The pressure on kids to choose a future is intense. When my daughter was 4 years old, her teacher asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” She tossed her head and proudly proclaimed, “I am going to be an INVENTOR!” (sassy attitude included without charge). Fast forward 12 years and she is now a senior in high school but is still being asked the same question, albeit, in a modified format, “What are you going to study in college?” Her answer now is a somewhat dejected, “I have no idea.” This uncertainty makes her feel that she is a failure since, between pre-school and high school, kids are supposed to be able to figure out the answer to this important question,
“What do I want to be when I grow up?”
Life isn't static and it is not too late to make a change. You can test your future through side gigs and work as an independent contractor.
I recently heard a great Ted Talk and the speakers did something wonderful with this question. They changed the question from, “What do I want to be when I grow up?” to “What do I want to grow into next?” This subtle change brings freedom because, unlike the first question, the answer is not a permanent choice but, rather, a plan that we can make, modify and tweak as our life changes.
That, my fellow therapists, is one of the best reasons to think about gig work as an Independent Contractor/1099. Work as an independent contractor gives you an opportunity to dip your toes in the waters of a new field, new career, or new opportunity without a long term commitment. Like the infomercials that we see on social media or television late at night, you can return it if you are not 100% satisfied with your decision. This means that you can explore a change and see if it fits your dream, your vision, and what you want to grow into next.
If any of this sounds familiar, if your current position is not bringing you the joy that you had hoped and if you have a wish to make a change, then please take a look at The Independent Therapist Alliance (ITA). I am one of the founders and ITA is what I “grew into”. Myself and my partners/friends help therapists start and succeed as independents and we would love to welcome you to our group. We exist to bring support, help and resources to therapists who are ready to grow into what's next for their future. You can learn more about what we do and why here and, if you’re interested, here is the link to the Ted Talk that inspired me to write this post.
Cheers to you, to healthcare workers everywhere and to making dreams come true.