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Is it a Job or a Career?

January 24, 2014 -
Whether you're just starting out, making a mid-career move or have been working at the same job for the past 15 years, there's no specific date or time to find the right career because, we are all so different, our circumstances are even more different and therefore knowing where you belong or what the right career choice is for you isn't always so simple.

My older brother knew exactly what he wanted to do from when he was a child and pursued it right from then and, with a mother like ours who honed his skills till he owned his very own automotive shop, his career path was like a bull's-eye.

This doesn't come easy to all of us. My mother encouraged me to pursue a career in the Arts but not until recently did I make a total 360° right back where I should have started, in the Creative Arts.

The point here is that, the answers and choices are within you and your environment. No matter what your circumstances are if you have the will to succeed and do better, you will and it really doesn't take much.

Where to begin?

The answers and choices are all within and around you. You know better than anyone else, your heart's desire but, sometimes we need to take some purposeful steps towards getting them out there and visible. I began by first going as far back into my past as I could to my childhood and looked at all the things I loved to do then and made a list.

1. Make a list: What this does is to place into perspective all the things you've loved to do since you were a child, uninhibited by society. This list of things you loved to do as a child ( your passions) may consist of one thing or six things or more. They are all very important.

This list gives you some facts about yourself that may have been obscured by the daily humdrum of life. The child that you were yesterday is the adult of today and this list is critical for your career move. You might even find that you are right where you belong but just need to make minor changes.

2. List dissection: Once you have made your list, find as many possible activities and careers that each passion can provide. For example, I loved to color as a child and still do as an adult and therefore, I can paint or decorate objects and sell them, teach adult learners my skill, take up graphic design or work in interior design. Basically what this illustrates are the choices and opportunities that are available to me from just one passion, which also applies to you.

3. Ask questions: Find people who know you well and whom you trust from your childhood, college, the workplace, family members or neighbors and let them tell you what they think your skills, talents and personality traits comprise and then repeat step 1.

Once you have a comprehensive list of activities, jobs and careers that you can pursue, it is time to do some more research of a different kind.

4. Find a mentor: Find someone online or offline who is doing exactly what you would like to do or think you might want to do and meet with them or correspond with them and pick their brains about their profession. This will help confirm whether this is something you can dedicate your life to or do it part time or not at all. Mentors are people who can guide you along your way in discovering the perfect course of life for you.

5. Offline and online research: Research further your top three-passions/career options online as well as offline by visiting libraries and career guidance counselors in your area. Career choices do not have to be traditional forms of employment and therefore, you can create your own niche by doing something unique.

At the end of the day, it is what makes you happy, is fulfilling and puts food on the table.

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