Before you can figure out your dream job, you need to determine your vocational nightmare — to know which careers would absolutely, positively never work for you.
(Photo Credit: Andrea Guerra/Flickr)
“My little brother came to visit me this weekend and we spent a while talking about this question,” writes Jill Tolentino at The Hairpin. “I guessed that the worst for him (a practical, quiet, ultra-big-picture person) would be over-the-phone technical support; apparently, his friends at college think he’d also be a terrible elementary school teacher.”
Questions such as these demand creativity more than scientific rigor — which is just another way of saying that your gut instincts are probably right.
But just to give you a jumping-off point, try the following:
1. Go ahead and take some tests.
There are endless numbers of vocational, aptitude, and personality tests available online. Alison Doyle of About.com’s Job Searching site has compiled some of the best and most reputable career assessment tests here.
2. Talk to anyone whose career interests you.
People who love their jobs love to talk about their jobs. (So do people who hate their jobs, but that’s a more depressing conversation.) If you’re curious about a field, and know someone who seems happy in it, ask them a few questions. They’ll most likely be delighted to help.
3. Try jobs on for size.
Not sure which job is right for you? Try a few on, before you commit.
“Job shadowing is a great way to get a sense of what it’s truly like working at a specific job,” certified career coach Hallie Crawford tells Yahoo. “There’s no way to be 100 percent sure you’re going to fit into a position until you’ve actually tried it — and shadowing or volunteering is as close as you can get.”
While you’re trying all these things, just remember: when all else fails, listen to your intuition. If that inner voice says a career isn’t for you, it’s probably right.
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