The Work-Life-Faith Balance

Following God’s lead through all seasons of life
The Work-Life-Faith Balance
Image: Austin Neill / Unsplash

A rocky career start, a handful of jobs, and deciding to leave the corporate world after a few decades in it—this wasn't exactly the career path I had planned.

When I was just starting out, I had what seemed like a pretty simple career plan: get the best education I could, land the best job I could get, and then work like crazy. Period. I envisioned my career like a single, long, straight path that I would run as hard as I could. I would put faith first—and family, too, when the time came—but at work I would always be running to win.

Or so I thought.

The first phase of my life went pretty much according to plan. I did well in school, worked a few years, and got into a great business school. But as graduation approached, I had a problem.

If you hope to navigate successfully, you’ll need to start with a healthy perspective on what work is (and is not), and then approach it with flexibility, humility, and courage.

My classmates were accepting flashy jobs at big companies in New York and Houston and Los Angeles, but my husband was in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The best job I could find in Tulsa was an entry-level consulting job at Arthur Young. Not flashy, not exciting, not impressive. Definitely not what people at Harvard Business School are expected to answer when asked about their post-graduation plans. But I had made a commitment to my husband to be in Tulsa, so I swallowed my pride and took the job.

I worked hard, but it was obvious the job and the company were not the right fit for me. So when an opportunity presented itself, I moved on. And then shortly thereafter, I did it again. Careers can be messy that way, especially when you are just starting out.

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Diane Paddison

Diane Paddison is a business professional and founder of 4wordwomen.org, local groups of professional working women committed to faith, family, work, and each other.

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May 25

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