February 9, 2021

Setting yourself up for career change success with Amy Bracht

Getting AheadShot Cover art
Getting AheadShot
Setting yourself up for career change success with Amy Bracht

Show Notes

Career coach Amy Bracht gives tips to anybody feeling like they are in a rut with their current job. The owner of A Better You Is Possible helps her clients see the opportunities and the realities that lie ahead and helps people transform their careers.

To find Amy, go to:

To find Lane and his work, go to:


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Announcer 0:02
Welcome to Getting AheadShot. a show for anybody wanting to get ahead in life join conversations between international award winning photographer Lane Hickenbottom and his clients who while Getting AheadShot offer relatable tips and strategies on a variety of topics, and now here’s lane.

Lane Hickenbottom 0:25
Have you ever thought about trying to make a career transformation or you just feel like you’re stuck in a rut and need a way to get out of it. My next guest is a certified life coach and helps her clients improve their life in all sorts of ways. A key focus of her business is to help people maneuver career changes, or improvements. She has a six week career transformation program that helps people discover what they want next in life, and helps them take the appropriate steps to make it happen. I’m excited to introduce to you the owner of A Better You Is Possible. Amy Bracht. Thanks for coming on, Amy.

Amy Bracht 1:03
Thank you. Hello.

Lane Hickenbottom 1:06
Hi. So yeah, we just got done with a with a great branding session, you have a new website coming out? amongst many things will help steer people towards this this six week career Transformation Program? Can you tell me about a little bit about that?

Amy Bracht 1:25
Sure. So usually, when clients come to me, they are exactly what you described, a little bit stuck in a rut, not sure what to do next. And they may want change, but they don’t know how to go about it, then everyone’s busy, everyone has priorities, and you get really used to being where you are in your career. So when they come to me, the first thing we do is a real discovery session, where we go through different areas of their life that they may not have been thinking about and just have them read it one to 10. Where are you at today? That allows us to see where it may we have patterns developing, because often something shows up in career or people think, oh, if I change my career, things will get better. But sometimes it’s not about that at all. It could be about a variety of different things. In subsequent sessions, we really define what is the values you want to have in a workplace? What motivates you to get up and go to work in the morning? And why are you in that space, and what you may want instead, we work through different limiting beliefs. So stories and things we may tell ourselves that keep us from being successful. And I have a process that I work through with my clients to really get out of that space and get unstuck when it comes to things that they might be saying to themselves that don’t serve them anymore. And we define mission and vision. So when you have a mission statement, it’s easier for you to kind of maintain that truenorth and say, Well, here’s what I want going forward and use that as a touch point. So then even if you’re out, looking at new careers or interviewing, you have that idea that you’ve already thought about that, you know, this is what I want to do, or these are the things that I require. And it helps you make decisions when you know you have a couple of different offers, or you may be choosing to go into a different career, it can be very, very helpful for you to take the time to, to do that.

Lane Hickenbottom 3:37
Yeah. So, you know, if I was somebody, you know, if I decided this whole photography thing wasn’t working out, and I wanted to make a career move. what’s what’s some of the first things I might want to look at?

Amy Bracht 3:51
Well, I think, for most people, obviously getting a coach would be a great step, because you need that objective voice to kind of hold space for you as you’re thinking about those things. But not everybody is going to be in the space to to get a coach. So a couple of things I could suggest. If you were thinking to yourself, I definitely want to make a change, but I don’t know which direction to go. One thing you could do that I do with my clients as well as have a dream storm, and a dream storm sounds really fancy. Sounds like a lot of fun.

Lane Hickenbottom 4:27

Amy Bracht 4:27
But really what a dream storm is you take an hour, and you just think about questions and answer questions that maybe you haven’t thought about in a while. As we get into be adults, we stopped dreaming. Or we dream but we dream different dreams, maybe for our kids, or for our spouses, and it stops being about us. And so you can get a list on the Internet of just, you know, Google important questions or sometimes those cards decks like best self has card decks, you can go through there and just start answering questions. Examples would be, if I could go anywhere right now, no thought of cost, where would I go? If I were taking a road trip cross country? Who would I go with? What are five things that I’ve thought about learning and I never have, you know, just going through lists of questions that aren’t even about career, but just about you to get you in a space where you’re feeling more creative, which can kind of help you think about things in a different way when you’re done.

Lane Hickenbottom 5:41
Yeah, it’s interesting. When you when you use the term dream storm, first thing I think about is, is like falling asleep and having dreams. But really, you’re kind of encouraging your clients to wake up, you know, maybe they’ve been in almost like a trance and, and need to wake up and realize they’re alive. And

Amy Bracht 6:03
no, absolutely, I mean, we all get into patterns, and interrupts, we get busy. We kind of get on the treadmill. And I, I find, usually when a client’s coming to me, they’ve had some kind of awakening. They either know, they want to make a change, or something’s happened to them, which makes them think about things differently. Maybe they’ve seen something happening at their company that they don’t like, or they’ve had something happened within their family that makes them realize, Hey, I’m not here enough. I need to make some changes. And so when someone’s in that mode, and they come to you, the first thing you have to ask them is, well, what do you think about doing? And most often people say, I have no idea. Many adults fall into their careers. Just because you’re you’re kind of following the the shoulds, you know, maybe your parents said, go to college get a good job, that’s the answer, or you kind of did things because your friends were doing them, or you got married early, and you had to be responsible, because you had a family to take care of, or any number of things. So people find themselves one day waking up and saying, I don’t think I chose this. But because they’re out of touch with what they would have chosen, it’s hard for them to come up with something new. So clients can stay in that stuck space. of I know, I want something different, but I don’t know what to do. And doing something like a dream storm, even though it has nothing to do with the career, if you don’t want it to, it can get you in a space where you’re at least thinking differently. And waking up those creative juices to think about things in a new way.

Lane Hickenbottom 7:48
Very good. So so once once those creative juices are starting to flow, is that when people start to kind of discover what do they want to do next in? And if so, what’s your next step? Do you do you help them get there? Have I jumped ahead a little too far?

Amy Bracht 8:11
Well, we can do that, if they’re coming in for coaching. That is something I do with clients. But if you are just thinking to yourself, hey, I want to change, that would be something I would suggest to you. Something else that I usually suggest to people, even if they’re just coming to me for advice is to change your environment. So if you are thinking to yourself, I’d really like to take some time and some space. And think about things I might like to do, you know, just kind of have a blow off afternoon. A really important thing to do is change your environment. Because if you’re sitting around your house, you know everything is kind of the way it is. So you’re really in that framework that you’ve been in. So go for a road trip in the afternoon, go be in one of the small towns that’s that’s near your city and see something different, go to a park, go. You know, if you live in a rural community goes someplace bigger. Just doing something that changes the environment that you’re in will get you thinking about things in a different way, which can sometimes spark something you may not have realized you even wanted. A lot of times when we’re out. Just being open to our environment, we see things and we hear things that trigger things later that we forgot about. And so that’s one way to, again, wake it up. But maybe if you’re more focused on thinking about what should I do next? It’s a great way to just take a pen and paper and go someplace different and write down what you think.

Lane Hickenbottom 9:50
Yeah, so, um, you know, I, I feel like in my life as a photographer, and I’m networked with a lot of photographers, wedding photographers, and put ticular it’s, it’s good to network with each other. Because if, you know, we were our biggest source of referrals, you know, a popular date in June, I can only take one wedding, for example. And so instead of just sending a bride off saying no can’t do it, I usually want to point out to some fantastic photographers who I do. But as a result, photographers tend to network with each other. And over and over and over, I hear from, from people who have corporate day jobs, and they feel stuck there. They would like to jump into photography, for example, full time, but they, they just, they feel like they can’t make the very next step of actually jumping. Maybe it’s benefits, maybe it’s just comfort and not wanting to change. How do you answer that?

Amy Bracht 11:02
Well, there’s a couple of things, that’s a very real thing, especially if you’re many of the clients that I have are married or have young kids at home, I mean, there are different responsibilities that you have at that stage of the game that you need to have as a priority. But one thing I’d caution about is, when clients are out of balance, meaning they’re so stressed, or they’re so burnt out by what they’re doing today, they will often pick something that’s very, very opposite. And say, well, that’s where it’s at. So you could have a corporate person that you’re working with, and they see you as a photographer, you’re having a good time, you seem to enjoy yourself, and they’re thinking man, I should, I gotta get into that. What I would say to that person is take some time and really think about what you want to do. Because sometimes in our effort to change it up, if we’re coming at that decision from a place that isn’t balanced, we may go too far in the other direction. I worked with a client who is in a very rigorous, stable program management, you know, very measured very even. And I asked him, What would you do today, if you could just do whatever you want. And he said, Well, I would probably when I went to the Bahamas, there was a guy that taxied people from one island to the other. And he looked like he was having a good time. And I would do that. And while that was a great story, and we talked about the attributes of that type of work, that would get him really excited. You know, he’s not going to do that.

Lane Hickenbottom 12:47
At least not it’s not, it’s not the right fit.

Amy Bracht 12:50
It’s simply not going to fit into the priorities that he has from the standpoint of being a dad and being a husband. But you can take a look and say, What are the attributes that I’m seeing here? that I think would be attractive to me. So someone coming from a corporate setting, seeing a photographer, maybe the flexibility is attractive to them. Maybe casualness is attractive to them. Maybe not being so serious, or having less deadlines is attractive. Those are things that you can take, and really make changes that you’ve thought about. And when you go through that process, you’re actually moving towards something not away from something.

Lane Hickenbottom 13:31
Yeah. So So Amy just spent the last two and a half hours with me a photography session. So she’s she’s seeing that I’m not very serious is pointed that that answer? Yeah, giving myself a hard time.

Amy Bracht 13:47
You gave me a great example to work with. perspective.

Lane Hickenbottom 13:52
I kept on knocking things over. There’s no room to be serious if you’re not convinced. Right. Right. Yeah, you don’t get that in the corporate world. So So yeah, I feel like there’s there’s an important question here that I’m missing also about just for these people who, you know, I try to find direction, like what are some other tips that you may have?

Amy Bracht 14:20
Well, one thing is to find someone who’s in a space where they are happy, and ask them about it. Most of the time, when we’re thinking about doing something new, or we have questions, we’re asking those around us. So we might be asking our spouse, or our parents or our friends, and a lot of times they might be in the same boat we are. You’re right. Or, you know you when you ask people who are around you who are really supportive. Any idea you come up with is going to be great, because they’re your friends. But when you get into a space where you’re actually talking to Someone who’s maybe made a career change, and they seem really happy. Or even if they’re in your industry, and they’ve risen up to a role that you think would be really great, go ask them about it. And if they’re happy with it, there is an opportunity for you to say, Okay, well, what did you do? And was it always this way for you? And when did you decide this is what you wanted to do? And you can get really good information from people who’ve already been there and who are having a good experience?

Lane Hickenbottom 15:33
Yeah, very good. Good advice. Though, being married for 15 years, I’m going to encourage people to still talk to your spouse.

Amy Bracht 15:43
Well, yes. But maybe bring some other ideas.

Lane Hickenbottom 15:48

Amy Bracht 15:51
But you bring up a really good point when people want to make some changes. It’s also helpful to bounce ideas off of somebody who doesn’t have anything in the game. Right? Yeah. Because if you’re, if you’re talking about, hey, I want to make a big career change. And maybe you’re in a space where you’re at an income level that you’re very used to. And that works for your family that can be really scary to a spouse to hear that. And so they may be in a, in a place where they’re gonna say, Oh, are you sure? And not that you should ignore what another person, obviously, your spouse is saying. But it can be helpful to talk to someone objective, who can just you can just bounce ideas off of them with no judgment, and

Lane Hickenbottom 16:34
somebody who can take kind of a step back and look at the big picture without the emotion attached?

Amy Bracht 16:40

Lane Hickenbottom 16:41
Yeah, very good. Very good. So um, so anyway, what are some of the best places for somebody to find you?

Amy Bracht 16:54
Well, I have a presence on LinkedIn. So if you’re on LinkedIn, you can come find me there. I am, as you said, earlier, I’m redoing my website, or as we talked about earlier, I’m redoing my website and brand. So in a few weeks, you can find me at,

Lane Hickenbottom 17:15
with fantastic photos,

Amy Bracht 17:16
yes, with photos that will just blow your mind. But yeah, I’m very active on LinkedIn. And I actually have clients who come to me from all over the country that I’ve met through LinkedIn. And then we have a, you know, a really good conversation. We’re doing everything online, obviously, in these pandemic times. But it’s been a really effective way to meet a lot of different people and to an AI to do the referral thing as well. There are some things that I’m simply not your best person for. And so if you come to me and you’re saying, Well, I’m really interested in health coaching, or I’m really interested in something that I’m not a person for you, then I have somebody who I can usually refer you to.

Lane Hickenbottom 18:03
Very good. Well, Amy, it’s been really a pleasure all afternoon. I’ve enjoyed getting to know you. And and working with you and look forward to to that website. Launching.

Amy Bracht 18:17
Yeah. Well, thank you. It’s pictures, I think, as we discussed are not always my favorite thing. And you made it really fun. So.

Lane Hickenbottom 18:24
Oh, good. Thank you so much. Thanks for Yeah, thanks for joining me on Getting AheadShot

Amy Bracht 18:29
All right, thank you.

Announcer 18:37
Thanks for listening to the Getting AheadShot podcast, recorded inside the Omaha headshot company studio to support the podcast, share it with others post about it on social media or leave a five star review to learn more go to Getting We look forward to seeing you next time.

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