Retail Escape 5-Day Challenge - Overview

Play Video

The Rules / Challenge Overview

It’s time to declare that you are now all Retail Escapees!
I’m not sure about you, but I’m pretty excited that you’re about to take a step forward towards escaping retail for good!
As per the attached video introduction, I’m keeping each challenge simple.
Here’s a quick recap:
  • There’ll be 1 task per day (I’ll post this before 6 am UK time / 1 AM EST).
  • Regardless of where you are in the world, the task will be waiting for you in your inbox each day.
  • Each task will take you 30 minutes per day – make sure you plan some time to do it!
  • I want you to post evidence that you’ve completed each task in the #general chat or by replying to my daily emails.
  • I’m going live on Thursday at 19:30 UK time / 14:30 EDT / 11:30 PST – to answer your questions. If you can’t make it live, don’t panic. I’ll be sending out the recording shortly after.
  • Prize draw, I’ve got loads of downloads and prizes for the most engaged in the challenge – so get involved!
If you haven’t already, then get yourself over to the #general chat in the slack group and introduce yourself! Who are you, how different would your life be? and what would you do if retail no longer existed?
It’s my job to help you take action.
Like I said before if you don’t action each task.
Then you won’t be in with a chance of winning the prizes.
And even worse, you won’t take the action required to escape retail.
So with each task, I want you to take a screenshot or picture of the evidence.
The evidence that you completed the task.
And either post it in the #general thread in the slack group or reply to your daily challenge email.
Right, that’s ALL you have to do today.
Over to you Retail Escapees!
Play Video
Welcome to Day 1 of the Career Discovery Challenge Week.
Today we’re going to start with something hardly any of us do…
Planning our careers!
We spend more time planning our next vacation than we do our careers.
Surely, we should take time to think about what we want?
Like why do we work? What does work get for us?
We shouldn’t live just to work.
Work should be in service of something!
Even if it’s our basic needs (Shelter, Food, Safety).
So yesterday, I hope you had time to introduce yourself but also think about the question…
“What your life would be like without Retail?”
How did that feel? Pretty amazing right?
Some of you said things like…
  • You’d see your friends and family more.
  • Others said you’d do something more meaningful.
  • While some of you said your health would be better.
These are all things you WANT.
A lot of people waste time trying to make a career fit them.
They will search for jobs and then work out if it’s right for them.
But really, you should outline what you want.
Then go out there and find jobs/careers that fit what YOU want.
Before we begin. I want to set one rule.
I don’t want you filtering anything on this activity.
You must be as honest as possible here.
For example, if money is important to you, then let it be!
Let’s get cracking…
I want you to answer the following question.

ACTION 1: “What’s important to you about your Job/Career?”

Grab a piece of paper and I want you to make a list of at least 10 different things that are important to you.
If you are struggling with this one here’s a few common examples I see…
A Career that…
  • Makes me happy.
  • Offers a salary of £X.
  • Is no further than 30 minutes from my home.
  • Involves working as part of a team.
  • Will help me grow and develop
  • Is 9-5, Mon – Fri.
  • Offers great work-life balance.
  • Has more meaning or makes a difference.
  • Allows me to provide for my family.
  • Lets me be creative.
And after you’ve done this?


ACTION 2: I want you to put them in order of most important 1-10.

Number 1 on your list would be the most important. Number 10 would be the least important.

ACTION 3: Are they in the right order?

And I want you to challenge the items on your list.
“Could you have X without Y?”
Could you have “item 2” without “item 6”?
You want to identify if your top 10 really are in the correct order.
For example, could you have…
  • More flexible hours with less salary?
  • Less happiness for more fulfilment?
  • Further to drive to work but more salary?
This step is really important, so don’t skip it!
Most of the time people’s top 3 will change when they really challenge their thinking.
I’ve had many clients realise that something they thought was important all their life…
Ends up being less important than another aspect they have often overlooked.
So, they end up changing their top 10 many times.


  • “What’s important to you about your Job/Career?” (List 10 things minimum).
  • Rank your total list of 10 things 1-10 in order of importance to you. (1 = the most important thing)
  • Take the Top 10 items on your list – and test to see if they’re in the right order.
  • For example, could you have #1 without number #4?
  • Remember to post the evidence that you completed this activity in the comments in the slack group or replying to the challenge email!
By the end of this activity, you should have a clear list of 10 things you want your job/career to give you!
Any questions please let me know in the slack group or by replying to the email that took you here. 
Play Video
Day 1’s challenge was about coming up with the things you want your career to give you.
These “things” like work-life balance etc are all being driven by values important to you.
And when you live your life in line with your values you will be happy, if you live against them you will be sad.
It’s likely you are taking this challenge because you are dissatisfied with your career for one reason or another.
And I can guarantee it’s because your job is impeding one of your core values- the question is what one?
I’ll leave that thought with you.
But now onto Day 2’s challenge.
I once had a family lawyer (I believe an attorney if you are from the US) come see me asking to change careers.
He had the work-life balance, the salary, the status, the lifestyle – I was sitting there thinking “why have you come to me?! You’ve got it all!”.
After exploring further, it turns out he was so unhappy in his career because he didn’t like the day in and day out of his role.
He wasn’t utilising his skills to their full potential, and he loathed the admin side of being a lawyer (which unfortunately is nothing like you see on TV- It’s all admin very little action).
So it doesn’t matter if you have the best career in the world, if it’s mundane, boring and not fulfilling then you will still be unhappy.
Which is what day 2 is all about.
By making sure what you will do, day in and day out – is what you’d enjoy doing.
Because when you don’t enjoy the daily tasks.
The bread and butter of the job you’re doing.
You’re going to hate your job.
The job might give you everything you want (WHO YOU ARE / VALUES).
But you will HATE the day in and day out of the job (WHAT THEY DO).
Anyways, let’s get stuck into the task.
What I want you to do today is think about your average day.
And I want you to think about the times…
  • When you feel engaged. (Think about activities that you can concentrate on easily).
  • When you feel energised. (Think about activities when you feel motivated and energetic).
  • And when you feel inflow. (fully immersed in a feeling of energised focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity – basically when you could blink and hours have passed before your eyes).
When you notice yourself doing something that makes you feel like the above?
Take note and write it down if it made you feel energised, engaged or inflow.

ACTION 1: I want you to come up with at LEAST 10 skills/activities you enjoy using/doing at work.

For example, I find a lot of people in retail love organising things.
Whether it’s people or warehouses.
We all seem to LOVE it (I know I do lol).
Catch the time flying when you are organising?
Then stick it down, that’s a skill you enjoy using and you’re probably pretty good at it too!
Like yesterday’s activity, don’t filter anything.
Just because you don’t think it’s an important activity.
That doesn’t mean that’s the case.
Don’t you think there’s a job out there that’s sole job is to organise things?
Of course, there is!! (e.g event planning, project managers, logistics, coordinators and so on!)
Here’s a tip if you’re getting stuck.
Try looking at the following…
  • Environments – what around you made you feel that way?
  • Interactions – what people (or types of people) made you feel that way?
  • Objects – what tools or things were using that made you feel that way?
Here are a few ideas from past clients of mine…
  • Leading people.
  • Managing people.
  • Delivering excellent customer service.
  • Helping people.
  • Organising people or things.
  • Problem-solving.
  • Analysing numbers.
  • Spreadsheets (lol definitely not mine).
  • Working as part of a team.
  • Working on your own.
  • Being creative.
  • Communicating with people (be it written, visual or audio).
In summary, a day is made up of many moments.
And it’s your job to try and capture what made that day at work great or bad.
The best thing about this task?
Is that it will start to give you potential career ideas.
Say you feel in flow when your organising things…
Well, type “organising” into a job search website and it will bring up jobs with that keyword.
You’ll start to discover jobs you’ve never thought of using this approach!
But more on that later in the challenge!


  • (1) When work gives you what you want (your values).
  • (2) And it aligns with what you do (using the skills you enjoy using).
  • (3) That’s when you find meaningful (and work you will LOVE!).
  • Come up with at LEAST 10 skills/activities you enjoy using/doing at work.
  • Remember to post your lists in the comments below!
Play Video
How did you get on yesterday with your list of 10 skills/activities?
Don’t you think you’ve got more to offer than you give yourself credit for?
I know I did when I did this exercise.
Something that seems pretty easy in retail.
For example, customer service, organisational, resilience and sales skills.
Are all extremely desirable skills in other industries.
And because you’re good at these skills.
You’ll have loads of examples of when you used these skills to;
  • Go on your CV.
  • Provide at interview.
  • Solve potential employers problems.
The next step is to find careers where your top skills are sort after!
That brings us to today’s activity.


Remember the story I told you about the jigsaw puzzle on day 1?
Finding a new career outside of retail is kinda like putting a jigsaw puzzle together…
… without having a picture to work from.
All you’ve got is the pieces and you’ve got to work out how they fit together.
The picture is a job you’ll love.
And the pieces?
E.g what you want your career to give you, your skills, your current experience, what you do and don’t like.
And it’s these things (or puzzle pieces) you figure out as part of this challenge.
Once you know these things, it’ll give you an outline of what a great career means to you!
So, how do we pull all of this together?


I want you to take the top 3 from your list on the post on Day 1…
…the things that are important to you about your career.
And I want you to add them to the top 3 skills/activities you came up with on Day 2.
For example, your list could look like…
  1. Work-life balance (WANT)
  2. Mon – Fri (WANT)
  3. Working as part of a team(WANT)
  4. Organising (SKILL)
  5. Customer Service (SKILL)
  6. Training People (SKILL)
Go and do this now!


Now using your list.
Ask yourself this…
If I had a career that had WANT, WANT, WANT which involved you using SKILL SKILL SKILL.
Would you take it?
If you didn’t shout HELL YES!
Then you need to revisit your wants and skills as maybe you’ve not gone deep enough.
If you did! great you’ve just completed your jigsaw puzzle.
It’s now time to start generating career ideas that actually give you these things!


I want you to grab a piece of paper and start brainstorming jobs that include the things on your list.
You don’t need to combine all 6 things but start thinking of ideas that incorporate a few of them.
For example, if you like organising things, it could be jobs that include organising things.
That might take you to wedding planning, which would also include customer service, but you might not get to work Mon – Fri.
I want you to come up with at least 10 different career ideas that incorporate SOME or ALL of your list.
Today’s task is a big one, let me know if you’ve got any question in the challenge group.
Play Video
Yesterday, you started to brainstorm career ideas that included items on your 3 wants and 3 skills.
Hopefully, you managed to come up with some good ideas?
Did you come up with anything that surprised you?
Today, we’re going to generate even more ideas, but this time we’re going to go straight to the job search market.
I don’t like using job search websites for actual job searching.
But I do like using them for research!

ACTION 1: Watch the two videos attached to this post.

Watch the 2nd video and I’ll show you how you can use a job search website to generate potential career ideas.
Career ideas you’ve probably not even thought of!

ACTION 2: Generate 10 Different Career Ideas

Using the strategy outlined in this video…
I want you to generate 10 different career ideas.
Post your ideas in the #general tab in the slack retail escape community below!


Don’t confuse IDEA generating with DECISION making.
I don’t want you to filter ideas as you come up with them.
If you do this, you won’t come up with 10 ideas.
This stage is all about ideas – you’re not deciding anything.
Don’t let your brain start talking yourself out of jobs before you’ve even begun.
If something looks interesting…
Don’t let things like…
“Oh, that needs XYX qualification”
“Oh, that says I need 3 years’ experience in this industry”
Put you off…
Like the sound of the job?
Includes the things on your top 3 WANTS and SKILLS?
Then add it to your list.
I get a lot of people say they can’t find jobs that give them the salary they want.
Make sure you;
a) Filter the jobs to the salary you desire (I’ve found over 19K+ that pay over £60k which is way above the average for a retail manager). If you don’t think you can do the jobs listed at the salary you want then you’ve got work to do on your self-worth, if you are paid the salary in retail, you can command the same in another industry, but also…
b) Don’t just do this once, it’s a moment in time. You need to research on job search websites over a weekly/monthly period of time. Jobs come and go.
Anyways that’s it for today task – it’s a big one, right?
Now, if you have any doubts, further questions or want to figure out what to do once you’ve got an idea. Then join me tonight for our live Q&A.
Or send me your questions and I’ll answer them live even if you can’t attend.
Tom Harris
P.S Don’t forget to post your evidence and ask any questions for the Q&A.

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Play Video


So before we get into today’s FINAL task I’ve just got a couple of frequently asked questions:
1. This group will close on Monday at midnight and all of you will be removed on Tuesday. You’ll have the weekend and Monday to catch up on any tasks you have missed.
2. If you want to progress into the next stage of your retail escape journey then join us over at Checkout the Live Q&A for more information on this.
So today’s task!
It’s been amazing seeing all of the ideas you’ve generated that you’d never even considered.
Feels pretty great right?
You’re probably feeling quite overwhelmed with all the different ideas you’ve generated though, right?
So today’s task is all about exploring what ideas you’re going to explore further.


Make this option 1.
This is probably your “safe option”.
If you’re looking at the 20 potential career/job ideas from yesterday’s task.
There’s probably one that stands out and makes you think “Yeah I could probably do that”.
Most of the time this option is probably the idea you’ve been toying with for years.
But you’ve just never taken action on it.
Anyways, write this option down.
Let’s say you wanted to move into a 9-5, administrative/office role.
What would you do if this no longer existed?
Simple as that, write it down as Option 2.
This is your wildcard option.
The one you’d probably do in a heartbeat…
But you’re probably thinking it’s not possible or a bit too far fetched.


You’ve narrowed down your ideas to just 3 and hopefully, you are leaning towards one of these options?
I’d love to know in the comments which one you’re going to pursue and take action on!
(If not, tag me the comments with your questions and I’ll answer them live tonight!)
I want you to ask yourself
“How great would your life be if you pursued this option?”
Think about;
How much better would it look?
Would your life be better?
Would it give you more of the things you don’t have currently?
Isn’t it time you pursued one of these options so you could live this great life?
And that’s it! You’ve done it!
You’ve made it to the end of the challenge.
Thank you for being part of it!
Tom Harris