Choosing your career path is a pretty daunting task for anyone who isn't sure what they want to do or what area specifically is right for them.
If this describes you, remember that although it may seem like an impossible decision to make, there are ways you can help yourself so keep reading for these tips!
1. Take Your Time
Many people feel pressured to choose their career path because in the final years of high school there will probably be a large emphasis placed on this and it also doesn't help when you parents expect you to know right off the bat! What you need to remember is that although some people do know what they want to do early in life, others take a bit longer and need more time to carefully look at different options to find their niche area. Do you best to ignore any pressure you may be feeling and take your time - it's an important decision and one you'll want to get right!
2. Talk to a Career Adviser
Most high schools and even universities will have a career adviser who specialises in helping students make a career choice that is right and suitable for them. Although they will probably not be able to give you all the answers you're looking for, they will be able to offer different choices that you might not have considered by listening to what you tell them. They will definitely give you ideas and options to take away and may even be able to give you information packs from different universities so you can keep your options open.
3. Explore Your Options
One way you can help yourself is by exploring your options such as researching different fields of work that you have an interest in and finding out if there's any needed qualifications or prerequisites for the course they offer in this area. This will help you know more about what you will need to do first if you have a keen interest in a particular field. Another thing you could do is take a look at a few websites of your local universities and have a scroll through the courses they offer. Some universities are best suited for certain areas such as medicine or law so it's good to be aware of this so you can find one that you'll be compatible with.
4. Try Different Areas
If you've done a bit of research and spoken to a career advisor but are still not any closer to knowing what your chosen career path should be, try not to worry! At this stage what you can do is actually go out and try different areas to find out first-hand if the general field interests you. A way you can do this is by applying for different jobs in various areas and if you're lucky enough to get an interview or trial, keep an open mind and a positive attitude and see how it goes. If it doesn't interest you after, at least you gave it a good try and it might be time to look in another area.
5. Consider Hobbies and Interests
It's no secret that our strengths usually lie with our hobbies and interests. After all, why not love something you're really good at and enjoy? Think about any subjects you take at school that you particularly like and enjoy, or believe you're pretty good at. Write down a list of them and include what it is exactly that you like about them. Is it the hands-on activities you get to do, the theory behind the topic you learn about or something else? You never know, your ideal career path might be one of those written on your list!
6. Confide in Those around You
Not knowing what your career path is can easily stress people out and cause them to lose sleep over it, so it might be a good idea to talk to a close friend or family member about how you're feeling. They may not be able to give you the answers you want but they will be able to listen to you and give advice of their own. Most parents would be happy to help their child make an important decision like this in any way they can - even if that means helping them research different areas and going along to career evenings at local universities.
7. Don't Base Your Decisions off of Others
Your friends and family will not be able to make the decision for you or tell you the right career path for you. While it would be nice if someone just said, "This is what you're going to be now go be it." that isn't how life works unfortunately. Instead of following your friends to a college you don't have any interest in going, or allowing your family to pressure you into something you have no desire doing, you need to let everyone know the decision is yours and yours alone. Opinions are helpful when asked for!
8. Don't Be Discouraged
If you haven't chosen your career path yet it can be easy to lose hope, confidence and motivation along the way. It may also take a fair bit of time to come to a conclusion, but it's important to not be discouraged by this and keep exploring! The worst thing you can do in this situation is choose to give up and that's something no one should ever resort to doing. Don't give up on yourself and just keep trying because I promise you will get there in the end!
9. Break It down
Instead of trying to fight your way to a career path in your mind, start with a single career you have interest in. Say it's a lawyer. Now, ask your self why until you get to the very root of it. If you want to be a child advocacy lawyer then it might come down to wanting to ensure children get homes they deserve. If you want to be a doctor it might come down to helping people for the greater good of the world. Whatever it is, just get to the root of it before jumping to that career choice and being unhappy.
10. Jealousy Might Come in Handy Here
Being jealous of someone means they have something you want. Don't be jealous for the wrong reasons like money or fame. Be jealous because they're doing something you wish you could do. Then maybe consider that as a career choice. Will it work out? No clue! But, you're going to look at it more and decide if it's really something for you which is half the battle.
Finding a career path probably won't happen overnight, but, you can use these tips if you're struggling on your journey to your decision! :)