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How can I prepare myself for the future?

I'm a good person but sometimes I can start slacking #needstobefixed . I would be doing a great job and I would mess myself up because of my actions. I try to stay focused, but my head is always on another situation.

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To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you

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Crystal’s Answer

It sounds like there are multiple things going on here!

There's the "starting actions"-- you mention that you tend to "slack off". It seems like you already understand what needs to be done--you just have trouble getting yourself to start it. I often have this trouble too, so I have a rule: "If this seems like it's something that can be done in 2 minutes or less, I do it now" and "If this is something that takes more than 4 hours to do, I'll break it up (if you can) into 2-3 sessions of 1-2 hours over the next few days". It's not totally clear what you're having trouble with at the moment, but we're rooting for you! It's good to develop habits or rules that you keep strictly in order to stay on top of things and prevent future meltdowns when things get overwhelming. You're making these rules to help your future self.

Then, there seems to be the part where you are doing well, and then you slip up a little and make a mistake that you missed because you didn't pay enough attention. I want to say that it's totally okay to make mistakes--the thing to keep in mind is to not let those mistakes take you off your path. It's like driving. It's easy once you have the car going to not watch the road as carefully, but you have to stay vigilant for things that may suddenly pop up in front of you (like a cat!). You're doing good, so keep doing good! And it's okay that you made a slip up. Get yourself back into the rhythm of doing good.

Lastly, there's the focus part. I'm not sure if these are intrusive random thoughts or worries. If they're worries, it doesn't help to tell yourself "don't think about this!" in order to not think about it. In fact, you start thinking about it MORE. It's like me telling you to not think about a cow eating grass. You just thought about it! This is something I work on everyday, and one thing I find helpful is to let the thoughts come. Invite them in, and then say "okay, I know you're here. But now is the time to be focusing on this. I'll have time to think about you later". Then write it down so you don't forget, if you're the type to forget like I am.

These are some things I learned while I was in college to stay on top of my classes, projects, and homework.
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umer’s Answer

Hi

Here are some of my suggestions:

Be confident. Trust me; unless and until you believe in yourself, no one would trust you.

It is essential to upgrade your existing knowledge from time to time. Technologies change with time and it is necessary to keep oneself abreast with the latest developments in your respective fields. You need to know what is happening around you. Do not be under the wrong impression that you know everything. Remember, there is no end to learning. Try to find out what all new softwares or technologies would be in demand in the near future. In today’s world, you really do not have to burn a hole in your pocket to learn something new. Now a days, information is available at the click of a button. You just need to take out time to go through various sites which would acquaint you with the latest as well as upcoming developments in your respective domains. Would you like to work as a marketing executive all through your career? Obviously NO. Mere Educational Qualification and Degree do not help in today’s world of fierce competition. One needs to sharpen his/her existing skills not only to prepare for the future but also face all types of situations with confidence and determination.

Be open to feedbacks from your colleagues and superiors. Do not feel bad if your Boss scolds you or asks you to improve on certain areas. Remember, it is for your good only. An individual is successful only when he/she realizes his shortcomings and also works on the same. Do not feel ashamed if you do not know something. Never ignore your mistakes. An individual who has the courage of accepting his mistakes never fails in life.

Be open to challenges. Do not be afraid to take risks in life. It is not always advisable to stay in your comfort zone. Sometimes you need to come out of it as well. If you come across a better opportunity, please do not hesitate to accept the challenge. And yes, better opportunity does not mean only monetary benefits but better profile, additional responsibilities and so on. It is essential to stick to an organization for at least two to three years but after that it becomes essential to switch. Stay alert and the moment you come across any exciting opportunity, do not hesitate to grab the same. Grabbing the right opportunity at the right time ensures a successful professional career.

Read a lot. Remember, knowledge acquired at any stage never goes waste.

Master the skill of time management. Learn to value time if you wish to be successful in the future. Misusing time will not let you survive in today’s competitive world.

Learn to respect your superiors. You may be the master in your respective field but if you do not know how to behave with your superiors, you would fail miserably in future.

Meticulous planning also helps you achieve your targets within the desired time frame. Always be ready with an alternate Plan in case your initial plan does not work.

Develop a positive attitude. Remember, it is your attitude which actually makes the difference. Leave the habit of cribbing and complaining if you wish to do well not only professionally but also personally.

Learn to work as a team player. Gone are the days when individuals used to work in isolation. Now a days, nothing can be achieved if you do not know how to work as a team.
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Lovelace’s Answer

If you have fields of interest, look for people already in those fields and set up an interview with them to see what is needed for their field. You can also engage your school career counselor about taking career assessments. It is not uncommon to feel lost when trying to determine what direction to take.
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