Choosing a career path can be a daunting task. Whether you’re a college student feeling unsure about what to do after graduation, or you’re a professional simply looking for a change, it takes some self-reflection and honesty to answer this question.
Get to know yourself
First, take time to get to know yourself. What are your values? What matters to you? If you want to choose a career path that’s right for you, it’s crucial that you become self-aware and know the answers to these questions because they can help guide you throughout your career. So many of us climb the corporate ladder, shape-shifting as necessary depending on what organization we work for, pausing only when something we’re told to do sends shivers down our spines. Instead of taking the time to identify our values, we plod along just hoping to avoid making any terrible mistakes.
A better plan is to craft a values statement, identifying the things in life that are most important to you. This will help you get to know yourself, and it will help you know when to say no to the things that will only be distractions from your real goals. Gaining clarity on values can also help you identify your strengths and weaknesses as well as likes and dislikes. Aligning your values with the mission of the organization may help you in deciding which employer is going to be a cultural fit for you personally. Having this clarity can also help you in assessing your passion and deciding how you want to make your mark in the organization you are spending the majority of your time working for day-in and day-out.