Some lucky people know exactly what they want to do from when they are a kid and they take steps to achieve their dream. However, for the majority of people, things aren’t always that easy. In today’s job market, people are working in more and more different types of job rather than just focusing on one. But many still continue searching for that dream job – something that will provide them with happiness, fullfillment and hopefully a decent pay packet as well!

Finding the type of job you love really does take time and a great deal of thought. So if you are still trying to work out what direction you want your career to go in, here are a few pointers to give you a helping hand.

Determine Your Strengths

You should start off by writing out a list of your strengths. Many people find this quite a difficult task to begin with, so you need to think back through your life and work out what you have done well and where you have achieved success. If you can find a job that plays to your strengths, you will be in a much better position to analyse which jobs suit what you do best in life. If you are struggling to answer the question yourself, you could enlist the support of friends and family to give you some support. So, if you are a natural with people, you may find that customer service or sales suits you best. If you are naturally creative, you may discover that graphic design is right for you.

Analyse Your Past

Your past is a place that is ripe for analysis so you can determine what you have enjoyed doing the most. You should look at the companies you have worked for in the past or even the subjects you have covered at school. You can then start asking yourself a series of questions about what you liked, what you disliked, which part of the experience made you the proudest, what were your biggest accomplishments etc. So, if you always enjoyed supervising new employees, teaching or training may be the path for you. Of course, you don’t have to stick with the same type of career, but your past may help you to determine where your future is heading.

Talk to Different People

The more people you talk to, the more alternative perspectives you get and information on different career paths. You can attend networking events in which you talk with people about their job and industry sector. Also, try to put yourself in different social situations with people who are not in your immediate circle of friends and ask them some questions. People love talking about themselves so this shouldn’t be a problem! Once you have got an introduction into a particular career, you can start following it up by doing some research on what it would be like on a day-to-day basis. You may even discover that some jobs some jobs that you had ruled out in your head look more interesting than you thought.

Use the Internet as a Tool

With such a wealth of information available online, it can be difficult to know exactly where to start looking. Try to be focused in your approach. Firstly, there is a wealth of online career tests that you can try to determine what suits you the most. So, if you find a career path that you may potentially be interested in, start reading more about this particular area. Read articles and interviews from people who already work in this field. Discover if there are any more qualifications that you need in order to progress. Watch YouTube videos where you can see what the job is like. You can then start looking through job forums focused on that particular job. If you think that nursing may be the career path for you, you could check out to see what you would need to do in order to progress further. However, when you are browsing through the internet, it is very easy to become distracted so try to stay focused on one particular area at a time.

Think About the Work Environment

The actual work environment itself will play a big role in how much you enjoy the job. So, you may prefer to be a quiet office where you work largely on your own or one that is a fast-paced collaborative effort. If work-life balance is important to you, you will probably find that a very demanding career isn’t right for you. You also need to think about your ambition and chance of progression in each job that you consider. Ultimately, your job has a big impact on your life, so you need to consider what its impact on your lifestyle would be.

Don’t Think About Impressing Others

A lot of people use their job as a status symbol – something that will impress people at cocktail parties but not something that makes them happy. Unfortunately, we live in a culture in which different jobs are ranked depending on how they are perceived. Ultimately, you should be aiming to do something that gives you satisfaction, not something that pleases other people. Many of the most ‘impressive’ jobs are actually the most tedious and demanding ones. So, if you find a job that you think would be right for you, don’t let what others may think of it affect your decision.

Try to Build Your Hobbies into a Job

If you can turn your hobbies and passions into a job, this is something that will certainly provide you with a great deal of satisfaction – take a look at The internet has opened up so many more opportunities for people to earn money in different ways that were impossible in the past. For example, you could always go down the blogging path if you love writing about a particular subject. If you love arts and crafts, you could always try setting up your own online store selling your creations. Even if you can’t build a full-time career out of this straight away, you may still find that you can make a good second source of income that could turn into something bigger in the future.

Remember That You May Not Find Your Dream Job Overnight

Many people have to try various different things until they choose a job that is right for them. And you don’t want to necessarily discount something straight away if you don’t enjoy it from day one. Most of the most successful people in life have struggled to find the direction that is right for them, and it always takes time and perseverance until they get there. But if you give each new opportunity that presents itself a fair shot, you may find that what you never thought would be your dream job slowly becomes it over time.

A Change of Direction is Normal

People change direction on their careers at all points during their life, so don’t think that you have to stick at something just because you have worked at it for a number of years. You may even find that you have more than one dream job during your life. As you get older, your priorities change and you may find that something else provides you with more fullfillment. And if you commit to always learning new skills and taking risks in your life, you are more likely to keep trying new things.     

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