THERE ARE WAYS TO GET UNSTUCKKATHRYN MINSHEW
Starting the career search process can be intimidating, especially since the first thing any job search website asks for is WHAT? Like you’re supposed to know what job title you want in the first place?
When you don’t know what career path you want to take, the process is not only hard to get started, it can be paralyzing when you don’t have all of the answers. Just thinking about a career change causes stress, anxiety, frustration, and fear to rise inside many people because the majority feel stuck and unsure of what to do first.
But, there’s a way to get unstuck.
If you’re willing to do that, all you need now it to make the time and energy to get you through the journey.
Below, we’ve outlined tips from Kathryn Minshew, CEO and Co-Founder of The Muse, a career discovery platform that “puts the human at the center” and helps over 50+ million people a year in their career search.
Now, pull out a notebook and let’s get you started down the right path to get you unstuck and find your new career path.
HOW-TO GET UNSTUCK
Also known as getting out of the Figure It Out Limbo
STEP ONE: Layout your list of values
Ask yourself what you value most in a career.
Do you value your independence, creativity, management-style, flexibility in schedule? Or maybe you’re the type that values prestige, compensation, stability, or career advancement? Whatever it is that you value, write it down and make a list of what is most important because this will help you get closer to determining your new career path.
STEP TWO: Look to your friends, family, and co-workers for their honest opinion
Ask five friends/family/co-workers for their professional observation of when they have seen you at your happiest? What kind of work have they seen you do that absolutely lights you up?
The people closest to you only want to see you succeed and it could be anything from planning and scheduling parties with friends and family, to executing and leading projects.
Getting a more distant, outsider opinion in what kind of environment you thrive in will be beneficial in putting together the framework of your next career.
STEP THREE: Research and assessing the variety of paths against your values
You’ll want to take your list of values from STEP ONE and the opinions that you’ve gathered in STEP TWO and do some research to come up with a list of careers that best match your findings from STEP ONE and STEP TWO.
This part is similar to the scientific method.
Take your theory of career paths and test them against the career values that you’ve listed in STEP ONE and see how well they work. Your goal is to be able to approve or disprove the career paths that you’ve narrowed down for yourself.
The important part of this step is being able and willing to disprove the potential careers that you’ve chosen for yourself.
Once you’ve gone through the steps, you’re now able to take a closer look at the career path that best fits your needs and your values.
Now you’re ready to move on to the “Test Drive” method.
STEP FOUR: Test-Driving Potential Career Paths
What does is mean to “test-drive” your career path?
Essentially, you’re just dipping your toe in the pool of the career you’ve got your heart set on before committing to high-diving into the the deep end.
HERE ARE EXAMPLES OF “TEST-DRIVING” A CAREER FROM KATHRYN (FROM MOST INTENSE TO LEAST):
1. An internship – Whether you’re just getting out of school or are in-between jobs, an internship requires at least a 3-month dedication, but you’re in the trenches at that point getting to know the job position (hopefully at a company and industry you’re looking to get into)
2. Volunteering – Like an internship, you can volunteer your skills for a certain period of time to get that “on-the-job” feel at an organization of your choice. Volunteering is a great choice, since most organizations will let you do the work if you can outline your skills tailored to their needs.
3. Informational Interviews – This is your chance to ask all of the questions about the job. Ask the good, but also ask about the bad. Ask about the parts of the job that are mundane, tedious, and not so glamorous.
4. On-the-job Shadowing – If you can find an organization that gives the green light and you’ve got the time, shadowing someone throughout their daily routine is a great way to see it in action. Ask those questions and get all the information about the position as you can!
YOU FEEL LIKE IF YOU SWITCH CAREERS, YOU’VE LOST EVERYTHING – LOST EVERYTHING YOU WORKED FOR, YOU LOST THAT EXPERIENCE, [LIKE] IT WAS WASTED […..] NOT IF YOU FOCUS ON WHAT I HAVE LEARNED, WHERE HAVE I GROWN, WHAT SKILLS HAVE I DEVELOPED.KATHRYN MINSHEW
The career search process is more of an endurance run and not a sprint. This is a BIG life change that we’re talking about.
Once you have done the work of laying out your values and following the steps that Kathryn has mapped out for you to narrow down your new career path, don’t be afraid to test it out. When you’re looking for a new career, it’s definitely something that you want to be sure that you can sustain.
If you need help getting your career search started or need a little more direction before you start testing out your potential career paths, we’ve got the solution for you! Just apply for our coaching and we’ll set you up with one of our career coaches that can help you highlight your experiences and frame them in a way that will lead you down a more structured career search.
Head on over to www.happentoyourcareer.com/coaching to work with one of our coaches and figure out your new career path!
At the end of the day, if you know deep in your heart that this is not the right path, it is easier than ever before to change to a new path. NOT easy, but easier than before and possible.-Kathryn Minshew
Guest: KATHRYN MINSHEW
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