By Judit Lovas
An average person will spend 90,000 hours—11,250 days—at work over their lifetime. Anything we do for one-third of our waking hours can have a huge impact on the quality of our lives.
Unfortunately, many people feel stuck in a career rut, mostly because they don’t know where to start creating a fulfilling professional life.
Whether you’re in the midst of finding your first career path or daydreaming about leaving your current job to do something that makes you happier, the following ideas will help you get started on your journey.
(Hint: start looking inside.)
Identifying core values
Core values, such as integrity and loyalty, are the guiding principles of people’s lives. Our values reflect who we truly are and what we consider important in life.
Identifying your core values is critical to career success. When you bring your values to your job, you’ll feel fulfilled. Losing sight of your core values, however, might lead to career decisions that are not in alignment with your true self.
Think of three to five of your highest values, ones that guide your everyday life. Are they present in your career?
Finding your passion
The most successful people are passionate about their work. Passion brings an intensity and focus that effort and persistence cannot match. Think about your current career. If you won the lottery, would you still do your job, or would you rather do something else? What is it that your mind cannot stop thinking about?
Think of ways you could make passion a presence in your career.
Discovering your motivation
While passion is love for what you do, motivation is your reason for doing it. A key to success is making sure your career is driven by the right motivation, one that works for you. Think about what motivates you in your career: freedom? Money? People? Doing good?
Are you running away from your fears (not being able to pay your bills) or running towards your dreams (reaching your full potential)?
Think about what things generally keep you motivated in life. Are they external or internal?
Identifying your skills
Your core skill set includes skills that you are naturally good at. These are your unique talents, which you actively use in every job. Knowing what you’re good at is great, but sometimes identifying skills that you need to develop can be even more important to your career success.
Start thinking about three things that, since your childhood, you have always done better than others. Then list three skills you need to improve on to become successful in your career.
Think about what you often get compliments on, and also about what you do that is less than stellar, according to your last performance review.
Working with a career coach
My clients have proven over and over that career coaching can help clarify who we truly are and what we really want.
A career coach helps you turn your professional aspirations into reality. Coaching is a great resource, especially if you feel unhappy, stuck, or unfulfilled in your current position.
A great career is not a job title, a position, or a dollar figure on a paycheque. A great career is self-expression. A dream career is always in perfect alignment with our dreams, values, life’s purpose, and unique talents.
Judit is a business consultant and career success coach for ambitious professionals. Judit works with lawyers, doctors, accountants, CEOs, small business owners or anyone who feels stressed, burnt out, or stuck in one or more areas of their life. As a Human Rights and Diversity Consultant, she helps corporate businesses unlock the power of differences in their organizations.