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  Category: Articles » Self Improvement » Coaching » Article

How to give yourself a checkup now

By Craig Nathanson

Over 40? Is your work life empty?
How to give yourself a checkup now!

By Craig Nathanson (The Vocational Coach™)

Is your work fulfilling and full of meaning? This is a question no one can answer but you.
There are, however, several things you can look at to see if your work needs a major overhaul now!

The checklist of work happiness


How is your energy each day? Do you wake up fully alert and ready to work? Do you jump out of bed at the thought of starting work?
Does your mind race during the night because you can't wait to get up in the morning? Before going to bed, do you get excited just thinking of the work that you get to do the next day?

Or, when you think of your work, does it leave you with an empty feeling in the pit of your stomach? Do your thoughts instead turn to the bills piling up, the terrible boss or the long commute you have to do the next morning? When the alarm sounds, is your first thought "Oh no, it can't be morning yet!" Are you tired during the day? Does your energy level drop as the day wears on?


Are you happy and content most of the day? Do you feel balanced and on-track with what you do? Do you feel like the work you do fits you and is just perfect?

Or are your emotions a daily roller coaster full of anxiety, envy, jealously, sadness and anger? Could this be because you don't love what you do? Could it be because your work might fit those silly job descriptions but your work no longer fits you? Do you hang onto your job like an outdated shirt because you just can't force yourself to do something else?


How are you feeling about your loved ones? Are you supportive and always ready to listen to them in a calm and supportive way?

Or are you finding it harder to appreciate those around you because all you can think about is your work? Are you spending all your time thinking about how you can't stand your work? Are the people you care deeply about in your life being impacted by your moods and unhappiness in your work life? Are you being encouraged to stay in this job to support the family despite the way this job is draining you? Do you feel trapped in a box—with no key for getting out?


Are you prevented from following your passion and finding work that better fits you because of money?
Are you afraid that if you quit your empty job, you'll go homeless or rock the boat at home? Have you considered how you might get creative and follow your heart AND make the money you require?
Could you live on less in the short term to follow your dream?
Could your family live on less in the short term for you to follow your dream?
What would the tradeoffs be in the short term; the long term?
Does your own parental voice tell you it is not the responsible thing to do?
Are you unable to give yourself permission to follow your heart?


Is yours "just a job" with those empty days and wasted staff meetings? Does it seem like it's always all about the money? Does your employer have a "What did you do for me lately" attitude toward you and your work? Does it seem like you don't have control of your work and what you do? Do you feel trapped?

Do you realize that you must do something now before you become a statistic?

You must do something now if you are suffering like this

Being over 40 and empty in your work is a sure recipe for illness, unhappiness, failed relationships, needless spending and worst of all, a downward spiral towards a life that feels empty.

The good news

You can change! Many others like you have and you can, too.
It starts with an examination of your life and your work, because what you do determines who you are. Don't just settle any longer for a job created by someone else to do work that no longer fits you. You have a gift to give the world and it's time you start to pursue it.
It will be hard; it will be challenging, and it will be worth it.

Create a supportive team around you now to protect and encourage you in the next step of your journey. This new journey will improve your health, your emotional state, your relationships, your relationship with money and most importantly, your work.
Over 40, your work becomes your life because what you do is who you are.

It's all up to you. You can choose what you become.
About the Author
Craig Nathanson is the author of P Is For Perfect: Your Perfect Vocational Day and a coaching expert who works with people over forty. Craig's new E-book, Discover and live your passion 365 days a year is a workshop in a box designed to help busy adults go insane with their work. Craig's systematic approach, the trademark "Ten P" process,'' helps people break free and move toward the work they love. Visit Craig's online community at where you can take a class, get more ideas through Craig Nathanson's books and CD's, get some private coaching over the phone or read other stories of mid-life change and renewal.

Craig lives in San Anselmo, California. You can reach him at 415-457-0550 or at

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