I saw this sign on a building site in the area where I live and it got me thinking about the growing global economic crisis. The cuts imposed by the UK government to reduce the deficit are definitely impacting on our lives. For most people the ‘inconvenience caused’ is a measure of relative adjustment. For some of us, however, it serves as an important call to action and even an opportunity to invest … in ourselves.
At the start of the last recession in 2008 that I finally took the plunge and quit the 9 to 5 to work for myself. It was the culmination of 12 years of working up to ‘the right moment’. When it finally came, however, it didn’t quite look like ‘the right moment’ to friends and colleagues around me. With a toddler and baby number no.2 on the way, giving up a senior management job while my partner was also re-evaluating his career, seemed to them rather naïve and rather bad timing.
For me it was neither. I had waited long enough and had run out of logical excuses not to take the plunge despite the slight inconvenience of the economics around me. I had waited almost 20 years for the conditions to be ‘perfect’ before taking what I perceived (at the time) to be a big risk.
Four years on, I can see with hindsight that this economic inconvenience is a fertile backdrop for new types of businesses and innovative ways of working. For me and for many of the people I coach ‘the inconvenience’ has given us a reason to reflect on what is important and what’s not; to re-evaluate the stresses of the daily treadmill against what we hold most dear, be it our health, our family or pursuing our dreams.
The economic downturn coupled with the advent of the internet and social media revolution is our generation’s cue to update our outdated ways of thinking and working. In many ways, those of us who were unsure that working outside the 9 to 5 framework could be a sustainable alternative, the crisis is a catalyst for change; it is our fortune rather than misfortune to be living in these times. Traditional marketing methods are being pitted against the rise of successful, flexible and nimble internet models that are yet to be fully exploited.
If you are facing redundancy, putting off going for the career you really want or thinking about ditching the 9 to 5 altogether, the most important thing is to know that you are never alone in making these life changing decisions. Day in and day out I work with individuals who have recognised the potential that the economic crisis has delivered and turned it into an opportunity. In many ways, there is no risk. They are going for what they want and are beginning to reap the benefits. Take inspiration from what others have done and surround yourself with the support you need. Had I known about coaching years ago, I know I would have had the courage to make changes sooner rather than wait for the ‘perfect’ conditions. Even though it may seem ‘inconvenient’, if change is on you mind, take action now and join me at one of my upcoming workshops or keep in touch by signing up to my email updates below.