Passions and your Past

Tom was a marketing manager who wanted out, out of the day-to-day corporate grind. Out of the pressure cooker. He felt undervalued, unappreciated, and un-acknowledged for who he was and what he brought to each project, each assignment. He felt angry and frustrated, and some days oppressed, and just wanted out.

The problem for Tom, he still had a mortgage to pay, a son and daughter still in school, and no inheritance coming his way to allow him to live in the lap of luxury. He worried about his ability to earn the money he needed to support himself and his family. And so he also felt a bit trapped.

Tom, like many of us, begins the journey of career transformation with a simple calling to “get out” – to leave their current work situation that is causing them pain. And like many of us, Tom longed for a calling toward something, he just didn’t know what that something was. When we first met, Tom wanted to know how he could know what he was called to do, or at least, what he was called to do next.

The thing I find fascinating is that the keys to unearthing your own calling exist in your own life. You have left your own trail of clues, once you know where to look. There are 3 places Tom and I explored to help him find his “something” he was called toward.

1. Personal or professional achievements that brought him joy

What were the accomplishments from throughout Tom’s life that he felt proud of and enjoyed doing? The trick here is to make sure Tom only puts on the list items that he felt proud of, not that others acknowledged. Also, include only items that he enjoyed while doing, so not things that he overcame or survived, unless overcoming or surviving were fun for him. Tom then chose 5 and wrote a story about each one, what he did, how he did it, who helped him. Tom learned that in fact he loved marketing, and marketing like activities. He always has. Even as a child, he would package his book reports in a way that enticed the other students to want to read his book.

2. Passions that moved him

What were the top 10 moments in the past 10 years where Tom felt in the zone, losing his sense of time and enjoying what he was doing and who he was with. Tom chose 3 and wrote a story about each one, what he did, how he did it, and who was with him. Tom discovered he loved working together with a group toward a common goal, especially one where everyone benefitted. He didn’t like to compete. He didn’t like earning money for money’s sake.

3. World needs that move him

What were the top 5 issues in the news over the past 10 years that really got Tom going? What moved him? What really bugged him? Were they local? Or national? Were they about groups or individuals? Tom chose 3 and wrote out the story of each one. What is the issue? What does he want people to understand about the issue? What bothers him most? What does changes does he want people to make to address this issue? Tom found his stories all centered around doing business in a socially conscious way. And really creating communities where families could live and work and care for the environment.

In these stories are the keys to our own calling, to identifying who we are today, and what we want to be doing now. The answers to what we want to do, and where we want to do it can be found in these stories about ourselves, our accomplishments and our passions.

Tom began to explore the idea of working locally, for his community, as part of a project to transition to making the community greener, through supporting local businesses, and encouraging changes to make it a live-work community. He was hired to lead marketing and communications for the project, to help educate and inspire the businesses and the community on the project. Tom found his calling for what to move toward.

What is your calling? What are the clues and keys from your life?  I invite you to share your discoveries on my blog below.


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Client Stories

What did you need at the time you hired Lori?

I wanted to work in my industry and didn't know how to progress any further than I was. I knew I had much experience that could be put in the industry of my choice but not how to parlay that experience. I needed guidance.

What did you and Lori do together?

Many, many things. Overall, to get clear in my mind what I offered and really what I wanted in a work environment. Every week was another epiphany after another. One of my favorites was the "knowing your core values". Having had some experience on this subject I was all ready to dive-in. Core Values is key. Knowing your core values. 

Lori makes it so easy to pinpoint. One time we were speaking about something else and we both realized...OMG...that is a core value for me. I hadn't written it down before, but discovered later that if ever a core value fit was the one I mentioned at that time.  Knowing that piece of information also answered a long standing question in my head.  One of the "why's" as to my constant upset with other places I had worked.

What were the results from working with Lori?

Many things. One is a great looking resume. I thought, wow, I look good and it was all from work I had already done elsewhere but didn't know how to say it or present it. Another is the clarity of knowing where I will feel good when I do work. What I really want and with the kind of people I really want to work with on a daily basis. This entire process is so valuable. The best money I ever spent and I am not kidding or exaggerating. I was only hoping it would be valuable and it really was valuable.< I know stuff and it has value and is marketable. Lori showed me those things and it gives me confidence.

Anything else you’d like to add?

Lori delivers above and beyond. The highest quality of exchange, 'more than you expected.' I told my friends this over and over: 'I wish I had her 10-20-even 30 years ago.' Every one, and I mean EVERYONE, needs a Lori. Her understanding,patience, how she problem solves, putting things in simple terms, was mind blowing. I wish I could that well. I present a problem and she could turn it around and yes...another epiphany.

Lori, is worth every penny. It isn't about a title. It is about enjoying everyday doing work you love with people you like and are like minded. You'll know what you are looking for when you interview.  I never say this, but I will say it here. Lori is a major key into the rest of my life doing what I always wanted to do. That is: Being happy doing what I do, everyday. Something I have been saying for years. Allowing be Sherlock.  Finding my people. They are out there and now I know what I am looking for in that respect.


Sherlock Ganz, Los Angeles, CA