As kids, people start off with very clear ideas of what jobs they want to have when they grow up - firefighter, pilot, doctor, or scientist. But as people grow older, they lose sight of what they really want to do. The once-so-seemingly-simple question of what you want to do for work becomes clouded with materialistic pursuits, peer pressures, and other irrelevant factors. Whether you're a college freshman deciding what field to pursue or a young professional looking to switch careers, it's important to find a job that brings out the best in you. Here's five career tips on how to do just that.
List Down Possibilities and Impossibilities
Narrow down the possible choices early by making a list of careers that you find possible, such as physical therapy jobs or software engineering, and, subsequently, careers that you won't even bother exploring. This will give you a baseline from which to start rather than just looking up random career options on the local newspaper ads or online career portals. Look at the list and try to find similarities in each career you listed down. Whether it's the skill set required or the work environment for each possible career. Your list could reveal what exactly it is you're looking for in a job. Be detailed and objective when listing down career possibilities and only include the ones that you genuinely feel interested in.
Talk to Professionals in Your Prospected Industries
It's helpful to read the job description of each career path, but talking to professionals who are already in the industry can shed more light to what the career is actually all about. Talk to as many people as you can and ask them questions regarding their work. Be specific when asking since broad questions will simply yield generic and philosophical advice. Prior setting your sights on a specific career or entirely ruling it out, be sure that you know what the day-to-day entails.
Take online classes or on-campus workshops that can introduce you to a career you're considering without requiring you to commit to a full-time schedule or pay a hefty tuition fee. For example, if you are interested in coding or web development, attending a one-day workshop can help you make the right decision or at least imbue a clearer sense of what the job entails. Look into how you felt during the workshop. Did you like the people who attended the class with you? Was it mentally stimulating and rewarding to work on the technical challenges?
Apply For Internships
A big part of what makes a job a dream job is the company or business you work for. Even if you're on the right career path, working for the wrong employer can create a miserable professional lifestyle. Apply for internships to various companies and pursue the ones that you enjoyed the most interning for. In addition to introducing you to the day-to-day of your prospected career path, internship experience can also be added on your resume thus making it easier for you to find work.
Pay Attention to What You're Thinking
What do you daydream about? There's at least one thing that's consistently on a person's mind. Whether it's food, travel, numbers, or wildlife, there are things that you just like to think about and can't shake off your head. This may lend a clue as to what your dream job is. Aside from your thoughts, observe your actions. Doodling constantly could hint a potential career as a graphic designer while enjoying a sport could signal a career as an athlete.
The number of professionals who end up being unhappy with their place of employment and job position is simply alarming. Make sure you position yourself to live a professionally gratifying and lucrative career path by following the five tips aforementioned.