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How do I determine what I want to do with my life?

I don't want anything that has to do with the law or blood. I like something more on the artistic side. #artistic #dreamjob #highschool #job #career


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Deni’s Answer

Hi, Nancy -
I'd suggest this book:

"What Color Is Your Parachute? 2020: A Practical Manual for Job-Hunters and Career-Changers" by Richard Nelson Bolles

You can find it online in a PDF format. You'll take a fun assessment, then see what jobs and careers would fit you best. While it may take a few hours to get through the book, it will give you a process for finding your career direction. Bolles publishes it every year, so it has up-to-date, current careers. It will also expose you to jobs you may not even know existed.

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Rohail’s Answer

Hi Nancy,

Great question and everyone has given great insight here, so I want to offer a little bit of a controversial opinion. I think it is ok to not know what you want to do. It is sometimes challenging to know exactly how you want to spend your life coming out of high school at 18. I am almost 30 and I still am not sure exactly what I want to do, I have changed careers and industries three times.

I read an excellent article about this recently, which says do not follow your passion but something you are willing to slave away at: https://hbr.org/2020/11/what-you-should-follow-instead-of-your-passion

Universities are great for finding out what you want to do, the best step is to take as many diverse courses in your early years and find what you enjoyed and go forward in that directly.

And lastly, do not worry if you chose wrong. Take me as an example, its never late too change careers or industries as long as you are willing to put in the effort for that change

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Grace’s Answer

You are already off to a good start....you know what you don't want!! Begin with listing what you love to do and what hobbies enjoy that let's you know that you are more on the artistic side.
Next.... take each one and do a blind search for ideas...e.g. If you love reading, go on google and type in the search box, "jobs with reading"
This will give you some ideas that will tap into your imagination.

All the best and let me know how this goes and what you find out!
GKS

Grace recommends the following next steps:

Write a list of things you love to do or hobbies enjoy (that lets you know that you are more on the "artistic side")
Saved!
Pick your top 3 from the list
Saved!
With each one of the top choices, do a blind google search: type --> "jobs with [put name of hobby here]" and press enter
Saved!

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Danvy’s Answer

Hi Nancy!

So moment of transparency... that is a question that A LOT of people are still trying to figure out the answer to!
I personally feel that the best way to discover your true calling is to understand who you are first. understanding who you are as a person, knowing your goals, setting your standards and believing in yourself is the foundation to starting a happy and fulfilled life.
If you don't already, start journaling. Write about any and everything that comes to mind! Take time to reflect on your past, present and jot down some goals for the future.
I love reading my old journals and looking back what how far I have come. For me writing brings a sense of peace and truly allows me to think about my goals and the things I would like to work on personally, mentally, and spiritually.

Lastly, journaling allows you to also see how much your perspective has changed over time. This alone provides a realistic sense of maturity and growth.
I hope this hopes Nancy and good luck on your journey!
I know you'll do great!

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Mark’s Answer

Think about what excites you, maybe something you only think of as a hobby right now. It doesn't matter what it is really, just that you show an interest in it and get excited or motivated thinking about it. Then, as some others have suggested, Google it and just browse and read.

Another thing you could do is think about the parents of your friends. Do any of them have a job that you think would interest you. If so, talk to them. Find out what they fantasized about for their career when they were your age. Although it's a good thing to keep potential earnings in mind when thinking of a career path, please don't make it #1 priority. I have known many people over the years that make a very good living but are absolutely miserable at their job.

And lastly, a perspective that you should consider is that you can always change your mind and career. It is easier to do when younger but adults of any age can change. You are never stuck.

Get out there, talk to people, ask lots of questions, don't let anyone tell you your interests in career are misguided, follow your dream. Good luck.

Mark recommends the following next steps:

Make a list of anything that excites you
Saved!
What are your hobbies
Saved!
Talk to the parents of your friends
Saved!

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Simeon’s Answer

The starting point I usually recommend is going to the department of labor's website and seeing what the fastest growing fields are. That will give you a starting point if you're drawing a blank about what you'd like to do. I'd also recommend looking at YouTube videos where employees discuss their favorite and least favorite parts of their jobs. One of the downsides to a lot of career decision materials is that they don't usually tell you the downsides of different careers, so it might help you narrow down the options you're considering. If you're feeling artistic, I'd say Marketing is a pretty safe career path that could give you some opportunities to be creative.

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Malisa’s Answer

Hi Nancy -

What a great question. My advice would be to stop everything and find some quiet time to think about what lights your heart of fire. What are you good at? Have you ever looked at someone doing a job and thought 'that looks like fun'? Then begin to research these things more and see what kind of jobs are in the things you are drawn too naturally. Others who have answered have provided the same advice that I was given (use the What Color Is Your Parachute? book / take time off). For me, my career has evolved over time. I did not set out to manage people or monitor risk and compliance. These things came to me as I navigated through things that at the time I really enjoyed doing. As my skills grew and my interests changed so did my job and career choices. The phrase "what do I want to do with my life" is all encompassing. Things are going to change in your life as grow and priorities change, people you meet influence you, life events happen. Focus on the next 5 to 10 years and how you can set yourself up for success and happiness in personal and professional life. All the best ~ Malisa

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Megan’s Answer

I think figuring out what you want to do sometimes can just take time. If you are unsure there is no harm in taking a year off and trying out different jobs. Or going to a tech or community college to just take gen ed courses then going from there. I think it is important to find a career that you feel you will be happy with. You want to get up and in general want to go to work everyday and be happy with that.

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