Episode #139

Create Your Own Future

Do you LOVE your work? Do you enjoy the day-to-day that your job entails? While there’s no one perfect job, it is possible to have a job you genuinely love, with a crafted future that you get excited dreaming about.



In this episode, we have one of our amazingly gifted coaches, Gina Robinson, talking with you all about creating your own future. You’ll hear Gina’s story of how she gained tenure and then gave it all up to create a future she was excited about and aligned with.

Don’t forget that we are in the period of enrolling people in our Elevate program. Elevate is our mid-career, post-tenure program that centers on one-on-one coaching, and next-level career and personal development.

If you missed the Live Info Session for Elevate last week, watch the full replay HERE! 

If after watching, you think Elevate is a good fit for you, submit an application through our website. Applications are open from now until December. But there are some amazing bonuses for signing up early, like our January virtual retreat to kick off the program! The program runs from January 2023- July 2023, and we would love to have you join us! Applying does not mean that you must join. We will respond to your application within 48 hours of submission and are available to answer any questions you may have before officially joining.

Gina’s Story:

Gina was incredibly successful early on in her career but to the chagrin of her colleagues. She made tenure but found that the success wasn’t exactly what she hoped or dreamed it might be. She pivoted in her career and left her tenure position in 2018. She began in new roles where she got to write her own job description and design a working life she was more in tune with.

Gina’s big dream, becoming a writing coach for academics, wasn’t entirely clear to her until it was happening. She wasn’t stepping into ready-made roles, but was instead stepping into roles that she had to figure out the ins and outs, sometimes the hard way.


Ask yourself: Could I be more intentionally designing my future and my career?

Wherever you are in your career, but especially if you’re in a moment of transition, you can pause and reflect on this question.

It might result in a huge change, or you may end up recognizing that you’re on exactly the right path for yourself already. But either way, you’ll be able to move forward with more conviction.

The Framework:

Use this framework to start designing your career: 

  1. Decide how you want your workdays to feel. Those feelings are going to form the foundation of you Your design.

2. Start daydreaming and imagining the impossible. Envision things that are not necessarily realistic at the moment. Make a list of these things and post them somewhere. For now, they will just exist there in the background reminding you of what you really want.

3. Talk to people about some of these ambitions that you have. Share your dreams with anyone who will listen compassionately, and try to connect with people who are doing that work.

4. Be open to those opportunities as they arise.

Let Go Of:

  1. Let go of survival mode
  2. Let go of the fear of uncertainty
  3. Let go of the belief that you can do it alone
  4. Let go of the need to compare yourself to others

You don’t need survival mode, fear, and comparison weighing you down as you move towards your future. Especially because some of this work is going to take a lot of energy.


Next Steps:

If any of this story resonated with you- the feeling you could be doing more of the work you love, that you’re doing too much for other people and not enough for yourself, or that you’re missing out on a community of peers who support and encourage you, you might want to consider working with a coach.

Check out our Elevate Program, our 6-month, high-end coaching program for tenured women and nonbinary academics. We provide the space and coaching to ask yourself the big questions and go after your big career dreams.

Head to scholarsvoice.org/elevate to learn more!


Key Quotes:

“Once I made that first big decision, it got easier to put myself and my needs at the center of the decision making process.”

“This is part of what designing your future is all about: Knowing you’ll have a vague idea at best of what it looks like, but believing in it and going after it anyways.”

“When you’re designing your future, you’re not reacting to others’ needs. You’re stepping away from the frenetic activity of survival mode, taking a pause, and making decisions and plans based on your vision of your future.”


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