Want to Find a Career You Love? Stop Doing These Twelve Things.
Posted on February 19, 2020 by Claudia Rossi, One of Thousands of Career Coaches on Noomii.
Discovering a career you love can be a frustrating process for a lot of people. To get some clarity on your career path, here's what not to do.
Discovering a career you love can be a frustrating process for a lot of people. One that can take years, or for some, even decades. This was true for me when I was seeking to make a career change, and it’s true for the people who come to me for help.
There is certainly no shortage of information and assessments online designed to help you identify your ideal career, but after coaching and talking to hundreds of people, I’ve found that there are 12 things to stop doing that will make it easier to find a career you love.
1) Stop applying to any job that pops up online that sounds interesting. Only a very small percentage of jobs are found this way, so if this is your only strategy, not only will it take you longer to find a job, you’re also likely to become increasingly frustrated by the lack of responses.
2) Stop taking assessments and hope they’ll give you the answer. Although assessments are fun and can sometimes lead to interesting insights, without someone to help you make sense of them, they’re unlikely to point to a specific career.
3) Stop listening to your own limiting beliefs. You may be telling yourself “I’m too old to make a career change,” or “I’m not experienced enough in that field,” or “I’m not smart enough,” but If you listen to these beliefs, they’ll stop you dead in your tracks before you even have a chance to explore your options.
4) Stop worrying about other people’s expectations of you. Whether you’ve just graduated from college and don’t want to disappoint your parents by choosing a job outside your major, or you’ve been working for 30+ years and are concerned people will judge you for leaving behind a career you’ve invested so much time in – letting go of other’s expectations will allow your mind to think of other options.
5) Stop looking for the jobs that will make you the most money. We all want to make a decent living, but if you lead with this requirement, instead of first figuring out what you love to do, it’s almost a guarantee that you’ll ultimately wind up feeling dissatisfied or unfulfilled.
6) Stop worrying about making a “wrong” decision. Frequently, the fear of making a wrong choice stops people from taking any action at all. Letting go of this fear is often the first step in opening your mind to new possibilities.
7) Stop focusing on your weaknesses. In the workforce, we’re often told exactly what our weaknesses are and told to improve them, instead of encouraged to focus on the things we’re good at. If you’re working at a job where you’re having to employ your weaknesses most of the time, you’re in the wrong job.
8) On the other hand, stop doing things just because you’re good at them. Unless you love them too. Then keep doing them. But if you don’t love the work you’re doing, even if you’re good at it, it may be time to let it go.
9) Stop focusing on the negative. It’s completely understandable why we think about the things we don’t like in our jobs, whether it’s the work we do, our boss or co-workers, but the more we focus on the negative, the more these thoughts discourage and drain us of energy. Shakespeare once said, “A man with a toothache can’t fall in love.” Just like a toothache, the pain of a stressful job makes it difficult to focus on other things in your life and can lead to challenges with our relationships, health and energy levels.
10) Stop listening to unsupportive people. If you have people in your life that support your dreams, no matter what they are, great! But if you don’t, stop listening to them. People don’t support our dreams for all sorts of reasons that have nothing to do with us. They could be afraid of how your choice might affect them, they could be jealous, or they could have their own limiting beliefs that make them believe it’s not possible.
11) Stop looking for the “perfect” career. There is no such thing. But there are one or more “ideal’ careers that are a good fit for you.
12) Stop focusing on “how” to make a change unless you’ve identified exactly “what” you want to do first. Focusing on how to make a major change, when we’re not sure what we want to do, shuts our brain down from considering all options.
Here’s what to do instead:
1) Develop a learner’s perspective. Accept that it’s ok to be in a position where you’re not the expert anymore. It’s ok to be a little uncomfortable.
2) Surround yourself with people who support and inspire you. You may have heard the saving that “you’re the sum of the people closest to you,” so if those around you don’t support you, find some who do. One of the fastest ways to change your results is to change your environment.
3) Focus on your strengths. “What comes naturally to you?” “What do people compliment you on?” “What can you do for hours and hardly notice that time is passing you by?” These are all clues as to what your strengths are – talents that can be carried over to a new role.
4) Take action. The natural human tendency when we’re feeling stuck is to do nothing, but by taking action, any type of action, we’ll get clarity over whether we’re heading down the right path or the wrong one.
5) Do something slightly uncomfortable every day. By practicing being uncomfortable and realizing we can survive it, we gain confidence in other areas of our lives that then opens our minds to new possibilities.
6) Meditate and/or Journal – a few minutes a day can yield some insights into what your heart wants you to do.
7) Focus first on “what” you want to do, before you start worrying about “how” you’ll make it happen. Once you’re clear on your career direction, figuring out what to do becomes less intimidating.
8) Identify the beliefs that are holding you back. It’s quite possible that you know exactly what kind of work will fulfill and excite you, but your subconscious mind won’t allow you to identify it, let alone believe in it.
If you’ve been stuck trying to identify and find your ideal career, it may be time to get some help. It’s not easy to take this journey by yourself, as we frequently don’t recognize our own strengths or roadblocks. “When you’re inside the bottle, it’s hard to read the label.”
Hiring a coach will help you to not only find a career you love, but can also release the fears that are holding you back.
For help developing a strategy to identify and then find a career you love, schedule a free, no-obligation Discovery Call at RevolutionYouCoaching.com.