Growing up there are so many career options available to you: firefighter, singer, dancer, police officer, dinosaur, and more. As you get older, you might start asking your parents and other adults what they do for living. Then you start getting answers like accountant, engineer, program manager, analyst, consultant, and director. By this point in your life, you are distancing yourself from the grand title of master dinosaur and realizing that you might have to pursue something different.
The problem now is what’s next? It’s not like you are taking classes in accounting and engineering so how do you know you want to be an accountant or engineer?
In high school, I had this grand idea that I would be a doctor. The specifics of what kind of doctor changed frequently but I knew that I wanted to work in the medical field. Why? Mostly because of the money but also because I wanted to make people feel better.
In college, I majored in Chemistry and quickly realized that I was in over my head. It was at that time I realized that I needed to have a heart to heart with myself. I needed to discover what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.
Now I’m a huge believer in you should do what you love because life is too short to do something that you hate. So, I set aside the lure of money and decided to follow a path that would make me happy. So how do you find a career that makes you happy? I remember sitting in a room asking myself these questions:
- What do you love to do?
- What would you love to be paid to do?
- Who currently does what I want to do?
- What do I have to major in to do this career?
That seems simple enough but sometimes the answers don’t come that easily. Or you could be like me and need to narrow down the field to focus on a particular career path. So once again, I found myself asking questions:
- What classes interested me?
- What assignments did I enjoy doing?
- What job can I do that is similar to this interest?
With these questions, be honest with yourself. Don’t let outside influences determine in what direction you want to go. I didn’t rely heavily on my support system to help me answer these questions. I knew that the answers had to come from within me not anyone else.