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How Overstaying in my Frustrating Career Almost Killed Me - Literally.

Intense dissatisfaction in our career affects every aspect of our life experience. Our sleep, our relationships, our quality time with family and friends, our ability to fully relax on our down time, even our health can suffer.

I speak on this from personal experience.

Grisel holding a certification in a cubicle-style open work space
I might be smiling big here, but that smile was masking my building anger and frustration

For years, I felt trapped in a frustrating career. Running the corporate hamster wheel where my strategic thinking style was underutilized, and I wasn't able to fully unleash my potential or make the impact I truly wanted.

Although my career grew, I was unfulfilled, and my work-life balance was suffering.

At the expense of my mental, physical, and emotional health, I was perpetually morphing away from what I needed in exchange for what "they" wanted.

Focused on climbing the corporate ladder and busy chasing that dangling carrot, I neglected my friends, family, my life, and my health. I ignored all the signs that I was not on a sustainable path.

The aggregate effect of that neglect was akin to collecting steam under tremendous pressure with no release valve in sight.

And you know what happens when you collect an increasing amount of steam in a vessel with no release?

Something explodes.

That's exactly what happened to me. More precisely, it happened to my appendix.

When I least expected it, I was diagnosed with a rare appendix cancer in 2019.

One in two million people are diagnosed with my specific type of cancer, and due to its rarity, it is not well studied or understood.

One thing the doctors did know with certainty is that it would end my life, perhaps even in two weeks, if the totality of the cancer wasn't removed expeditiously.

After a few extensive surgeries and a subsequent nine-month recovery period, I was given a second chance at life.

Grisel in the hospital post surgery holding a sign that says "Fuck Cancer"
This was right after my 3rd surgery during my battle with cancer

I am grateful to say that although I am cancer-free today, the unequivocal clarity this experience brought with it was astounding.

I realized that I wasn't being true to myself... I wasn't fully living my purpose. I was indeed advancing my career, but in a direction that kept me moving further away from what was truly important in my life.

Being an overachiever, and immense giver, I was habitually placing others' wants and needs above my own, which was also taking a toll on me. It was time to reassess my priorities and how I was honoring them.

It was time to connect with my higher self to figure out what I wanted to do with my career.

And what I found was that I needed to make important changes in my life... starting first with myself.

Being a child of immigrants, I grew up in a family where hard work is celebrated, respected, and expected... as was struggling through intense work dissatisfaction because, well, "that's just how life is."

Except it doesn't have to be.

We don't have to be trapped in a frustrating career.

My intense work schedule was causing me to neglect almost every single aspect of my mental, physical, and emotional wellbeing.

And unfortunately, it took a cancer diagnosis to make me actually see what my career was doing to my life, acknowledge it, and then do something about it.

Grisel in work-out clothes holding a green juice bottle
Honoring my priorities and making time for self care with exercise and juicing

Due to my life-long fascination with people and work, I've dedicated my entire career to understanding the human condition and the factors that enhance our work life, as well as our overall personal life satisfaction.

With a bachelor’s degree in counseling psychology and a master’s in industrial/organizational behavior (otherwise known as the Psychology of Work), my mission has always been to support others in their quest for living a life that is satisfying and fulfilling.

But I wasn't doing that for myself... not until cancer came along and catalyzed a shift in my perspective.

Grisel sipping a hot beverage leaning up against a wall displaying an inspirational speech by Rocky Balboa about winning
Me resonating hard with this quote from the movie "Rocky" at my oncologist's office

So, in my personal life and career shift, I decided to leave the corporate world as an employee engagement strategist to pursue my life-long dream of independent business ownership.

I gathered up my collection of evidence-based strategies and two decades of experience to create a proprietary career advancement coaching program that I wish would have been available to me years ago when I felt like the only option available to me was to continue suffering through the frustration and working myself into the ground.

Fulfilling career, fulfilling life. From my perspective, that's the two-punch combo that enables us live a life we love.

My focus is helping caring, strategic-thinking professionals quickly achieve a fulfilling career advancement and work-life flow so that they can better enjoy the life they work so hard to support.

When you advance your career in the wrong way, you end up running the risk of putting your own needs on the back burner and being controlled by everything - and everyone - around you... and the rest of your life suffers for it.

But when you advance your career in the right way, you are in the driver's seat controlling the direction and pace of your progression and enjoying the rewards that your career affords you.

Each and every one of us is here with a conscious or subconscious desire to leave some kind of mark on our corner of the world... to make an impact that matters to us. Although that desire is different for each one of us, they are all equally important. Because the more people we have making a positive impact in their space, the greater the ripple effect of positivity we create together.

My life purpose is to enhance joy in the world by helping you deepen the impact you make through your work - the impact that matters to you - so that you can proactively move your career, and your life, toward a place of fulfilling success and wellbeing... and so you can make your mark in the world and catalyze your own a ripple effect of positivity that radiates out from you.

I am an awakened professional coach who helps seasoned professionals like you uncover what you need to feel truly happy and successful in your career, while also achieving a sense of harmony in your life.

My tools help you identify your unique zone of genius, pinpoint the type of impact you want to make through your work, and quickly pivot your career in that fulfilling direction.

When you align your work to your strengths, your passions, and your desires, you are more inspired in your work and your success grows.

A 3x4 grid of Grisel's headshots in work-out clothes
This is the face of an empowered professional who knows exactly where she wants to take her career and the life she wants to live

Career coaching is my calling. It's what I was born to do, and I've been doing it for almost 20 years. It has always been at the core of my work, I just let that get muddled up with other things and didn't put my finger on it until I applied my own tools to my own professional experience and finally saw the light.

Now that I've done that for myself, I have curated a repeatable process that, so far, has helped every person who has gone through my program.

I deliver a laid-back, personalized experience that is goal oriented and unique to your personality, strengths, behavioral style, and career aspirations.

As an empathetic, big-picture thinker, I empower you to see all the beautiful possibilities that may be hiding from your sight right now, and create your own unique path that gets to the heart of what matters most to you.

I come with a strategic toolkit of evidence-based practices, assessments, and contemporary industry knowledge. Plus, I'm connected with an amazing network of seasoned professionals and fantastic recruiters.

My coaching leverages my robust toolkit and taps into your intuition so you may discover what your higher self is calling you to do professionally. It empowers you to move your career in that inspiring direction with confidence so you can work smarter not harder, live your life more joyfully, and make lasting memories with the people that matter most to you.

Grisel sitting at her computer working with a smile
While building my home office, this is a pic of me organizing my evidence-based tools into a robust career development strategy in early 2020

I support caring seasoned professionals who are at an impasse in their career. My gift is in helping you make important decisions around your best-fit career path, and partner with you to strategically advance your career, achieve fulfilling success, and live a deeply satisfying life that prioritizes your health and wellbeing.

If you are feeling trapped in a frustrating career, and if my story sounds in any way relatable to what you might be going through right now, book your complimentary call with me today.

Let's discuss your professional needs, goals, and how I might support you to make the most of this one life you get to live.

You don't have to stay trapped in a frustrating career. Trust yourself to know when it's time for a change, and then do something about it before the universe makes you do something about it.

Let's talk,



Career Coach Griz smiling at you

Grisel Scarantino, MA, ODPC is an expert Career Advancement Strategist. She helps caring, strategic-thinking leaders quickly achieve a fulfilling career advancement and work-life flow so they can better enjoy the life they work so hard to support. Don't waste any more time in a career you've outgrown. Visit Grisel's website at and schedule your complimentary call today.

For more tips and informative content, connect with Grisel on LinkedIn.


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