How to Find a Career That’s Best For You

If the title of this post hit home with you, don’t worry, you aren’t the only one.  According to a recent Gallup poll of workers across the globe which is nearly 1 billion full-time workers, roughly 85% (yes you read that right, 85%) of those polled are unhappy with their current jobs.   You can read the rest of the article here if you’re interested in learning more on the stats. And don’t worry if you’re someone who doesn’t like numbers, I won’t include any more big numbers for the rest of my post.

So the good news is, you are definitely not in the majority if you aren’t happy at your job.  The bad news is, that information really doesn’t help you get out of your current situation does it?  The answer is no.  What that information can tell you is that there’s a lot of people out there, both young and old that are not happy with their current job situation.  You spend a ridiculous amount of your life working.  Don’t even try and do the math because you’ll make yourself sick.  It’s a lot of time away from your family, friends, and of course pets, so wouldn’t it be nice if you could spend that time doing something enjoyable?  The answer to that one is YES.  But you’re 50 years old and have been an account manager for 20 years now so you’re definitely stuck, right?  Wrong!  It’s never too late to make a switch no matter what your situation is.  Here’s a few important tips on how you can get the process started:

  1. Make a list of your passions and interests:

This is extremely important for a number of different reasons.  First it’s important to be realistic.  If you’re 50 years old and you’re passion is playing in the NBA or WNBA, I hate to break it to you but you probably won’t have a great shot at making a team.  Now with that being said, if the NBA is your passion, there are a ton of opportunities to be a part of the NBA and not be the starting center for the New York Knicks so it’s important to also keep an open mind.  You should be able to list at least a handful of things you’re passionate about or interested in so this is a great start for determining the route you’re going to take.

  • Make a list of talents:

This may be hard for you because either A. you have a ton of talents, or B. you’re someone who doesn’t realize the talents they have.  So put some time and effort into this part as you sit in your cube and think about what John in accounting is bringing for lunch today.  Let’s take it back to the NBA example, maybe you are someone who is passionate about the NBA and are someone that has great communication skills and experiences.  There are hundreds of jobs in the NBA’s Communication Department and if the NBA is something you are passionate about, you are going to feel a sense of purpose working on the New York Knicks Communications Team. 

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  • Determine your connections and experiences that can help you get where you want to be:

Too many times people think their dream jobs are unattainable and give up without even trying or thinking about it.  They think just because they’ve been a school teacher for 20 years there’s no chance that they could become a top earning financial advisor at Morgan Stanley or UBS. They don’t realize that the parent that stands next to them at their son or daughter’s basketball game every other night works at UBS and all they have to do is take a couple of steps and they could be well on their way to heading down the financial advisor path.  After all, isn’t a financial advisor a teacher in a lot of ways?  It’s getting yourself to think outside the box, rather than feel stuck in the box and hide in that box until it’s time to retire and get old and die and you wind up in another box (wow that got dark fast). 

These few steps may be way easier said than done, but they are being done by unhappy workers every day who aren’t satisfied with their current situation.  It’s all about being motivated and putting in the effort.  So please, stop going into the office every day, buying a scratch-off or lottery ticket after work and hoping for a miracle.  Be the miracle story and pull yourself out of the box and into a job that makes you happy.

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