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Achieving a Dream Career Takes Risk - by Anita

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Change and growth take place when a person has risked himself and dares to become involved with experimenting with his own life." - Herbert Otto

I have a friend who creates art quilts. Art quilts are just that: expressive art that uses a quilt instead of a canvas as its medium.

She has begun to achieve some notoriety for her art and when you see her quilts hung next to quilts that have been created from a pre-formed pattern, you notice how alive and engaging her work is compared to the others.

I have talked to her at length about her creative process. She gets a feeling about something or is inspired by something in nature. She then places fabric that seems to represent that feeling on her 'creating wall.'

She continues the process for days or weeks, rearranging colors and patterns seeing primarily with her inner eye what the piece needs to be. It's only after the quilt has been created that she knows what it is about and what the title should be. In other words, the inner dictates the outer through the medium of her creative process.

I think our careers are like that.

We feel drawn to certain work. We want to express ourselves in the world in a specific way. We feel a need to share our gifts with the larger world.

But we may not always know precisely what we are doing, or why, until it is created. And that can take a year, a season or a lifetime to understand.

I do know that if we pay attention to what wants to be expressed; we will overcome any obstacle, undergo any sacrifice and stick persistently to a goal until it comes alive.

Michelangelo was once asked how he created such beautiful sculptures. "It's easy," he said, "I simply cut away everything that is not the statue."

Creating from the inside out takes courage. As the quotation above says, it also takes the willingness to experiment with one's life.

I've observed that what so often happens is that people allow their careers to become jobs. They remain on the surface, never touching or disturbing that inner core of passion, desire and meaning.

It feels scary to open that door to the depths of who we are. It feels uncomfortable; it gets us off-balance; we can't see what's ahead and what will come out.

In our rational, goal-setting world, we are told we need to know our goals in order to reach them. But what if our goals are felt, but not known? What if we don't know what we should achieve until we have achieved it?

What if we are called to be the artists of our own lives, creating as we go, not always sure what will be created, knowing only when it's done what it is?

Can we handle that? Have we the courage and staying power to interact with our own creative drives and see what happens? Do we dare to take that risk?

These are the real questions that underlie any career shift we are considering. Unfortunately, we don't usually ask ourselves these questions.

We stay with the superficial: Have I got the talent for this? Can I afford it?

Should I do it now or wait until the economy gets better?

These necessary, but ultimately superficial questions often block the awareness of the deeper questions. But it's the deeper questions that lead us to the deepest and most satisfying changes.

Are you ready to risk asking those deeper questions? Are you ready to trust that the powerful, hidden part of you knows what is needed and can lead you to deeply meaningful work?

Are you willing to make the contribution you came here to make? Are you willing to not know for awhile in order to arrive at a place of greater knowing?

Are you ready to grow? Are you ready?

Anita Web Weaver is the owner of Design to Shine Consulting, offering coaching, mentoring and speaking services to help people shine, no matter what, in their career, their life and their health.

Get her FREE Audio: Busting Through Fear to Have Your Dream Career


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