If you asked my younger self what I wanted to do when I grew up, I don’t think I truly knew the answer for a long time, but I did know one thing: I wanted to love whatever I did.
I paid a lot of attention to the adults in my life and their careers. It was a horrible fear that I would one day get sucked into some tireless job that I couldn’t stand. Think about it: 5 of 7 days a week with the same people from morning to sundown… If you get yourself stuck somewhere you’re unhappy doing something you have no passion for, how is that good for you mentally? It sounds so draining, exhausting and miserable. I never want that.
How can you avoid this? Do hard things! Whether you apply for a completely new job to see if it’s the one for you or you take a local or online course to test the waters first, the only thing standing in the way of where you are now and where you want to be is yourself. You cannot take the easy way out, you have to do hard things, like start over, learn something new, or take on a new commute.
You have to work hard to get to where you are your happiest. It doesn’t come easy, but it’s worth it to wake up on a Monday and think, “Yay! Back to the Grind!”
Not everyone knows what that “perfect job” for them is, which is okay. It’s not easy to find that perfect piece right away, sometimes you have to try on a couple shoes until you find the one for you. A job interview, however, is not much different than trying on that glass slipper.
Job interviews are your key to finding what you’re looking for. Already have a job? Good! Then you risk nothing with a quick phone interview about a potential new career choice. Walk into that interview, for whatever gig you applied for on Indeed or LinkedIn, knowing you already have a job, and ask questions to determine if this open position is a good fit for you. While the interviewers want to know if you’re right for the role, it’s also about you and whether the role is right for you.
The pandemic has caused major issues in employment around the country, which can make this an opportune time to give something new a try. Put yourself out there, and you never know what you could find. If you don’t, you’ll be stuck in the same place ten years from now, sulking on a Sunday night and daydreaming of better days.
It’s not easy, but you should never stop fighting for your happiness, especially in your career. If you have the flexibility to take a risk, do it! Apply, try something new, interview for jobs you may have never dreamed of. Ask friends and those around you about their careers. What do they do? What do you find interesting?
If you don’t have the flexibility to just jump ship for a new career, then ask questions instead and take it slow. Interview for some different positions, but make sure you ask your questions – ask what the job requires, what the day-to-day looks like, the company culture, what the team is like…. If you already have a job, you have nothing to lose in a 15-minute phone interview, so ask all your questions. That’s what an interview is for after all – finding out if you’re a good fit for them and if they’re a good fit for you.
You don’t have to hate the one thing you do the most – if you invest in yourself and take the time to truly find something you love in a company you appreciate, you will feel happier in the long run. I didn’t want to say it, but I might as well: do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.
And I hope it goes without saying, but you can do anything you put your mind to – follow through with action, discipline, and hard work, there’s no telling how far you go.