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Infinite Career Moves

26 May 2023

The math is quite staggering.

The number of next career moves available to you you is infinite, yet most of us act as if there is only one or two possibilities.

The staggering number of options was pointed out to me in a blog by Gaping Void in reference to the game of Chess:

Consider the game of Chess. In Chess, there are two players with six types of pieces.
After each player takes their first turn, there are 400 potential arrangements the pieces could take.
After each player takes their seventh turn, there are 61,885,021,521,585,529,237.


Career is more complex, changing, and abundant than Chess.  Borrowing from the ideas of Annie Duke

Career is more like the game of Poker.  Career is a game that with each career move you make a wealth of other opportunities that you knew nothing about previously are revealed.  You can never know the wealth of opportunities that are possible.  With each skill you develop there are more ways in which you can use the skill.  With each person you meet there are more possibilities that you get access to.  With each experience you have there is more wisdom you can bring.


So don't allow your thinking to limit you to only one or two options.  Know you can take your career in an infinite number of directions.

This doesn't mean that you have to head off in some obscure new direction.  The value is in knowing that you have choice.  And this knowledge of choice helps you be more courageous.

The action to take now is to make a Career Infinity List.  That is, list at least 10 directions your career could go in from where you are now.  List the obvious things, but also list the more obscure, more curious, and the more unexpected directions, and enjoy the feeling of abundance this brings.  

Here are some thinking aids that may or may not help you make your infinity list:

  • Different organisations - private, public, not-for-profit, small business, own business, side hustle...
  • Countries - the world is a big place, virtual work from anywhere in the world is so possible now...
  • Industries - apply you skills to a totally different industry...
  • Experts - what areas of expertise could you bring value to, what adjacent areas can you add expertise to...
  • Different times - what might open up if you think about working at different times...

Do this in whatever way is fun for you - create a document, open a page in your journal, list on a whiteboard, put sticky notes on the fridge, make it a screensaver...  You don't have to do anything with the list - simply make it.

As always, wishing you a flourishing career.


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