Sometimes we do get ourselves stuck, but other times we simply find ourselves marooned in the in-between—where the present feels more like the past, but the future is uncertain.
People talk a lot about finishing an existing project or starting a new one, but how can we effectively navigate the seeming wasteland between them? Whether or not we choose to be in this space, it can be uncomfortable and it is often unproductive. It’s as if we find ourselves treading water—personally, professionally and financially. But by effectively navigating these in-between phases in life and work, by releasing the outcome and exercising proactive patience, we can keep moving forward.
Maybe you’re rehabbing an injury and are out of the game or the season. Maybe you’ve sold your house and temporarily are crammed into an apartment while you’re building your new dream home. Maybe a long-term relationship has ended and you’re taking time to heal before considering coupling again. Heck, maybe you’ve gotten the first vaccine shot and are awaiting the second!
One of the most common—and challenging—in-between scenarios, however, is occupationally oriented. I spoke with a great friend and amazing professional this past week who runs her own business—but she’s in the middle of a lengthy interview process for a job that could be really stinking awesome.
The new job, if offered and accepted, would initiate a massive amount of change for her and her family. They’d have to move—and they already live in the best city in the world, for goodness’ sake—but her husband and three children are all on board for a new adventure if that’s how it breaks.
There are several meaningful pros to accompany that monumental con, though. Most notably, the job would vault her visibility within her industry, compounding her already impressive credentials, and position her as a national authority in her realm of expertise.
But the whole process of wrestling with this possibility began months ago. First, she had to come to grips with the possibility herself; then she had to communicate that development to her husband, whose work would remain in their current locale; then they had to see if the kids were on board; and only then did she really seriously consider this option.
And throughout it all, the “Will they pick me?” stress continued to build and build. The first interview. The call back. And now, a scheduled third interview. Oh, and running the business she already owns.
Most of us have been through some version of this and many other in-betweens—or we will be in the future. But as she recently brought me up to speed on the process and progress, I could feel my own stomach tighten. So I asked:
How are you managing being in the in-between?