Starting out as a fresh new professional can be a huge and momentous occasion in one’s life. There are many avenues that one can take and there is a whole world to explore. However, there is a lot to consider. Bills, finance, housing, and much more. Your career decisions will affect them all.
Making a decision is never fun. But, someone has to do it.
Where does someone begin with all of that responsibility? How does one know what to do? That is a difficult and varied question. There are a lot of ways to start wrong, but in regards to success, it can take you to a variety of places. You just need to know where you start and where you plan to end.
1. Plan, plan, plan.
The first thing you need is a plan. Every one of your good career decisions will have started with a plan. Plans are what make the Earth go around. Planning is the first step.
So ask yourself. What do you want to do with your life? Once you figure that out, it will help you narrow down your goals and expectations.
For example, authors, when writing a new book, will outline the story so that it flows and it makes sense. You must be the author of your career. Where do you want to go and what do you want to do? Outline your plans. Create a five or ten-year plan to help you move along confidently through life.
The framework seems like a silly idea, but it really does work and it helps you with completing smaller tasks at hand. It can help with the larger ones later down the road. With the outline, figure out what is manageable now and continue to fill it in as you go. All of your career decisions should support longer-term objectives.
2. What’s your value?
Once a plan or an outline is in place, the next thing you should do is figure out your values and what matters to you. This is a deep question that can help you figure out who you are.
Luckily, this is not a step-by-step process of what checkboxes to complete. In fact, this could be the beginning of your journey right here.
- What matters to you?
- What do you place value in?
These questions can seem overwhelming, but they really aren’t. To help you with this, there are many online quizzes and tests you can take to see what kind of person you are.
But why does this matter? Because you matter! If you want to know what you are doing with your life, you need to understand who you are.
Once you understand who you are, that can help you make informed decisions for your career. You get to know more about yourself. It gives you a sense of looking for a place to belong.
3. Remember: We all matter.
You know who else matters? Everyone else. You are not the only person on the planet. There are almost 8 billion other people here who all have a different opinion, values, and way of life than you.
As you figure out your path for your life, reach out to your family for assistance. Or even members of your community. Many will be pleased to help. It also helps because as many are older than you, they have experienced life much more than you. They can give you all sorts of advice about what to do and not do.
Take advantage of that, especially if you live in a small community where everyone knows everyone. It will be easier to approach them and you can discover secret tricks that have helped people for generations.
How it affects other people is also detrimental to how you make your decisions. Talk with your friends and family about the pros and cons of a possible decision that you are on the fence about. If possible, see if you can negotiate with your job about your values. If not, that’s okay! Do you think you can manage? Great, keep doing what you’re doing. If not, that is also okay. The good news is that there are many jobs still available in the world every single day.
When making these decisions, remember that there are other people involved. Be sure to account for their feelings and values about any important decisions.
These are real people with real lives. So make sure what you are doing is in the fairest way possible. That way, you are not left surrounded by lots of angry people.
Making career decisions, no matter how big or small, can be a task that leaves some people awake at night. When presented with these decisions, one is usually overcome with emotion first before logic. Before you make any rash decisions just take a deep breath. Know your (and everyone else’s) place in the decision, look at your options, communicate with others if you need help, and you’re far more likely to make the right decision.