Whether you are about to finish your midyear exams or you are second-guessing your current career situation, these four points should help you be mindful on how to be successful in your career:
-Work in the field that you have natural ability in:
Everyone is good at their own unique trait, that one skill which comes naturally to them. You still need to work in a field which you can challenge yourself and always learn (see below), however if you have identified a certain skill you are good at then try to incorporate it into the work that you do. It could be that you are good with people rather than numbers, or you are process based or are really good with your hands. Whatever it might be, it is important to work in a job which has a daily element of your strength, rather than the title of your job.
-Do work that makes you happy:
This is separate to the above point in that you might have a natural ability, but that doesn’t mean you enjoy it! For example, I know people that have always had a natural ability to work with numbers, therefore assuming they should be an Accountant, and then 15 years into their career go into another field which equally uses numbers but also makes them happy. Don’t identify your strengths and then limit yourself to other possibilities. The same can be said for the importance of Sales staff to be happy and believe in the product or service they are selling. Yes, sales might be their natural ability, but respect and belief in the product they are selling will lead to maximised happiness.
-Work in something that challenges you and that you can always learn:
If you have a natural ability for your field and it makes you happy, then that happiness will unfortunately only last for so long if the work becomes repetitive and doesn’t challenge you. It is also important to teach yourself new skills and always keep up to date on that latest in your industry. We spend so many years learning in structured education, it is important to find a career with an option for further learning. Young graduates might currently have the dream of finding an easy career which pays well and involves minimal challenges, but how many retirees do you see not keeping their minds active and challenging themselves even in their later fragile years? Don’t fight it, embrace it! If you truly love your career then you will love the challenges that come with it.
You should be proud of the work you do and who you work for, and therefore be proud to tell others outside of the workplace. It is always refreshing to meet people who you can tell have a genuine passion for their career and share it enthusiastically, and then it borderlines disheartening when you meet someone and they hate their job and don’t enjoy talking about it. Don’t allow yourself to be that person.
Career happiness should resonate with you 24/7, rather than be something you are not willing to talk to others about in your social life.
Everything mentioned above is a fine balance, but do consider that your ideal career will need to have an element of each of these points. Happiness is the key to a great life. You spend a lot of your life at work, so make it count!