When choosing a career, you must take into consideration your personality. After all, you will be devoting the bulk of your time at this job, so you should like it and be well suited to doing it.
- Analyze what you like to do. What are you passionate about? What do you enjoy doing? Start out by writing what you like to do. Are you interested in music, acting or the arts? Do you like helping people? Do find it challenging to solve puzzles and finding solutions to complex situations? Do you like working with your hands or do you prefer doing research? The answers to these questions should guide you towards the type of work you can do. If you like the arts, don’t limit yourself to being onstage. Perhaps, you can still work in the field but under a technical aspect. When listing down what you like to do, make a separate list of what you don’t like. For example, if you don’t like working nights and standing for long periods of time, maybe a career in the food service industry may not be for you.
- Review what areas in school you did well in. Did you like doing group work activities? Did you thrive being in a leadership position? Did you love math and science or did you prefer literature and history? These are early indicators of the type of career you can have.
- Go to a career counselor. High schools and colleges offer career guidance services. It is free so take advantage of it! A guidance counselor will interview you and should be able to assess your skills based on your school records and any personality tests you have taken. Take heed of his advice. Open your mind to possibilities, even though a particular field isn’t something you thought about getting into the first place. Sometimes, it takes another person to guide you into seeing things more clearly.
- Ask those already in the field. You can also talk to other people already in the field to get an idea what a particular job is like. For example, if you’re interested in a sales job, talk to sales people and find out what a day is like. Most of the time, those already in the industry can tell you what type of people do well and what type of people don’t make it based on personality and skills.
- Take a career aptitude examination. School guidance counselors give these exams, especially to graduating students. Some employers give this type of exam to potential employees to see if a prospective person will be a perfect fit for the job description. Don’t make up answers or fill in what you think the counselor or interviewer wants to see. Be honest to be able to get a correct assessment. A popular test is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). There is also the Keirsey Temperament Sorter. You can also find some tests online that you can take along with corresponding analysis and suggestions.
- Be honest. When you are making a list or taking a test, stay true to who you are. The best way to get a correct assessment is to give the most accurate information. Don’t discount a career even if people say there’s no money in it, if that is what you are strongly drawn to. For example, if you honestly don’t like people, then you shouldn’t be in a customer or service oriented field. There are jobs you can do in relative isolation that you may be perfectly happy with.
- Don’t let money be the guide in your career choice. Keep in mind that you can make money out of a passion if you put your mind into it. You must first love what you do to be able to do it well.
Put careful consideration into what type of job you’d like to work at. If you’re happy with what you’re doing, it won’t seem like work at all.