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Personal Story on Choosing the Right Career

What is a Career Choice?

I cannot forget my Commerce Teacher back then in high school – Master Dan was the name we (students) called him. It was the close of another term and I stood staring disappointedly at my result sheet in one hand with my mom who came to the term closing as was the custom at that time. I was still a teenager and so was ignorant about a lot of things.

Master Dan walked towards us and after exchanging pleasantries with my mom, went ahead to educate my mom on how excellent a student I was. I was marveled and thought to myself “if only he had seen the portion of my term’s result decorated with F9s, then the story would be different.” This was the second term in senior secondary school yet it didn’t seem like I had mastered the core science subjects: Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry. Yes, those were the decorated portions I was talking about.

After pouring encomiums on me, Master Dan spilled the bitter truth. He informed my mum and I that I would do better as a Commercial student as that was my area of strength. That day, my orientation changed and I had an idea of a possible profession and began to think along the lines of a career choice and a focus.

 Choosing a career

In choosing a career, one must pay attention to his/her area of strength, passion and interest. A Career Aptitude Test can also be conducted in order to assess one’s talents, abilities and interests in a given career. However, it is important to note that there are certain factors which influence career choice. Some of these factors include: the personality of the individual, the role he/she plays in the family or society in which he belongs, parental pressure and persuasion from peers can also influence one’s choice of a career.

Myths about choosing a career

There are some misleading Myths people believe about career choice which are not true.

One of the myths is that in choosing a career, one must go for “only what they love”. This is not true. It is possible to be in love with a particular career but cannot perform at your best in that field. I remember as a kid I loved the idea of becoming a medical doctor and always aspired to be one, but was never good in the sciences throughout my stay in school and the worst part is, “I hated needles and the sight of blood”. The mere thought of blood was enough to make me puke. Being in love with a particular career is not enough. You must be able to choose something you are  very good at and can do with ease, not necessarily what you love. Satisfaction is key.

Some other people believe that you must stay in one profession for a lifetime. Again, this is not true. The average American changes jobs more than 10 times dues to a number of reasons. You should be ready to adjust and switch professions when the need arises if you must stay happy and fulfilled.

Common mistakes people make when choosing a career

Do you feel unsatisfied with the career path you tread? And keep wondering where you might have gone wrong? Keep reading to see what mistake you may have made and find out what you can do to salvage the situation.

1. Lack of mentorship:

Having a guide in a field of specialty is of utmost importance and therefore should not be ignored. A mentor is someone who is more knowledgeable and experienced than a tyro in any field. Not having proper mentorship before choosing a career can result in a lot of mistakes and lost time which can never be restored. 

2. Not making the decision yourself: Allowing other people to choose what career you venture into is a grave mistake young people make. Most times, Parents dictate what career their children should choose and this is not a healthy practice. Young people also give their peers the permission to decide for them what career choice to make.

3. Settling for just anything:

Most people do not want to go through the stress of carefully selecting and weighing their options when it comes to a career choice, thereby resorting to cherry picking anyone as long as it pays the bills and  good number of them regret this action.

Whatever career you chose, whether in Tech, Education, Business, Medicine or Engineering etc, the decision must not be hasty. Take some time out to research and explore your options in order to arrive at a career that is befitting to your personality and would give you satisfaction.

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