The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second-best time is today.

You’ve probably heard this saying because it applies to many situations. Sometimes, when we aren’t completely satisfied with how our lives are going, we avoid making changes because we convince ourselves that we have passed the deadline for success. It’s too late, we rationalize, so why try? 

This is almost always an excuse.


Why don’t people try new things, go after their goals, or take risks?

My experience as a career coach provides two reasons. 

  1. Fear – Fear of failure, fear of success, fear of rejection, or fear of something else along the way
  2. Laziness – Sometimes, people just don’t want to do the work

(I tend to find that #2 is usually just fear masquerading as laziness. So, maybe there’s only one reason. What do you think?)

By this point, you’re probably thinking, “Thanks, Miranda, for the philosophizing, but you’re not a professor anymore, so can you please clearly explain how this relates to my career?”

I’ll be glad to. 

My clients often ask me when they should begin their job search. Or, when we talk about getting started on a project together, they let me know that they’ll contact me when they are done with a project, their kids are done with that season’s sport, or “when things calm down.”

There’s definitely something to be said for strategic planning and effectively planning your time. Unfortunately, when most of my clients ask me when they should begin their job search, they are really asking how long they can delay it. And when they tell me they will get to it “when things calm down,” they’re giving themselves an excuse not to get started. 

So, when someone asks me when they should start their job search, I almost always say now. Now is the best time. Sure, you might be able to dedicate more time in the future, but dedicate a little time now. Sure, there are certain times during the calendar year that are better for searching depending on your industry, but there is always something you can do now. 

When you start now, something that seemed big and scary becomes manageable, then it becomes doable, and then suddenly it becomes done. 


If you would like to talk more about starting your job search, reach out at