What I Did When My Perfect Job Turned Out Not To Be

Ever have the experience that what looked like the perfect job turn out not be?

Me too.

When the Perfect Job Isn’t

Everything looked great on paper. I had a fancy title, staff reporting to me, a growing national presence and a seven-figure budget to manage. Back in a fabulous town in my beloved home state, after being away for a decade. The salary generous and benefits a-go-go.

It was super position for a mid-career, early thirties gal. Just not for me.

Who I am as a person and my particular combination of strengths and approach to managing staff and projects covering 6 states were not a good match for the organizational environment I was in.

I was miserable. “What the h-e-double-hockey-sticks have I done?” miserable.

The Day Professional Development Paid Off

One evening after a long day I was looking at some workshop options.

I needed some continuing education credits for my social work license and found a 1-day workshop on coaching skills for clinicians. I thought, “Well that sounds interesting” and registered.

A month later I was at the workshop.

“Eureka!” I had found it. What I was supposed to be doing professionally.

Strengths Light the Way for the Next Professional Step

As the workshop progressed, I could see the connection between what I had done and the possibility of what I could do. I could imagine a better career path that would leverage my crazy quilt of professional experiences and my signature strengths.

Once I take in- the bigger picture I can focus in on the details, that’s good since that is in part why my clients hire me.

As a bonus my natural tendency to be open-minded and think things through from multiple perspectives (that can be a bear to hold in check personally) is a super strength for my work because I can see connections that my clients don’t.

Perseverance, could be my middle name, and is an ideal trait for an entrepreneur.

For better or worse, I am genuine and don’t try to fit myself into a what I am not supposed to be in- like “the job of misery”. And it means I’ll speak the truth even when it’s hard.

The day after the workshop- literally- I signed up for my first coaching training course. Two months after that I had my first coaching clients.

As I developed my chops as a coach, I drew on my best-of-self traits both when coaching and in my job.

Then the miserable job went.

I left it- with a plan, but not a safety net job.

Stepping into a Promising Future

That was 11 years ago.

Yes, it was scary to step away from the safely of what looked like the best thing possible on paper, in to a future that was promising if unknown. And I don’t recommend that for everyone.

I have not looked back, but I sure have pulled on my perseverance, critical thinking and sense of perspective over those years to expand what was possible for me. And make those possibilities reality.

I’d love to help you step into your next professional expansion.

If you want to explore how more fully integrating your best-of-self traits can help you and your business, please email me, using the contact form below. I’ll be delighted to connect with you.


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