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The Right Career Fit: Passion and work
If those two words evoke much different emotional and cerebral responses in you, you are not alone. Many of us think of passion as involving high intensity feelings of pleasure whether it be a romantic pursuit or a particular love of a hobby or past time. Passion is the reason we love who we love and what we do with our time. People are passionate about their children, their politics, their significant other, their travel, their friends and families and whatever else sparks their interest. There are some, perhaps a seemingly lucky few, who are passionate about their work. They wake up most days energized about the labor that lay before them and are motivated to dive in.
What separates those fortunate individuals from the rest of us working stiffs? They are most likely working with their natural abilities, their personality type and their acquired, or learned, skills in harmony with one another and with their vision and values in life. While this may be something they naturally gravitated towards or landed on by dumb luck the question remains: Is this path something that all of us can replicate? This is the million-dollar question. And the answer to that impending question is like most of the things in life: Yes, if you are willing to work for it.
Why is the right career fit important?
Making what we will refer to as the right career fit is an important decision and one if not made correctly can lead to unnecessary stress, dissatisfaction and even burnout. According to The Harvard Business Review burnout is defined as: exhaustion; cynicism, or distancing oneself from work; and inefficacy, or feelings of incompetence and lack of achievement. Additionally, research has linked burnout to many health problems, including hypertension, sleep disturbances, depression, and substance abuse. Moreover, it can ruin relationships and jeopardize career prospects.
A 2013 ComPsych survey of more than 5,100 North American workers found that 62% felt high levels of stress, loss of control, and extreme fatigue. In the fields of healthcare and finance researchers have found that up to 50% of medical professionals and 85% of financial professionals experience high levels of burnout. This is not okay and can have very real negative impact on customers, patients, co-workers and the family and friends of the burnt-out employees.
We can see that the cost of career burnout is significant and the problem is widespread so what choices can we make to avoid or reverse the course of this direction?
How to find your right career fit
First, let’s begin at the beginning. Start to think about the questions: What do I want out of my life? What are my natural abilities, aptitudes, interests, personal vision and values? How important is work-life balance to me?
Why does all this matter? It matters because in order to find your right career fit you need to discover what makes you tick. Otherwise, a career can feel like a burden instead of a joy.
If all this seems daunting, there are many tools to help identify which careers may fit you. One effective comprehensive online program is called My Career Design Studio. It provides a series of assessments that take all of these factors into account then guides you through the process of self-discovery as it relates to finding your right fit career. You can jump into this program alone or you can join the creator of My Career Design Studio, Career Strategist Ronda Ansted’s Facebook Group as a way to ease into the complex process supported and with some direction and feedback.
Just as important as knowing yourself and your values and vision in creating the life you want is to consider work-life balance. Employers have been putting in an extraordinary effort to figure out what this means to millennial workers as they are projected to make up 75% of the work force by 2025. Work-life balance is important for every generation but it is particularly emphasized as a high priority with millennial workers.
Maintaining work-life balance has many advantages. Among them are reducing stress and preventing burnout. Too much stress over a long period of time causes the burnout we discussed earlier. Employees who work massive amount of overtime hours are at high risk for burnout. This is bad news for employers because according to The Harvard Business Review, the psychological and physical problems of employees who are burned-out cost an estimated $125 billion to $190 billion dollars a year in healthcare spending in the United States alone.
Choosing your right fit career maximizes your opportunity to have a healthy work-life balance. When you are living your values in a career designed to work with your strengths, interests, abilities and skills even if you are putting in some extra hours it won’t feel as stressful. This is because when you have work that energizes you and fills you with joy most of the time you are going to be living in harmony with yourself and your goals in life.
A career fit leads to a fulfilling life
This path sets you up for a more fulfilling life. The importance of a career in life is huge so choosing a career needs to be done thoughtfully and knowledgably, as your future mainly depends on the decision you make. In addition, while taking up a career is very common in everybody’s life, picking the right career is a big factor in making one’s life successful.
Though there are many important factors in choosing a career, the most vital ones would be going along with your passion, interest, natural and acquired abilities, personality type and one that meets the criteria of you work values and vision. Picking a wrongful career might help you earn good living, but you will never be able to enjoy your work as much as you could be.
While you may be having a lot of ideas on how to accomplish this, finally, you will be left with a few options at the end: Follow a path inconsistent with you true self or take charge and do what feeds your soul. The final decision is up to you but you don’t have to do this alone. My Career Design Studio can guide you through the entire process and the Facebook group can give you the inspiration to keep going.
Choosing passion not only helps you enjoy your work but also aids you in doing very well in the field, thus making you successful and prosperous. At the end of the day, that is what most of us wants from our professional life and this also gives us the opportunity to create a happy fulfilling life.