What percentage of people do you think are passionate about their current career path? Probably not too many. It seems that when most people talk about work, they are either complaining or too exhausted to even care. The majority are just putting in their time before the weekend, and counting down the years to retirement. But why is this? Perhaps too many of us choose our professional path too early in life. In fact, there may be many reasons why it is better to push off this important decision until we have gained more years and experience.
We Know Ourselves Better as We Get Older
Oftentimes we set the course for our career paths when we are pretty young, before we’ve had any real life experience. Living your life according to your own schedule is a way to uncover your true talent and passions. This is why a lot of people feel unsatisfied in their jobs year after year, and why so many consider changing careers entirely; instead of a “mid-life crisis,” this could really be seen as a “true self discovery.”
There Is Less Influence from School and Family
When we are young, we learn what we are “good at” through general courses in school: math, science, art, etc. But these are often very basic classes that don’t give a true representation of an industry. Kids may also be responding to teachers that they like or don’t like, as well as particular course syllabi or their classmates. Young people are also heavily influenced by their family, and learn what careers look like based on their home life; if your parents grew up always complaining about work, then it’s likely you never expected a career to be emotionally fulfilling. By being exposed to more people, we have a better sense of what else is out there.
When We’re Young, We Romanticize the Future
All too often we grow up thinking what we “want” to be, because it looks or sounds good on paper, but we don’t have a true sense of what it actually takes to get there and what the day-to-day will actually entail. For this reason, many people find themselves disenchanted once they actually spend some time in a particular field or industry. That being said, it’s important to make sure that we don’t continue to romanticize the future, and switch careers without a good sense of what the change could actually mean.
Look for a Profession That Matches Your Lifestyle
It’s important that we spend time learning the things that are really important to us. For example: What motivates you? What work-life balance do you need to be happy? How much money will it take to sustain your desired lifestyle? All of these factors make a big difference in the type of profession that an individual might be best suited for. Just make sure to be honest with yourself.
Take Advantage of Your Resources to Uncover Your Passion
Over time, we not only gain the confidence, but the personal connections, and—hopefully—the financial stability that allows us to have new experiences that expose us to different things. By taking advantage of the resources that come with time, you can make the best decision when it comes to your future career, and how you choose to spend a significant amount of your years, attention, and energy.