We develop a lot of skills throughout our career. Most of us learn these skills because they are in demand by our employer or industry.
Our interests are aligned with our talents. If you are not sure of the difference between your talents versus your skills please read the post Talents versus Skills – Do you know the difference?
What happens when your skills are not aligned with your interests?
We get bored, burned out or left behind.
After I had a near fatal bicycle accident in 2002 I went off to teach Algebra I and II at an inner-city high school. I lasted 2 years before I realized I could not teach and stay healthy. When I left teaching, I was completely lost. I went to a career coach and I was given an MBTI assessment. This is pretty standard and it told me I was a teacher and trainer. I went DUH! I was told to talk to former colleagues and have them tell me what they thought I was really good at. They told me that I was phenomenally good at taking very complicated technical systems and explaining them in terms just about anyone could understand.
DUH!! I knew that and more importantly, I did not want to do that anymore!!
What was the reason? I was interested in training and helping people but the thought of learning one more complicated technical system made me want to barf. My interest in that skill was long gone. I was bored and burned out.
I have had multiple clients who have been excellent relationship salesmen/women. You might call them account managers or in the sales world, you would call them farmers.
All of them became salesmen/women because someone told them early in their careers – “You should be a salesperson. You are good with people.”
Well… Sales have been changed by the Internet forever. The relationship building has been removed from the sales process. Customers can get online, research products, and even purchase relatively complex products without ever speaking with someone.
This has forced a lot of B2B (Business to Business) salespeople to think about if they can continue in this line of work. What they were interested in (building lasting relationships) is no longer a valued or even required skill.
My skills had been honed over 30 years in working in corporate America. My skills no longer aligned with what I wanted in my career and more importantly my life.
Has this happened to you? Do you have valuable skills in areas that no longer interest you?
As you move into the 2nd half of life you may have skills that you want to leave behind. If this topic intrigues you please read the post What Skills Will You Use in the 2nd Half of Life?Marc Miller
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