I had the pleasure last week of organizing and moderating a panel presentation to Greensboro’s Women’s Professional Forum: “Navigating Your Career with Intention: knowing when to make a change and having the courage to leap.” Michelle Clark, Laurelyn Dossett, and Kathy Ridge came together sharing their personal journey of career transition.

Both Michelle and Kathy are former corporate executives who now have launched their own independent endeavors: Michelle, as a soon-to-be published author, and Kathy as founder of her own consulting practice. Laurelyn has followed her lifelong passion of music, becoming an acclaimed musician, singer, and songwriter.

Their stories revealed the underlying currents that sparked a change in direction, propelled them to action, and gave them courage to close one chapter and open a new one.

While each was unique, the collection of experiences shared presented gems of commonality:

  • Live awake. We all have an internal compass that will guide us if we simply pay attention. And listen.
  • Know who you are. This is not about the various roles each of us serves, but rather, “who am I, really?” Allow this and your core values to drive you.
  • Live with the end in mind. We all have a story to tell. How will yours end? What mark will you leave? How does this guide you in the present moment?
  • Living your life with purpose and intention starts with one small step. What step will you take today? Tomorrow?
  • Believe in yourself and your own best work. Unconditionally.
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