If you find yourself watching the news or reading articles about current events, and wanting to be a part of the change the world needs, you’re not alone. But it can be tough to work out not only what careers make a difference in the world, but how you can have the impact you want.
Of course there’s no “one size fits all” when it comes to making a difference. But if it’s time for a change there are some important things to bear in mind when considering how you can have your biggest impact.
If you’ve found yourself considering a change of career so that you can be part of the future you want to see, here are 4 things to bear in mind.
1. You won’t make a difference if you’re burnt out
“First, replenish yourself” is one of our fundamental principles here at One of many and it’s especially relevant when it comes to considering a big question like how you can best make a difference in the world.
If you’re in a period of transition, start by making sure you’re energised and well resourced, so you’re in the best position to make thoughtful decisions. You’ll need to be able to trust your instincts – and if you’re utterly worn out and fed up, they’ll simply be telling you to STOP.
It’s easy to make rash choices when you’re coming from a place of panic or overwhelm. Give yourself time to recover from burnout, and get to a place where – at the very least – your basic needs are taken care of, before you start looking at the big picture of how you can contribute to the world.
The causes you want to contribute to will benefit far more from you at your best and most resilient, than if you take a leap to support them only to find yourself floundering.
2. Leaders need followers
A lot of us assume that to make a difference we need to start a movement or come up with a groundbreaking, world-changing idea. But not everyone is cut out to be a leader, and that doesn’t mean you can’t make a difference.
Derek Sivers first gave a name to something he calls “first follower theory”, pointing out that the first people to follow leaders are arguably just as important as the leaders themselves. In fact, the first followers are vital because they “give permission” to others to join a cause.
Perhaps you’re passionate about ending poverty, or bringing creativity back into the curriculum, or promoting flexible working for mums so they can be there for their kids as well as contributing to society through their work.
You could think of your own ways to solve those problems. But you could also look for people who already have good ideas for how to solve them, and see what support they need.
3. Build on your strengths
Whether you decide you want to start something new, or join a cause or organization who are making the difference you want to, knowing your own strengths and how you can best build on them is a huge asset.
Your Women’s PowerTypes Profile is a great place to start when it comes to understanding what makes you tick on a deeper level. Whether as a leader, freelancer or as part of a team, when you understand the patterns of behaviour you tend to adopt you’ll be able to make sure you have the impact you’re capable of, and that you do so from a place of power – without burning out.
If you don’t know your PowerTypes Profile, click here to get your report.
4. Work isn’t the only way to make a difference
When considering what careers make a difference in the world, remember that work is only one part of what makes up your contribution to the world. Perhaps you’ve spent decades building up a rewarding career that’s well paid, but doesn’t feel as though it really has a direct impact on a cause that’s close to your heart. There are lots of ways you can have an impact withput having to give up a career you love:
- You might find that there’s a local organization looking for volunteers to help with beach cleans and raise awareness of the perils of single use plastic.
- Or a campaigning group who could really do with your editing skills on their website.
- Maybe you can help a local school raise awareness, and empower a younger generation to campaign for change.
If you’re happy with what you’re doing and are looking for more impact, you don’t need to throw the baby out with the bathwater. How can you use the skills you already have to make the difference you crave?
You can make a difference
It’s a time of huge global challenge, and women are key to finding the solutions to those big problems. Every single one of us can have an impact, and we’re committed to helping empower one million grassroots women leaders to start creating the change we want to see. You are one of them!
If you’d like to have a chat with one of the team about how we can support you to make the difference you’re called to, get in touch by clicking here – and we’ll arrange a time to talk.
Our intention is simple. To support professional women to handle the day-to-day so they can unleash the bigger impact they feel called to make in the world.
We believe real leadership is less about skill, and more about having a well of physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual strength to draw on. Every week we support thousands of grassroots leaders globally with our free articles, videos and online trainings with powerful tools and methodologies created BY women FOR women.
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