Teachers in Transition

Teachers in Transition - Episode 63 - How a Vision Board May Help You Envision a New Career

June 11, 2020 Kitty Boitnott
Teachers in Transition
Teachers in Transition - Episode 63 - How a Vision Board May Help You Envision a New Career
Chapters
Teachers in Transition
Teachers in Transition - Episode 63 - How a Vision Board May Help You Envision a New Career
Jun 11, 2020
Kitty Boitnott

Sometimes when caught up in the process of changing careers, people feel stuck. They aren't sure how or where to start. And they struggle with what they think they might be qualified to do based on their past experience and education.

When I start working with a new client, I urge them to set aside practical considerations in the beginning. Focus instead on what you want, not what you think you can get or what you might have to settle for.

Now, thinking about what you want can feel like a daunting task. So, it might be easier if you make it fun. Why not play with creating a vision board. Don't know what a vision board is? Listen to this episode. And then take a look at this article:  https://www.jackcanfield.com/blog/how-to-create-an-empowering-vision-book/

Got questions, thoughts or comments? Reach out to Kitty at kittyboitnott@gmail.com, but don't forget to also offer a review and a comment on this episode to help other people find Kitty and "Teachers in Transition."

Show Notes Transcript

Sometimes when caught up in the process of changing careers, people feel stuck. They aren't sure how or where to start. And they struggle with what they think they might be qualified to do based on their past experience and education.

When I start working with a new client, I urge them to set aside practical considerations in the beginning. Focus instead on what you want, not what you think you can get or what you might have to settle for.

Now, thinking about what you want can feel like a daunting task. So, it might be easier if you make it fun. Why not play with creating a vision board. Don't know what a vision board is? Listen to this episode. And then take a look at this article:  https://www.jackcanfield.com/blog/how-to-create-an-empowering-vision-book/

Got questions, thoughts or comments? Reach out to Kitty at kittyboitnott@gmail.com, but don't forget to also offer a review and a comment on this episode to help other people find Kitty and "Teachers in Transition."

Kitty Boitnott:

Are you a teacher who's feeling stressed out and overwhelmed? Do you worry that you're feeling symptoms of burnout or are you sure you've already gotten there? Have you started to dream of doing some other kind of job or perhaps pursuing a whole different career, but you don't know what else you're even qualified to do? You don't know how to start a job search. You just feel stuck. If that sounds like you, I promise you're not alone. My name is Kitty Boitnott. I'm a career transition and job search coach and I specialize in helping burnt out teachers just like you deal not only with the stress and overwhelm of your day-to-day job, but to consider what other careers might be out there waiting for you. Join me for "Teachers in Transition." In some episodes I'll be speaking to stress management techniques and how you can manage your stress on a day to day basis. In other episodes I'll be talking about career transition. What tools do you need to be successful in a job search when you're moving from one career into a totally different track? These are questions that you need answers to and I can help you find those answers. My name is Kitty Boitnott. Welcome to "Teachers in Transition." Welcome back to episode 63 of Teachers in Transition the podcast and the YouTube channel. My name is Kitty Boitnott, the moderator and host for both YouTube and podcast stations of Teachers in Transition. And if you've listened to me before, you will know that I speak alternately each week about either stress management strategies or career transition strategies, because I am both a career coach specializing in working with teachers who are burnt out and finding themselves eager to get out of the classroom for whatever reason. And I also offer stress management strategies, coaching , uh , and have offered workshops for teachers on how to manage their stress more proactively and effectively this week. I want to talk a little bit about career transition and how we are approaching the summer of 2020. And I have to believe that some teachers are going to be making some hard decisions this summer. Do you go back to the classroom? Do you attempt to go back into the brick and mortar building and put yourself and your health at risk, if you are already compromised health wise, or do you decide it's time to do something else, cut your losses, take early retirement, whatever is financially feasible for you and find something else to do for the duration of your career? Because I think that's really going to be a choice that a lot of teachers face, if you are already diabetic, if you've already had a bout with breast cancer or some other kind of cancer that you have overcome , uh , if you have any one of a half, a dozen or more auto-immune disorders like , um, chronic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease, Lupus, I mean, you name it. There are dozens, if not hundreds of ailments that teachers [have], because we're all human beings. Um , many of us have experienced hypertension. The list goes on and we've been told by the Center for Disease Control that if we are compromised , uh , as far as our immune system, because of one of these conditions that we should isolate ourselves continue, even though the economy's beginning to open back up and some places are entering Phase Two this week, while others are still inching toward phase one, we've been told that if we are already compromised health-wise, that we should continue to the extent that it is possible, stay home in order to stay safe. And if school opens in the fall, and even if it's just for a few months, teachers are going to have to make a decision. Do you go back and expose yourself to the potential risk? I know they've said that the risk for children is low and that's great, but they're not, I don't think at least, not yet, considering the impact on the adults who are going to be there to serve those children, the teachers, the administrators, the cafeteria workers, the sanitation workers, the bus drivers, all of those folks who have to be involved in the day -to-day operation of a school. So. I don't know what the answer for any of that is. I'm not, I mean, that's way above my pay grade. And I've been grateful that I'm not responsible for trying to figure out when and how to safely go back to schooling. I know that children need to socialization, so I'm not advocating for not ever going back. They need school. It needs to be part of their childhood experience, and they need, they need to be with other children. On the other hand, how do you factor in what's completely safe as opposed to, what's mostly safe to what might be putting people at risk? So depending on where you are on the spectrum of whether you feel healthy and well enough to go back or you feel compromised and would rather not go back, but you don't know what you would do instead. I'd like to offer a sort of a quick, fun way for you to start to get in touch with what it is that you might like to do in your next career, if it should come to that. And so I want you to approach this particular activity, not so much as a job search function or something you'd do to get your resume ready or anything like that. Just to do something for fun. That's intended to help you to get in touch with who you are and what you want in your life, as well as in your career. And let's face it. Increasingly life is blending into our careers and vice versa. If you've been working from home like most people have since March, if you were lucky enough to have a job that you could work from home, then life has been very much in the midst of your career and vice versa. You've had to deal with children at home, from school. You've had to deal with online meetings that interrupt the flow of your day, but are still critically important so that the people in your company or your organization can continue to be on the same page and be striving for the same goals and all of that has been taking place in your home. So the blurred lines between work and life and work life balance has really gotten sort of jumbled up. But as we inch toward some more normal kind of balance, maybe as you began to go back to work, even if it's just a few days a week, you , you want to be conscious of the fact that your career impacts your life in a critical way. And what you want out of your life should be part of what your career is all about. And the folks that I believe are fully engaged and happy in their work are those who feel that they are working for a purpose, that they are engaged in something bigger than themselves, and that their lasting legacy is going to be remembered long after they are gone. That's the best kind of work I believe. So what is the fun activity that you can do that can help to connect what your life is about and what your desires and goals and drains are with your career? And that is a vision board. Now, if you've engaged in creating a vision board before it may sound a little woo, woo. It really isn't, it's become more and more mainstream. The first time I ever heard of a vision board was probably sometime back in the early nineties, maybe. Um, and it seems like to me, I heard a woman who was a guest on the Oprah Winfrey show, and she was talking about vision boards. Uh, I created my own vision board in , um, probably the winter of 2007 because my first vision board was centered on every idea that I could glean from a magazine or a catalog or somewhere that was focused on graduating from my doctoral program. I was working on my dissertation during that time. And I was heavily focused on finishing in time and being able to complete the presentation and graduate in the spring of 2007. That was, that was my goal. That was every, every fiber of my being was focused on finishing that doctorate because I had gotten divorced the previous year. I didn't want to be paying tuition any longer than I needed to. And I was on my way toward finishing that dissertation. And I was laser focused on it that I created the vision board with the idea that I would be walking across that stage and getting my diploma. Then I had a mortar board picture on my vision board and everything related to graduating was on that vision board. A few years later, I decided to create another vision board. This time I was focused more on what I wanted my post K-12 career to look like this would have been in the, probably the fall of 2012, maybe into early 2013 as I was leaving my K-12 education work behind. I was leading the VEA . I'm a former president of the Virginia education association. I was leading that work behind in moving into a brand new unchartered and yet to be envisioned career. Because at that particular point, I was at a crossroads in my life where I didn't have a clue yet what it was that I was going to wind up doing. And because I had had success in creating the previous vision board, I decided to create a new one. And on this one I wanted , um, I had had a less laser focused goal. I had more goals than just the one. And in this case I wanted to, to demonstrate or manifest or great attract to me a loving relationship , uh , travel and , uh , good experiences, friendship , uh , uh, a well rounded life that also included new pets because my two pets had died the year before, within just a few days of each other. And I had been so traumatized by losing both of them in such quick, quick succession that I had waited a while before deciding whether I wanted to invest in a relationship with another dog or not. So I put pictures of dogs on my vision board. One was a little Jack Russell terrier with freckles on his nose. And the other was a red, red retriever, golden retriever. And I had those on there. I had a car that I wanted to be able to purchase at some point. And I put that picture on there and , uh, words that had to do with coaching, because by then I had decided that I wanted to do something in the coaching field that had not yet crystallized exactly how that was going to look or how it would shape up. But those were the things that I knew I wanted. And I took a picture of a nice looking gentleman from a magazine with salt and pepper hair and blue eyes and a nice smile. And I plastered his picture in the middle of my vision board. And then I started placing the other things, words that resonated with me like health and happiness and friendship and pictures that depicted the dogs and the car and the money that I wanted to make and words that related to coaching and success and wellbeing in every facet. And I created it. And then I put it over in a corner where I know right now I can look at it. And every day I could take look at it and, and be reminded of the things that I would like to manifest in my day to day life. So that was all in 2012. Now that was a long time ago. Okay. So I still have that vision board. It might be time to create a new one, but I only manifested the most recent thing that was on the board a year ago. So it's still working for me. The first thing that happened was that I met someone who just happened. I didn't even, I didn't even connect it because we became friends more than , uh , romantic partners right off the bat. He was a nice guy. I knew, we knew that we would be friends, even if we didn't decide to date. He was just that kind of a guy. And I took a few months, it sort of simmered on a friendship and then heated up into something more, but it took a few months and it was actually a few months into our relationship before it dawned on me that , um, he was the guy in the picture, on my vision, board, salt and pepper, gray hair with blue eyes and a nice smile. The only difference was that he, my guy wears glasses and the guy in the picture did, and it was like, golly, gee, I hadn't even made that connection yet. I got my first dog after losing my two within days of each other and October of 2019, I ended up, I'm a docs person, you know, once a docs in person, you never go back. And so I went and adopted my fourth docs from a woman, a few of my, about an hour from here. And he was a pie , bald white in red. Piebald a beautiful little guy. Name is Bernie and I brought him home. And it was a few days before I looked at the vision board and thought, well, dang, this old red Russell terrier with white and red markings look could look like Bernie if he had longer ears. So I think I had manifested Bernie with that picture of the red and white dog on the , on the vision board. I haven't manifested a golden retriever, but I did shortly after getting Burnie . I saw a picture online of a blonde miniature dachshund that I didn't even know existed. I didn't even know they, they bred blondes . They're called light creams. And I go, Oh my gosh, before I stopped having dogs, I need to get one of those light cream puppies. And so I started looking around for how would I find one? And the breeders were scattered all over the country and they were rather expensive because they were rather rare at the time. So I put a picture , I put that little picture that I had seen that I fell in love with, on my vision board. And it took a few years, but my, the girl, the woman that I had gotten Bernie from got a blonde that she started breeding and long story short, I adopted a blonde minature DocSend puppy a year ago. Her name is Zoe. The car I actually bought three years ago, the exact car that was on my vision board. And I love it and still, and still driving it. And it's still like new. So the point is for me, the vision board is definitely, it's been a tool that I have used to help envision the things that I wanted in my life and track them to me. And I have managed to do that. The only thing that I may not have manifested quite to the extent that I would like before I make another vision board is a big old pile of money and I don't play the lottery. So maybe I need to figure out a different way to, to bring in the pile of money that's on that vision board. But the point is, I believe that the magic of the vision board helps to attract the things that you want in your life. What does that have to do with your career? I believe that if you were to take a little bit of time to play with a vision board for creating the kind of energy around the work you would like to do in your next career, whatever that might be, that you could help to make it happen in a way that you don't even understand how that might happen yet. That's why it's called playing . You don't, you don't have to have a plan. You don't have to know exactly how it's all going to come about. You just, you take words from a magazine or a series of magazines or online. You can find online vision boards, words, phrases , um , pictures, illustrations, anything that represents what it is that you want in your life, whether it's a home, a relationship , uh , children of your own dogs, or cats, or whatever, kind of animal lights you up , um, cars and work, things that have to do with the work that you want to be accomplishing. The purpose that you have to bring forth into the world. So I will attach to the notes today, a list of the things that you would need to do to create your vision board. If you've already created one. How about trying, creating one? That's just about the work that you want to do in your next career, assuming that you're not going to stay in your current career, it may be that you want to write a book. It may be that you will want to become a coach or a consultant yourself. It may be that you will want to be able to simply retire and enjoy gardening or fallen, whatever it is for you create that vision for yourself. And in order to make it more tangible, creating the vision board can help and just make it playful. Don't make it work. Don't make it a chore. If it's going to feel like a chore, don't do it because that's not the right kind of energy that you want to be bringing to that kind of exercise, but try to play with it so that it feels like playful possibility. And then as things begin to shape up on the vision board, watch for clues that things that are on that vision board are coming to you in another kind of way. You know, I've told the story, I'll tell this very quickly when I decided, and I first started thinking about the possibility of coaching. I resisted it, no sleep because I had not had a very high opinion of the term life. Coach still don't love that term, frankly. But the first time I ever heard the term life coach, I remember asking the person who referred to his life coach, what is the life coach? I've never heard of that? And the way he explained it, I remember thinking that is the dumbest thing I ever heard. He would need a life coach, or you just do what you set a cold, do it because that's sort of how I approach things. I decided to do something and then I go do it. Not everybody is wired that way I have found out. But when this idea of coaching and the reason for me that coaching was attractive was that I wanted work. That would allow me to work from home. That would allow me to create my own schedule. That would allow me to work with people that I enjoyed working with. And I knew that in some way, shape, fashion, or form, I wanted to be of service. And I wanted to work with teachers. So coaching came up in a meditation one day and I immediately pushed aside. No, no, no, can't do that. Don't even think it's a real job. So how could, how could I possibly do that? But it kept coming back. It kept coming back at KIPP . So I finally broke down and talked about it with my career coach. And I said, you know, this, this idea keeps popping up and I keep pushing it aside because I know other than, other than her as a career coach, I had never even met a coach. Never had never used one, never had a need for one. So her response was, well, if it keeps coming up, don't you at least owe it to yourself to explore that possibility. Maybe there's a reason it keeps coming up. Well, I hadn't thought about it that way. So I decided, okay, maybe I should give a look. And the minute I decided to at least explore it, I felt this weight just sort of lift off of my shoulders. It was like, I'd been given permission to do the very thing that I was wanting to do, but kept resisting doing. And within a week through a series of happenstances that I like to call serendipities , I met a woman who was a life coach who informed me that there was a whole group of coaches in the city in which I live in , that they met once a month for lunch and professional development and that, and then she proceeded to share with me her niche and that I would need a niche. And I said, I have a niche. They would be teachers. I want to work with teachers. That's what I knew at that moment. And from that point on, one thing fell into place. After another, until here I am seven years later, still working with teachers, still offering my service, still helping people find their purpose in life because I found mine

Speaker 3:

[inaudible]

Kitty Boitnott:

and my vision board helped. And so I want to suggest to you that a vision board might help you as you consider. What are the things in your life that you would like to attract to yourself that you don't already have? And don't forget to be grateful for all that you already do, because gratitude is an important part of this whole process of living too . I'm going to be offering a presentation this week on seven ways to connect with your purpose and passion vision board is just one. So in the future episodes, I'll be sharing other strategies, techniques, things that you can do to help you connect with your passion, your purpose in life. But I believe that building block a foundational piece of connecting with your purpose and your passion, discovering what it is that you want most in your life. It can start with a vision board. I'd like to invite you to play with one. If you'd like, and that's it for today, have a wonderful week. Stay well, stay safe, be kind until next week. So there you have it, an episode of "Teachers in Transition." I hope you enjoyed the information and I hope you'll plan to come back. Please subscribe to "Teachers in Transition" so that you can be alerted of future episodes. And let me know if you have any questions or topics that you would like me to specifically cover in a future episode. I'm more than happy to help with individual questions as well. So email me at KittyBoitnott@BoitnottCoaching.com. If you are interested in finding a new career or just enjoying your life more, this is the place to start. Hi, I'm Kitty Boitnott and this is "Teachers in Transition."