WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU WANT TO DO AS A CAREER …
If i’m honest i’m not really sure what triggered me to write this post, most of my tips posts stem from something i’m thinking or feeling myself, this one however is quite far removed from where I am in my career and life, and very far removed from my career journey to date. See, i’ve been quite fortunate in that i’ve always sort of know what i’ve wanted to do, and i’ve always been pretty driven to get there. I constantly push myself to work towards the next thing, and i’m quite clear on where I want to get too. But I know that i’m fortunate in that. I know that for most people in their 20’s and even their 30’s, knowing what they want to do with their lives and their careers is a real mystery. Something that changes regularly, and as a result find themselves changing careers, trying new opportunities and even taking career risks in the quest to find out what they want. In many ways I think that’s exciting & a far more opportunist way of going about things (think about all the wonderful adventures, new skills and how multi-talented you will become) but equally I understand for those people without a clear direction, it can also be unbelievably stressful, disheartening and a little unsettling at times.
Thats why today I thought i’d share some advice on how to deal with these situations. At one point in our lives i’m sure we’ll all experience the feeling of not knowing what it is we want to do. We’ll all experience the nervous excitement of taking a risk and trying something new. And i’m sure at some moment we’ll want to seek reassurance and advice that actually it doesn’t matter really, it’ll all work out in the end.
And so today I’m going to share 6 tips to help you help you regain focus in those moments where you simply don’t know what to do with your life.
6 THINGS TO DO WHEN YOU ARE THINKING ABOUT CHOOSING A CAREER
#1 EMBRACE YOUR PASSIONS
We have this funny habit of having passions and assuming we simply couldn’t do them for a living. Don’t you find? But blogging is one of those passions that has proved that it is possible to do what you love for a living. If you put enough love, effort and dedication into something you love, you can make it into your job, your career and even your business. If you don’t know what to do with your life, with your career or even with your university degree … start from your passions. What is it you love?
#2 STOP THINKING TOO MUCH
God don’t we just love to over analyse, over worry, over everything really! If you don’t know what to do when you ‘grow up’ don’t worry about it, think about the here and now, live for the moment and stop worrying so much about the future. What you love today you may hate tomorrow, so over thinking doesn’t really help in these situations. Even people with 30 year careers in a specific discipline often say ‘i don’t know’ when you ask what they want to do when they grow up. It’s not uncommon.
So stop thinking so much, and go back to point 1. What is it your passionate about.
#4 TAKE NEW OPPORTUNITIES
Finding out what you want to do with your life, what career you’d like to have is an exciting prospect … and the key to working it out is simply to try things out. Take new opportunities when they arise, test and learn, work out the things you enjoy and work out the things you don’t, and learn from all your experiences. The more opportunities you embrace the more you’ll learn, the more people you’ll meet and the bigger your network will grow, and before you know it you’ll have stumbled upon something that might just feel right.
It’s better to take new opportunities and explore the possibilities that to sit back and do nothing through fear of it not being just right.
#5 SET YOURSELF GOALS
I talk about Life KPI’s a while back, and I think they’re so important. Finding your perfect career or perfect job should be as much about your actual life as it is about your work. When it comes to trying to work out what you want from life or your working life at least, you need to think about the bigger picture. And once you’ve worked out what it is you want in your life more generally (what it is that brings you happiness, content & health), you can start setting yourself smaller goals to help you get there.
Even huge career ambitions require breaking down into smaller more achievable mile stones. Setting yourself goals helps you focus, and feel as though you’re working towards something. It doesn’t have to be the answer, but simply setting small short term goals will help you in discovering what it is you want, and more importantly help you feel it’s possible to get there.
I’ll admit something, personally I use the term YOLO in a sarcastic manner to mock those who use this term seriously … but today I’m actually going to be one of those people. Today I genuinely mean YOLO. You only live once. So don’t fret, enjoy yourself, focus on finding happiness, spend time living in the moment not worrying about the past or the future. Ultimately does it all matter? What’s most important is that you’re well, happy, healthy, have loved ones to support you. If you don’t know what you want to be when you grow up, who cares, no one really does, and life’s to unpredictable to rely on for those that do!
Do you know what you want to do in your career, how did you discover your dream job? Did you find these tips helpful?