Don’t Just Sit There! Know How To Choose A Career Path: 6 Simple Steps
Have you ever considered what career path would perfectly suit you? or are you trying not to make the mistake of choosing a career you will eventually not like?
Truly, there is so much joy embedded in having your passion as a job? In all sincerity, I’d say the joy is unquantifiable. Being paid for what you love to do naturally; with so much ease.
As beautiful as having one’s passion as a job seems, only very few actually attain that. Some people have only settled for what looks good enough to them. You know that proverb, right? a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. 😕
Can I sincerely ask you a few questions? – Have you checked what you are truly passionate about? Have you also checked if you have all the needed skill-set for the profession you are passionate about? I am sure you don’t just wanna jump from a ‘good’ job to another.
I believe there is something you will naturally excel at.
Unfortunately, life does not always present to you the opportunity to explore your potential on a platter of gold. So what can you do to help yourself?
This article will direct you on how to strategically determine a career path best suited for you. 😉
1. Know what you are cut out to do
One of the foremost questions to ask when considering the above subject is – “What is it that I do that makes me happy; what excites and energizes me?
If you have been able to answer that question, then I’d say “congratulations! You have been able to decipher your passion. If not, then, you’ve got a little self-examination to do.
Carefully, look inwards for that thing you so much love doing and do so well. You can also ask people around.
Personally, I never knew I had a writing skill, I just do random writings and post on social media occasionally.
One morning, a friend looked me in the eyes and said; do you know you have a writing ability? I was like “really?”. She said, “if you work on it, it can actually be of more benefit to you and others”.
Since that time, I have been intentional about my writing ability; developing myself and also blessing others with it. Therefore, people around you can also be a pointer to what career suits you.
In addition, there are a couple of online personality tests that can help you determine a career that is just right for you. Some of them are The MAPP Career Assessment Test, Myers-Briggs indicator, Myplan.com, etc.
If you have known what your passion, another important question to consider is, “do I have the necessary skill-set to be a success in this profession?
Oh! Do you think your passion for something automatically makes you skilled?
Nope. It doesn’t always work that way.
Let’s take a brief look at Cynthia’s story 🙂 …
Cynthia has always been good at combining colours and choosing beautiful dresses. This mastery of hers made her friends encourage her to go into fashion design. After much persuasion, she decided to take a course in fashion designing.
Having spent one month in her fashion school, she still struggled to know how to cut the design of a variety of styles. The first week of her training had gone and she only made little improvement. She started feeling frustrated and decided to opt out of the fashion design school.
After some research on her natural skill and talent, she discovered she would be more productive as a fashion consultant. Today, Cynthia is a successful fashion consultant and colourist. Yeah! She combined two closely related professions together and she is now doing so well.
Back to our discussion…
The fact that you actually have a liking for something does not mean you have the necessary skills to make it a profession.
Also, there are a thousand and one professions out there but many people are only familiar with the common few which limits the career pursuits of many, just like Cynthia.
I’d congratulate Cynthia for not wasting too much time trying to fit into what she was not cut out for. The moment you realize you lack an essential skill for a particular profession, don’t try to force it.
Yes, you might want to learn it but when you notice it is a struggle from start to finish, kindly move on to something else. Look inward for something you have been told by others or you know you do so well and tread towards that path. Get trained or certified in the area your interest lies.
2. Do not let money be your primary drive
Hold on! Let me explain myself.
I know money is a very essential factor for life and a major one in any career. I also like money and I do not pray to be broke so I cannot tell you that money is bad.
What exactly am I saying?
I have actually come to realize that many people die without utilizing their potentials because of the initial money that comes with certain jobs. They are more interested in the money in it than what they have been cut out to do.
Unfortunately, such people just go on existing and doing some other person’s job instead of contributing their value to the world through the utilization of their gifts, talents and skills, they
Let me share my story with you…
While in the university, I knew a particular lecturer who seemed to loathe coming to class. Whenever she shows up, it was always obvious she was struggling. My friends always wondered why she took up the job.
Well, my answer to them was – MONEY! I was able to draw that conclusion because a lecturing job is one of the good paying jobs.
Regrettably, the problem does not just end with her but has the potential to affect her students. Instead of making students love the subject she teaches, she always ends up confusing the class.
Therefore, when next you want to go for a career because of the money, just remember you won’t be the only one that will be dissatisfied but many others.
3. Get a mentor
Please don’t go for a particular career without having the necessary information about the profession, what you need to be successful or how to deal with challenging situations.
Don’t just assume that the theoretical knowledge you gathered within the four walls of a classroom is all you need to succeed.
Inasmuch as I am not disregarding the authenticity of a formal education concerning a particular career path, so am I not overemphasizing the need for a mentor.
Someone who has been that can hold you by the hand; helping you to navigate a path you haven’t trod before. No knowledge beats that specification gotten from experience.
When you realize what you are passionate about and you are sure you are not just after the money, look out for someone who is into something similar and learn from them.
Let them share their experiences with you; their successes, failures, setbacks, gains etc.
With such vital information, you will be prepared for whatsoever might want to be a challenge in your chosen career. As mobile apps make you more productive, so does a good mentor help you move at a beautiful pace.
4. Consider internship
You may be a multi-talented person; someone who can fit into many professions. This has been the basis of your confusion because you do not know which one will best suit your personality.
You can consider being an intern in an organisation that focuses on what you’d want to do, starting with your first preference.
If you have absolute satisfaction with what the job is all about, and you feel you will optimally utilize your skills while interning for the job, you can settle for that career.
If not, try out another, till you find the one that brings you absolute satisfaction and best utilizes your skills.
You can also intern to further develop vital skill-set needed for the profession you are passionate about in order to know the rudiments of the profession.
I can suggest that internships help you realize you’ve got what it takes to be successful in any chosen profession.
This is another vital step to take while looking out for a good career path. Your mentor might not have all the necessary information you need, therefore, networking with many people can be of great benefit.
This will help you gather knowledge from different sources. Moreover, human versatility varies, so you will also have the chances of being vast in the career you are considering.
Networking is quite different from mentoring in that you might not have a direct or physical relationship with your networks.
You might just communicate with them on social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc., but ensure you get something worthwhile from your networks.
Networking helps you to be outstanding. As the saying goes, “Knowledge is power.”
6. Keep Expanding
Never stop learning, keep developing yourself. Always be on the lookout for more opportunities to expand and utilize your skills. Let me remind you about Cynthia’s story to validate this point.
Cynthia actually started out as a fashion consultant after quitting her fashion designing career but she was also able to add the profession of a fashion colourist to her profile.
How did she do that? she was on the lookout for more opportunities to expand and better utilize her skills. That’s more profits for her, right?
Likewise, do not be satisfied with good enough but always look out for ways to expand yourself beyond the common horizon of any career you are considering.
Have this mindset even at the very beginning so that it will not be difficult for you to pursue it when you get started.
In conclusion, always keep it in mind that money is not the first thing to consider while looking out for a career path, rather it is what you are passionate about.
This is because money will not give you absolute satisfaction, but nothing beats getting paid for what you enjoy doing.
Moreover, your uniqueness; skills, gifts and talents, if properly developed and utilized, will definitely fetch you more funds than you can ever imagine.
So quit coveting a profession you will struggle with and look inwards for that thing you do so well then go for it.
Your ability to utilize your skills may be the solution the world needs to solve a particular problem. Be that solution!
Again, here are the highlights:
- Know your passion
- Ensure you have the necessary skill-set for what you think you have been cut out to do, you can know this through internship, training, etc.
- Make your research about all the professions that borders around what energizes and excites you. Then settle only for the one that best utilizes your talents and skills.
- Do not make money your primary drive.
- Get a mentor; someone who is a success in the career path you feel you are made for. Let him be the compass you need to navigate the unknown path.
- Network- Connect and learn from more successful people because your mentor is not an island of knowledge.
- Keep expanding- Do not limit your capability. Go for more!
Excited? Let me know any of the tips you found most useful in the comment section. Winks.