It’s natural to get overwhelmed when you’ve to choose the right career path. With thousands of career options available, picking out one and pursuing it can be overwhelming.
Every person has their own priorities, and if you’re honest with yourself about what you want, then there is a much better chance of finding a suitable career option.
However, if you have no idea about what you want -then the task may seem gigantic. But with strong commitment, focus and effort anything is possible!
It makes sense to look for fulfilling careers when you are trying to figure out what to do with your life.
This quest can lead you to conduct an online search for list of occupations that will pay the bills or you may end up finding articles with really interesting titles like “Top 5 Fulfilling Careers” or “10 Jobs That Will Feed Your Soul”, etc.
But these searches don’t address the differences among individuals.
A career that works wonderfully for a person won’t necessarily be someone else’s cup of tea Just like a snowflake, perfection is defined individually.
The perfect career comes in many shapes and sizes which usually equates to happiness, fulfillment and success. If you’re looking for a meaningful career path or not sure in which direction you should proceed, then let these 7 tips help you in your quest to pursue the right career path.
1) Start With Self-Awareness
To pursue the perfect career, you’ve got to understand who you are, your priorities, your motivations, and what gets you out of bed every morning (without any whining!).
People who understand their personalities and interests better, increase their chances of finding fulfilling careers.
If possible, carry out a thorough self-assessment before you begin the career planning process. You can also use a variety of tools, such as personality and interest inventories to learn all about yourself.
The personality type of individuals is made up of social traits, motivational drives, needs and attitudes. Once you are self aware of your personalities, interests, likes, or dislikes you can easily find a career that is compatible with these traits. For example, if you are an introvert, you can get success in an occupation that emphasizes on working independently.
But with these self-awareness terms, it is also essential to discover your aptitude. A profession that takes compensation of your natural talents and capabilities will be more fulfilling since it is very satisfying to be able to perform your job well.
2) Make a List
When you start hunting for the perfect career, you’ll find a list of occupations in front of you generated by each of the self-assessment tools you used. So to keep yourself organized, combine these occupations list into one master list and then choose the best option.
The first thing that you need to do is to look for careers that appear on multiple lists and copy them onto a blank page. If your self-assessment traits indicate that they are a good fit for you, then definitely consider them. If it still doesn’t satisfy you, then find an option on your list that appeals to you the most.
Also, include those professions on your list that you don’t know much about but you feel that you have the potential to do it well and who knows, you’ll end up learning something new and unexpected.
3) Explore The Options You Get
Once you are done compiling your potential career list, gather basic information about each of the options you’ve listed. You’ll be amazed to see the results as it will narrow your list down considerably. Now take these options into account to find the best career that you can pursue.
Go through the job duties and responsibilities that you’re expected to perform for any career you are considering and make sure most of them are things you like doing. When you perform tasks that you enjoy, it motivates you and the resulting enthusiasm will allow you to do your job better.
4) Find A Mentor
Find someone in your network who knows you and can help you make a decision. The person doesn’t have to be someone in the industry you want to work in, it should be someone who can advise and coach you through the process of uncovering your interests and entering a new career field.
A mentor can potentially help you gain insight into your desired field, serve as a reference or help you network. By finding the right mentor for your chosen field, you can have an ally to help you get into the industry when you’re ready.
5) Consider an Internship
An internship is a great way to test out an industry while gain experience in what it’s like to work in a full-time job, especially if you have no prior experience. An amazing internship can help you build your career and network.
Internships are not just about picking coffee or doing other administrative functions; a good internship offers you the chance to learn in a place where you are supervised by professionals. It gives you an opportunity to achieve your own learning goals without the responsibilities of being a permanent employee.
There are many benefits of working as an intern with a well-established organization.
- It will give you the opportunity to deal with real-life situations.
- It will provide you with professional exposure that can help you acquire a better insight.
- It proves to an organization that you are reliable and have the knowledge to do a certain job.
- The most important thing that an internship offers you is the ability to build connections with professionals.
When you build a network with professionals through an internship, you can easily get a career and job advice from them.
6) Tap into your network
People are the strongest assets in any organization or field and an internship gives you the opportunity to build a network with those assets. So before you start applying for jobs, educate yourself about different career paths by talking to as many people as possible.
You can use social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, to seek people out who have your dream job and ask for an informational meeting.
Try to find out more about their role and the path that got them there, as everyone’s journey of getting the right career is different and people love to tell their success stories. Ask these people for informational meetings and treat these meetings like interviews.
The main purpose of informational meetings is to understand a field of work from someone who has firsthand knowledge and experience. But, keep in mind that an informational meeting cannot lead to a job, so you should never ask for a job in an informational meeting.
Informational interviews are a way to start building a network. The person, who is the subject of your informational interview today, can be the first person in your network many tomorrows from now.
7) Identify Your Goals
After all the research and network building, you’ll be able to make your choice for the right career. Pick the occupation that will bring you the most satisfaction based on all the information you have gathered. Once you’re settled with a decision in choosing a career, it’s time to identify your short-term and long-term goals.
Identifying your goals will allow you to eventually work in your chosen field. Long-term goals can usually take up to five years to reach, while you can easily fulfill your short-term goals in less than two years.
To fulfill your goals, take help from the research that you carried out about the required education and training. Once you get all the information in place, you need to set your goals.
Time To Make Your Career Action Plan
A career can only be beneficial if you have goals and accompanying plans for it. For example, if you want to be a writer then consider writing as the first step, the next step after that is editing. Do you really want to do that? Or maybe you want to transition from being an editor to a restaurant owner. How do you plan to get there?
So put together a career action plan that lays out all the steps you will take to reach your goals.
Consider this action plan as a roadmap that will take you from point A to point B, and then to C and D. Also, include any anticipated barrier that could get in the way of achieving your goals and the ways to overcome them.
To be honest, the journey of getting the perfect career never ends, but you can craft a fulfilling life for yourself through it. The search for the right career never happens overnight and there will never be a day where everything will be perfect.
You and your passion will continue to evolve, but you should take action now because this is the time and you’ll never get it back. You are the only one who can make this happen for yourself, so go and explore yourself and find what puts a smile on your face!