Have you ever been in a season of life when you can feel a door closing behind you but can’t seem to find your footing on what’s ahead and the next step is unclear? It could be that you’re graduating from college or graduate school and you don’t have a job lined up. Perhaps there is a situation at work that is causing you to reevaluate your career in ways you hadn’t expected.

Sometimes, seasons like this can come on slowly and you can almost sense them as they’re happening. Other times, a door is slamming behind you before you can even blink! Many of us have experienced both scenarios.

After graduating from college, I networked my way into a job in New York City. I loved the thrill and fast-paced lifestyle I had taken on and felt as though I had found my forever home in Manhattan. I dove headfirst into every opportunity that was presented to me. I went to events, met celebrities, hosted parties and thought I had truly found my place.

I thought I had found my forever home in NYC. However, an opportunity came along that changed all my plans. 

How do we respond when life brings change that seems disorienting and upends the life we have always known or expected? How can we move forward in faith when the steps ahead aren’t visible?

KNOCK

Have you ever felt like Jesus is knocking at the door of your life to do something outside of your comfort zone? His invitation is for you to enter into an intimate relationship with Him as you take your next step. Maybe it’s moving to a new city, starting a job, starting a new passion project or leading out at your church. 

Sometimes when Jesus knocks at the door of our lives, it feels like we could get locked out of the life we wanted if we step through that door. That’s what I felt like when I left New York to start my first company in Texas. But, we have no idea the blessings that are in store until we take a step of faith.

Practically, where do we begin?

UNLOCK

When looking for the next step in your career or life, there are a couple of things to keep in mind.

Focus on your passions

What is it that you’re passionate about? What do you love to do? Perhaps you love to encourage others, organize, travel, cook or exercise. Think creatively about what roles might allow you to do these things while getting paid. It can also be helpful to make a list of companies that share your passion. If you love interior design, check out the interior designers you follow on Instagram and see if they’re hiring. You may also want to make a list of cities you’d like to live in and cross-examine your lists to see which companies are based in cities you love.

The above are quick and easy ways to begin to take your next step.

Unlock (your network)  

Have you ever intentionally thought about the Six Degrees of Separation? It’s the idea that all people are six, or fewer, social connections away from one another. If that is the case, can you imagine who might be in your network?

Here are a few tips to figure out who you know that might guide your next step! If you’re wondering what your next step is, allowing other people into the conversation can be such a source of wisdom and encouragement.

Begin with relationships that are important to you, perhaps a trusted relative or family friend. It can also be helpful to choose someone in a career position or role that you admire or to which you aspire.

Set up a time to meet with them and perhaps have some questions ready for them. I personally love John Maxwell’s “Seven Questions to Ask a Person of Influence” from his book, Good Leaders Ask Great Questions. Come expectant, excited, and ready to listen and see what you might be able to learn. Many of our ‘Ah-ha!’ moments in life can come through conversations like the above. Now you’re ready to move forward! 

STEP THROUGH

We can also extend our personal network as we meet with loved ones or close friends by asking them if they know of anyone who shares in our passions or has experienced a similar season in their own life. Hearing how they found their next step can be an encouragement to us as we’re looking to do the same.

1 Corinthians 3:12 says, “We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then; see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!” (MSG)

I found this verse while reading in Central Park shortly before I moved away from where I had expected to settle down. Little did I know the next step and season in my life would bring more joy, passion, excitement, and blessings than any before it!

You may not be able to see the next step now, but you will. You can take even the tiniest steps to follow the path, discover the career and live the life you’ve been dreaming of, knowing every step of the way God had it planned for you all along.

Emily Landers
Emily Landers

Emily Landers is the author of 'Take Flight', founder of Flight Social Media, and Social Media Specialist at Luxe Social Media. She is passionate about women finding their purpose and pursuing their dreams. Emily lives in California with her husband, Luke, and their golden doodle, Maui.

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