The course was fabulous and has shifted me up a gear, (which after 'knowing' all of the course content - most of it was nothing new - was a bit of a surprise).
One other surprise was that as the course is usually run for the Long Term Unemployed (i.e. Me), people on Incapacity Benefit and Prison Offenders, I was expecting to be surrounded by people in the same situation as me. Instead, I quickly discovered that this was an Open Course, open to everyone including people who are considering becoming an Affiliate to train the course. Needless to say, it took a bit of pluck to 'confess' my situation to the person who would be introducing me (who instantly said "I would never have had you down as unemployed - I see you as a person already running your own personal development business". A surprise compliment indeed).
There were 5 other people attending the course, 5 other wonderful people. It was a great two days. Something that one of the guys said really stuck with me. He had been working on pushing himself outside of his comfort zone and at first it felt really awful, but he continued to keep pushing and is seeing the results, the feeling of discomfort has started to actually feel welcome. So much so, in fact, that now whenever he is about to do something new he has realised that "If it doesn't scare me then it's probably not worth it". What a brilliant way to look at challenges.
The material that wasn't familiar to me was surrounding finding work (funny, that). The following statistics surprised me:
- 85% of jobs are never advertised (or if they are, it is purely for legal reasons and somebody has already been identified for the role)
- You are 4 times more likely to land a new job if you are already in a job (no matter how relevant your skills)
- Employers rate the following skills - honest and dependable, reliable, punctual, gets along well with people, accepts and handles responsibility - higher than: works well with minimum supervision, can solve problems, possesses entry level job skills.
So I finished the course feeling practical - I need to write my goals and affirmations, and start taking action towards getting any job in a training or creative environment which will give me a chance to expand in to what I want to do. Then maybe a while down the line I will have enough knowledge and experience to set up my own training consultancy/personal development business. Running my own business is something that I know little about and there is no point in trying to run before I can walk.
So this morning I go to Shabbat, and the man who owns Goals UK came over to see what I thought of the course. I gave him my feedback and said that I was changing career. He asked what I wanted to do. Without thinking, I announced "I want to be an inspirational speaker. I want to run workshops with my own material."
"Why do you want to do this?" he asked.
"Because that is what I am here to do", I replied, hoping that I didn't sound too much like a giant ego on legs. (But as Nelson Mandela said in his inaugural speech "You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn't serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will feel secure around you"
"In the meantime", I continued "I need to find my 'shelf-stacker' job, in a creative or training environment, and I would love to find out more about how I would set up a training consultancy"
"We are running a train-the-trainer this week" he said "Do you want a free place on that? We go in to the course in more detail and on Friday I come in and talk about the business side of things"
A little voice inside my head popped up and said "You're not ready for this.... you have to sign on Thursday - they won't let you sign on another day. This course is going to be full of actual trainers to compare yourself to. You're going to feel even smaller. You were only looking for a shelf-stacker job - you can't launch yourself in to a training business. You need to have some money coming in right now. You're. Just. Not. Ready!!"
And the butterflies started whirring round my stomach and I thought - "Oo, I'm scared"
Which means that it is probably worth it. So I said Yes.
Then I was told that my timing was impeccable, because the Train the Trainer course only runs once every six months....
The Kabbalists say that the Creator will give you everything you need (note that I say 'need' and not 'want') but only if you meet him halfway. Well look at me, stepping up to the plate....