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  1. #1
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Default Steps to Finding a Career

    I was driving home today and had some important insights that I thought I would share. Instead of making a selfish post all about me, I thought it'd be cool to have everyone contribute. Your job: list, sequentially, what practical steps one could take to find a suitable career. Also, extra points if you give it a cool title.

  2. #2
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Arrow Correct Motivation

    The problem with the way most people try and find a suitable career is that they use the wrong motivation. They focus too much on what will make them happy. Consequently, they choose careers based on their personal preferences and personal enjoyment. Their personal enjoyment, however, is bound to change because of their own personal development (e.g., suddenly money is less important, or you realize you're really interested in math) or because they realize that they've encountered something they don't like in their job that they underestimated or overlooked. Since the only thing that ties them to the career is their OWN enjoyment, when the enjoyment fades, the commitment to that career changes, and they're back at step one. The effects of that pattern can be pretty devastating in the long run because (1) you may suffer financially (2) you run risk of feeling interminably lost (3) your chances of building expertise diminish (4) you don't build a strong connection to your job (5) you may end up feeling like you have wasted time (6) it's harder to make your career serve as a source of fulfillment. Obviously this is not the case for everyone, as some people may find enjoyment is job-skipping, but I think most people, myself included, would agree with this premise.

    The answer, I think, is to stop thinking about yourself and your preferences and start thinking about it from a different perspective: what is my duty? what is my responsibility to this world? Your duty is something you can think of as handed to you (by your genetics and upbringing or by a deity if you prefer), rather than something that you choose. I don't mean to say that it's handed to you like an envelope that has a specific thing written on it -- no. Rather, you have certain gifts and talents that can be used to better the world. Your task then, is to contemplate (a) what your gifts are and (b) where they can be utilized to produce maximal benefit to mankind. While typology is a good starting point, there is lots more to your personality and abilities that the practice of typology will miss. By discovering your duty to this world, you have a better chance of weathering through job-disappointments, creating a connection with your job, resisting fleeting urges to find something a bit more stimulating (that may disappoint you too), building expertise, and feeling fulfilled.

    Practical Steps to Finding Your Life's Purpose and Duty
    1. STFU. Your mind is both a friend and foe, but in order to get in touch with your real qualities, you need to shut your mind up. One way to do this is through arousing compassion (reading certain stories, nostalgia) or arousing some sadness (listening to emo music). If you meditate, now's a good time. If you think some is beautiful, be around it, even through the internet. You can also go to the gym and do some intense exercise. Any one of these will work. (1.5 hours)
    2. Ask yourself what your best qualities are. What do you do very well? Exceptionally well? What talents do you have? What was your best grade in school? Favorite subject? What have people complimented you for? What was your favorite job thus far? (20 minutes)
    3. What types of areas are your skills needed? Where are you, personally, needed? If you had a duty in life, what might it be? What type of career would give you quiet pride? (2 days)

  3. #3
    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    What if you happen to enjoy that which you do well, because you've consequently spent a lot time doing it?
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

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    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    What if you happen to enjoy that which you do well, because you've consequently spent a lot time doing it?
    What would the problem with that be? Are you pointing out an error in my guide? (No hostile tone here, I just want to make sure I understand you correctly.)

  5. #5
    Diabolical Kasper's Avatar
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    Need to mix passion with talent, anything else will result in dissatisfaction over time.

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    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatsWhatHeSaid View Post
    What would the problem with that be? Are you pointing out an error in my guide? (No hostile tone here, I just want to make sure I understand you correctly.)
    Hmm I don't know. Nevermind.
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

  7. #7
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatsWhatHeSaid View Post
    2. Ask yourself what your best qualities are. What do you do very well? Exceptionally well? What talents do you have? What was your best grade in school? Favorite subject? What have people complimented you for? What was your favorite job thus far? (20 minutes)
    What if there's more than one!
    ENTj 7-3-8 sx/sp

  8. #8
    Senior Member swordpath's Avatar
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    I think it's very important to utilize your strengths but to feel passionate towards that which you do. How are you really going to be beneficial without the mixture? If you happen to hit a focus shift and you just can't stand your occupation anymore, cross that bridge when you get to it. You can only do so much to plan for the future, because obviously the future is non-linear and unforeseen.

    Not that Edahn's advice is bad or wrong, but I really can't relate to the mindset of ignoring self and latching to your strengths even if that compromises your interests. To be truly effective, you have to be passionate about what you do.

    1. Look for something within an avenue that caters to your interests.
    2. Research.
    3. Take proper steps in receiving the experience and training that would make you optimal for that career; whether that be internship, mentorship program, schooling, a part-time job that's similar in nature etc. etc.
    4. Start applying.

  9. #9
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    What if there's more than one!
    That's fine. Combine them.

  10. #10
    4x9 cascadeco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatsWhatHeSaid View Post
    The problem with the way most people try and find a suitable career is that they use the wrong motivation. They focus too much on what will make them happy. Consequently, they choose careers based on their personal preferences and personal enjoyment. Their personal enjoyment, however, is bound to change because of their own personal development (e.g., suddenly money is less important, or you realize you're really interested in math) or because they realize that they've encountered something they don't like in their job that they underestimated or overlooked. Since the only thing that ties them to the career is their OWN enjoyment, when the enjoyment fades, the commitment to that career changes, and they're back at step one. The effects of that pattern can be pretty devastating in the long run because (1) you may suffer financially (2) you run risk of feeling interminably lost (3) your chances of building expertise diminish (4) you don't build a strong connection to your job (5) you may end up feeling like you have wasted time (6) it's harder to make your career serve as a source of fulfillment. Obviously this is not the case for everyone, as some people may find enjoyment is job-skipping, but I think most people, myself included, would agree with this premise.

    The answer, I think, is to stop thinking about yourself and your preferences and start thinking about it from a different perspective: what is my duty? what is my responsibility to this world? Your duty is something you can think of as handed to you (by your genetics and upbringing or by a deity if you prefer), rather than something that you choose. I don't mean to say that it's handed to you like an envelope that has a specific thing written on it -- no. Rather, you have certain gifts and talents that can be used to better the world. Your task then, is to contemplate (a) what your gifts are and (b) where they can be utilized to produce maximal benefit to mankind. While typology is a good starting point, there is lots more to your personality and abilities that the practice of typology will miss. By discovering your duty to this world, you have a better chance of weathering through job-disappointments, creating a connection with your job, resisting fleeting urges to find something a bit more stimulating (that may disappoint you too), building expertise, and feeling fulfilled.

    Practical Steps to Finding Your Life's Purpose and Duty
    1. STFU. Your mind is both a friend and foe, but in order to get in touch with your real qualities, you need to shut your mind up. One way to do this is through arousing compassion (reading certain stories, nostalgia) or arousing some sadness (listening to emo music). If you meditate, now's a good time. If you think some is beautiful, be around it, even through the internet. You can also go to the gym and do some intense exercise. Any one of these will work. (1.5 hours)
    2. Ask yourself what your best qualities are. What do you do very well? Exceptionally well? What talents do you have? What was your best grade in school? Favorite subject? What have people complimented you for? What was your favorite job thus far? (20 minutes)
    3. What types of areas are your skills needed? Where are you, personally, needed? If you had a duty in life, what might it be? What type of career would give you quiet pride? (2 days)
    This is all interesting. In a sense I agree with what you're saying in the first paragraph, as a more superficial enjoyment can fade with time and there will always be factors in whatever job you have that are unpleasant or overlooked initially. I would say this is actually a reason I've never been able to pinpoint a career -- because I know over time my interests will change, so I fear committing myself to one, and only one, career, only to eventually dislike it over time.

    As for the 'duty to the world' concept....it's an interesting take. I think it's a good way to compartmentalize the job thing, and make it in your mind so that it's more of a reality (which it is) and an obligatory thing, but I don't think it's a concept I can easily integrate into my brain. :-)

    I do take your point on assessing gifts and figuring out the type of job/career they'd best be utilized in. Bullet points 1, 2, and 3...I've done similar things before. Basically given that list I should be in an analytical/strategy/planning job. Problem is that I hate working in a corporate environment at this point, and also need to actually care about the project that I'm on and the subject matter at hand - and most corporate stuff is stupid in the big picture. :-)

    I think I already know the sector I need to target - environmental or government.

    I also agree with Trinity and Beat that passion (on some level) IS a necessary element - otherwise there will dissatisfaction.

    The only 'problem' with going the route of pure skills/talents is that you can easily be GOOD at something that you don't like doing or that isn't a great fit for your personality or ideals. Example - I was really good at math and science. Those were my favorite subjects in school. But I hated engineering classes and the types of people I'd end up having to work with - so I left it.
    "...On and on and on and on he strode, far out over the sands, singing wildly to the sea, crying to greet the advent of the life that had cried to him." - James Joyce

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