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Six questions to help you tune-out your ego and tune-in to your inner voice.



Hi!


A mid-career crisis is like an eclipse: a period of darkness when we find ourselves lost, purposeless, and questioning our choices.


Today I want to talk about the sneaky object that causes the “mid-career eclipse,” I’ll end with six self-reflection questions to help you regain clarity for your career.


Let’s talk about Ego.


Our ego is our sense of self-esteem or self-importance. And boy, we do anything to preserve it! When we feel insecure, lacking, defensive, or indecisive, it's all driven by ego.


Ego pulls us into a contracted state of mind:

  • Anchored to the past.

  • Self-absorbed and self-conscious.

  • Stuck in scarcity and “all or nothing” mindsets.

  • Unable to distinguish stubbornness from grit.

  • Unwilling to reach out and ask for help.

  • Making up excuses and lying to ourselves.

In a contracted state of mind, we become oblivious to the blatant signals our inner voice sends us.

How challenging my ego helped me tune into my inner voice.


In March 2020, I was waiting for a job offer from a top consulting firm. That same week, Covid happened.


With the uncertainty of the pandemic, we decided to put my career plans on hold to care for my two little daughters while my wife continued working. In a blink of an eye, two years went by in this state of limbo. This was not the way I pictured my career path.


The unexpected reversal of gender roles and transition from a “six-figure hot shot” to a “stay-home toddler-chaser” hit my ego.


Whenever someone asked what I did for a living, I quickly launched into a ramble about my pre-pandemic glory days as an innovation strategist. It was my way of conveying that being a stay-home dad was just a temporary blip.


Concerned about the gap in my resume, I followed the conventional wisdom of labeling myself as "Independent Consultant / Self Employed" — the go-to title knowledge workers use to cover up employment gaps.


One day, my friend Joel asked a simple question that stopped me in my tracks:


“What are you trying to hide?”


Yeah, what was I trying to hide? Why couldn't I own it with pride?


That night I rewrote my LinkedIn profile, showing my current role as "Taking time off to focus on my family and personal growth" Underneath, I listed all the learnings and experiences as a full-time dad and how they reshaped my perspectives as a professional: from dealing with tantrums to finally understanding the crap that women have been putting up with all this time.


With sweaty palms and a deep breath, I hit publish.


What followed was pure magic.


Taking off the mask of a “Bright and successful Innovation Expert transitioning into his next high-profile opportunity” was like clearing out a cluttered closet in the basement.


As the weight of pretension and self-preservation dropped, my mind freed up, and that little voice I'd ignored for years finally spoke up loud and clear.


"What I love is to help others get unstuck when they have a career issue. The last 20 years have prepared me for this moment! "


The next day, I enrolled in a 6-month program to become a certified coach.

Use these six questions to challenge your ego and tune into your inner voice.


1) Do I find myself trying to impress people when they ask me what I do for a living? If so, am I trying to hide, prove or justify something about myself? 2) What do I enjoy more: doing this work or being associated with it? 3) What do I value having in my life that my career is not giving me today? 4) What kind of experiences and learning opportunities would bring out my best self in my next job? 5) If I could go back in time, is this the career path I would have chosen? 6) What are my fears about making a change? Are these real?

That’s it!


As always, thanks for reading, and Happy Thanksgiving!


Hit reply and let me know how this post helped you. Your comments and feedback (good and bad) are pure gold!


If you are stuck in a mid-career crisis and are ready to start walking out of the fog, ask me about my 1:1 signature career transformation program.


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