Why Turning Down an MBA From a Top School Was One of My Best Decisions
Can you remember what your dream job was as a child or teenager? What did you imagine you would be doing as an adult? More importantly, how did you imagine you would feel and what your impact would be on those around you?
Most of us take a few twists and turns in our life path to find what makes us feel truly alive in our work.
I can certainly attest to that. As a teenager, I remember saying that I wanted to be either a writer or psychologist. But how can you be two things at the same time?
And over time, those big dreams get forgotten, lost, as we get older and focus on the day-to-day responsibilities and meeting our basic needs.
However, as so much of what we perceive are constructs of the mind, my first challenge to you is that I believe our purpose is not at odds with our basic needs. What if working in your purpose, aligned with your talents, also meets all of your needs? What if that were true?
Why We Lose Sight of Our Dreams and Purpose
Like many, I graduated with student debt. I didn't want to be a teacher or translator so I fell into what I perceived to be one of very few options that my degree opened up to me: a technical role where I could use my languages.
Over the years I gained more technical skills and advanced in my career. But even promotions didn't change the fact that I was fundamentally out of alignment with my passion and values.
Why did I stay? Why do we stay in work that does not fulfill us?
I think there are a few reasons.
First, we are conditioned to fit in and repress any aspect of ourselves that does not fit with the work, the role, or the culture we are in. We do not accept our true self.
Second, we are also conditioned to feel scarcity and constant lack. Our basic needs become all of our needs. We never feel we have enough and what we do have could be taken away or denied to us at any time.
Third, we are also subconsciously conditioned to feel trapped yet also fearful of anything beyond the cage. I felt this feeling of being trapped. It is, of course, an illusion of the mind but a powerful one, nonetheless. Perhaps you can relate. I had invested so many years, 17 years to be exact, in my old career. How could I start again?
Twists and Turns In Life's Path To Find Purpose
It took many years to figure out what I wanted to do. I didn't know what I wanted to do so I started with what felt like the best next step.
I studied Sustainability over a few years at night school. After that, it took even more time, research and a process of self-knowing to put the pieces together.
But eventually, I found a way to combine all I love in my career (and life) redesign: my joy in writing, my belief that we need to create more socially supportive and inclusive communities, and my passion for both learning and showing others the power of the subconscious mind.
Limited Thinking Leads to The Road That Everyone Travels
And even during those years of studying and searching, the subconscious fears would resurface and demand that I gain certainty and clarity. I tried to join the dots from my old work in corporate tech and landed on Corporate Sustainability. I then applied for, was offered a place at Cornell University. My practical mind, trained to always have a plan, to be pragmatic and reasonable, pushed me to say yes. But every other part of me said no. I turned the offer down.
"Saying no to a Cornell MBA was one of the best decisions I have ever made."
This was a classic sign that I was trying to put the pieces of my career change together with my limited conscious mind.
I would have been committing to a career that was a parallel to the one I had just left, one that was completely out of alignment with my passions and values. Saying no to a Cornell MBA was one of the best decisions I have ever made.
Find Courage to Embrace the Unknown
If you feel lost and unsure of the next step or direction, while I can't know exactly what you are going through, I myself felt lost for many years, and you are not alone. I encourage you to resist the urge to turn away from the unknown; face it. We are trained to be certain in everything. Learn to sit with the unknown. That is your first step.
Find the courage to admit you don't yet have all the answers. Yet. You will find your way forward. Take the first step in the direction that feels right. Where focus goes, energy flows. Each step will provide momentum for the next.
Failure is Not Final
And even after we find our passion or purpose, however you wish to name it, the challenge is not over.
Over the course of the first 3 years after I qualified as a Clinical Hypnotherapist, more challenges were to come. Ill health forced me to give up private practice. Youtube took 3 years of work before I broke even.
"If others are invested in your failure, it is because they are too afraid to take those steps themselves."
When my health recovered enough, I worked both in hypnotherapy and took on two other jobs to get out of debt. At that time, some may have said I had already failed. Perhaps some of you reading this think that it is humiliating to take a perceived step back to minimum wage work. But I still had choices even then. I never returned to a corporate office or corporate job, and I never will.
And, as this is my life, my values and my choices, my own judgement is what matters most in determining my success. If others are invested in your failure, it is because they are too afraid to take those steps themselves.
Finding your purpose is the beginning. It takes courage to make these changes. Persisting and remaining true to your purpose demands both humility and determination.
But even in limited circumstances, you can always tap into your limitless mind. Your subconscious mind will guide you and show you signs of your true potential and purpose.
If you are ready to learn more about the gifts you hold and your true purpose, I recommend listening to my hypnosis session to Discover Your Hidden Gifts From Past Lives. And as I remind my listeners, you do not need to be visual to enjoy this session as you will relive the experience with all of your senses. Tune in to your sense of sound, touch, intuition, and more.
Let go of forcing answers to come and approach the session with an open mind and curiosity. And, over time, as you listen again, you may get more answers to complete the pieces of the puzzle that will guide you to your purpose.
You can also access and explore over 200 hypnosis and meditation sessions on my channel, Unlock Your Life. I also now have a second channel in Spanish: Unlock Your Life En Español. The skills developed in my undergraduate degree have also become part of my career and life redesign, but I didn't know this when I began my hypnotherapy career.
Thank You for Reading
My name is Sarah from Unlock Your Life and you can read about my journey here. I have worked as a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist for almost a decade now.
My mission is to make hypnosis and hypnotherapy mainstream. My work centres around the belief that therapy and support should be available at no cost or low cost to everyone, inspired by models of Sustainable Communities.
I am passionate about showing others the power of their subconscious mind. I embrace both the science and spirituality of hypnotherapy.
You can access my hypnotherapy, meditations and affirmations sessions on my Youtube channel here.
As always, I am here to support you on your journey.