by MSM Coaching on 3rd December 2012

None of us would argue that we spend a fair old amount of time cogitating on the things that are important in life. For example, buying a house isn't something we rush into - we think, we plan, we save, we look (and look and look and probably look some more!) we consider areas, shops, transport and schools where relevant. And then there's a mortgage - goodness knows, none of us rush into that without a considerable amount of thought.

Of course major cogitation doesn't just apply to houses. We also think long and hard when we decide to change our car; we compare prices and models and we weigh up preference against practicality. And what about jetting away to the sun - how hard do we hunt for our perfect holiday each year or indeed several times a year?

OK, we're agreed, a lot of thinking-time on major matters.

But how much time do we spend thinking about our careers? Yup, I know, me too! But isn't our working life something that's with us a long time? In a world that's technologically turning ever-faster and with the economy as gloomy as the weather - isn't this something on which we really should be cogitating and cogitating hard?

Think about it now - in the past you might have taken up a profession - accountancy, law, medicine. You might have gone into the Civil Service or worked your way up the corporate ladder, following which you might reasonably have expected to collect a healthy pension and head off into the sunset to fulfill all sorts of hobbies!

NOT NOW! Job or career security is simply not what it was - the current climate has seen to that. Many of the professions have been hit as hard as the corporate world with redundancies and economies across the board and it's probably fair to say you might expect to have as many as seven different jobs during your working years. So, as we hopefully enjoy better health and longer life how do you plan to deal with that?

Isn't this a great time to be reviewing where you are and where you might want to be in a few years' time? Isn't this a perfect moment to make some plans? Develop your leadership abilities; look at taking on some new skills; ensure that because of the range of your abilities you stand head and shoulders above your peer group. After all, the more you have to offer the greater the gift of longevity you give yourself, the more desirable (in a purely business sense!) you become.

So here's a thought for December, as the holiday season approaches. How about spending some time on YOU? I'm willing to bet there are areas of your life you'd have liked to develop which have been put on hold because other stuff got in the way. Maybe now's the perfect time to kick the 'other stuff' to the kerb and focus on what you'd like from your career, how you want to spend the next few years.

Wake up and smell the coffee, put some plans in place. After all, you wouldn't put on a blindfold to run a marathon, why wear one to run your life?

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