On this Fab Friday, we carve a pumpkin. Things get messy but it always glows.

“Change is hard at first, messy in the middle, and gorgeous at the end.”

—Robin Sharma

If you are like many in the US, you have or soon will acquire a fall pumpkin. You might go and pick one from a field or simply buy one with your groceries.

Once you get it home, you might set out to carve it.  You get out a rather large knife and figure out how far from the stem to start cutting a hole in the top. It sounds easy, but it is harder than you think. You only do this once a year, it takes some time to remember the right approach!

Once the proper hole is cut in the top, you begin the process of pulling out the seeds and pulp. No matter how hard you try, it’s always going to get a bit messy.

With everything removed, you can carve your design. It might be a happy face, a scary face, or even a scene of fall (if you are artistically inclined). However, once you put a candle in it and set it on the front porch, it looks pretty neat. It gives off a warm glow and reminds you of all the pumpkins you have picked and carved before.

Robin Sharma was likely not thinking about a pumpkin when he wrote that quote, but the analogy fits the fall season. Ponder your own career development for a minute. Are there some personal pumpkins you need to pick, some things you need to change?

Maybe it is something small like responding in a more timely fashion. Maybe it is something big like learning a new programming language from scratch. Take time this weekend to pick one thing you need to change in your personal career development.

Cut it open, get messy, and carve an improved you. Remember, improving things about yourself in your life and careers benefits you and those around you.