Ever thought what stops you from landing your dream job? It’s your assumptions – some genuine, some baseless.
There is interesting thing going on here. We often do not consciously know what our assumptions are, and worst yet, we often forget that even genuine assumptions have ways to break them so that we can achieve what we always dream about.
When we think of pursuing our career aspirations, we see multiple roadblocks in the form of fears and assumptions that limit ourselves from making an attempt to achieve our goals.
Our assumptions act as mental barriers limiting us from even thinking beyond what are doing currently.
We are what we think and believe. We make our assumptions on our possibilities and life in general based on our beliefs. And our beliefs are formed by what we read, experience and observe from our friends and family.
Ever thought like this?
- I do not have the required experience to apply for that job
- I am not qualified for that job
- I am not graduated from a well-known institution
- What if I get that job and don’t like it later?
- Companies don’t pay good salaries for my skill
- I do not get that job because it is multiple levels above my current job
- Market is not good; there are no openings. It’s difficult to find job in this market
- There are no jobs for my technology/skill-set; I cannot change my technology at this moment
- Changing from technical role to management role (or vice verse) is difficult
Many a times, it’s not all or many of them, but just one or two that stop us from taking next step – as small as even applying for the job we wanted.
First you need to know what’s blocking you, and then you naturally try to find ways to break it.
Often these mental barriers are so deeply ingrained in us that we generally cannot think outside of our assumptions.
I have numerous examples where people successfully challenged their assumptions and landed coveted jobs they love. I myself have challenged and broken most of the assumptions mentioned above during the search for my dream job.
Our assumptions control our life to a large extent even without our knowledge. Unless we identify and test them systematically, we will not be able to break those barriers and think outside of them.
Assumptions are easier formed when they occur within a community. Your circle of friends and your family plays critical role in laying your assumptions.
I saw people living their entire life with simple assumptions that many others have easily broken and achieved their goals early in their careers.
How to identify your mental barriers?
When you ask yourself whether you are looking for a better job that gives higher responsibility and more salary, the answer would be YES in more than 90% of the cases. Now that you agree, ask yourself why you are not able to get that dream job or even make an attempt towards it.
What comes to your mind is a list of barriers, your excuses, your assumed inabilities. Some of them may be true and some may be an illusion. But all of them have solutions to overcome. Probably that is not believable for you at this moment.
Start this exercise now.
Use the following table to brain-dump your assumptions that stop you from finding and applying for your dream job. I will show you how to systematically de-construct and find a way to overcome them, opening your way to find your dream job.
One quick and easy way to find them is to go through the job description of a job that you always wanted to apply for, check each and every requirement and ask yourself – why can’t you do this job? Just write what comes to your mind. Do not bother about whether there is a way to solve it at this moment. Just list all that blocks you from getting your dream job.
You may not find a readily available open position to do this exercise. Company is not important at this moment. Just take any sample job description that is closest to your dream job. The objective of this exercise is to understand how your assumptions are limiting yourself and controlling your fate.
Just be honest with yourself when you choose your dream job and list your assumptions. You may totally believe that your reason of disqualification for a particular requirement is true and you cannot change or overcome it at any cost. But I still request you to list them here.
Categorizing your assumptions would tell you where your greatest fears are, in which area so that you can focus on it further for the real reason behind it.
Then move ahead and try to fill up the rest of the table. You have to get out of your chair and talk to people to fill rest of the table. However, if you can fill up this table to the last block, I am sure you can find yourself in a better position – one step closer to your dream job.
At the end of this exercise, I am sure you will be surprised to know what’s blocking you.
Acknowledgement and understanding your fears that are hindering you to make any attempt towards your dream job is the first step in your journey to break all barriers and land job you love.
What fears did you identify in you so far and how did you identify them. Let me know.