Natasja King details five steps to help you reinvent yourself
Quick. Think back to July 2010. Where were you living? Were you studying or working? What dreams did you have? How would you describe the July 2010 version of yourself?
You’ve changed a lot since then, haven’t you?
The world has changed too. Things we take for granted like Instagram and Zoom didn’t exist in July 2010. Today, we can’t imagine a world without them, yet we are living in that world. If you’ve been on a Zoom call, it means you embraced change and adapted. You moved with the times. Well done you!
But how about consciously reinventing yourself, or a part of you? Not merely adapting to the world around you, but taking the bull by the horns and doing it by choice?
Here are five steps to do just that:
It’s the first step because this is where it all starts. Until you decide to do something different, that new version of your life, career or relationship will remain a wish. As soon as you decide to change, you set an intention, and it’s the intent that gives you the motivational drive to act.
Having decided to change, it’s time to weigh up all the options and choose how you will go about reinventing your skills, career, weight, finances or whatever else you decided to improve. Google is excellent for the research step. You can research and read reviews on almost anything. Reaching out to people who have done what you are trying to do is even better. Use LinkedIn for this. For instance, if you want to give up your accounting job to become a dog groomer, connect with other dog groomers and ask them about their business. Or if you would like to move up the ladder from associate to partner, reach out to colleagues who have made it to partner level and ask them how they did it. People love when others show interest in them and will be happy to answer your questions.
3. Give it a try
Once you have chosen the e-course, or identified the type of job you want, it’s time to do a test run. Just as product designers will develop a prototype product, get feedback, redesign the product and test it again, so should you. (For more on this, I suggest reading Designing Your Life, based on the Stanford University course with the same name.) The idea behind prototyping the New You is that you don’t have to commit immediately. In fact, it’s recommended that you don’t go with your first idea. For example, before quitting your job to be a dog groomer, work at a doggy parlour on the weekend. Temp jobs or contract work are also great ways of prototyping before you fully commit.
In the review stage, ask yourself, ‘Did I like it, and did it energise me?’ Did you want to keep trying, even when it was difficult? The point of the reviewing stage is to see if you can do this new thing long term. Don’t give up too soon, though. If Prototype #1 really isn’t for you, repeat the Research, Try and Review steps with Prototype #2.
5. Live it
Congratulations! Prototype #3 (or #13, or #30) has gone into production. It means you have reinvented yourself and you are living in the intent you set at Step 1. Well done.
Just remember that life is ever evolving. It’s entirely possible, even likely, that you will want to reinvent yourself again. Go for it! You’ve done it before; you can do it again.