Career Hope: The Happy Future of Your Work

“There is always hope.” I think this is a line from Leo Tolstoy in Anna Karenina. Or so I told myself as I walked out of my law office on a chilly December day about 16 years ago. Like many career seekers, I was lost.
Fortunately, even in my darkest career hour, I still had the wiring of an optimist and hung on to the only thing that I knew for sure: I had hope. 
I had hope that things would change. But, inadvertently, I discovered what has become the tangible reason for hope: exploratory career work. I was working long hours. I had a wife and baby at home. The work was energy draining. While I loved my wife and my infant boy, new parenthood also consumes a lot of energy. However, I knew that in my spare moments, whether commuting or on the 15 walk that I would take each day at work or on the phone calls that I would make to wise elders each weekend, I could actively search for a new career path. 
The exploratory work process led to my happy future of work. Too many of my career counseling clients have sat in misery for years at a job, expecting that they will wake up one day with a career plan. It doesn’t happen that way. Our schooling, unfortunately, conditions us in the exact opposite way that we need for the new world of work.  1st grade led to 2nd grade and so on without any creative process to make that happen. Old world of work large corporation thinking led to the same: entry level to assistant manager to manager…
That’s not the way the world of work operates any more.  You need to commit to exploratory work. My literal and symbolic work for many as a career counselor is exploratory work.  I am delighted that I can help because this is my unique talent.  But I desperately want to help because I remember that lost career feeling vividly.