How to get off autopilot to move your career (and life) forward

Millions of people feel like they are living their life on autopilot. This is the word to describe when day in and day out it’s the same thing, to the point that many feel they are sleepwalking through life. Polling by Strada Education Network finds that many people feel stuck in their career and don’t know what will help them improve their circumstances. In fact, 32% of those people say they don’t even know where to begin in order to make things better and become unstuck. The good news is there are things that can be done to get off of autopilot and move your career and life in a better direction.

Oftentimes, people simply suggest training or educational programs in order to move your career along, but there are plenty of other things you can do. We need to get off autopilot in life as a whole, not just in our careers. Once you do this, you will become more successful and ultimately enjoy life a lot more.

Those who feel stuck, both in their careers and in life in general, can take action to change those feelings. It all comes down to knowing what to do and how to get started. Some of the things that people can do include:

  • Get help. First and foremost, people need to start recognizing that you cannot do it alone and you need to hire someone to be a coach, a sounding board, and a catalyst.
  • Set the intention. You must set the intention and energy around creating new shifts in order to move in a different direction or at a different pace (aka, you have to decide to get off of autopilot in the first place).
  • Discover yourself. Recognize that you need to become familiar with yourself and your patterns of being — again, something you cannot do alone — in order to be able to make adjustments. This takes time, and it takes working with someone to help you see your patterns, to draw connections, to build understanding, and then to support you in reprogramming for desired outcomes.
  • Answer to yourself. You also have to stop meeting society’s ideals, your family’s ideals, etc. and be open-minded and willing to do you, to be your authentic self, and to honor what that means so that your career and life is filled with purpose and impact.
  • Making a decision. Oftentimes, people feel stuck because they are not sure what to choose. They consider various options and can’t decide what to do, so they don’t make any decision at all. That will keep you stuck, so make a decision so you can move forward with something.
  • Try new things. One of the most common reasons that people get stuck in life is that they don’t try anything new. They do the same things over and over, which ends up being autopilot. Make a point to try something new every month, whether it be for fun or for your career. This will help get you energized and so you can engage in life in a different way.
  • Start small. If you don’t like being stuck but fear making big changes, start small. Making small changes in various areas can add up to big results. Commit to the first small change, and then go from there as you get more empowered along the way.

Nobody enjoys feeling like their life or career is stuck in one place. If that’s where you are, then it’s time to do yourself a favor and make shake things up. Working on honoring yourself will bring joy and peace to your life. Think of it as a gift to yourself, which ripples and benefits those around you as well.

Katie Sandler is a popular impact coach and provides health and wealth coaching and personal and professional development. She offers retreats around the world as well as private coaching and corporate impact coaching opportunities. She focuses on helping people become more successful so they can live with purpose and make an impact in our world.

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