Are you asking yourself "What should my next career be" or "How to plan my next career move" ? Are you confused thinking about what you should do next?
Making any decision about your career, especially changing your career path can be exhausting. But with a little direction, the process can feel far less daunting and a lot more enjoyable.
It doesn’t matter how fast you get there if you’re heading the wrong way.
A few days ago I was rushing to meet up with a friend at a hotel in the centre of the city. I realised I was heading in the wrong direction a good 45 minutes into the journey..all because I had selected the wrong address in Google Maps!
Many of us make the same mistake in our careers.
In a terrible rush to find our careers, we land on the wrong one. Once we are there, we spend so much time trying to make it work. We realise we are in a place where our heart doesn't belong.
We end up staying at the job till it’s too late to do anything about it.
What Should Be The Next Step In My Career Path
Right at this moment, you may think it's easier to stay where you are, rather than try for new opportunities. “Things at this job aren’t that bad,” you reason - Maybe you will get a promotion at the next appraisal - the same promotion you were promised a year ago.
I know how hard it can be to even think about getting back to planning your career journey when you think you're already on your destination. It can feel quite exhausting thinking about changing your company or even moving to a new role within your present company.
But I promise once you give yourself enough time to think, to plan and to decide where you want to be and head in that direction accordingly, you'll soon arrive at your new destination, this time the right one.
The one where you are meant to be and the one you didn't rush to but found with patience.
Here's a blog that will help you understand better how you can get a fresh start in your career. Career Change: 5 Ways To Get A Fresh Start
You are a unique individual. There is absolutely no one else in this world like you. You are here to do something that only you can do. Some of us are meant to be doctors, others lawyers..but remember that no-one is ever going to do anything exactly like you do!
Figure out your career path and how to get there. Take one step at a time.
What Makes a Job Fulfilling? Let's Look At A Career Change Example
All of us want work that doesn’t feel like work at all..but not always do we find that.
I have a friend (lets call him Karthik) who worked in an MNC. He was a Senior Project Manager and he was brilliant at his job. He told me he'd joined for the experience of working at a big company, specifically his boss who’s a big name in the industry. He figured he’d get the work experience of working under someone well known, get a really good recommendation and move on to more creative avenues. However his “job" began to take over his life . It was slowly but surely, draining all the fun out of his life.
Unfortunately by the time he woke up to this realisation, he’d given up several years to this organisation and was earning more in one year than he had thought he would make in a lifetime.
How was he to give up all that money??
Which brings us to the dilemma most corporate workers face:
Do you pick a job for the Money - or the Heart?
After wrestling with this question for more than a few sleepless nights (and days) Karthik chose the job that hit closer to home. He had always found joy in volunteering in community programs. So he found a similar job at an NGO which gave him the satisfaction of using skills while at the same time giving something back to the community.
Pursuing one’s passions has proven profitable on many levels - and it has proven so for many other friends, as well. I believe this is for two reasons:
When you do what you love, this is most likely where your true talent lies, so you’ll stand out in your field.
You’ll be so enthusiastic about your pursuit, you’ll have more energy to jump over annoying obstacles in your path.
What To Consider When Defining Your Career Path?
Some of us end up looking at old maps that have not been updated to show the new and exciting paths that have been added or the old ones that have been closed down. We’re are still headed to some dream place that we picked back in 12th grade or college - when we have changed so much in the meantime. Or we consult the maps given by our parents and family members or our friends gave us. While the map they give you makes sense to them, it may not necessarily make sense to you.
You need to find a map/path that works for you, for your career. This could mean that you need to create one of your own. Even before that, you need to see who you really are. Thats the only way you can identify where you need to go.
This is How You Can Make Your Next Career Move
So, to plan your next career move, make a list things you'd do if you could do anything you wanted! Things that speak to your soul. Things you would not need a paycheque for. Things that would make your heart soar, like an Eagle!
For example, I'd love to simply talk all day to people about what they do. It would satisfy my soul and my curiosity to know the kinds of ways in which people make a living. I’d be so happy at the end of the day, that I wouldn’t feel tired at all!
What are yours?
Write down at least 3 here ..
Once you do this, you'll find the clarity that you need to carve out the right path. Here's a blog that will simplify the process even further. Need a New Career? Make a Career Action Plan
Career Move Examples
For example, look at these people:
Rubina was working in sales in a company that had recruited her right out of college. The company however, had posted her in a city that did not have the creative outlets she needed. This made it very hard for her to be motivated at work, because after a point it felt like she had no life. She took a call on whether she could continue working there or shift base and take a pay hit. It was a no- brainer. She took the pay hit and chose a much more balanced lifestyle.
Ashish was working at an MNC abroad and doing very well but his mind and heart were always with his family in India. He kept telling himself that he’d pay off his dues and then make his way back home. That black hole had swallowed a good chunk of his life. Along the way, he woke up to the fact that he enjoyed working with students who came in for work experience etc. After much thought, he quit his work abroad, came back to India and got himself a job at a prestigious university engaging young minds in the subject of business.
If you ever feel confused about your next career move, remember that it’s better to have a short wrong job than a long wrong job! It’s never too late to find who you are and start doing what you are meant to do.