The Power of a Growth Mindset in Career Change

One Clinician's Journey to Finding Meaningful Work Through Self-Exploration and Learning from Mistakes

A person standing on the tip of the hill (created via Lexica Aperture)

What is a growth mindset, and how I use it to change my career?

Definition of a growth mindset and its relevance to career change

Fear of uncertainty is normal. Struggle and frustration are unpleasant. However, emotions serve their purpose, which is taking the corresponding action. When dealing with a setback, it's okay to feel frustrated. Acknowledging your emotion is the first step toward healing. Your emotion and self-criticism don't reflect your self-worth. They are simply thoughts and feelings. Reminds yourself the pain you feel is a shared experience, there are other people on the planet also under difficult emotions. What would you do next determines how this setback affects you.

Finding the right career through perseverance and commitment

I was a clinician before, I was told this is a stable career with good value return. This is true, but it doesn't feel right to me. I wanted to have a career that I feel meaningful and passionate about. But I don't know what it is. I quit and plan to pursue a short art program abroad, to see if this is my passion. The pandemic hit, and the plan is no longer feasible. I started to learn everything on my own, exploring every option that I have an interest in. I took painting lessons, crafting courses, etc. I spend 8 hours a day learning new skills like it is a full-time job. On top of that, I am still practicing in the clinic part-time. I felt so burnout and disappointed when I grow out of interest in one area to another. But I never stop trying.

Sometimes I took the wrong choice of tools, and spend too much time on an outdated course, but I keep exploring and learning from my previous mistakes. I eventually found the right career that I wanna pursue, even though it took a bit longer than I think and not in the way I expected. But it taught me you can change your career trajectory by showing up for yourself and making a commitment.

Overcoming fear and embracing change in career decisions

Since I have memory, I knew I hated changes and not knowing what was to come. I was convinced that changing is bad and means you've made a bad decision. To protect my ego, I took the path that most people recommended because I didn't want to make mistakes. So when I made my choice on choosing a major in university, I didn't do much research or explore my options as I should be. I put little focus on that. If I dared to take risks and be more responsible for my own decision, I might be in a different place in my career.

You may feel you are out of options, fear making mistakes, and feel trapped by the sunk cost, but if you are willing to give another perspective a shot, you would never know what you can achieve. The obstacle you face is not the end of the world, but rather a portal to another realm.

Hope you find the story helpful!

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