Choosing your college major, selecting the ideal career, trying to decide if you should leave your current job & go for a new one — decisions like these can feel intimidating. We all spend a vast amount of time at work, & we all want (& deserve) to do what we love. But the path to finding that work isn’t always easy & clear. Luckily, there are some Steps To Make Better Career Decisions to help you figure out what’s ideal for you.
Hundreds of career choices are waiting for you to select them. Having lots of choices is wonderful but can also be pretty overwhelming. That’s why it helps to take it one step at a time. With proper steps, you will feel more organized & focused on what you can do to make a rational career choice.
Steps To Make Better Career Decisions
1. Think Deeply About Yourself
We often feel a little awkward when we discuss our strengths & weaknesses, but it’s essential for your future career. Find a calm place & sit down with yourself. Consider your values, hobbies, & soft skills. Take a moment to list out your strong areas.
Then imagine your future self: What would you like to be your ideal lifestyle & schedule? Look for careers that align with those preferences. Take one or numerous career aptitude tests to get an idea of what jobs are out there that match your preferred lifestyle & routine.
2. Listen To Your Feelings
As mentioned earlier, if you want to find a satisfying career, it must align with your values. Your feelings can help you distinguish this, even if you have not intentionally identified those values.
Take it this way: When you are faced with a vital decision, what’s your mind’s and body’s first reaction? Typically, you will experience a strong emotion before logic starts kicking in. Be attentive to that.
Your emotions are linked to who you are at your core & can provide vital insights about your true identity & the values that may be influencing your actions, but that is also, at times, beyond your awareness. So, think about the type of work you are doing now or the type you plan to do.
Brainstorm & note down ideas of different types of careers you are considering. Try to monitor the feelings that come up. If you feel disgusted, sad, or even fearful & anxious when you are looking at the options on your list, those are red flags. If, in contrast, you feel happiness or excitement, that’s a sign that what you are doing is a good decision.
3. Curtail Your List
One of the vital Steps To Make Better Career Decisions is to curtail the list of options. You most probably encountered some deal-breakers in the earlier step that crossed off some career choices. That is a good thing. Curtailing your list based on your research helps to focus your decision.
Try to create a list of five potential careers. If you haven’t finalized that yet, try to eliminate choices that come with responsibilities you know you don’t like or have requirements you are not interested in fulfilling.
4. Determine What Matter To You Most
Once you are linked with your emotions, you are ready for the next step: consciously recognizing your values. What are considered to be values? They are described as what matters to you or the answer to your “why.” That is, they can help you to describe why a particular decision feels more meaningful to you than the other.
Understanding your “why” will let you make choices that are in line with what you care about — choices that will keep you satisfied in the longer term.
For instance, let’s say you are trying to choose between two job offers. One is a high-paying corporate job & the other is a job working at a nonprofit NGO with a reasonable but lower salary. If you take the time to recognize your values & find that helping others is one of them, & money doesn’t get high on your list, that makes your decision to work at the NGO a bit easier.
5. Talk To People In Those Fields Of Study
Reaching out to people in a similar field of your potential career can give you valuable insight that job descriptions can’t. The direct knowledge & honest opinions they offer could help guide you in the right direction.
Networking lets you ask questions like how they manage their time & balance a healthy work-life. If they have newly started working in that profession, you can ask how they are adjusting to their new role or what their responsibilities are. Having support from someone when you make that career decision can help you to assess your options more clearly & rationally.
6. Keep An Open Mind
Refrain from assuming that your career choices are limited based on age, experience level, educational qualification, or other factors. Even if you want to start a new career but don’t have any experience in the field, it can be done. It can take time, but possible. To answer the question,’ How to Make Better Career Decisions,’ keeping your mind & options open is vital.
7. Think Of Your Life Goals
When you think about your life goals, you should assess how they impact your professional & personal life. Do you want to spend quality time with your family? Then maybe a career that compels you to travel continually isn’t right for you.
Recognizing your life goals will help you understand yourself entirely, not just someone with a job. Note down the long-term & short-term goals that you wish to accomplish, & make sure your career will allow you to do it.
8. Make Your Final Choice
The time has come to choose your career path. But if you are not feeling ready, you are not ready. You may want to do more research or take extra time, which is absolutely fine.
Trust the research & effort you have put into this conclusion & realize that you aren’t making a life-long commitment with no chance of turning back or starting something new. People go for career changes all the time & at any age. You shouldn’t feel confined by your decision.
9. Write Out A Plan
After you have made your decision, how will you attain your future objectives? Career planning isn’t just about deciding which job you want and how you will get there. Write out what you need to achieve.
Do you need your GED (General Educational Development), or are there training programs or online courses you must have? How many certifications does your current job need? Planning out the steps, you must take will help to give you some idea about the time & cost involved.
What Are Some Tips For Making The Right Career Choice?
You can practice little strategies to help to take Steps To Make Better Career Decisions. Making the right career choice is more than just following those steps mentioned. It can also be helpful to keep these tips in mind as you think about making the right career choice. Be conscious of how other factors influence you.
- Don’t forget your strengths.
- Volunteer in your probable professions.
- Consider how you want your career to support you.
- Take your time — don’t rush the process.
- Be patient with yourself, & keep in mind this is a demanding task.
- Consider what subjects in high school you enjoyed.
- Think about your dreams in life but try to recognize why — what is it about these dreams that appeals most?
Q: If I have messed up & didn’t follow the Steps To Make Better Career Decisions, what should I do?
A: Remember, we all make mistakes & it is never too late to start again.
Q: If I am not satisfied with my current career, what should I do?
A: You can always try to modify your current career or start something new.
Q: Is it compulsory to have a conventional career?
A: Nowadays, more & more people are opting for non-conventional careers. They had to struggle initially, but they developed a rewarding career.