on the career track that requires a 70+ hour work week, it’s hard to get off. Later we realize the impact it has on our personal life and other aspects that are important to us outside of work. How long are you willing to live a life of work that negatively affects your lifestyle needs and, ultimately, your overall health and well being?

There is no right or wrong choice; it’s a matter of figuring out what your terms are as you craft the life you want. What works and what does not work for you? We are all different and unique in what matters to us. Defining what matters to you is uncovered through a process of discovery, it is not an event. If you know yourself, what you value, and have the tools to help you “see the truth” of situations, I promise you that you’ll be able to make good decisions for yourself and successfully craft your life’s work.

#whatsnext, #wantadventure, #urcommunity, #getinvolved

Are you ready for the next step? I invite you to be a part of a community that will be there to support you no matter what goals you choose to pursue. This will be a community of your peers who also want to take on this adventure.  I call it #CRAFTURLIFESWORK. As your tour guide, I will lead this community in a process that launches each participant’s adventure.

This is a whole person experience, not an intellectual exercise. It is an adventure in being and learning how to understand yourself as well as write your own new rules for success.

Will you take the adventure with me? Let’s talk about it – call or text me for more information at 281-450-6316.

Kathi Crawford, SPHR, MMC

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