by Deborah Brown-Volkman

Your career is a series of choices. Some are good and some are not so good. But either way, you are the person doing the choosing. At times it may feel like you have no choice, or someone else is making the choices for you, but the truth is you have more power over what you choose than you think you do.

What going on in your career? Frustration? Boredom? Exhaustion? Things we all deal with in today’s workplace. (It’s good to know that you are not alone.)

If your career is not where you want it to be, it’s up to you to do something about it. The old cliché, “Good things come to those who wait,” hurts more than it helps. It gets you off the hook because you believe things will happen on their own over time. Action is what gets results. Not waiting.

So what are you choosing? Are you choosing to work on making more money or quietly wishing a raise will come to you? Are you choosing to update your resume or letting being busy prevail? Are you actively choosing to discover what your true passion is or are you hoping the answer will magically appear? The choices you make today will determine whether you are happy or not tomorrow.

In order to go forward, sometimes you have to go back. Once you can accept where you have been, then you can make plans to move forward. Look at your career. Where have your choices led you?

Have Bad Choices Led To Regret?

Everyone has something in their career they wish they’d done differently. Maybe you mis-spoke in an interview or a meeting and you blew an opportunity. Maybe you could have negotiated a bigger salary but you did not. Maybe you ran into someone in your career who could have helped you move to greater heights but you failed to ask for help. Again, know that you are not alone. Bad choices are something we all share. It’s not what happens to you in your career that matter, but how you recover from it. Have you moved on, or are you replaying every moment over again in your mind? Replays are for sports, not for your career. Let it go so you can move on to something better.

Have Bad Choices Led To A Bad Attitude?

Are you fun to be around? Or, do people ignore you? What kind of vibe are you sending at work or on interviews? Believe you are hiding a bad attitude? Your belief is wrong. People can pick it up from a mile away. No one can hide unhappiness or anger. You may think that you have a right to be gloomy, but the person you are hurting the most is you. No one cares that you are upset. They do care that you are being difficult. Want to shake things up in your career and see real results? Become a more positive person. This one act alone can transform your career.

Have Bad Choices Led To Fear?

What are you afraid of? Afraid to ask for more money or resources? Afraid to speak up in meetings? Afraid to call people you know to see if they have a job opportunity for you? Afraid to go after your passion? Fear is normal. You wouldn’t be alive without it. But there is a difference between being afraid and letting fear paralyze you. Even though you are busy, you know yourself pretty well. You know when fear is getting in the way. The question is what will you do about it. Will you let fear win or not?

Start Making Good Choices

Until you make better choices, your old choices will continue to haunt you. Start today by making one good choice. One choice will lead to two and so on. You have to start some-where, so start where you are right now. Good choices made over time will lead you to a more fulfilling career. So, what do you say? You only have one life to live, so it might as well be a life you love!

Deborah Brown-Volkman is the president of Surpass Your Dreams, Inc., a career- and mentor-coaching company that has been delivering a message of motivation, success and personal fulfillment since 1998. The company works with senior ex-ecutives, vice presidents and managers who are out of work or overworked. Deborah is also the creator of the Career Escape Program and author of Coach Yourself To A New Career: A Book To Discover Your Ultimate Profession. Deborah Brown-Volkman can be reached at via email at or at (631) 874-2877.

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