by Contributor

Photo: geralt at Pixabay

(Aug. 16, 2019) — Your career is that profession or trade you to do for a substantial part of your lifetime to earn money. Usually, you would have undergone some training or skills acquisition before starting your career job. It doesn’t matter which stage you currently are on this lifetime journey; there is always the first step you have to take. Of course, the first step is to determine what a career of your dream looks like. Stated differently, you are going to have to know which profession best suits your skills and talents.

But how to find out which career path to follow? That’s a major challenge that almost everybody in life has to succumb. There are several jobs out there, but not all jobs or professions are suitable for all categories of people. As such, this first step in a person’s career journey is perhaps the most crucial of the steps. However, there is good news: you can always change your career if you discovered you are heading in the wrong direction.

That said, here is how to take the first step in your career.

  1. Understand Yourself

It would be to your advantage if you first understand your personality type. Know what your strengths and weaknesses are. Everyone has things they struggle to do, things they cannot do, and things they do very easily. In making a good career choice, you should aim at going for something that you can do very easily without feeling some unnecessary pressure or dissatisfaction.

Getting this right may mean you would take a personality test. There are standardized questions that could help reveal what your strengths and weaknesses are concerning your career. There are many works on the relationship between career success and personality types, and all point to the fact that success is only guaranteed when a career is matched with a person’s personality.

  1. Cast a Broad Net

The career world obviously has a lot of options from which you can choose. Some require great experience, and some don’t. Some no experience writing jobs may, however, require that you have a degree or training in a college. There are almost no limits to what can constitute a career if you think outside the box. The first step here is to identify a niche which you feel represents your interest and personality the most.

After determining what niche represents your interest the most, you should take time to research as many subsections of that niche as you can lay your hands upon. This is so that you can narrow down your best match. Ask questions if you don’t know what a profession stands for. Gather as much knowledge as possible on the market demand of each, and be sure you have exhausted almost, if not all, of the branches.

For instance, if you realized, based on the personality check that you would do well in the health niche, take your time to check all the subsections in the health sector before settling on one. Get to know the challenges of each and juxtapose it with your strengths and personality.

  1. Decide Wisely

After considering all the options you have, it is now time to make a decision. You need a career that would ensure job satisfaction and reliability. Do not listen to hearsay, but do a thorough analysis of your potentials vis-a-vis the current market demands. Of course, apart from job satisfaction, you also need money to keep things together. So, you need a career that offers both.

In making a sound career decision, you need a lot of patience and deep thought. As such, it would not be wise to rush into it. Even when you think a career is good for you, it might be necessary that you give it a second thought. It is only when your second thought is affirming your earlier thought that you can be sure you’re on track.

  1. Look up to Someone in Your Proposed Career

As you decide on which career to pursue, you should check out individuals who have engaged in that line of duty before and see how successful or otherwise they are. Research their mistakes and learn from them. If such ones have written a book, get to read them. It is always good to learn from other people’s mistakes and worldview than making one yourself and be crushed.

You can even walk up to successful figures in your proposed career and ask them questions. Usually, they are in a good position to help you navigate the difficult paths to the top. As most careers have their downsides, you need the help of these to get through those challenges and keep going.

  1. Have a Plan

Settling for a career is certainly not the end of the process. At best, it is the beginning. But even from the beginning, you should set a goal and map out a plan of how you intend to achieve that goal. Workable goals are those in the short and long terms. Take, for example, if you set a goal to become a renowned surgeon, you could break it into short and long terms.

Your short-term plan can be how to pass high school courses and gain admission into a medical college. In the meantime, all your efforts would be directed at achieving this. Of course, passing exams and gaining entrance into a medical college is a prerequisite to becoming a surgeon. Once this is achieved, you can now focus on becoming the best surgeon around.

When you set a goal without having a concrete plan to achieve it, many have said that you are only dreaming. Set out workable plans on how to achieve each of your goals. In the analogy at hand, your short-term plans can include purchasing the right textbooks, getting enrolled in a good college, setting time to read every day, and eating certain types of food. When you have these plans in place, you are better focused.

  1. Stay off Distractions

Distractions are part of life. Everyone faces them. However, you should avoid distractions that can take your mind off your career and goals. For instance, if you don’t intend to become a footballer or sports manager, you should not allow your passion for the game to prevent you from focusing on your career. As good as the game may be, since it is not directly in line with your career, it is a distraction for you, especially if it takes a lot of your time.

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