In this lesson you are going to learn the exact process of how to choose a career path. In it, you will discover why:
1. It’s important to define your own success
2. Having a clear understanding of your lifestyle is so critical
3. You should be an expert in your industry
4. Being passionate about your industry is crucial
5. You need to find something that accentuates your natural talents
6. You need to pick a career where you will be appreciated
1. Define Your Own Success
Before you go out and choose a career path, it’s important that you take the time to determine what success means to you. Chances are you have been bombarded with messages from your parents, family, society, and friends about what success means. Generally speaking, it looks like this:
> High paying job
> Big house
> Nice car
> Two or three week vacation
You know, the “American Dream.”
While this may work for some people, now more than ever people are waking up to the fact that making a lot of money and working crazy hours for it does not equate to being happy in life.
The first question you must ask yourself is this:
1. What do I want?
2. What makes me happy?
3. What does success look like to me?
A simple way to help you come up with this answer is to talk to your future self. Visualize yourself a couple of years away from death and ask that version of you,
“What matters most in our life?”
“What does success mean to us?”
Then write whatever comes up and play with those ideas for a bit.
2. Create A Lifestyle You Love
The biggest mistake most people make when they choose a career path is that they tend to just focus on survival needs (i.e. making money). Very seldom do people actually take the time to think about the lifestyle they want to live.
And I am not just talking about your comfort level and stuff you can buy with money.
I am talking about how you spend your time each day. Many people assume that when they choose a career path that they automatically have to succumb to the 9 to 5 Monday through Friday regimen.
This is not true.
There are many creative ways to develop your career that compliments your lifestyle. It all comes down to what you want. If you are not a morning person look into opportunities that allow you to work in the afternoon or evenings.
So spend some time thinking about what you want your day to day life to look like first.
3. Become An Expert
When choosing your career path, it’s important that you have the mindset of becoming the best at what you do. The only way you will be able to create leverage and have more negotiating power with the company you work with is by establishing yourself as an expert in your field.
This means you are going to have to eat, sleep, and breathe the information that makes up this industry. Therefore, it’s very important you choose the right career path to ensure it is authentic to who you are. The last thing you want to do is become an expert at something you really don’t care about (which makes up more than half our society and is why so many people are miserable.)
By increasing your perceived value, this will allow you to increase your earnings, work less, work flexible hours, and the company will treat you with more respect. High level team members want to surround themselves with other people who are at their level or at a higher level. Therefore it’s important that you be perceived as their equal. And the best way to do that is by establishing yourself as an expert.
4. Love Your Industry
When you choose a career path, you will now become part of an industry. The people who make up this industry are now your community and tribe. You will be seeing them at conferences, talking with them via email, and constantly engaging with these people about your subject matter.
Since you are going to spend more time with them then you will your own family, shouldn’t you care about the industry you are a part of. Your industry is part of a collective group on this planet that is producing a product or service that (hopefully) is improving our culture. Just look at all of the industries out there and you will see they all have a common message and “vibe” about them.
Whatever career path you decide on, make sure you love that industry because it will become your second family.
5. Tap Into Your Natural Talents
When you are trying to figure out how to choose a career path, it’s important that whatever you do taps into your natural talents. Each one of us has a set of special talents and its important that your job accentuate those talents and give you an opportunity to improve upon them.
This does not mean you will not have to learn anything new because you will. But rather than trying to force yourself to become something you are not, just be your natural self and find something that aligns with your existing set of skills.
6. Be Appreciated & Acknowledged
Whatever you do, make sure you find something where you will be appreciated and acknowledged. As human beings, we all need to feel love and respect. Without it, we will become miserable human beings.
Notice how unhappy people are at work?
That’s because they are doing something they hate or not being appreciated for the work they do. Having to go to a job day in and day out where you are never acknowledged or appreciated will make you feel like shit! If you are reading this right now then you are at a great place where you still get to choose what path you want to take. Make sure it is one where you will feel appreciated.
- Goal Setting
- Positive Quotes
- Daily Motivation
- Motivational & Inspirational Quotes
- Words of Encouragement & Quotes
NSF – Faculty Early Career Development Program
This post is about the Faculty Early Career Development Program. It provides very critical information for proposers. If you’re part of the junior faculty, you may want to check out this post as the awards are given to support the junior faculty. The NSF or the National Science Foundation encourages deserving junior faculty members to submit their CAREER proposals.
This activity is for the whole NSF so it’s a must check for everyone who’s part of the NSF. You’ll also know more about the revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide.
Forbes – A Step-By-Step Plan To Change Your Career To Something You Love
A lot of people want to change careers, but they don’t even know where and how to start. This is why this post is useful. If you hate your current career and you’re looking to make a switch, you have to check out this post because it provides a step by step plan in order to do so.
More importantly, this post provides guidance so you can change your career into something that you love. This makes it a good post to check if you’re considering a switch in career so you can be guided accordingly. Don’t make the switch until after you’ve checked this post.
NYC Department Of Education – College and Career Support
The New York City Department of Education is working hand in hand with other institutions to make sure that students are given the right resources so they can succeed. This page will lead you to a lot of useful resources that you can use to do well in school if you’re a student.
This page is also helpful for parents. As parents, it’s a must that you provide guidance to your kids, and this page has a lot of resources that you can use to provide the right guidance. This page is constantly updated with new and updated resources so always check back for new resources.
Forbes – How To Choose A New Career Path
Gone are the days when right before college, you choose a career path, choose the appropriate major, and go down that career path until you retire. Nowadays, you actually have an option to go down a new career path. You can make the switch.
This doesn’t mean that it’s easy to do so. There are a lot of things that can go wrong and this is why you should be guided accordingly. If you need guidance, you can read this post. It offers good advice on how you can choose a new career path. It’s not too late to do so. You just need the right guidance.
The Guardian – Why there’s no such thing as a fixed career path
There’s a common misconception that whatever career path you choose, you’re fixed to that career path. If things are not going well in your chosen path or you simply feel that there’s a better career path for you, you can make the switch.
This post provides a good example. Lynda Thomas is now an interim CEO over at the Macmillan Cancer Support. You would think that she grew up wanting to be one, but she actually wanted to be either a concert pianist or Olympic athlete. This article will open your eyes on why there’s no such thing as a fixed path as far as your career is concerned.
Huffington Post – A Love Of Flowers Saved This Woman From The Wrong Career Path
Family pressure is very hard to deal with as far as choosing a career is concerned. Kate Gilman’s story is proof of that. She grew up in a family of lawyers so right from the get-go, her career has been chosen for her.
However, this story also proves that you can overcome family pressure to do what you love. During a break before she started working, she discovered her love for flowers. Now, she’s in the flower industry and she’s doing what she loves doing.
Fordham – Career Planning Resources
This is the career planning page of the Fordham University School of Law. This page has a lot of services available to the students of the university. Alumni will also find several useful information. Even employers can benefit from this page so check it out.
The mission of this office is to make sure that students, alumni and employers get the service that they need when it comes to career planning. The office is open for those looking for career planning help so make sure to check it out.
Wall Street Journal – Obama Aides Break Tradition in Career Path After White House Service
What happens to ex senior aides of President Obama? You’d think that they take jobs where they can use their experience, but the exact opposite is happening.
A lot of the most senior aides of the President are breaking tradition as far as their choice of next career path is concerned. Nowadays, they’re finding jobs in the tech industry, and they’re not starting at the bottom. They’re actually taking jobs at the upper tiers of the industry.
Yes, they’re not turning into lobbyists or consultants anymore. Read this article to know more.
NY Times – Follow a Career Passion? Let It Follow You
Follow your passion. This is an advice that you’ve been given your whole life. It’s an advice given by supportive parents. It’s an automatic advice given by guidance counselors. However, you know that it’s easier said than done.
This is a story about a person who had three career options. Did he follow his passion? No, he let the passion follow him. This is helpful for people who don’t have a clear passion in life. If you’re not really sure what your passion is, this is a good read.
Career Test – Find Out What Career Is Best For You