What career do I go into when I haven't ever had a solid idea of what I wanted to do?
I am interested in many different things, but I can't see myself fully committing to a career, I have always loved forensics but I want a job that will make decent money.
I decided my career path by combining my interests with my talents/gifts. Fortunately for me, I knew at a young age that I had a heart of service. I liked helping people, especially vulnerable people. As far as my interests, I liked being around babies and toddlers. I decided to combine the two and pursue a career as a pediatrician (although I ended up becoming a nurse instead).
For you, I would make a list of every talent or gift that you have. Think of the things that your family, friends, peers and teachers say you are good at. Great listener? Leader? Human calculator? Then think of the things you like to do. What's something you could do all day long without ever getting bored? What types of places do you like to go to? What types of activities do you like? It'll be great to work in an environment that you already enjoy being in.
You say you like forensics, what exactly do you like about it? Do you like figuring things out? You could explore more careers that will satisfy this same curiosity, for example, certain types of engineering or even a psychologist or researcher.
Combine your talents, gifts and interests. Keep in mind that your interests may change overtime. If so, explore different elective courses in college or volunteer in the community in some way (you could even start now). Eventually, it should all come together.
Dr. Lexi Rand, DNP, MSN, APRN, PMHNP-BC, FNP-C
Dr. Lexi’s Answer
Where do you begin?
So, you have lots of things that you love to do but do not love them enough to make a career out of them.
It is natural to have multiple interests. However, one of the ways to narrow down what your main interest is, is to find out what problem makes you angry. For me, that was taking better care of sick people, mentally and physically. I knew that it made me angry to see the care people were getting and how they were labeled because of the mental illness. This really made me very angry, and I knew that I could make a difference.
Back then, I could not be specific because I was trying to find out exactly where do I belong. I like theater, working outdoors, teaching, mentoring, being an advocate, helping people, travel agent, and cooking. I knew some of the areas I liked, there is no way I would be working in those fields for more than 6 months. I tried most of them out and began eliminating them off my list. I revisited a few of them along the way but still came back to the main list because I did not see myself working in those areas long term. I also did a lot of reflecting and spoke to others who were working in the areas I liked, and this helped me even more.
The thing is that knowing your niche comes easy for some and for others, it takes time, sometimes years. No worries though, as you begin working in areas you are interested in, you will be able to see whether that particular area stirs up passion to wanting to do it every day. Your list will begin to get shorter and pretty soon you will be able to discern where you want to be and what you want to do. When you decide which area you are most passionate about, you will know because others will tell you and you will operate in that area like without any stress or dread. For me, my theater experience allows me to relate to my patients with severe mental illness who are in psychosis or who are in crisis. My love for outdoor allows me to walk with my patients who have diabetes and hypertension, and who are pleasantly plump. My cooking allows me to share healthy recipes with my patients and cook for the team I work with. Teaching and mentoring come with my job as a Nurse Practitioner. And as far as travelling, I can do it without worry because I make enough money to travel where I want to go. For me, everything fell into place, but it took years. I now have the best of both worlds and you will too! And don't forget to watch out for your destiny helpers...
Candice Robinson, BS, NCPT-4
This is truly personal decision. Begin with thinking about what you enjoy doing, is it design? Fashion? entertainment? etc. Once you figure out what you love, while in college look for internships in that area and apply to them and start off working as an intern to get exposure in the hopes of it turning into a perm job once you graduate.