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Career Corner
Don't Just Choose--Decide!
Monday, April 23, 2012

People are always interested in how others come to be in their current positions. Careers are a journey, a series of processes and no two are alike even for the same job title.

People often don't have a clear-cut answer and will usually say, "I just ended up here." The fact is no one "just ends up" anywhere. Somewhere down the line, they made a conscious decision that lead them to where they are now.

Even if by a process of elimination, people still know what to eliminate and what to leave open. There are influences all throughout our lives that steer us toward one direction or another.
In order to guide ourselves down the right track we need to make sure that we're doing more deciding on rather than falling into our professions like a chip in "Plinko."

Ask yourself these questions often as a reminder for what your ultimate goals in life are and where you want them to take you.

1) Get a grasp for your strengths.
It can seem to be, but it really isn't hard to find out what you're good at and what you're better leaving as a hobby. Start with what interests you and see which of these things you have a knack for. Do you like working with people? Great with kids? Considering careers in sales, customer service, or even child care could be viable options for you.

2) Understand what you care about.
Perhaps things you care about don't seem translatable in terms of a career. For example, maybe you care about where your clothes are made but not sure how to turn that concern into a career--but you can. Maybe you had a job in sales before and were good at it. Think about places that you like to buy clothes and how you can apply your skills at that company.

3) Know yourself and your values.
Personality types play a major part in the positions a person excels in. Some people can work at a desk and others would rather spend their days traveling. Apply your own personality to what types of industries you envision working in. This will help you thrive in your job and your career.

These are not questions that are meant to have an immediate answer nor a right one. As your life goes through changes, so will your mind.

If you continually think about your career not only as something to pay the bills, but as an extension of who you are then you won't have one that you "just ended up in." You'll have a fulfilling calling that you decided to pursue.
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