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How Do You Choose a Career?


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I am feeling stuck as to what field I should enter for a career, or what Masters degree I should get. I have a couple of ideas for jobs (Mental Health Counselor or Public Health Educator). I've got a bachelor's degree in Psychology and I've already taken some graduate coursework in Counseling and also in Public Health. I like Psychology as a topic and the idea of helping people. Some other masters degrees I've considered are Industrial/Organizational Psychology or Social Work.

 

I'm just feeling really indecisive about what to do. Does anyone have any tips for trying to decide which career fit is right, either just in general or for my specific situation? Thanks in advance.

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Hey! I am in the same predicament as you. Graduating with a BA in psychology and unsure of what I'm going to do lol. I feel your confusion!!

 

What I've been doing is reading up on the professions I am interested in..I've been taking out books from the library, reading up articles online, and speaking to people I know who are in the field, etc. I find that's really helped to me to see the realities of what a particular job entails - the pros and the cons. And based on how suitable I think I would be for a job, level of schooling I am willing to undertake, etc. I've now narrowed it down to one or two careers. That is a good step considering my long list of careers before, lol =)

 

Can I also suggest 2 excellent career books?

Nicholas Lore's "Now What? The Young Person's Guide to Choosing the Perfect Career" is an EXCELLENT one. Filled with great, honest advice from a world-renowned career counsellor.

 

And "Do What You Are" by Tieger and Barron suggests careers for you based on your personality type.

 

Personally, I've found those two books to be more useful and helpful than going to the school career services lol.

 

You are not alone!

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Okay, you mentioned you wanted to help people. Thats something I like to refer to as a core motive. It might help you to sit down and clear your mind and have a good long think about what you want as a person. What mark you want to leave on the world. What impression you want to leave on mankind. I know this seems vague and existential, but we're trying to start with the big picture and work smaller here, because in the grand scheme of life, career is a small thing. Just think about what gives you that sense of fulfillment, of accomplishment. What gives you the warm-fuzzies and makes your heart swell when you think of doing it? THAT is your core motive. So once you have a good idea of what your core motive in life is, look at jobs that will allow you to fulfill it. You mentioned wanting to help people. Not help them cross the street or carry their groceries to their car, but to make a vast, life-altering change for the better in someone's life. Something where you get to interact with them directly and see the gratitude in their eyes at the end of the day. Now try to identify career fields that will allow you to fill that role, and cross-reference the kind of pre-requisites these jobs need to the education you already have to narrow the list down. At that point there shouldn't be too awful many things left, and now you can start looking at things like average salary, locations where these careers are prevalent and in demand, what kind of benefits they offer, their effect on your private life, and on and on; all the details that will set one career above the others for you.

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I am feeling stuck as to what field I should enter for a career, or what Masters degree I should get. I have a couple of ideas for jobs (Mental Health Counselor or Public Health Educator). I've got a bachelor's degree in Psychology and I've already taken some graduate coursework in Counseling and also in Public Health. I like Psychology as a topic and the idea of helping people. Some other masters degrees I've considered are Industrial/Organizational Psychology or Social Work.

 

I'm just feeling really indecisive about what to do. Does anyone have any tips for trying to decide which career fit is right, either just in general or for my specific situation? Thanks in advance.

 

Since I've graduated college about 2 years ago, I realized that you don't choose a career, it chooses you.

 

You'll take jobs because you need money (regardless of what level of degrees you have) and which ever one you are best at, you will excel at and move up.

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