Panic mode! How do we know if we’re pursuing the right career?

With all of the competition we face trying to break into our ‘desired’ field, sometimes it’s worth taking a step back and asking ourselves: ‘am I pursuing the right career?

We spend years studying and convincing ourselves that we are putting in all of this effort because it’s what we’re passionate about in life and ultimately, it’s what we want to spend the rest of our lives doing.

But is it really?

As they say the greatest things in life do not come easy, so to put our best efforts into building a career around something, it’s a good idea to first establish whether it’s something we can actually imagine ourselves excelling in and doing for a reasonable length of time. In some ways it’s easy to feel as if we spend so many years engraving the notion of ‘it’s what I want to do‘ into our subconscious, that we are almost brainwashed into thinking it’s what we truly want have to do. But in actuality it is perhaps all that we have come to know as we have invested so much time and effort into it.

Though our curiosity may be peaked by other possibilities, we simply brush these thoughts of intrigue off by telling our inner ambition that, ‘it’s not what we’re good at‘ and we’re definitely best off ‘sticking to what we know‘. However what we are actually doing is allowing the fear of failure to stop us from even trying. Furthermore our thoughts are always centred around the idea of how short life is, but it’s a typical half empty: half full situation. Is life really too short, or do we actually still have our entire lives ahead of us?

The answer? A bit of both.

At times it can seem as if there is not enough time from one day to the next to accomplish all we feel we need or want to. On the other hand, we have all of the time in the world. This is our prime time to experiment, take risks and get ourselves out there. After all, we have barely even begun to live our lives!

As we are all individuals with unique strengths and interests, although we may value the opinions of our loved ones and appreciate their advice, the only way in which we will ever know if we are making the right choices is by getting out there and experiencing life for ourselves. Our ‘mistakes’ will only help forge the path to a more suitable and exciting destination.

Remember our career is not a marriage and certainly doesn’t have to be ‘until death do us part’. In fact it is more like a string of one night stands – we learn a lot along the way, without the need for any serious commitment. At least not if we don’t want there to be any.

That’s not to say that we do not need to take things seriously but rather we need to embrace the risks and muddle our way through life’s intricate puzzle, until all of the pieces fit together and we are finally able to start making sense of the bigger picture.

Don’t worry, we’ll get there in the end.

Courtesy of Victoria Puddephatt

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