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what does it take to be certain in your carrer

im the type of person where at first im really into doing something i put my mind to but then as time goes on and tough challenges arise the feelings change and i can completely withdraw all the passion i once had for that something . #career #job #business

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Melanie’s Answer

Hi Thayliz,

I wanted to let you know that you are not alone in this struggle. It sometimes feels as though the people around us have things figured out, or are on some kind of path, and that makes it harder on people like us!

I've always struggled to stick to one thing. In high school, I played; basketball, volleyball, tennis, track, and soccer! However, I never did any of them well, and never for very long. I tell you this because I am now at a place in life where I know in order foe me to keep interest in something, it needs to be ever changing. I guess you could call us the "Jill of all trades". We are masters of everything, but experts of nothing.

Rather than focusing on what kind of career you want, think about how you want to work. For me, autonomy is incredibly important, as well as high standards of integrity. I also need to work in an environment that allows me to accomplish new and different things, as well as have a good work-life balance. Focus on finding a career that gives you what is important to you.

In addition to that, whatever you decide to do, give it your all. You don't necessarily have to be the best at it, but ensure you give it your best effort. I always say- you get what you give, and that definitely applies to work. Even if it's a mundane job that you aren't necessarily passionate about (believe me, you'll have lots of these) make sure you hold yourself to a high standard of work ethic. This will make you stand out, and it will also ensure you are learning as much as possible regardless of what job your doing. When I worked in a kitchen that primarily served the elderly, I learned the lesson of patience. Had I not given that job 100%, I might have missed that very important lesson.

Hope this helps!

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stefan’s Answer

Hi Thayliz,

There is always some change and uncertainty. Many people change majors in school and careers at work. Sometimes the economy or available jobs cause changes and uncertainty. As for tough challenges at work, there is usually someone you can ask for help, like a coworker or a specialist that has more knowledge about the problem. When you're finally able to fix the problem you may feel a sense of accomplishment and have learned something new about yourself. Look at challenges at home, work, or school as opportunities to learn and grow. If there were no challenges, it could get boring and that can also cause you to loose passion. Either way, you are allowed to change your mind. If you do lose passion for a career, you can always make a change. The things you learn in one career will often be helpful in another career. Good luck and keep learning.

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Bob’s Answer

A career is a destination. The job/responsibility steps to fulfilng the journey toward that destination, will offer the knowledge, experience, perspective and expertise you will require to reach and become successful in your chosen career.
As you move along the job path toward your career objective, you may discover that one or more of those steps may provide you with the insight to pursue a different destination. That is okay. You are learning, contributing and growing.
More importantly, you must love what you do. The right career choice is the one that offers the greatest personal satisfaction, continuous learning/growth and personal financial reward that you are pursuing.
You have time to experiment as you journey forward. You should however choose your ultimate career destination by the time you are in your mid thirties. You should not wander along various paths too long.
For me, when I graduated from college, my career destination was to be President of a corporation. The job choices I made along the way, all contributed to understanding the various functions of a business as well as how they should work together to meet customer needs at a prudent price point. Fortunately, I loved the various jobs I pursued and eventually became Chairman, President and CEO of various high tech global businesses.
I concur with John's suggestion to create your own "Board of Directors" to assist you through advice and counsel while on your career path.

Bob recommends the following next steps:

There are networking opportunities in many cities where you can meet people in the careers that you wish to pursue.
Subscribe to magazines that cater to the career destination that you wish to better understand.
Write a letter to the Chairman of a local successful company-ask if you can take them to lunch to learn more about their company and what they look for in an individual that is successful within your career choice.

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John’s Answer

Hey Thayliz,

That's a tough question.

I don't think I have ever been 100% certain in my career. I'm fairly certain about the direction I want to go, but there are lots of paths to get to the same destinations.

What I would recommend is to find companies that are more flexible in job assignments which will allow you to explore different options within the company.

Also, choosing a job, doesn't mean you have to do that 1 thing the rest of your life. There are ways to transition (typically with higher level degrees) to new job areas (like using an MBA to go from marketing to finance or accounting to HR).

I would recommend pushing through some of the tough challenges to give your passion a chance to reignite. Sometimes, if you hit a rough patch, you can come through it even stronger on the other side, but it requires sticking with it longer than what might feel comfortable. Every path will have rough patches, but some things are worth working through those rough patches.

No matter what journey you choose to take, I strongly recommend building your own "board of directors." A group of friends and mentors who know you, but don't think like you do (you want diversity of thought!). They can help guide you on your journey and help you to figure out when something may not be a good fit versus when it is worth fighting for.

Best of luck to you!

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Claudia’s Answer

That is a great question and I bet lots of people have asked themselves this before.
I am working now since nearly 20 years and I have to say, I haven't had a classic career so far, where you set out with your specialised topic and work in one occupation or field going forward.
I am working in the software industry, always in customer facing roles and I found over time that my interests and what I learned helped me move to different positions, grow as a person and a professional and become better at every kind of job I do. In the software industry it is quite common to move roles, to move companies every few years and progress in a way that fits your personality and what you like to do.

So, if you don't know what you want to do as a "career", don't be afraid to try out something that catches your interest and see how it develops over time. I only recently went back to university part time and am studying now for my Bachelor's. That is also more and more an option and it allows you to even change career direction later in life.

I hope this helps. Enjoy the journey and best of luck!

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Celine’s Answer

I think thats pretty normal to be fair - and the wonderfulness of the world today is that we get to, in part, change what we do pretty regularly and easily. The more you move the more experience and insight you gain so take it as a positive. When I recruit my teams I love to see an array of experience and industries - its gives you a really rounded level of experience - so embrace change - you'll inevitably land yourself in a place that you love ;)