557: The Discomfort Zone: How Taking Risks Can Lead To A Fulfilling Career



Stephanie Bilbrey, Content & Communications Strategist

Stephanie felt unfulfilled by her career in marketing, but her aversion to risk kept her stuck in her comfortably unhappy role.

on this episode

When people think about making a career change, they often don’t take action because of the perceived risks.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard “I’ve been considering a career change for years, but it seemed like such a risk.”

Even if you’re not really happy with your current situation, it’s easy to focus on the possibility of losing all the good parts of your current job.

But after helping thousands of people through career changes for many, many years, I will say that we don’t see that people are losing any of the good parts. That rarely ever happens.

Instead, I would argue that the far larger risk is the risk of doing nothing and staying for more years of your life in a situation that’s no longer good for you.

Many people are afraid to take risks because it’s easier to stay where they feel safe and comfortable. We like to think of this as “comfortably unhappy.” It’s the kind of unhappy that you can live in because it feels stable and safe.

But the problem is that if you aren’t willing to get uncomfortable, you could be cheating yourself out of career happiness.

That’s right – you have to get out of your comfort zone in order to make big things happen!

Stephanie was plagued with an aversion to risk and her role was comfortable but unfulfilling. Once she finally saw the writing on the wall, she decided to face her fears and embrace the unknown to find her ideal role.

What you’ll learn

  • How to take small steps to ease your way out of your comfort zones
  • How to use the “5 Whys” exercise as a career change breakthrough
  • How figuring out what you want gives you more confidence in nerve-racking situations

Success Stories

I see much better now how my five Clifton strengths tied together and the ones that I had felt were really not that much of a big deal, I can see better how they are innovative to me as a person and to my strengths and where they come from. And that was a kind of a new thing. What I love is new situations and learning, and I actually actively look for opportunities to push myself out of my comfort zone. So, and if I look back at past roles, I would tend to have to go back to go to the land and to run a major program that had been failing. And I didn't know a lot of the nitty gritty, the detail of all the different projects, but I had the organizational skills, I wanted to learn about the different projects. I wasn't fazed by the fact that I didn't know any of that detail. So I had the challenge of learning and the environment initially and also the challenge of language as I learn to. And that satisfied my learning.

Judith Bhreasláin, LIBOR Discontinuation Project Manager, United Kingdom

I think the clarity and accountability I got from my coach was super important in this process. Sometimes people don't have the discipline, not because they're not diligent or hard working. It's because they're afraid.  It's because they're scared. You know, they also don't know what to do. I think with the accountability from my coaches, especially like, my coach can just lay down, okay, now, after this call, you need to do 123. So that was specific, right. And that was an even like, you need to do this by this time of this week. So I got to do it. You know, it's very clear. I think the clarity and accountability I got from my coach was super important in this process. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there even if you feel under qualified or not the right fit because you might sit down and they might say I know you applied for this but what do you think about this and it could be something you totally love.”

Sylvia Guo, Research Director, United States/Canada

Stephanie Bilbrey 00:01

But that goes back to, "If you always do what you always did, you always get what you always got." And so by taking this kind of like incremental safe approach to career change, and like just career nudges, was not yielding me the vision of engaged work

Introduction 00:25

This is the Happen To Your Career podcast with Scott Anthony Barlow. We hope you stop doing work that doesn't fit you. Figure out what does and make it happen. We help you define the work that is unapologetically you, and then go get it. If you feel like you were meant for more, and you're ready to make a change, keep listening. Here's Scott. Here's Scott. Here's Scott.

Scott Anthony Barlow 00:49

Why does making a career change feel risky to so many people? I mean, I get it, if you're in an organization where the pay is great, or the benefits are awesome, or you have the flexibility that you want to continue to have, or maybe even the people are absolutely wonderful, and you're afraid of losing all of that. But here's the thing, even if you're not really happy with the job, and not really happy with the situation, what goes through so many of our heads is, "Is it worth taking the risk on a new career and possibly losing all the good parts?" But have you ever considered why it feels risky to you? Now, I would argue two things. One, that after doing this many, many years, not just the podcast, but helping thousands of people through career change, we don't typically see that people are losing all the good parts. We see that that rarely ever happens. And instead, I would argue that the far larger risk is the risk of doing nothing and staying for more years of your life in a situation that's no longer good for you.

Stephanie Bilbrey 01:57

I feel like I've been on autopilot. I've been checking boxes that my elders told me to check. So not really taking risks and listening to my heart. So that was my first kind of, like, "Somethings got to change."

Scott Anthony Barlow 02:12

That's Stephanie. She worked for years in community college environment and was plagued by an aversion to risk. I think it's pretty safe to say she was comfortably unhappy in her role. Now, once she finally saw the writing on the wall, she decided to face her fears and embrace the unknown to find her ideal role. Now, here's the really crazy thing. If we fast forward to what happened at the end of her change, she ended up surpassing her own expectations, by a longshot in terms of salary, and what was possible for her and her happiness in her career. Now, I want you to listen for that. But let's start out as Stephanie shares right here right now, what caused her to want to make a change in the first place.

Stephanie Bilbrey 02:58

I will say that I feel like I've been toying with my career for like, a decade. But looking at the work that I've been doing in the last couple of months or past year, previously in that last decade, I wasn't bringing intentionality and reflection and risk. I was taking this kind of like small hopeful fingers crossed kind of pivot. And but then questioning like, "Is this the right company? Is this the right role?" And then later, you know, that impostor syndrome comes up, "Is it me? Is that what's wrong?" I was actually listening to the podcast that you did with Dan Pink. And he said something to the effect of many people go their lives half asleep. Am I quoting that right? Something like that?

Scott Anthony Barlow 03:37

It was something similar to that. Yes.

Stephanie Bilbrey 03:39

So that actually really hit home with me because my husband and I, about seven years ago, had been toying with the idea of moving across the country, going out west, just appending our lives. And in my sign-off letter to the organization I was working on at the time, I feel like I've been on autopilot. I've been checking boxes that my elders told me to check. So not really taking risks and listening to my heart. So that was my first kind of like, "something's got to change." But I kind of leaned on moving across the country to be the, like, thing that offends everything and changes my career. And so needless to say, that was not the solution. I'm so glad that I did it. It was amazing. I've actually moved back to the East Coast since that initial. But you know, so I kind of, like, shook up the industry that I was working in, I started working in higher education, I started digging heavier into a different industry. But turns out that wasn't the solution either. So one of my favorite quotes is, "If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got." So it became evident that I was ready to move back across the country to be closer to family. I said, "I have got to do right by my career." And so that foundational work began and then I did the bootcamp probably about six months after coaching.

Scott Anthony Barlow 05:02

Wow. So this is, in any ways, as you said, been a journey, a decade in the making but especially in the last three years, is what I'm hearing. And now, you've been in a variety of different areas, you said, higher education, you've been in event planning, you've been even the marketing side of events, if I remember correctly, too, right? And also dipped into, like training and content development, those types of pieces as well. So you've been in a lot of areas, but it sounded like it wasn't as much about the area for you, it wasn't as much about, in some ways, the exact occupation for you, it's more about other pieces. So you know, as you were thinking about making this change, and you're really starting to take some steps, then, what were some of the pieces that at that point in time, you were feeling like you were either missing or wanting to change? What was the reason for the change?

Stephanie Bilbrey 06:01

You know, some people, they have a calling. And that's not the case for everyone. I've listened to enough of these podcasts, and I'm like, "It's okay if you don't have a calling. It's okay."

Scott Anthony Barlow 06:11

It's okay. It'll be there.

Stephanie Bilbrey 06:13

You know, I made peace with that. But it's like I had these fits and starts of, "I'm passionate about this." And then like a year or two or three later, I'm like, "I hate this", you know. I had a very specific moment where I was working, moving away toward event planning over several years, but I had to lean back into it when I moved across the country because I had to get a bridge job. And I remember this woman coming into the office and she was a client. It was a big conference convention center. And she came in devastated. The event is going on, and she said, "We agreed on white napkins. In ballroom A, there are white. In ballroom F, there are ivory." I mean, she looked like the world was ending. And I was like, "I can't do this anymore. This is not what I want." So where's that spark? And you know, marketing wasn't doing it for me. And I even started like a local networking organization for marketing because I was like, "This is it. This is cutting edge." And I was like, "Man, I really liked these people. But this isn't doing it for me either." So I think really what it comes down to is just, I wanted to feel engaged with the work I was doing, I wanted to be excited about it, even if it's not a calling.

Scott Anthony Barlow 07:30

Calling is such an interesting word. I have had lots... I've had probably, I don't know, 500 or so conversations where people are like, "Hey, what you do is a calling." And I don't even know if I'd identify with that word to be quite honest. I can absolutely see how people get that. However, I really don't necessarily identify with that word. And I think that the reason I'm bringing that up is because it doesn't have to be something that you feel like it's a calling, but it does have to hit all the buttons per se for you to feel fulfilled, rewarded, engaged, and maybe it's doesn't even matter that much about what word you identify with, but where you're feeling something towards it emotionally, and that is something that is on an ongoing basis. And often, we've seen that that lines up with, not just the work itself, but also the environment and the type and way that you're making an impact, and you can see that impact. Because I think the story that you told is really interesting one because I have met some people in the world where they would describe that napkin situation. And they would say, "You know what, this event mattered so much to that person that I felt very compelled to make sure that they had the white napkins as opposed to the ivory ones because I can see how I'm helping." But it's also totally okay, that that's not how you want to help and you don't get that type of fulfillment from that. Everybody has to find their own brand of fulfillment and menu.

Stephanie Bilbrey 08:57

If there are any event planners out there, it is okay if that is very important to you. Absolutely. Just there it is simply a misalignment on my part.

Scott Anthony Barlow 09:06

Yeah, there's nothing wrong with that, though. Like, I don't think that there's anything wrong with that. And that is, in many ways, the challenge in this journey. So as you started going through, and as you began trying to identify, "Hey, what would create a great next step for me? What would create an ideal next step for me?" What did that beginning of the journey really look like for you? Where did you start? How did that work for you?

Stephanie Bilbrey 09:27

I would say that it started with when I engaged a career coach. It very quickly became life coaching. The thing that rose to the top most quickly as my initial mountain to climb was my aversion to risk.

Scott Anthony Barlow 09:48

In what way? When you say aversion to risk, I think there's lots of people that say that, but what does that mean for you?

Stephanie Bilbrey 09:53

I would say, like, primarily financial risk, never leaping from one job without having another one secured, those kinds of conventions. And then I just think fear of the unknown is a risk. And you know, a career change brings so many complicated emotions and I don't like that space very much. So much of that impostor syndrome. And what if I fail? That became very evident to me right away, that is your first area that you got to work on. Is this work is hard? You know, listen to the podcast, and knowing the challenge that lies ahead, you've got to kind of get into a discomfort zone.

Scott Anthony Barlow 10:36

I think that when you say, get into a discomfort zone, that is...

Stephanie Bilbrey 10:42

Sounds terrible to describe?

Scott Anthony Barlow 10:44

It does sound kind of terrible. But why do you say that? Why was that such a big thing for you? What role did that play in this process? Can you think of a time where did you start getting outside your comfort zone beyond the risk?

Stephanie Bilbrey 10:58

Yeah, well, a couple of things. First of all, it just goes back to, "if you always do what you always did, you always get what you always got." And so by taking this kind of like incremental safe approach to career change, and like just career nudges was not yielding me the vision of engaged work. Note, I didn't say calling. So for me, I know this sounds strange because it sounds so nice. But meditation and reflection, going back to what we were previously talking about, getting deeper into my why. So much of the bootcamp work resonated with me, you know, because it was your first response, you need to go deeper, you need to ask yourself, "Is it three whys? Five whys?" I can't remember.

Scott Anthony Barlow 11:44

There's a problem-solving methodology that has an exercise where it is five whys. And generally, five whys is deep enough. And it goes something along the lines of, and I think this is what you're alluding to Stephanie is, you're saying, "Well, okay, well, why am I at work? Well, because I need to earn money. But why do I need to?" Keep going to layer and layer and layer deeper. Or it's, "Hey, why do I feel that I want fulfillment?" And then going to the next level. "Well, because I feel like I'm missing something. Well, why do I feel like I'm missing something?" And just keep going layer and layer until you get to what's called the root cause. But now that our bass caught up, why was that so interesting for you?

Stephanie Bilbrey 12:23

Because that's really where the meat was, where my values were, where the answers were, you know, I'll give you an example. And I think this is your eight-day mini course. I love to the question, "If you had the opportunity to teach something, what would you teach?" And one of my answers was, I love branding. I love creating a whole world for a company and a look and a feel and a tone, especially, you know, a lot of ground communications, because that really is a major kind of pillar in my skills and my interests. But through asking why and digging deeper, I realized that there was more to that for me and that it was organizational culture, it was company branding, that I really was digging into and latching on to, that was a thread for me. So that led me down that path of, not only is culture important to me wherever my career goes, company culture and good work-life balance, you know, throw out those buzzwords. But I need to be in it. I need to help direct it in some way. Doesn't mean that like, I am the Director of Culture for company X. But it was through those kinds of exercises that I was able to pull out that thread. And if I hadn't been meditating, as part of that, creating that kind of, it doesn't sound uncomfortable when I say it because it's like meditating is really nice. But for me, and digging deeper, and taking time to myself, also, that's a whole other thing that I'm sure many career searchers can understand and empathize with is just like the time to do this and to justify nothing. You just sit here and you think, it can be really hard. So another way that I was adding disruption to my life, adding discomfort is taking on hard conversations at work that I would have normally run away from screaming. For example, I don't like interpersonal conflict. I don't know who does but I'm like, it's my kryptonite. But man, did it get me out of my comfort zone? Did it challenge me? Did it keep me on my toes? Does that directly relate to my career, you know, kind of work and the results that I got? No, but it got me in a better space to be broader in the way that I was thinking and just more welcoming of discomfort.

Scott Anthony Barlow 14:45

That's really interesting. So one of the pieces and parts that I had picked up as you were going through making this change, just in tidbits of communication. I can't remember whether it's from a conversation or from an email, but it really is seemed like this was an inching along process for you, and not in a bad way at all, in a great way. And when I say an inching along process, it seems like each of these little pieces, like, taking the time, not just the meditation itself, but taking the time, the practice of taking the time to meditate and do something that normally wouldn't have or get outside your comfort zone with some of these conflict type conversations, each of these paved little tiny inch spaces to be able to get to the next step and the next inch. And that was really, really interesting to me because I think you did such a great job of going one inch at a time consistently, even though it probably didn't always feel that way.

Stephanie Bilbrey 15:41

It felt like 17,000 inches at the same time.

Scott Anthony Barlow 15:47

So here's my question with that, then. When you were beginning to recognize some of these themes or threads that you mentioned earlier, and you started getting into the experimentation phase of the process, what we call the experimentation phase of the process, what did that look like for you?

Stephanie Bilbrey 16:04

It looked like one way was just reaching out to former colleagues, friends. One of the exercises that I loved within bootcamp was just getting feedback on your strengths from a variety of people. That was one way that I approached it. Another way was, honestly, dropping in words that really were resonating with me on LinkedIn, and seeing the web of connections that were there. So for me, culture was a word. So I would find individuals on LinkedIn, some of them were second and third weak ties, some of them were not. And then I just hit the phone hard trying to make those connections and asking good questions, 15-20 minutes, that's all you got. So trying to understand what made them successful in their career, what they love about what they're doing in culture. And I was talking to a lot of different people to just get as many perspectives about how one could interact with and be in support of culture.

Scott Anthony Barlow 17:09

What are a couple of examples of those, like, different... I know, we have a tendency to say, "Hey, it's less important about the job title, because that's drastically different from the organization." But what were some of these people responsible for or doing? Or how were they interacting with culture? What's a couple of examples of that?

Stephanie Bilbrey 17:24

Yeah, absolutely. Training, organizational development, and change management. So those are kind of more like corporate buzzwords, their process certified, which sounds intimidating, but then I also went down that, like, "Do I need a certification route?" And some of them were internal communicators. So really responsible, obviously, those tend to be larger organizations that need that kind of role. And some of them were, I would say, more traditional kind of HR folks that took on more of the well-being, you know, well-being champion. Those kinds of things.

Scott Anthony Barlow 17:54

Interesting. So that is such a span. And it can be. And I think that that's true for every time that at least we're interacting with people through a career change process, that they start to discover, like, this can be a big thing. Now, the other thing that we often see happen, and I don't know how much this did or didn't happen in your case, but when people go through, and they're having those types of conversations, or they're getting feedback in a new and different way, and getting an exposure in a new and different way, they're often getting realizations that help them to pinpoint where they might be interested in. So what did that look like for you? Did that happen for you? And how did that look?

Stephanie Bilbrey 18:33

Yes, it did happen for me. I would say what one area that resonated for me a lot was when I would talk to the internal communicators. And you know, it's funny. I mean, how many times have people said to you, "Scott, the writing was always on the wall, like, why didn't I see it?" Like, it was like, duh. But, you know, hindsight is 2020. But, you know, for so long in different organizations, you'd be in a situation where you would be at a table with your co-workers, and somebody would ask you, "Why do you like working here? Why do you work here?" And my co-workers would have some mission-based answer. You know, I worked in higher education. "I'm here for the students", and then it would get to me. And then I would...

Scott Anthony Barlow 19:12

"I'm here for the white napkins."

Stephanie Bilbrey 19:14

Oh, "Y'all, I'm here for you." I mean, other people would say that too. You know, I love my co-workers. But I worked in theater. Yes, the theaters, the art is so important. But I found myself saying, "I'm here for my co-workers before I'm here for the art, before I'm here for the students before I'm here for the mission-driven thing." So that was a huge realization for me. So then, kind of combining all of that together and realizing like that particular example internal communications, that's my customer is the co-workers.

Scott Anthony Barlow 19:48

Okay, so that's such an interesting example, Stephanie, because I think there is so many different ways that that can go. First of all, you made a really great point that, often, when people go through this type of process and they're trying to clarify what makes an amazing next step for them, and even beyond that, and what great looks like, and you know that we often, if we're helping with that type of change, then we'll often help in the form of creating what the ideal career looks like and a profile of that, if you will. However, I think the great point that you made there is that so often it comes out on the other side where the writing has been there and now you can clear enough away to be able to pay attention to it in a way that simply wasn't possible before. And I think so many people go into this process thinking, "You know what, I'm going to discover something brand new. I'm going to be a beekeeper." Or, "I'm going to be a..." I don't know, insert your occupation here that is just absolutely polar one ad from whatever, you know, people have been doing. And that's so often not the case, it occasionally does happen. But so often, it's not the case. So great point. And then for you, my question becomes, as you were thinking about that writing on the wall piece, what caused you to begin to pay attention to it in a way that was helpful for you? And I'll preface that only to say that I think so often people feel like, "Hey, I'm saying I'm here for you. But I really feel like I don't actually have an answer, or I feel bad about my answer, or I feel like I shouldn't have that answer, even if it is true." Instead of saying, "You know what, this actually means something." And in your case, it really absolutely did mean something, meant everything in many different ways.

Stephanie Bilbrey 21:31

You know, one of the terms that you hear a lot, one of the phrases in bootcamp is, "What can you not stop doing?" And so for me, thinking about my co-workers, and not that the customer is not important, the customer is very, very, very important. But when your knee-jerk reaction when you look at a process, or communication, or anything is internal versus external, that was a light bulb for me.

Scott Anthony Barlow 21:57

The other thing that I wanted to ask you because it's easy to sit here and say, okay, you know, if we skipped to the end of what the story looked like for you, you got not one but multiple job offers, you did a fantastic job negotiating with both of those job offers and speaking of those conflict conversations, you had some more conversations that were way outside your comfort zone. And you did a fantastic job with those. But aside from that, what would you say was the hardest part of making this type of career change? The type of career change where you're putting yourself in the way that you want to show up in the world first?

Stephanie Bilbrey 22:34

I would say that the hardest part for me was just taking risks in general. It's such an uncomfortable thing for me. But to that end, I moved across the country yet again, without a job. And it really was the right decision for me. But the work was really hard and sometimes a confidence killer. And so to be so drained, you know, and you're already trying to fight your fear. You know, like, "I don't know if I can call this person. I don't know if I can leave this job", in addition to just being kind of run ragged from the phone calls and trying to figure it out that I wasn't anticipating that drain and that challenge that uphill battle. I thought it was going to be ripping resumes apart, you know, like, "Oh, I'm embarrassed. Okay." It goes so much deeper than that.

Scott Anthony Barlow 23:29

What advice would you give to that person who's in that same place where they realize and recognize that the situation they're in is not where they want to be, and they know that there is something much better out there, but they're in that place where those fears are popping up. And that beginning stage is such a hard place to be to even committing to making this type of change and call it a career change. But really, it's a life change.

Stephanie Bilbrey 23:57

Yeah, I definitely would have told myself to start even sooner.

Scott Anthony Barlow 24:03

Hold on. Why is that? I'm curious.

Stephanie Bilbrey 24:04

I don't regret my career trajectory at all. But to have looked back and known that so many years were not spent as engaged as I could have been, as happy as I could have been, just kind of miring through, that would be a motivator right there to tell, you know, 2011 Stephanie, "Hey, this kind of incremental safety net approach won't yield what your heart really wants." You know, that's like a big overarching. So it kind of fast forward a little bit and I have already learned a little bit of lessons. I would say the advice that I would have given myself is to research more to be as curious as possible. I tend to be a doer, not that I'm not a thinker. However, if given the opportunity, I rely more heavily on go implementation, press the start button. Knowing what I know now, creating more opportunities for research, more opportunities for curiosity, I think would have been really helpful.

Scott Anthony Barlow 25:10

That's interesting. Any other pieces of advice that you would give to those people who are just now thinking about this, or maybe in the midst of a career change? You've done a great job going all the way through. And I know that some of the things that you've learned through this process will probably help you for many, many years to come, not just now, in the immediate future. What did you say? You're 60 days into your role. You sit in a different place than two or three years ago. So anything else that you would encourage that person to think about as it relates to this process?

Stephanie Bilbrey 25:43

Well, first of all, it truly takes a village to change careers, in my opinion. I think there's this expectation that we put on ourselves that we can figure this out, that it's not rocket science, and it's my own personal journey. So it's just on me. And that is so not the case. Not only does it take a village of your immediate, you know, friends or family rely on some of those folks, as well, but it takes a village of like strangers, actually, you know, depending on the kind of research that you need to do and the connections that you want to make. You are like reaching out into the great unknown to say, "Hi, your LinkedIn profile story is fascinating to me. Do you have 15 minutes?" And that can be very uncomfortable. But some of those uncomfortable reach outs yielded such critical connections for me, and specifically, what I really latched on to and loved was make it easy for people to say yes, so I worked on that a lot. And the other, there was a podcast that you did– Jay Papasan. Yes.

Scott Anthony Barlow 26:45

Yeah. Jay is great.

Stephanie Bilbrey 26:47

That piece of advice that he gives about relationships are like bank accounts– you have to put in deposits before he can make withdrawals. It's actually this specific piece of advice that got the ball rolling to get me to the job, where I am right now. I took that. And I realized there was a specifically one day I said, "I need to make some deposits." And there was a former co-worker. And I reached out to her with no agenda whatsoever. And we had kind of like, kept in touch on social media, but I knew how connected she was on LinkedIn. And I said, "How was your holiday? How are your kids?" And the rest, I don't wanna say the rest is history. First of all, it's really trite. And the next two or three months were like, really painful and roller coaster. But it was literally that idea. And therefore that moment of sending that email that set the rest in motion.

Scott Anthony Barlow 27:41

That's interesting. So you're saying that taking that idea of building relationships or giving to others without expectation as part of how I'm interpreting that and making those deposits if you will, then that is part of what led to this actual opportunity for you?

Stephanie Bilbrey 28:01


Scott Anthony Barlow 28:01

Very cool. Love it. We see that so often. But I think that's also a really hard thing for so many of us. Because the thoughts that jump into our heads are like, "But I need a job", or, like, "Where do I do the thing that then gets me to the job offer?" Like, and it is, in many ways, going against those short-term benefits or short-term type of tactics that then allow to focus on long term. That's the big takeaway that I have more recently realized about this type of process and how we guide people through it, it requires long-term approaches to get to long-term solutions versus short-term approaches get to short-term solutions that you don't want to be in for very long job or otherwise,

Stephanie Bilbrey 28:46

Yes. And then, you know, just like totally on a granular level. The applicant tracking system, traditional way, applying resume and cover letter, is terrible. And also way less likely. And from what I've seen than the relationship pathway to not only a career change, but the actual job, it kind of does double duty in that way. Like I spent so much time on cover letters and resumes that went nowhere.

Scott Anthony Barlow 29:20

Oh my goodness. Yes. I feel like you do seven hours a podcast on why not to do that. However, we'll make that into a series later on. Let me...

Stephanie Bilbrey 29:30

Even if you yielded some success. But overall, it is not what got me where I am right now.

Scott Anthony Barlow 29:36

I think that it really depends on what your goal is. We've really toyed around with how to explain this in a way that makes sense, but it's hard to explain it in a soundbite. But if you think about it in terms of, if your goal is to get a job, maybe even a well-paying job as quickly as possible, then that means that going on job boards and looking at what is open right this second, and what people need and trying to match yourself into that, that is the best way to go. If that's your goal. However, if you have goals, much more likely you've described Stephanie, where you were looking for that fulfillment, you were looking for that calling, and you were looking for that thing that was missing in one way or another or multiple things that were missing, and that's really what you want, and that's a priority for you, it requires a completely different solution. It requires completely different tactics. It requires a completely different. So I think it really does depend on your goal. And you've done a really nice job taking steps that lead you towards what your goal actually was. One more thing I really wanted to ask you about, partially because we were just talking through it before we even really hit the record button here at the beginning of our conversation, but you did such a nice job working through multiple offers. And that was very uncomfortable for you. So first of all, what's not always obvious is the work that it takes to get to more than one offer. You know, when we talk about two or three or four offers on this podcast, I think it gets glossed over and people don't realize how much work. But what was your biggest takeaway in working through that type of situation before we end here?

Stephanie Bilbrey 31:13

I would say transparency and honesty were really, really helpful to call someone that, and I have to say that this particular human being was so lovely, and saw value in me that other interview situations had not... I couldn't feel that the way that I could feel this with this particular company, and individual. So hello makes it so much harder. But so than saying those kinds of things and saying, "I didn't envision that it would work out this way. And I was so genuinely excited for this opportunity. I hope we can stay in touch." Were helpful, I think, to kind of say there was a substantial amount of respect and excitement, but then a level of understanding as well, to help ease the blow.

Scott Anthony Barlow 32:13

Hey, if you've been listening to our episodes here at Happen To Your Career and you want to make an intentional career change to much more meaningful work and have it neatly laid out into an organized framework, well, guess what, we actually have that available for you in the Happen To Your Career book. It's available on Amazon, Audible anywhere else where you get your books. You'll learn about the five hidden obstacles, stopping your career change, how to figure out what would truly make you happy with your career. And what brings you more happy more often. And more importantly, how to transition to a much more fulfilling career and life. You can find the book on Amazon, Audible anywhere where books are sold, by the way, people are particularly loving the audio book, which you can access right now in second.

Scott Anthony Barlow 33:01

Here's a sneak peek into what we have coming up for you next week right here on Happen To Your Career.

Scott Anthony Barlow 33:08

Job search today is very different than it was 20 years ago. Recruiters and hiring managers are absolutely drowning in potential candidates today. So how do you convince them to give you a chance– a chance for an interview, a job, or even just the time of day? Well, it turns out, it's actually not about convincing the hiring manager or recruiter that you're the absolute best perfect fit for this job. That's not it. There's not just one secret Jedi mind trick that's going to make them choose you. So what is it then? What matters most when it comes to your job search? That evasive answer is what we break down in this episode of the Happen To Your Career podcast.

Scott Anthony Barlow 33:52

All that and plenty more next week right here on Happen To Your Career. Make sure that you don't miss it. And if you haven't already, click Subscribe on your podcast player so that you can download this podcast in your sleep, and you get it automatically, even the bonus episodes every single week, sometimes multiple times a week. Until next week. Adios. I'm out.

Ready for Career Happiness?

What Career Fits You?

Finally figure out what you should be doing for work

Join our 8-day “Mini-Course” to figure it out. It’s free!