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How do you know if that is the right profession for you?


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John’s Answer

Vanisha the old saying "find a job you love and never work a day in your life" puts a great deal of pressure on people who are trying to choose the right career. Can you really find one that is so enjoyable, it won't even feel like work? With thousands of occupations to pick from, to increase the odds of career satisfaction, find one that is a good fit for your interests, aptitudes, work-related values, and personality type. It is also essential that you enjoy the majority of the job duties, the earnings are acceptable, and the job outlook is good. Here's how to go about making a good match.

FOUR STEPS ON HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT PROFESSION FOR YOU

STEP 1: BECOME MORE SELF AWARE
Life is a journey of self-exploration, and the more self-aware you are, the more successful you are going to be. Without self-awareness, there is no way to know your skills and strengths, and you may find it difficult to identify the possibilities that open up to you. Once you learn what you are capable of and explore your potential, you are ready to take the first step to figuring out what you want to do in your career. Becoming more self-aware means getting to know your strengths and weaknesses, what motivates you and makes you happy. It also means knowing your beliefs, personal values, recognising your achievements and failures and what these mean to you. If you want to learn more things about yourself to find a suitable career, then you have to give an honest answer to each one of the following questions:
• What are you really good at, what makes you happy?
• What are your interests and hobbies, which subjects do you enjoy the most at school?
• What kind of lifestyle do you want, what are you most passionate about?
• Which jobs fascinate you the most, what jobs other people have that you wish were yours?
• Where do you prefer working, what inspires you to take action?
These questions can help you with your self-check and encourage you to think about your skills and personal qualities in more depth. Getting to know all of these aspects of yourself can help you make well-informed decisions about your future and set some solid foundations as to how to move forward.

STEP 2: EXPLORE CAREER OPPORTUNITIES
Look at careers that require you to carry out activities you enjoy and can do well. This includes the daily responsibilities that you are expected to do as part of your job. Learn more about what a typical day is like in the role and try to imagine yourself in it.
• Talk to graduates and other professionals already working in the field.
• Get more information from students studying in your chosen area.
• Get to know what a job involves online e.g. study job descriptions.
• Try some on for size, by volunteering, job shadowing (creative job hunting) or part-time jobs.

You should try to find out what parts of the job you like/don’t like or expect to be different. See what works and what doesn’t and choose a career that is more likely to satisfy you.

WORKING CONDITIONS – Working conditions describe the environment of the job. The profession you choose may be indoors or outdoors; it could even combine both. This also refers to the working hours and tells you how long you are expected to work per day/week. Most full-time jobs are eight hours per day, but there are others that have longer or night shifts e.g. surgeons, bartenders, casino workers, etc. So before you make a choice, you need to make sure that you are well aware of what you are signing up for.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS – Apart from skills, some professions have physical requirements which you may need to comply with. For example, some jobs require physical strength, carrying or lifting heavy objects or being in good physical shape. Quite often there are physical demands in terms of strength, motion parameters e.g. standing for extended periods of time, climbing stairs, kneeling (for cashiers and construction employees), specific height or weight measures and vision/hearing requirements. If you can’t meet these, it means that you may not qualify for the job.

POTENTIAL EARNINGS – Lots of people choose to go in a career that pays well, although this pretty much depends on your priorities and career expectations. While this is something that you have to examine, it can’t be the sole element that determines what career suits you best. You might want to research potential salaries to give you an idea of how much you are expected to make in the profession. But, you should know that earnings vary according to location and individual employers.

STEP 3: DECIDING ON THE PROFESSION THAT IS RIGHT FOR YOU
The next step is creating a list of the careers you are interested in. It’s important to evaluate these against what you have already, including the information that you acquired from your self-exploration and make a decision. Most people who are starting out will have a few options to choose from. You might want to look into available opportunities defined by the subjects you chose at school, your qualifications and A levels – if you have any. So, when you narrow down your choices to approximately three or five careers that you are interested in, try to find out how to get into each one. More specifically, you need to look at the following:
• The different paths that you can take leading to the profession(s) you like.
• The different types of work that are available in the field you want to get into.
• The different majors/degrees you can go into e.g. which are accepted and which aren’t.
• The level of education you need to get into the industry/profession you want.

This information can be difficult to obtain without proper research, though the one person who can help you get the most out of it is a careers adviser. These professionals have both the knowledge and the experience you need to inform, advice, and guide you effectively into making the right decision. So if you are struggling with it, this might be good time to ask for help. A career adviser will ensure that you are being realistic about your choices and can help you go through these essential elements. Not only that, but they will also answer all of the questions you may have.

STEP 4: CREAT AN ACTION PLAN
So instead of waiting for fate to come and knock on your door and tell you what career you should go into, you need to become more proactive and creative in your approach, exploring alternative opportunities. Besides, you know how the saying goes; opportunities don’t happen, you create them. Opportunities can come in many forms such as people, seminars, educational workshops, events or run-ins. Your job is to make sure that you are out there taking advantage of everything that comes your way. Networking can be a great help here by expanding your professional circle and introducing you to key people in the industry. You need to start considering:
• Where are you now?
• Where you want to be?
• How you will get there?

Vanisha these three questions will help you create your action plan and get you started. When you have finished your self-evaluation, decide what your goals are and then come up with a strategy to achieve them. The best approach is to break your goals down into smaller steps and then write them down. The three most important elements in choosing a profession are that you would be good at it, enjoy it and that it has good career prospects.

I hope this was Helpful Vanisha

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Marília’s Answer

I strongly agree with all the answers here, specially when it comes to internships. I think that's the best way to really know if you like it and if you see yourself doing that.

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Grace’s Answer

A couple thoughts on this! Think about what you enjoy doing now and the skills you are good at - are you a good writer? Are you a good public speaker? Do you enjoy working with your hands? Do you like working with people or are you happier doing solo work? Even general questions like this can really help guide you in the right direction of the types of roles that you could enjoy and that fit with your natural abilities and interests. For example, you could be a lawyer who stands in a courtroom presenting trials in front of an audience or you could be a lawyer who sits in an office and works on contracts. You could be a doctor who sees patients all day long or a doctor who works in a research lab and never sees patients. Even once you start working, it is helpful to take a look at what parts of your job you enjoy and are good at versus the parts of your job you procrastinate doing - this will help guide you to your next job, and the one after that, and hopefully get closer to what you really enjoy. This is my next point, which is that you can change your job and even your entire career throughout your life! Rest assured that if you try something and decide it is not the right fit, you are not trapped in that role forever. Good luck!

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Holly’s Answer

If at the end of the day you feel awesome and that you did something worth while and you cant wait to go back- then its a good fit for you. If at the end of the day you feel beaten down and you hate it and you really don't want to go back the next morning, then look for something else. You know its the right profession when you love it and you don't feel like its work.

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Kim’s Answer

Vanisha,

I think it helps when you think about this to distinguish between "profession" and "industry." It could be that we are in the right profession, but, the wrong industry! Perhaps being a corporate trainer for a restaurant isn't quite the right fit, but, doing the same job for a warehouse firm is.

Or, maybe you don't really know what profession you want, but you do know the industry. Perhaps you definitely want to be tied to healthcare, but, not sure of the profession. Then you will have to do some self-analysis. Do you want to be working with people? Can you see yourself emptying bedpans and cleaning patients? Perhaps you'd like to be in physical therapy. Or a dietary manager.

Either way, there is almost always room to change jobs. You simply learn to highlight your transferable skills on your resume - those are skills acquired in previous jobs that relate to the position you are applying for. For example, a lady who wanted to work at a doggy daycare center whose job announcement emphasized the cleaning responsibilities of the job, emphasized her experience in fast-food--- cleaning grills, sidewalks, etc. The two jobs both are very concerned with infectious disease control, so, while initially you might think she wasn't qualified, once we focused the resume on the transferable skills, she got the interview.

Hope this helps!
Kim

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Holly’s Answer

If at the end of the day you feel awesome and that you did something worth while and you cant wait to go back- then its a good fit for you. If at the end of the day you feel beaten down and you hate it and you really don't want to go back the next morning, then look for something else. You know its the right profession when you love it and you don't feel like its work.

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David’s Answer

A great way to figure this out is an internship. I got an internship for software development and after the 6 months was up I was certain I had the right career path chosen.

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Heather’s Answer

It's an interesting question and I think one that people may ask themselves as they progress throughout their career path. Ultimately, I think a few points to consider is whether you are excited/genuinely interested in the profession as well as opportunities that may exist or develop over your career path. Compensation/benefits/job security are important as well as opportunities to grow and advance in your career.

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