Before choosing which field of study you want to major in, you need to have in mind what kind of job you want to pursue with your degree. Even if you didn’t go to college, you’ll already have an idea of what kind of life you want and what you’ll be doing in it. The tricky thing that most people deal with is “How do I become that person?”
When you’ve been looking for a job for a while, you’ll start to think that taking any job is better than having no job, which is true–to an extent. Applying to any job that seems doable and relatable to your experience doesn’t mean it’s the right one.
There’s plenty of career advice out there offering different way to avoid hitting dead ends in your job search. “Follow your passion” or “do what you love” they might say but what if you just want to do what interests you? You may have a passion for vintage cars, but also like the fact that it’s completely separate from work.
Given the choice, everyone would want a career that ties into what makes them happy. The problem with making this kind of decision is that people tend to change their minds making it harder to predict whether they will still feel the same about what they do in the future. No one can ever really say for sure that they will love their job until they’ve been doing it for years. It’s rare that you’ll come across someone who took a job that ended up meeting all of their expectations.
Often times, a good match between skills and job position can create happiness rather than using what makes you happy to create the perfect job match. Along with preferences and compatibility, a successful long-term career also provides necessary motivation to stay in that career.
Generally, there are two types of mindsets that people have when setting motivational goals: promotion and prevention. Those who see their goals as a way to hang on to everything they’ve done up to that point, are considered prevention-focused. Promotion-focused workers see their goals as an opportunity to gain more if and when they successfully accomplish them.
Depending on which orientation is your focus-type, you should keep that at the forefront when searching for and applying to jobs. What motivates you and the way you work can be the missing link for lasting career success. When you’ve been trying to stick a square peg into a round whole, no amount of trimming around the corner is to make it fit.