Find your purpose

Discover your core career needs

Finally, when changing careers at any age, Peterson says the key is to find your purpose. What’s the common thread that takes your interest from one career to the next? What are you here to do?

“If you can find the common thread—what we as producers call the golden thread of your story — you can change your career as many times as you like,” she says. “But try and stay congruent with what your main purpose in life is, and if you can’t figure it out, go and do some personal work. There are plenty of people out there who can teach you how to find that. We’re all here for whatever that purpose is.”

Your “personal story” should encompass:

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    Purpose in life
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    Find your "golden thread"
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    Personal work
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    Transformation points

She notes that in her own work, the common thread for all the different things she’s done is storytelling—helping people find the transformation points in their life and helping them to transform wherever they’re at through storytelling.

“I’ve worked in advertising. I’ve made a social justice doco. I’ve done experiential events. I’ve made stuff happen. I’ve done product launches and now this business, and a thousand things in between. I’ve worked in hospitality and run shops and all of that, but in every single career I’ve done, there’s a common thread.”

Peterson adds that once you’ve identified this common thread in everything you do; you’ll never have to feel like moving into a new career because you’ve failed at the first one, since it’s all part of the same story.

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interviewee quote

"It’s like changing costumes, but actually, there’s always going to be a common thread. It can take time to get there, but that’s the golden rule, really."

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  • Kaaren Peterson

“It’s all building on this idea that we’re here for a purpose,” she says. “We’re going to do it in many different ways. It’s like changing costumes, but actually, there’s always going to be a common thread. It can take time to get there, but that’s the golden rule, really.”