How to Instantly Gain More Clarity About Your Career with These 8 Tips

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When I ask my clients what they want from their careers, they often respond that they don’t know exactly. Gaining clarity in one’s career requires time, self-reflection, and, most importantly, action. It’s not something that happens overnight. Here are some tips that can help you determine what you really want:

Understand the Value of Career Clarity

To me, career clarity means having a clear understanding and certainty about your career direction, goals, and a clear understanding of yourself; your values and interests. It helps you address critical questions like, “Am I in the right job?” or “What’s missing in my career?”

Take Responsibility

Many people assume they have to patiently wait for clarity to come to them. However, clarity is not an external gift but something you actively shape. The decision to attain clarity in your career lies with you. The level of clarity you possess now is the level you’ve chosen to create. Not making a decision is still a decision. In this case, you’ve simply decided not to take any action.

Start with Yourself

Reflect on how you see the world and define your values. Contemplate your experiences in different roles and what truly fulfills you at work. Often, people choose careers for the wrong reasons and later realize that their workplace isn’t aligned with their true values. This situation leads to dissatisfaction, frustration, and a lack of motivation. It’s that feeling of “something just isn’t right.” To facilitate this reflection, ask yourself questions like:

  • Who am I?
  • What am I good at?
  • What do I want to do professionally?
  • What values drive me?
  • What motivates me at work?
  • What brings me down?

Set Clear Goals

Specify what you want to achieve in your career. You may already know that you want a leadership position in your field. However, remember that this doesn’t necessarily mean a new job or a promotion. It could also involve making some changes within your current role. Some questions that can help you clarify your goals are:

  • Are you still learning in your current role or organization?
  • What benefits do you see in achieving your goal?
  • Are you interested in internal transfers?
  • What resources are currently available to you?
  • Are there perceived risks?
  • Which industries appeal to you, and why?
  • Which companies in these industries do you admire?

Research these companies, learn more about their culture, and talk to employees to assess how well they align with your own aspirations.

Evaluate Your Current State

Compare your current situation with your career goals. Identify the gaps and the necessary steps to bridge them. Consider what skills or experiences you might be lacking. Do you know someone who has achieved a similar goal? Assess your current performance. Do you have skills that will propel you towards your desired future? What sets you apart from your team members? Remember not to be overly critical and to acknowledge both strengths and weaknesses.

Take Action

The most crucial step in gaining clarity about your life and career is taking action. Many people find their focus but fail to act on their vision or step out of their comfort zone.

Explore Different Career Paths

Be open to trying out various career paths as long as you have the opportunity. Test different roles or industries to discover what suits you best. Don’t get stuck in a career that doesn’t fulfill you. You might start in public relations and realize it’s not your passion, but you might discover a liking for the writing aspect and then explore copywriting. Find a company that offers job rotation so you can test different departments within the organization rather than resigning hastily.

Seek Support

If you’re having trouble finding clarity in your career, seek guidance from mentors, career advisors, or coaches. They can offer practical advice at every stage of the process. Asking for help doesn’t mean you’re abdicating responsibility for your clarity.

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