Finding the Best Career Choice as a Student: How to Pick the Right Path for Happiness
As we transition into adulthood, one of the most important decisions we are faced with is deciding on a career path. The simple truth is that nearly all of us will need to work to survive, and most will end up working right up until the average retirement age which of course will be decades after graduating school.
Because work will end up consuming a great deal of our adult life, it’s vital to choose a career that at the very least brings us some sense of joy, while also providing the funds to pay for the lifestyle we want to enjoy.
Developing an effective career path consists of a number of steps and requires you to set both short and long term goals. Everyone’s career path including your own should be unique and suited to your individual personality and set of circumstances. Choosing a wrong career path can really set you back in the progression of life and sadly as many as 75% of people end up changing their careers within 10 years.
So how do you choose the correct career path for you, one that will keep you motivated, happy, and fulfilled in numerous aspects of your life? Here are some very helpful steps that will help you choose and get set up in a career that will hopefully give you the lifestyle you wish to live.
Managing Your Time
One of the most challenging aspects of choosing a fulfilling career is actually finding the time to focus on your career path. We are somehow expected to keep up with schooling and achieve top marks, while also working a hopefully temporary, not-so-dream job to pay for rent, a car, general living expenses, and paying off school loans. Some young people may also be trying to nurture a new relationship or possibly even care for a child which can reduce available time even further.
It can often seem like there just isn’t enough time in the day to effectively manage everything and should you not be able to give 100% to any aspect, it can seem like a never-ending uphill climb. If you focus solely on getting good grades to get into that university that will give you the degree you need for the career you want, then you may not be able to work while going to school to earn enough to actually pay for that degree or your daily essential needs. Any relationships you have too can suffer if neglected.
Students especially are always looking for ways to better manage their time and trying to ensure all important aspects of their life are attended to. It is important to know that many students struggle to keep up with everything and seek out assistance from time to time. For example, many are looking to essay writers to help them keep their grades up when things get difficult.
It seems like professors are flooding students with essay writing assignments these days, and these can really consume a lot of your time. Many teachers don’t often take into consideration the many other demands students face and also often don’t provide additional assistance to those students that are struggling to meet deadlines and requirements.
Essay writing services can be a useful tool to students when used the right way. It is of course important for you to learn good writing and thinking skills, but there are times when you may be under tremendous pressure in another area of your life and need a bit of help.
The alternative is churning out a poor essay and receiving bad marks which can hurt your future career goals. And the truth is that a single essay that may even have nothing to do with your chosen career shouldn’t hold you back or prevent you from getting the career you want.
When it comes to working while going to school, don’t overwork yourself or you won’t be able to keep your grades up. If you are struggling to save up for the college you want to go to, you may have to be realistic in choosing a more economical school.
And when it comes to relationships while in school and deciding on a career path, it pays to find a partner that is supportive and won’t hold you back from getting the career you desire. At this age, your career is just as important as any relationship and they should be able to coincide harmoniously if you have chosen the right partner for you.
Recognize Your Passions
Once you’ve mastered the art of time management and being able to juggle various aspects of your life, it’s then time to do a bit of self reflection and really discover what you’re passionate about.
Many of us are probably told by our parents, friends, or teachers what career we should go after. While they may mean well, nobody knows your desires like you do. Because a career really will take up such a large chunk of your life, it’s important to really think about what brings you joy.
It’s too easy to get wrapped up in looking at salaries for various careers rather than one that you will actually enjoy. As they say though, money can’t always bring happiness. Choosing a job strictly based on a salary can see you hating waking up each day, working a schedule you dread, possibly leave you with little free time to actually enjoy the money you’re making, or spending a great deal of money on counseling or unhealthy coping mechanisms to be able to deal with a job you detest.
Going after a career you’re passionate about may mean having to sacrifice a large salary in the beginning, but in the long run the passion and motivation for a career you love with see you work your way up quicker. Being blinded by dollar signs will always limit your growth and potential to live the life you want.
Do a Self-Assessment
While it’s important to choose a career you’re passionate about, you also need to be realistic. Hard work and determination does have its limits. For example, if you’re 5 feet tall and want to play professional basketball, you may be wise to follow a different passion you have where your chances of success are more on your side.
Doing a self assessment allows you to reflect on what your strengths are and whether you honestly think you will be able to achieve the career that interests you.
It’s one thing to be passionate about a career, but you need to consider whether that career will truly align with your skills, values, personality, and lifestyle you want to live. For example, being a touring musician may sound like a dream job, but it may not be a good fit if you already have or want kids in the near future and want to settle into a stable home.
It’s a good idea to make a list of careers you enjoy and think may be a good fit for you. Then do deeper research into the realities of these careers. Talk to people that are in those careers to get an idea of what it’s really like to live that career and see if that career matches up to what your expectations were.
Get the Tools to Succeed
Utilizing the right tools will definitely help you in reaching your career goals. Reading is your first main tool you should be utilizing, as thorough research will allow you to make good decisions. You then need the right physical tools to help you excel in your career. For instance, if you want to be a professional photographer, it will usually mean having a professional camera and the right accessories to be able to produce professional looking images.
A dependable laptop is another tool often needed these days for many remote jobs. The tools you need will of course depend on what job you want, so find out what you’ll need to compete with others in your profession and calculate what those costs may be. It may be a case of having to spend a fair bit to get you started in your chosen career but hopefully you will be able to justify those upfront costs as you start earning a steady income.
And other people may be your most useful tools you can use on your path to obtaining your dream career. As we have already discussed, talking with people already in your chosen career will help you gain first-hand knowledge of what you can expect and what will be expected of you.
Networking too is equally as important as any other skills you may have. Some stats have shown that the majority of people landing jobs these days are doing so through networking. As they say, it’s often more about who you know as opposed to what you know.
Fine Tuning Your Skills
Landing your dream job is one thing, but then there’s staying sharp and relevant. Landing a career doesn’t guarantee you’ll be able to keep it. It takes work to maintain a career and you need to always be wary of the possibility of being replaced by someone that is more skilled than you are.
Working hard to build up an impressive résumé may help you land a job, but then you will be expected to not only live up to what your résumé says you can do but also keep up with changing times and be able to adapt. Climbing the corporate ladder means constantly learning new skills and improving on the ones you already know.
Never fall into the trap of thinking you know everything or that things can’t be improved upon. There is always a more efficient way of doing things and always more money to be made if you play your cards right.
Students who are serious about seeking the best career choices should try and utilize the above tips. These will hopefully prevent you from initially choosing the wrong career or jumping from one career to another without success. You should always set your goals and evaluate all you need before selecting a job.
Remember, a career path consists of making both short and long term goals. Take things step by step and recognize ahead of time what your obstacles will be. Be realistic in what career you choose and with enough hard work nearly any career can be within your reach.