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Career Paths: Myths, Mistakes, and Tips

This week we will be discussing career paths and some ways to help you choose one. There are some myths about career paths as well as common mistakes many people make when choosing them. We will also elaborate on some tips and advice so that when it is time to pick your career path, you will be knowledgeable on the subject.

5 Myths:

MYTH #1: Only one career can be perfect for you. TRUTH: There can be many different careers that will fit both your skill set and your interests. There isn't just one career that will fit your needs.

MYTH #2: You must know which career path you want when you go to college. TRUTH: Some people know which career path they want to take when they go to college, but many people have no clue. Don't feel pressured to know exactly what you want to do when you go to college since so many of your peers also have no idea what they want to do either.

MYTH #3: You should pick a job that's in demand right now. TRUTH: The jobs that are in demand are constantly changing. You can see if any of the jobs in demand seem appealing, but you shouldn't make a big decision based solely on which job is in demand in the market at that time.

MYTH #4: Choosing a career is a simple process. TRUTH: Choosing a career is not a simple process for everyone. Some people grow up knowing which career they want to have in the future while others have to do a lot of research to figure it out. You have to take both your interests and skills into account when picking a career which can be hard.

MYTH #5: You can only pick a career that aligns with your degree/major. TRUTH: Your future career does not have to align with your major or your degree. Many people get jobs that are not in the field that they got their degree in.

3 Mistakes:

MISTAKE #1: Picking a career to appease your family/friends. Pick the career that you are passionate about and want to pursue. Don't pick a career based on what your family/friends want you to do. Choosing a career based on other people's opinions is bound to lead to unhappiness in the future.

MISTAKE #2: Not considering long-term demand/growth. Just because a job is in demand right now does not mean that it will be in demand in the future. Check a career's predicted growth and demand. A career with growth in the future will allow you to have more job security.

MISTAKE #3: Focusing on money and not your passions. You shouldn't choose which career you want to pursue based on money. Pick a career that you are passionate about not just the one that will make you the most money.

3 Tips:

TIP #1: Research careers that appeal to you. By doing research on these careers, you can narrow down which ones you like. Doing research can help you figure out more details about each career like what an average work day looks like or the average salary of people who are in that field. You'll find out whether you could see yourself in that career or not.

TIP #2: Figure out your ideal work day. This is extremely helpful when choosing a career path. You need to know if you would like a workplace where you would be more interactive with coworkers or secluded, if it would be a traveling job, or if the hours would be flexible. All of the aspects are important when trying to figure out which career you would like to go into.

TIP #3: Get an internship. An internship in a career field that you feel you are interested in can be a great help. It will show you if you like that field of work or it could lead you in a new direction.

General Advice:

Figure out your passions. You need to figure out what you are passionate about before you choose your career path. Figuring this out can really help you narrow down your options for a future career.

Know your skill set. Knowing your skill set can also help you narrow down your future career options. You don't want to pick a career in mathematics if you know that you aren't the best at math. Making sure that your skills line up with your future job is a must.

Figure out your deal-breakers. You also need to know your deal-breakers when it comes to a future career. How many hours are you willing to work? Do you want a 9-5 or something with more flexible hours? These are things you need to figure out. If you are not willing to work under certain circumstances, that will reduce how many career paths you can look at.


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