How to choose the right career

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It is usually drummed into high school students that they need to take a great deal of care over their career choices. To a certain extent, this is true – after all, choosing a career that makes you deeply unhappy isn’t going to do much for your health or for those you are supporting. However, it doesn’t really matter whether you find the right career for you immediately after school, or whether it takes a bit more time and experience to rule out those careers that aren’t for you. Here are some tips to ensure you choose the right career, preferably sooner rather than later.

Consider what interests you

For some people, the choice of career is an easy call to make. If it isn’t, then sit down and list all the things that interest you. Then think about the sort of environment you would like to work it. You may want to go abroad, for example, or you may abhor the idea of working in an office. Once your list is complete, start thinking about careers that could be created from it.

Research your potential careers

Once you’ve come up with your ideas, research them. What sort of jobs are available, for example, and what level of pay could you expect. Check on qualifications – if you don’t have what is necessary, then you may need to take some extra courses. Alternatively, if you need, for example, sciences, and are completely hopeless at science, then you may need to think again.

Consider the commitment

Think about the level of commitment that your career choices could involve. Becoming a doctor, for example, involves years of study and is not cheap. You need to be really sure that you want to do it before starting your studies. Other careers could be easier to break into and easier to change if you want to. Make sure you are prepared to put in the time and energy that you need to reach your ultimate goal.

Talk to a career advisor

Book an appointment with an advisor. They are trained to judge you and decide on the sort of career that would suit both your qualifications and personality. They may even be able to come up with some ideas that you haven’t even considered. Finally, they should be able to give you some useful leads for ways of getting into the career of your choice.

Don’t follow someone else’s dreams

If your mother has always wanted you to study to be a doctor, but you don’t really want to even if you do have the qualifications, then be honest with her. If you are forced into a career that you don’t really want to do, it can be a very miserable experience. Only you can decide what you really want to do – and if others don’t approve, then that is not your problem.

If it doesn’t suit, give it up

If you enter into a career that you don’t like, then give it up and move on. There is no need to stay somewhere that you hate. Many skills are transferable these days, so there is no need to think of your experience as a waste. Don’t be put off by the fact that you may need to start again at the bottom – if you are determined, it won’t take you long to get where you want. After all, we spend a great deal of time at work, so the happier you are, the better.

Put some thought into what you want to do and you should be able to find your ideal career. Just don’t panic if you don’t find it the first time or even the second time round – there is plenty of time yet.

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