Applying Ikigai to Leaving the Emergency Services

Ikigai, or raison d'être if you prefer, seems to be a hot topic on LinkedIn at the moment. If you aren't aware, the idea is that everyone has a fundamental reason to exist, to do what they do - and once you find it, you will thrive. Sounds good, doesn't it?

Clearly not everyone is "in the zone", in the sweet spot in the middle of the four circles in the picture above. A fortunate few know early on what they want to do with their lives, and find it quickly. For most of us though, it takes time and effort to deliberately "self-discover". It might well change as life goes on too - the arrival of children, any number of life events or external factors - things change.

So what's this got to do with career change? And specifically to the emergency services?

Well, when we work with people that are unfulfilled in some way, the first thing we ask them is: "What do you want to do?" After all, life is short and you're going to spend a lot of it at work in one way or another. So why not do something you're interested in? Not to mention the fact that passion leads to productivity and performance.

As existentialism fans will know, the key pillars of self-discovery are to ask: "Who am I? Where am I going? What am I doing?" How deeply you go into this is up to you, but on a practical note I would suggest that if you don't know, how can you expect to convince a potential employer or business partner?

Careers in areas such as policing, paramedics, doctors - in fact most of the public sector - tend to be full of people who do them because they believe in them and want to do something meaningful and make a difference. A key part of Ikigai. Unfortunately, the recently building storm of internal and external factors affecting these areas is forcing those same dedicated people to rethink what is really important.

At Mightify our approach is always about looking at the whole picture - the best results come from having all the pieces of the career change jigsaw in place. For example, there's no point being the World's greatest networker if you then hand over a shoddy CV or business card that doesn't reflect your skills.

Equally not much use is having a superb CV on paper that doesn't reflect who you are and that you aren't happy to talk about confidently.

Applying the concepts of Ikigai to this, in my opinion, looks something like the picture above. You need to be have these four areas nailed down otherwise one will scupper your plans. Got a great pitch? Fantastic - where's the evidence? Got a great CV and LinkedIn profile? Excellent, but who is going to see it? How will you get it under the right eyes?

It might sound like common sense, but it really isn't that common to see all these areas working well together in a cohesive way.

What we do through our coaching work and our bespoke Frontline Fulfilment programme is to work with you on all aspects of a career move, to create a properly structured strategy that is proven to get results. It's about bringing together your personal "Ikigai" with the professional equivalent - that's how you will have the maximum chance of achieving a role or career that ticks all your boxes.

As always, get in touch to have an impartial, expert and obligation-free chat.

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