As children, we often have ideas about what we want to do when we get older. Maybe you dreamed of being a professional football player, a lawyer, a teacher, or a doctor. Perhaps you never really knew what you wanted to do, but as you got older, you figured out what you were good at. It can feel like a monumental decision to determine what type of career you want to invest your life in. So, how do you know which path to follow?
It begins with self-reflection.
First, look introspectively. What are your values? What’s your personality and how does that align with your skills and interests? Determine the answers to these questions so you can narrow down what career field would satisfy you long-term. For example, are you a passionate learner that loves to impart knowledge? Are you outgoing, patient, and enjoy being around people? Maybe a teacher or nanny would be a good career fit for you. Or perhaps you have a gift for numbers and love strategizing business opportunities. Maybe a job in finance or working as an entrepreneur beginning your own business would fulfill you.
Once you’ve reflected on who you are, what makes you tick, and what your goals are for a career, take those into your job search. Consider how the job duties, company culture, and opportunities for growth impact your unique personality and goals. When you find a job and/or company that gives you the chance to walk in your strengths and grow, you’ll be better able to take steps to reach your career goals and build a career that you don’t just love, but that you’re proud of.
Last, it’s important to self-reflect throughout the duration of your career – not just at the beginning of it. You invest a lot of time and effort in your job, and it is important to maintain a strong sense of self-awareness and reflection to ensure you are happy with the work you’re doing daily.
If you are at a junction in your career where you’re considering making a change, it is incredibly important to take some time to sit and think about what you want out of your life and career. It might mean taking some time away from the day-to-day grind, or it might mean talking to a career coach to get some advice on how to proceed. Maybe you’ve known all along what you really want to do, and it just takes that one leap of faith to finally do it.
Self-reflection is a wonderful tool to have at your disposal so you can ensure you live the life you want.