Tuesday, 7 December 2010

How do you make the Sunday evening feeling a good feeling?

Welcome to my first post on my career coaching blog!  For those of you who have experience of that ‘Sunday evening feeling’, my career coaching blog is especially for you!

Before my first session with clients, I often ask them to provide me with a brief summary of their background.  This can include their career history, aspects of their career/life they enjoyed/disliked, and satisfying career or life achievements.  Not only does this information provide me with a useful background about the individual to enable me to coach them effectively, it gives my client an invaluable opportunity to have a think about all those forgotten things they are inspired by, are good at or have achieved. 

As this is my first post, it therefore seems right that I now tell you a bit about my career path and my passion for helping people to find fulfilling and rewarding careers.

I initially studied law, having been attracted to the challenge as well as having a particular curiosity in family law given my interest in helping people.  Following my studies and subsequent training contract, I qualified as a family law solicitor in 2006 and enjoyed the successful beginnings of a career, working hard and tackling the challenges my caseload provided. 

Having been qualified for 2 years, I started to wonder what else was out there.  I have always been determined to find a career that is really me and is what I really want to do and decided that there was more in life I wanted to explore.  Leaving behind paid employment and stepping into the unknown was a challenging risk I was prepared to take.  I always knew that if it was my last day on earth and I was looking back on this point in my life, I would regret not giving it a go.   I therefore saved some money, started to look for opportunities and left my position as a family law solicitor at the end of 2008 to pursue a 6 month career break, initially intending to do some voluntary work within the charity sector. 

Within a couple of months of my career break, I had gained experience working in a school, completed a Foundation Course in Counselling Skills for Working with Children with Place2Be and was fortunate to secure a paid position at Macmillan Cancer Support.   It was great to experience such different places of work and witnessing the courage of those being helped by Macmillan made me even more determined to find a career that I was really passionate about. 

It was at this time that career coaching started to feature in my mind.  Given my experience of moving from the legal to the charity sector, a number of people approached me to ask for advice and guidance on careers.  I started to realise how unfulfilled many people are in their careers and the negative impact this was having on their lives.  I investigated the world of career coaching and became more and more passionate about it.

I am now writing my first post as a qualified coach having spent 6 months establishing my business, Tessa Armstrong Associates.   I have found a career that is really me and is what I want to do, using my past and present experiences and skills to enable individuals to discover what they want to do and support them in getting there.  

Finding this career path took a lot of thinking time, research and planning as I thought seriously about what I wanted to achieve.  It also took a lot of perseverance as I had to overcome challenges and obstacles along the way but it was all worth it!   I really enjoy what I do and hope you have enjoyed reading a bit more about how I got here. 

So, I will now leave you with one question.  How do you feel on a Sunday evening? 

If enthusiasm, excitement and fulfilment are not the words springing to mind, this is the time to write your life story - you never know, you may renew a passion for an area of your life that you have hidden away over the past few years.

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