When it comes to choosing a career of a lifetime, the decision can be so complex, based on many determining factors. Many people have had to encounter different bottlenecks along their path to their career but one thing is common to everyone. You will finally settle down with whatever you finally decide to hold on to for a career.
But if you are given the chance to go back in time and decide again, you would choose the same job. Right? Just before you answer that, I want to tell you one of the most important criteria, if not the most important, to choosing your career.
In many parts of the world, career choice has been linked to one’s education. The system was designed to train people along the line of their career as they grow. So with the intent of helping their children achieve great feats in life, parents would sometimes impose certain decisions on them. Apart from parental influence, children also naturally choose to study one of those competitive and respected courses in school because of how they perceive society views those subject areas.u Thus, education has become the best way people choose their career paths in many parts of the world.
It is not as though it is a wrong thing to pursue a more respectful and lucrative career path but that is actually what the society says. You may actually say differently if given a choice. What are the criteria people consider when choosing career paths?
There are countless people who have had to neglect their “parents-oriented” career paths to focus on the one they consider best for them. A large percentage of these people live happier and do better in life than if they continued to stick to the career that society considers best.
Choosing a career is by far one of the most important decisions in one’s life but fortunately and unfortunately, external factors exert a great deal of influence on this decision. A few parents take the time to study their children to understand what their interests are. This way they help their children achieve their best forms and choose the best career.
Society has a list of professions already, so it is almost mandatory to choose from them or never choose at all. So everyone is forced to choose a career they think will enable them to live their best life both financially and socially. This then makes some careers extremely competitive such that not everyone who desires them gets them. Family and societal decisions are usually far from being altruistic because their choice is only based on the desire to see that you have an affluent life as much as possible. This is in itself beautiful but it robs the child the will to do what he really loves to do by reassuring him that he cannot do affluently well doing the things he loves. But then again, society want to fix your gaze on only one thing which may just represent only one of your potentials. So how do you balance your desires with societal and family expectations?
Now, these are some common criteria that determine people’s choice of a career.
Economic Relevance And Social Value
Personal Ambitions, Interests And Dreams
Inborn Talents And Acquired Skills
Economic Relevance And Social Value
This is one factor that has been given the highest priority universally. By economic relevance, we refer to the financial worth of the job. This is very important because money is needed to bear the responsibilities of being alive and having a family. Therefore, these criteria should ever be greatly prioritized. The only problem with this priority is that many people automatically stop looking out for their potentials in the quest for the economically favourable job opportunities. It makes you think that you cannot make it any other way. Many people have had to live their lives thinking they can no more attain their dreams because they are not in any of these lucrative professions of being a Doctor, an Engineer, a Lawyer, or the likes. The coincidence is that the more economically relevant the profession is, the more social value and prestige the society gives them. The easiest way to live in affluence is to discover your self and do what comes out of you, even if you may be doing your societally acquired job alongside. The vast majority of cases of depression and dissatisfaction in the workplace is primarily due to the fact that people do the jobs they were not initially interested in but for sake of making wealth, were cajoled to follow such career paths. And when they monies do not come the way they imagined, they look for something to crucify, either themselves or society.
Personal Ambitions, Interests And Dreams
I deliberately put this as the second point but it should actually be the first and foremost criteria to be considered. Studies have shown that people do better at things they are really interested in. I want to disprove the notion that only a select few professions can yield your wealth. By careful understanding of the things you love doing and the willingness to explore them, you are happier with your life and are more likely to succeed in your life. When your career is in line with what talents and skills you already possess, it becomes so much easier and fun. The greater part of the joy you will ever have comes from the satisfaction in what you do or become and not necessarily from the amount of wealth you amass. But fortunately, satisfaction or happiness in what you do enables you to make the greatest magnitude of wealth you could ever make. Along the path of life, challenges may come but your ability to resist and overcome them is dependent on your level of motivation in the said job or activity.
In the early stages of one’s development, the mind is like a clean slate (tabula rasa). One thing I have come to believe in is that a child can acquire any skill in the world because the tabula rasa brain is ready to take in whatever comes in. However, many factors determine what a child will be interested in at that tender age. No one has been able to explain the complexity of the determinants of what the child chooses to hold up and what he will not. Hence, this has been best described as the persons “talent” because we now believe God, the creator has specially given him such skills. I have once debated that skills which are only acquired in later life are not as different as the naturally inherent talents except that the process of acquiring skills is often more systematic and can be replicated in different people. Another supporting evidence why people may be more proficient in their talents than in the skills they secondarily acquired is based on the length of time they have been with these talents. You have been with your talents right from birth and that affords you some level of more proficiency. It is not within the context of this post to contrast talents from skills, or describe in detail how they are acquired. So I will go on to give you what I promised; the first criteria you should have considered before making your career choice.
The First Criteria You Should Have Considered Before Making Your Career Choice
If you must excel greatly, you must stay open to learn new things, skills and seek to understand how to do them efficiently. One of the beautiful things about knowledge is that the usefulness of knowledge knows no bounds. One piece of information you got here can be used there or someone where else, even in areas where you never thought possible. Sometimes, acquiring new skills can be a really tough process but with time, it becomes internalized and then, they start flowing seamlessly. The first criteria you must consider when making your career choice is finding something that shares so much with your passions and interests already. Your inherent interests may not be job opportunities but they can come handy in certain job opportunities.
But when you look at the above, does it meant that you will always remain confined to your already known sphere of interests? Remember that there are many other potentials that you have not discovered yet, so to live maximally, you must be willing to tap into your unused potentials. In so doing, you are gradually expanding the list of career opportunities where you are useful.
When you make your career choices around the things you are interested in, you are happier, more productive and more useful to the world around you. In respect of this, you must be ready to do the things that relate to your interests, both the natural talents you are not ashamed to exude and the skills you learnt already. On a final note, that should not stop you from learning more. Even after you have chosen to be an Engineer, you still have a lot to develop in you and the good news is, nobody can stop you from living to the fullest of your achievements. Goodbye, till we meet again.
I am a seasoned writer, not because I am some genius but thanks to many years of trials, failure, and near successes. I curate the most content on this website; all geared towards making you a better and happier audience.