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Career Progression: Moving from Pain to Gain

Career Progression: Moving from Pain to Gain

Career Progression: Moving from Pain to Gain.

I believe it’s a rare journey in life where we get to the end point without some pain along the way. To be honest, I don’t know would I want it any other way.

One of my favourite minds on living life well, Victor Frankl, emphasised how suffering pain is a part of life. He believed that the route to gain in life was not through fighting pain, but to embrace it.

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The trouble is though that feeling pain is tough. It’s unpleasant and hard to sit with. We’re not built to seek pain, we’re built to minimise the amount we experience.

But do you know I think there are two benefits to the times when we experience pain. Firstly, there’s learning in painful experiences. Leonard Cohen once wrote that “there is a crack in everything and that’s how the light gets in”. The cracks caused by pain allows great opportunities for us to heal, grow and be better for the experience.

Secondly, appreciation of the ‘gains’ in life is heightened by the experience of pain. For example, the pain of rejections and set-backs are experienced as regular as breakfast in a small business. Consequently, the gains of things like business wins and invoice payments are just the sweetest feeling.

Are you someone who is experiencing pain in your career currently? Here are three tips to move from pain to gain.

Be compassionate:

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78% of ourselves find it easier to be compassionate to others than we do to ourselves. When we’re working through a tough patch at work, it’s so important to be compassionate to ourselves. It can be as simple as cup of tea or a short walk. This act can break a cycle, alleviate the experience and help to create a more positive outlook.

Know your vision:

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Pain is temporary. It will go as quick as it will come. A personal vision for your career is so key from moving from pain to gain. It helps put a purpose on the pain. And it helps you to realise that there is gain going to come from the pain you’re experiencing.

Manage your exposure:

Some pain we experience, such as bereavement, is impossible for us to avoid. Thankfully, there’s a huge amount we can do to minimise our exposure to pain. For example, some TV programmes, news stories and political figures are pure pain-inducing. Minimise the time you give to them. Some people in your working world may have the same effect. See how you can minimise the time you have to give to them too.

Life is short and your career is a one-off experience within that. Pain is part of work and life. Take action to make pain nothing more than a valuable and necessary part of bringing the vision for your career to life.