Have you noticed the 15 minute cycle of today’s health research findings? One minute, the researchers are telling us it’s absolutely essential that we take this step for healthy living, and 15 minutes later, they’re telling us … oops, no don’t. What was formerly totally good for us is now not so much.
Happily, the steps we should take to maintain a healthy career aren’t so unpredictable. As I explain in The Career Fitness Workbook, we know exactly what we have to do to keep up the strength, reach and endurance of our career. And that won’t change.
So, the challenge for us isn’t figuring out our regimen; it’s starting and sticking to it. We have to find the will power to change our behavior, to move from the laissez-faire approach to career self-management that most of us have used successfully over the years to a much more engaged approach today.
Although that may seem like a radical change in direction, it’s actually a shift many of us know pretty well. As we age, it becomes unavoidably clear to us that we have to pay closer attention to our physical health and take proactive steps to protect it. The same is now true for our careers.
Unlike in the past when experience allowed us to coast a bit in the later years of our career, today we have to redouble our efforts as our career gets on in years. Age discrimination, a demanding workplace and the transformation of our economy all mean that we can’t sit back and take it easy, if we want our career to stay healthy. We have to work at it, even though we’re smarter, savvier and wiser than we’ve ever been before.
It’s counter to our expectations, I know, but it’s also true. And happily, unlike with health research, when you hear “do this” for the health of your career, you’ll never hear “no, don’t.”
Thanks for reading,