28 answers

How can you determine what career is best for you?

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Building things and finding solutions to problems are things I like as well as being able to help people. I plan on opening a business whether it is in auto mechanics or construction.
#construction #business #automotive #career

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John’s Answer

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My professional advice Domenica, is to do your best to find a combination of a career that taps into your passion as well as one that will be viable in the future.

HOW TO FIND THE ANSWER TO "WHAT CAREER IS BEST FOR ME"
Look at the flip side of your weaknesses. If there is something you hate to do, look at its opposite. For example, if organizational ability is not one of your strengths, you may be better suited to a less structured, perhaps designing cars where creativity is a higher priority than organization. If working in an garage makes you feel claustrophobic, perhaps you would prefer working outdoors in constuction.

When you’re wondering “what career of the two is right for me?” it’s best to think about the intersection between what you’re good at, what work is need most or what the world needs, and what you enjoy doing. The overlap between those three areas is your sweet spot, your career. Also, think about the overall work environment of the two different careers you’re considering. Do you thrive when you’re moving around all day or when you get uninterrupted time to work? Do you like a predictable schedule or variety? Do you enjoy interacting with others or having solo time to work on projects? Think about when you’ve done your best work and felt your best and use that as a guide to narrow what type of career might be best for you.

CONDUCT INTERVIEWS
Separately, research helps! If you know someone in a field you’re thinking about, ask if they’ll have a short coffee with you (your treat) to discuss the day-to-day duties of the job. Interviewing itself is another good way to figure out what career is right for you. You can learn a lot about jobs by being interviewed for them, and an interview often forces you to boil down your interests and skills even if it ends up not being a good fit.

THE SHADOW KNOWS
If you aren’t sure what you’d enjoy, ask people you know if you can shadow them for a day at their job. Find out what they love most about their job, what they like the least. If they could change one thing about it, what would they change? What is their work-life balance like? What about their stress levels? Are they constantly working on deadlines, or is their work more predictable and at a slower pace?

CAN YOU PREDICT THE FUTURE
Lastly, even with your current skills and interests that are driving your present career aspirations, count on these changing over time and, therefore, leading to ever-changing career interests. Consider, a recent study revealed that millennials jump at least four times in their first decade out of college; as a result, it’s important to know that in choosing careers you need to reflect on where you see yourself in five years.

Hope this was helpfull Domenica
Thank You Elwira. “Help one another. There’s no time like the present, and no present like the time.” – James Durst John Frick Translate
Thank You Christopher. “I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do.” – Edward Everett Hale John Frick Translate
Thank You Jeff. “If you become a helper of hearts, springs of wisdom will flow from your heart.” – Rumi John Frick Translate
Thank You Cassandra. “Volunteers are the only human beings on the face of the earth who reflect this nation’s compassion, unselfish caring, patience, and just plain loving one another.” – Erma Bombeck John Frick Translate
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Elwira’s Answer

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Hi Domenica,
Great question!
In order to answer that you need to learn a little bit about yourself and skills and predisposition you have. Please take a look at the below, which can give you some insights:
SELF ASSESSMENT – https://www.whatcareerisrightforme.com/
CAREER ASSESSMENT – https://www.careerfitter.com/

Additionally I would suggest to read excellent book: FIND YOUR WHY by Simon Senek which will give you guidelines around how to find your purpose in life which will be your internal driving force making you getting up every morning and be passionate about what are you doing regardless circumstances. That is very important to have your purpose because only then you feel fulfilment which enable you to overcome all the challenges and thrive in fast paced environment.

Secondlly I would suggest to look into IKIGAI concept, as that is fantastic roadmap which will navigate your thoughts through what's really important to you in life to answer your question about which career path to choose.
Ikigai (pronounced ee-key-guy) is a wonderful Japanese concept that essentially means “a reason for being.” It's made from two Japanese words: iki, meaning “life” and kai, meaning “effect, result, worth or benefit.” Combined: “a reason for living.”

Ikigai is the union point of four fundamental components of life: passion, vocation, profession and mission. In other words, where; what you love meets what you are good at, meets what you can be valued and paid for meets that which the world needs. Ikigai is only complete if the goal implies a service to the community. We feel more satisfied giving gifts than receiving. The next step, once you’ve identified these components, would be to start following your compass. Start working on your questions, and see how your answers fit in the Ikigai components.

Hope that will give you another perspective to look at your search to discover your perfect career path match!
Keeping fingers crossed!
Greetings,
Elwira

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Bobby’s Answer

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One thing to consider is that you don't need to determine your career path at one moment in time. Even if you feel that you've started in one career it doesn't mean you're locked into that path forever.

After high school, I felt that I was definitely going down one path, went to college for it, and my first job out of school was in that field. I found out it wasn't for me and stopped working there after a few months. It's been 13 years and none of my work since then has been directly related to what I focused on in school. But it wasn't a waste - everything I learned and have experienced has helped me in some way.

Think about what you feel is right for your future and also what you feel passionate about. Take your education seriously and know that everything you do is a learning experience. Talk to people who have already opened up businesses or who work in the fields you are interested in, and ask them how they've gotten where they are. What steps did they take, what do they like, what were the challenges they faced?

Feel free to explore and don’t stress out about "choosing" your career because it will find you.
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Jeff’s Answer

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Hello,

This is a good question and a hard one for even me to answer. What I recommend you do is to answer some of the below questions and sit with a mentor to review them once completed. For me when I did this activity, I started writing down what I was passionate about personally then I tried to answer for my professional life. Once completed you should be able to identify patterns of what excites you and your area of interests for potential Career opportunities.

Your Career Plans

• What are you passionate about?

• What do you love to do?

• What strengths do you leverage?

• What are you excited to learn?

• What do you value most?

• What are your career interests?

• What do you want to be doing 2-5 years from now?

• What experience and exposure should be on your plan to make you “ready now” for the type of work you aspire to do?

• What conversations do you need to have with your manager, mentor and others?

Good Luck! :)
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Bert’s Answer

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It's often said that if you do what you love, you never will have to work a day in your life. While not everyone starts off in their dream job, we all have the ability to learn from every experience and figure out what truly makes us feel productive and fulfilled. If you are fortunate enough to have studied subjects, or selected a major, that you love, then you already may be on your way to finding the right career for you. Approach every opportunity with a sense of curiosity and a desire to learn. Ask questions and learn from those who are more experienced. Find one or two people who appear to be doing things you would like to do, or who have achieved things you would like to achieve, and ask them if they would be willing to mentor you. As those relationships progress, and the level of trust builds, they will feel comfortable telling you their personal likes and dislikes about their profession, which also will help you get a feel for what areas may appeal to you. Ask your mentors for honest feedback, whether positive or negative. This will be a critical part of your personal and professional growth. Read about the aspects of your chosen industry that interest you and seek out certifications. Not only will that make you more marketable, but as you continue to learn, you will gravitate towards those things that interest you. Finally, seek out networking events and conferences that are geared towards your interests. Those types of events will expose you to greater amounts of people and information than you typically have available to you. All of those factors will allow you to learn more about your options and figure out what really motivates you and brings you personal satisfaction.
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Lavontell’s Answer

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I would say to always take value in yourself. Take a look and see what motivates you. Value all of your strengths and thrive for the journey you would like to embark on. I would say to set a pathway and see what gives you best opportunity to reach that path. I would then say use those to determine what you wouldn't mind contributing your life too. You should use your negatives and weaknesses to help narrow down your options. I would always say to not focus strictly on money even though it is very important, but besides what motivates you and then let the money follow.
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Heather’s Answer

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Hi Domenica,

Your question is very common, as very few young students know exactly what they want to do ! I am not sure if you are a high school or college student, but I encourage you to keep searching and asking yourself what you like to do, and don't like to do. As so many others have said in this forum, it's wise to find a job you love, and the money will follow! I would suggest searching for "Career Direction Test" to see ideas of what you might enjoy. Then, do some research in those fields that sound interesting. What type of education is necessary? How likely is it to find a job in this field? Is the salary projection what you are looking for? Take a look at the job rankings on US News and World Report (https://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/rankings/the-100-best-jobs) for additional information. Then, once you have settled on a direction, try a class or two and see how you like it.

Keep searching for something that makes you happy! It's out there, I promise! Best of luck to you!
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Giovanni’s Answer

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Hello Domenica,

Excellent question! I'm glad you've made that questions because I myself and many others have done so as well. It's something we should think about with critical thinking and self evaluation.

Find what activities grab if not your full attention but most of your interest. Find your place within the many career opportunities that are present. Coming from a father who works in residential construction; I develop a huge interest in housing because that's what I would in a daily basis from my father. YouTube is a good platform to search for guides and techniques on how to learn some . In addition to observation you can attend career events that are offered in schools like "career day" for example.

After reviewing the construction and or automotive field I will break it down to specialization fields such as accounting, marketing, management, operations, finance, etc. Whether being a laborer, supervisor and or an accountant for a construction or automotive company there are differences. I recommend learning the roles and functions a company has and from there make a decision in what I would want to do. And if entrepreneurship is what you aim to do with these industries I recommended start in a small company first and from there take the necessary steps in reaching your goal.

I hope these serves you will in reaching the career you dream of achieving in your future. I wish you game changing learning opportunities and success. Thank you.

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Cristina’s Answer

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Hi Domenica!

This a great question! There are many options, and it is best to start by exploring them. I took a career exploration class in community college that changed my life! I was able to take career assessments and explore different careers. I was able to determine that I wanted to become a college counselor to be able to help other students through their academic journey. I see that you already have some interests picked out so you can start by doing a little research on those areas. I have suggested some steps for you to take in no particular order. Good luck :)

Cristina recommends the following next steps:

  • Visit the Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH) and the O*NET websites to do your own research on the topics you listed: auto mechanics and construction.
  • Take career exploration assessments found online.
  • Look into career exploration courses at your community college.
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Rajesh’s Answer

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It's a very good question and needs to be looked at from different angles.

1) More often, when we are in our teens and/or early twenties, we don't evaluate a career choice in the context of our personality or the lifestyle we aspire to have. It's very easy to get attracted towards glamorous careers like advertising, marketing, medicine, or being a pilot or cop. I suggest one should understand what type of lifestyle these professionals have, what sort of soft-skills one should have to excel and enjoy that career. For example, if you are an introvert person who would do number crunching rather than meeting new people and influence their shopping behavior, a career in marketing and sales may seem glamorous but may prove to be very harsh for you.

Suggestion - shadow professionals from the career areas you are considering. Talk to them, understand the pain points, understand what personality traits one needs to excel in that area. Create an inventory of soft skills needed and map yourself to that.

2) "Follow you passion" is a cliche advise and used very frequently without much context and thought. Sometimes we don't know what we have passion for because we are not exposed yet to all the possibilities out there. Also, "passion" can be developed. No one is born with passion for specific things. One develops passion over time as one jumps into that area, get families and becomes good at it. Passion is subjective and ever changing.

Suggestion - Look at careers without being clouded by the "passion" driver. Think that if you have a career that helps you make a good living and makes you happy, you still have opportunity to follow your passion outside of your "career". If you have a passion for flying but don't have that personality type, no worries. Find a career that allows you to excel and be happy and then save money to develop the interest in flying.

3) Money matters. Yes, believe it or not, money matters a lot. I'm not saying that run for the best paying career, but do look into the money making potential of a career. You don't want to end up with a career that fulfills your passion but leaves you unhappy because it doesn't afford you a comfortable and responsible life.

Suggestion - Find out what an average professional makes in your choices for career.

To summarize, please look at your career choice from different angles. Talk to different people, find out more about the struggles and pain points rather than focusing on only the "glam" aspects.
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Christina’s Answer

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Business Administration is a good degree to have to go into various areas of business. Many folks have gotten this degree and then moved into an interested area of business that they learned about in college. Marketing, Advertising, Accounting, etc. What do you like math, sales, customer service? Find out what you love to do through business electives at college. Then work with your college advisors to chart a course a successful degree program.
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Scott’s Answer

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The most important thing is to find an area of interest you enjoy doing and then make sure it is something you can establish a professional career in. Once you have established your area of interest, check on what kind of skills, experience, and needed education you will need to have. Find out if there are any internships or possible jobs you can work at while you are attending school and acquiring new skills for your career choice. Review the future trends in your career choice. Most importantly, make sure your career choice is something you will continue to enjoy working in professionally long term.
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Samantha’s Answer

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Think about the things you like and how that might translate into different careers. That is the best place to start - my daughter loves writing and being creative so doing a job like marketing within a business setting would give her an opportunity to use those skills. For myself, I tried a bunch of different things within the Finance and Accounting field and over time I figured out what I like.
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Claudia’s Answer

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Domenica, follow your passion. Look at what things/activities you enjoy the most to do, those that makes you wake up willing to do them.
It´s a really difficult choice for everyone but think that you can always change it or study another career so don´t overstressed about it.

My own experience: I chose International Business and after 3 classes in my first day, I noticed that it was not for me so I went to the school office and asked for the careers list and chose one, asked for the change ( I had a terrible first semester schedule cause they were few available classes) and now I am an industrial engineer. Im grateful that I realized it in that moment even when the decision was so quick, I follow my instinct. :)
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Lauren’s Answer

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Hi Domenica,

Great question! Finding the right career isn't something that happens overnight. It takes years of self discovery and really looking inside of yourself to figure out your interests and applying them professionally.

I work in marketing but it wasn't a direct line to get here. Early in college, I thought I should be a business major because jobs were plenty. However, I didn't love it and that reflected in my grades and overall happiness. After some soul-searching, I realized that I've been creative my whole life, ever since I was a child. I was always making things, writing articles, coming up with new games. Even though that's from when I was much younger, it made me realize that a more creative major - Media Art and Design - may be a better fit. It was!

My career has taken a winding path to marketing. I've worked in adult education, communications, and now marketing. All have a creative aspect and are people-oriented. Taking the time to recognize my passions and what get's me excited to wake up each morning made all the difference.

I recommend you take a look at how you spend your time outside of school and organized activities - it just may help you figure out what you're meant to do. And don't forget to look for the people who want to help you along the way. Managers and colleagues often have a valuable perspective on your strengths and can help you get to where you need to be.

Best of luck! It will all work out.

Lauren
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Patricia’s Answer

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Hi Domenica,

Thanks for the question! To accomplish what I have thus far, I was focused on developing goals and then sticking to them. I also had people who would hold me accountable. It also helps to have a job that you like doing and people you enjoy working with so that it doesn't seem like a job!

If you're planning to open your own business, I would suggest starting with a well-developed business plan and to vet it with those whose opinion you trust. Also, find a current business person as see if he/she can be your mentor.

Whatever path you take, wish you MUCH success!!

Take care, be well, and stay safe!

Patricia'
Thank you for answering my question. Domenica V. Translate
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Scott’s Answer

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The most important thing is to find an area of interest you enjoy doing and then make sure it is something you can establish a professional career in. Once you have established your area of interest, check on what kind of skills, experience, and needed education you will need to have. Find out if there are any internships or possible jobs you can work at while you are attending school and acquiring new skills for your career choice. Review what the future trends in your career choice area. Most importantly make sure your career choice is something you will continue to enjoy working in professionally long term.
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Heather’s Answer

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Hi Domenica,

Your question is very common, as very few young students know exactly what they want to do ! I am not sure if you are a high school or college student, but I encourage you to keep searching and asking yourself what you like to do, and don't like to do. As so many others have said in this forum, it's wise to find a job you love, and the money will follow! I would suggest searching for "Career Direction Test" to see ideas of what you might enjoy. Then, do some research in those fields that sound interesting. What type of education is necessary? How likely is it to find a job in this field? Is the salary projection what you are looking for? Take a look at the job rankings on US News and World Report (https://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/rankings/the-100-best-jobs) for additional information. Then, once you have settled on a direction, try a class or two and see how you like it.

Keep searching for something that makes you happy! It's out there, I promise! Best of luck to you!
Thank you for the suggestion Domenica V. Translate
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Blake’s Answer

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Hey Domenica,

I would recommend asking several friends or family about what they do and see what interests you.

Thanks,
Blake
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Jenise’s Answer

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I suggest to determine what you like to do (which it seems you have), perhaps join a few forums (for example, Meetups) of similar interests, see if there are any members of that forum that have careers that align with that passion, and then find ways to volunteer in that field. Even if it is an unpaid job shadow opportunity or internship, it is the best way to determine if it is something that you want to pursue as a career and continue long-term.
Thank you for answering my question. I will definitely be doing what you suggested. Domenica V. Translate
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Justina’s Answer

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I would start by asking, what is my passion, interest, strengths, what do I love to do most? Then think of careers that might align with your passion. Also talk to a mentor, who could also help guide you in selecting a career. That said, as you grow career interest might also change, and that’s ok. What I would say, whatever you decide to do, try and do it to your best. And don’t be afraid of the unknown.
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Deepak’s Answer

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The answer you are looking for is in your passion.
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Will’s Answer

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The short answer is it may take some time. As you grow and learn more your ideas of what you want to do may change. If your not sure what your passion is at your age that's perfectly normal. The best advice I could give is to really take stock of what you enjoy, from there you can explore what options are available, join diverse clubs and organizations to see what might be available. You can always develop skills you maybe lacking later through education and training. If you can figure out what you want to do then you can figure out how to do it.
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Justin’s Answer

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Hi Domenica,

it looks like you have gotten a lot of great answers so far. I just wanted to add one point - something that might seem obvious, but something that is important to remember.

You need to like whatever you want to do in your career. If you don't like what you do, you have a long road ahead of you. One thing to think about with that, as you go through classes and learn about a particular field, if you don't enjoy that class, and truly don't want to learn more about what is being taught, it's probably not a good fit.

I started my career as an engineer. There are elements of it that I liked, but when I think back to my undergraduate engineering education, all too often going to an engineering class was like an unfun chore. I didn't want to be there and I wanted to be off doing something else. I should have known at that time that maybe engineering wasn't the right path, but I never put the connection together.

Ten years later I went back to school to get a graduate degree in business. That time it was a different story. I love going to classes and learning more about the topics - it wasn't a chore and I've been much happier ever since.

It's probably simple advice, but perhaps easy to forget in the quest to overthink what you want to do.
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Elwira’s Answer

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Hi Domenica,
Great question!
In order to answer that you need to learn a little bit about yourself and skills and predisposition you have. Please take a look at the below, which can give you some insights:
SELF ASSESSMENT – https://www.whatcareerisrightforme.com/
CAREER ASSESSMENT – https://www.careerfitter.com/

Additionally I would suggest to read excellent book: FIND YOUR WHY by Simon Senek which will give you guidelines around how to find your purpose in life which will be your internal driving force making you getting up every morning and be passionate about what are you doing regardless circumstances. That is very important to have your purpose because only then you feel fulfilment which enable you to overcome all the challenges and thrive in fast paced environment.

Secondlly I would suggest to look into IKIGAI concept, as that is fantastic roadmap which will navigate your thoughts through what's really important to you in life to answer your question about which career path to choose.
Ikigai (pronounced ee-key-guy) is a wonderful Japanese concept that essentially means “a reason for being.” It's made from two Japanese words: iki, meaning “life” and kai, meaning “effect, result, worth or benefit.” Combined: “a reason for living.”

Ikigai is the union point of four fundamental components of life: passion, vocation, profession and mission. In other words, where; what you love meets what you are good at, meets what you can be valued and paid for meets that which the world needs. Ikigai is only complete if the goal implies a service to the community. We feel more satisfied giving gifts than receiving. The next step, once you’ve identified these components, would be to start following your compass. Start working on your questions, and see how your answers fit in the Ikigai components.

Hope that will give you another perspective to look at your search to discover your perfect career path match!
Keeping fingers crossed!
Greetings,
Elwira

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Yvonne’s Answer

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Hi Domenica,

That's a great question. It can be a long journey or a short one. It really depends on your own experience and what you need to do for yourself and/or your family.

I thought college was going to help me figure that out but it turns out, it just made me more confused. I believe finding a career is about knowing yourself and uncovering what you like doing, what you're good at, what the world will pay for, and what the world needs or what your community needs. Below is a link of a venn diagram that really helped me think through what a desired career path would be.

https://i2.wp.com/www.yvonnetran.co/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/intersections.jpg?w=640

Also, understand that you may be multiple careers in your life so don't put too much pressure on your "first" career. A lot of us now have not only two careers but three or four. Just remember what can make you happy (even on a spectrum) and what you can make to support yourself and your family.
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Giovanni’s Answer

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Hello Domenica,

Excellent question! I'm glad you've made that questions because I myself and many others have done so as well. It's something we should think about with critical thinking and self evaluation.

Find what activities grab if not your full attention but most of your interest. Find your place within the many career opportunities that are present. Coming from a father who works in residential construction; I develop a huge interest in housing because that's what I would in a daily basis from my father. YouTube is a good platform to search for guides and techniques on how to learn some . In addition to observation you can attend career events that are offered in schools like "career day" for example.

After reviewing the construction and or automotive field I will break it down to specialization fields such as accounting, marketing, management, operations, finance, etc. Whether being a laborer, supervisor and or an accountant for a construction or automotive company there are differences. I recommend learning the roles and functions a company has and from there make a decision in what I would want to do. And if entrepreneurship is what you aim to do with these industries I recommended start in a small company first and from there take the necessary steps in reaching your goal.

I hope these serves you will in reaching the career you dream of achieving in your future. I wish you game changing learning opportunities and success. Thank you.

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Elizabeth’s Answer

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Hi Domenica, this is a great question and good thing to be thinking about now! My first piece of advice is to do a little self analysis or evaluation. What are your interests? What are your hobbies? What activities make you happy? Is there a particular field that you have always thought about and wanted to learn more? It's important to choose a career that makes you genuinely happy and where you feel like you are working your best and making a difference if possible. For me personally, my education was in marketing/advertising however I have not specifically worked in this field. I have worked in the sales, real estate and mortgage industries. All of these have marketing components where I was able to utilize my skills, but I was constantly trying to learn new things. I would suggest choosing a career path that also offers you growth and learning opportunities which are very important! I will leave you with two pieces of advice my parents gave me when I was younger that have stuck with me: 1.) choose a career or job that brings you happiness and you enjoy (that way its not really work its passion) 2.) If you try a particular career out and find that you do not like it or it was not what you had first expected it to be, you can always shift directions. A good resource for the self-assessment piece is performing a personality test: Myers-briggs https://www.mbtionline.com/. This could be a good place to get you thinking and good luck!
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