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Career Direction: What’s Your Pot of Gold?

career direction

career directionThrough my work, I’ve encountered many people who struggle with their career direction, and I believe there are even more of them out there. These people spend years bouncing from job to job or industry to industry. Some try to learn from past experience, and that’s a good thing. But where they falter is that they didn’t take the needed self-reflective time and space in the beginning to evaluate what they really wanted.

They didn’t define what their pot of gold at the end of the rainbow looks like. That pot of gold is your vision.

“If you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.” – Lawrence J. Peter

I know this seems obvious. But I can’t tell you how many people understand it rationally, yet respond emotionally. Tanya, for instance, had three jobs in six years. She kept having problems at work and was let go each time. It was obvious the jobs were not a fit and that she had no vision for what she wanted instead.

How do you create a vision? For starters, what gets you excited or elicits an emotional response? Is it working with children, being a writer, managing people? Is it something you’ve wanted to do from an early age? Or something you’ve just discovered?

Vision is that answer that pops into your head without thought when the above question is asked. It’s a big picture sort of thing. And it is absolutely necessary to develop such a vision for what you want in a dream job. A job that is rewarding for the rest of your life.

You probably wouldn’t choose a partner or spouse based on two weeks of dating, so why would you choose a career that quickly? In both instances, taking time to think things through usually results in better outcomes.

In a nutshell: Most of success is knowing where you want to go in the first place from a visionary point of view.

Hallie Crawford is a certified career coach and founder of Her team of coaches helps people find their dream job and make it a reality. She is regularly featured as an expert in the media including the Wall Street Journal, CNN, and US News & World Report. Visit her website at for more information about her teams career coaching services and to sign up for a complimentary consultation.

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