Four Reasons Why People Delay Their Reinvention

It’s Spring and time to rejuvenate, renew and reinvent!

Perhaps, you – like so many other people – have reassessed your life and career and are weighing the pros and cons of a career reset, pivot, or reinvention

While the process of re-imagining your life and considering new possibilities can be exciting, it can also trigger so much uncertainty and doubt that you get overwhelmed and wind up doing …nothing. 

That is what happened to me around 2002.  

Several years earlier, I had reinvented myself from lawyer to entrepreneur with a renowned direct selling company.  While I had found mentoring and leading women entrepreneurs to be enjoyable and rewarding, when my son left for college, I was ready for a new career challenge. 

 I considered reinventing myself again as a coach and speaker who would inspire others to create lives of meaningful success However, I procrastinated making that transition for several years. 

It wasn’t until 2009, when we relocated to the Bay area, that I launched my second reinvention. 

Over the years, I’ve heard many people echo the same excuses I had used when I procrastinated reinventing myself although I was yearning for a new career challenge. 

These are the most common reasons people procrastinate exploring a career transition.  Do any of these resonate with you? 

I don’t have time to reinvent myself – Since most people considering a career pivot are already juggling careers and personal lives, this is the most common excuse. 

However, I’ve discovered that we always can make time if something is profoundly important to us. 

During my first reinvention, when I was working 70 hours a week as a lawyer, I carved out time to start the business that I eventually stepped into. I made the time because I wanted to get off the career treadmill to focus on my well-being and family.  That short-term sacrifice led to a rewarding career that changed my life. 

With good time management, we can all find time in our busy schedules to design a more fulfilling future. 

“I want to wait until _______” Exploring and pivoting to a new career or role requires stepping out of our comfort zones.  And because that’s so scary, we tell ourselves that we’ll get started when our life circumstances change. 

And that day never comes. 

As we continue to procrastinate, our doubt about the wisdom of reinventing ourselves grows, and we rationalize that our comfortable familiar position “really isn’t so bad.” 

As result, we let opportunities pass us by until we wake up one day and realize that we’re in the same unfulfilling stagnant place where we were five years ago. 

“What if it doesn’t work out” – While reinvention requires us to deal with uncertainty, the process usually takes 6-12 months or even longer, which allows time to explore and evaluate many different possibilities. 

Even if your original path doesn’t work out, when you put yourself out there and start exploring, new doors open that would have remained closed if you had not acted.    

“I don’t know where to start”-   I can relate to this. When I was contemplating moving into speaking and coaching, I had no idea how to get started. And so, I did nothing. 

Fortunately, today, there are many great resources available to guide your career transition. 

As new opportunities emerge from the pandemic disruption, you have more options than ever to refresh or reset your career or your life. 

What’s stopping you from starting to explore what’s possible? 

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore.”   Mark Twain

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