Stop Over-Thinking It

I had a conversation with a friend last night where he was telling me about an issue he has been struggling with for quite some time; it boiled down to not being happy about his work situation but not knowing why he isn’t doing anything about it.


I listened, and listened…and listened and then being the kind, sensitive friend I responded with, “Because you don’t want to.”


At first he wasn’t very please with this comment and began telling me all the ways that it wasn’t true – he really did want to change, he just didn’t know why he wasn’t taking the necessary steps to do so.


“Because you don’t want to.”


More passionate pleas of really wanting to just not doing it and not knowing why he wasn’t, it didn’t make sense to him.  He really wanted to change but he kept failing to do anything about it.


“Because you don’t want to.”


About that time he asked me why I kept saying that.  I love my friends – even the slow ones….


It is very simple – if you truly want a change then you take the necessary actions to make that change.  If no action is taken then you have decided it is important enough to change.  Again, pretty simple.


Now – there are times that there is some sort of relationships involving someone or something else is involved and you are not solely responsible for the change.  In work you have done everything you can to try to advance within a company but the organization is not at a place to be able to offer you the opportunities at this time.  Not your fault – however, as long as you keep doing everything you can to be prepared then you are taking action.


Maybe you work for a company or boss who, despite all your efforts, do not want to give you the opportunity.  Then perhaps it is time to move on.  It is like a relationship – if you both are not on the same page it is time to go, stop beating your head against that wall and walk away.  Something better is waiting for you.  Your vision is a bit blurred due to the head-banging but as soon as you take the action to move on you could very well be quite surprised and pleased to see there is something that is much better for you.


Stop over-thinking it, make the decision and take the action.  It is not enough to change your mindset, you must prove to the universe that you really mean it by taking action.  Once you start having some skin in the game then you start reaping some rewards.


It is scary to leave a job or even start looking for another job even if you are employed.  But fretting, hoping, banging your head against a wall are much, much worse.


The fear only lasts so long and by taking action it is gradually replaced by other things – hope, excitement and opportunities.  But you will not reap these benefits just by thinking about them – you have to take action.  Get your resume together, start networking, put yourself out there.  DO something.


My friend is a little afraid of leaving the security of his safe place, I get that.  But after months of hearing about how he wants a change I had to draw the line – either take the action or shut it.  You either want to move on or you don’t – it is as simple as that.  When he is ready I will be here to help him with his resume, networking and interviewing.  In the meantime we are no longer going to discuss it.


Being happy in a safe place isn’t always a bad thing.  Hey, if it works for you than good for you.  If it isn’t then stop infecting those around you with the whines and either do something about it or shut it.


If you have found yourself in the same type of quandary as my friend take pause and listen to yourself and compare it to what you are doing.  If your words and your actions do not match up then you need to realize that it is the actions that demonstrate how you truly feel.


Be kind to yourself and realize too that no matter how you feel there is no right or wrong – they are your feelings so no one has the right to tell you that they are wrong.


I do, however, reserve the right to tell you to stop talking to me about it.


Life is short – I want to concentrate of the work I love, the friends I cherish and the family I adore.  If something is not working for me I walk away and don’t beat myself up over it; if someone wants to drag me into their never-intending-to-take-action-but-want-to-constantly-bemoan then I choose to withdraw myself from those conversations.


Often times when I am facilitating workshops or coaching I will ask someone a series of questions and I will tell them to stop thinking and just answer.  It is when we over think things we begin to cloud the truth – about ourselves, our abilities and our desires.


Without thinking about it just answer these simple questions today: where are you on that pendulum of want and action and what do you chose to do about it?



Lisa K. McDonald, CPRW

Career Coach-Strategist

Certified Professional Resume Writer

Career Polish, Inc.

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