Make your career evergreen

Bruce Harkness, author of Performance Matters: The Ultimate Career Survival Guide, has over twenty years’ experience in leadership and talent development on the Gold Coast, and he’s here to teach us how to keep our career growing

Every day you have the possibility to make decisions that can make your life better or worse. The discipline is in the application of those decisions. A good starting point is to give yourself time to reflect on a situation, deciding what actions would result in the best outcome, and knowing right from wrong. From a workplace perspective, linking your decisions to your career goals is a critical component of effective career management and is an immensely strong driver of positive change.

“All good and well” I hear you say, but in an intensely competitive and stressful workplace it is not always easy to see the wood from the trees in terms of effective decision making. Competition for your job can now come from practically anywhere in the world and, increasingly, you are competing with emerging technology /AI, which may threaten or replace your job in the future. Regardless of how you feel about this change, the speed of change and the compounding effect will continue to evolve and intensify over the course of your career lifetime.

The first step in building your resilience to cope with the competitive nature of the workplace and cultivating a successful career is to accept that change is here to stay, that change is good and, ultimately, to become a ‘change maker’!

Those of you who learn to anticipate and respond well to change will be best positioned to react and seek out new and exciting opportunities. Initially, this can be difficult as change can be confronting and create feelings of uncertainty. Also, hanging on to what has passed often leads to frustration and anxiety. By letting go and embracing the moment you will automatically feel better. It really is that simple!

Our ability to let go of past experiences is influenced by what psychologists call locus of control. This concept essentially suggests that people who have a dominant internal locus of control believe the outcomes of their life are influenced by the decisions they make. Those individuals who have a dominant external locus of control believe it is predominately external influences that shape their lives.

Regardless, when it comes to coping with the stresses of both work and life you have got to have a resilience plan which incorporated daily habits to counter the stress that we all face:

  • Accept that the chaos that surrounds us is not a one-off event.
  • Understand that building your resilience is not optional. l Go to work on your self-belief and confidence.
  • Build your support team as a priority.
  • In work and life, live according to your values.
  • Find meaning in your work – what is your why for what you do?
  • Maintain a healthy optimistic mindset; stuff happens, it is a normal part of our lives.
  • Build in daily routines that help you manage stress – for example, a walk on the beach, meditation, or exercise.
  • Ensure you get the recommended hours of sleep for optimal health and be mindful of your overall physical well-being.
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