The fourth industrial revolution has skyrocketed the changes we see in jobs and careers. This used to feel far away, but the pandemic has also made it a reality for most of us.
If we can’t plan for the future disruption, what can we predict?
We can predict CHANGE and UNCERTAINTY.
Change is hard, especially forced change. The good news is: knowing change is inevitable, allows you to do something about it. There are some practical strategies to future proof your career. Now is the time to future proof your career.
Make ‘change’ your friend. To future proof your career, you need to work with change. See change as the tides of the ocean, you can’t control it but you can harness it. Then, the same wave of change that intimidates you can be the wave you learn to surf.
Your repertoire enables you to deal with change. Repertoire is like the supply of skills you have. This includes your mental and behavioural skills. You want to make sure that you always take stock of the skills to meet your career demands. Just like any business needs to know what is going on in their industry, you need to make sure you have the right stock of skills to meet the market.
There are some practical mental habits and actions you can do today to future proof your career. One of these skills is psychological flexibility.
Mental flexibility or psychological flexibility helps you recognize and adapt to various situational demands. Not only does psychological flexibility help you adapt, but it is also good for your mental health.
The mental habits of psychological flexibility increases your ability to meet the demands you are facing. Psychological flexibility is the ability to interact with your own thoughts, feelings, emotions and the environment in such a way that it helps move forward in the direction important to you. To be more technical, psychological flexibility is:
The capacity to contact the present moment, while being aware of thoughts and emotions without trying to change or be controlled by them. Then depending on the situation, persisting or changing your behaviour in the pursuit of values and goals.
The three core skills of psychological flexibility are: contact with the present moment, emotional openness and knowing what matters.
In whatever career you are, it is important to have a flexible relationship with your inner world. You want to interact with your thoughts and feelings in such a way that it helps you work around any mental obstacles that are keeping you stuck and doing what you need to get done.
Contact with the present moment
We often get so caught in the future and past. Our mind wanders about 50% of the time. Living in the future or the past makes us miss what is going on around us.
If you live a more present life, your chances increase to read the opportunities and situations on your path. You provide yourself with more mental space to read your situation and take action.
Here are three great resources to become more mindful and have more contact with the present moment.
- The University of California Mindful Awareness Research Center (UCLA): UCLA provides free guided meditation resources.
- Headspace is one of the world most widely used apps to learn how to meditate and be more mindful.
- ACT Companion
By accepting and allowing room for these inner and outer discomforts we experience, we struggle less and live more. Knowing the sources of your DAT’s, being more present and doing uncomfortable stuff gives you more freedom. Now you have enough mental space to read your situation and take proactive steps towards what is important to you.
Here are some practical strategies you can use to be more open to your emotions.
Connect with what is important to you
- If my career is a platform, what do I want it to give me more of?
- What are my deepest desires that my career can help me move closer to?