So what do you do for work?

I remember being asked this question a lot when I was dissatisfied with my career. My usual strategy would be to give a pat answer and immediately turn the question back on the person who asked it.

My avoidance of the question wasn’t so much that I was considered unsuccessful or that my work was embarrassing, it was more about the fact that I didn’t feel personally successful doing what I was doing.

I longed to be excited not evasive when asked this question. I wanted to be able to speak for more than 2 seconds before I turned the question back on my inquisitor.

What do you do when asked this question and how do you feel? If you find yourself avoiding and not feeling all that great about your answer, it’s time to change your answer and here’s a simple way to get started…

Ask yourself this: “What do I REALLY want to say when someone says, “So what do you do for work?””

  • What’s the first thing that comes to mind?
  • What about it is appealing to you?
  • What other things come to mind?
  • How do feel thinking about it?

If you feel good, then you are on the right track!

Now if you are like most, you’ll immediately start thinking of all the reasons why this will never happen. What if you put all those reasons aside and just thought more about it? Try it…

What would be one thing you could do to explore how this idea might work? I bet you do a lot of projects at your current job, what would be your next steps if you were to make turning this idea into reality a project?

This may seem simple, but it is the first step to shift your attention from discomfort to possibility.

Give it a try, you really have nothing to lose and could possibly get on your way to happily answering, “So, what do you do for work?”

I trust you enjoyed this article from Doreen. Want some help with your career? Contact Liz Kentish, The FM Coach on Tel: 01778 561326 / 07717 870777 or email:

About the Author

Doreen Banaszak is a career coach, teacher & founder of the “90-Day Get Your Career UnSlumped Challenge”. Where do you want to be in 90 days? Register today to receive your free “GetUnSlumped Welcome Package” including an e-workbook, free tele-workshop and complementary coaching consultation. Register at

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