We all have fantasies from the time we are young about what we want to do. These often transform from astronauts, super heroes, and super models, to CEO’s, famous writers, or hit Gourmet Chefs. As our youthful dreams change into adult interests and realities, we start to have a new idea and definition of what our dream job is. While we may become more clear and realistic about what our dream job might be, getting to it does not prove as easy. Not to mention there is a whole different category of people who are not sure what their dream is. They know their interests and skills, but they don’t know what type of job encapsulates them. So how do we go about finding our dream job?
How to find your dream job
- While this may surprise you, patience is one of the most important ways to find or build our dream job. I read a quote that says it takes 10 years to become an overnight success. While that may be a thought that seems discouraging, I think it is realistic. Think of identifying what you want to do, training to do it, getting experience, working your way up, and getting your name known. That takes time. This does not mean that you cannot have successes along the way, it just means that it might take you that long to be where you ultimately dream of ending up.
- While there are financial realities to all of us, somehow money has a way of coming to us when we are working towards our dreams. Maybe we need to take a job to pay the bills while we volunteer and get experience doing what we ultimately want to. While there is no money in volunteering, it can pay itself off threefold through experience, connections, and good will. I cannot name all the people I know who ended up in an amazing position because they were willing to put in the time and energy it takes to volunteer. Not to mention, there are far worse things you could be doing with your time, and all while working toward your goal!
- You have to pledge to yourself that you will keep working towards your dream job, no matter what. There may be tough times, there may be set-backs, and there may be failure and rejection. None of that matters if you learn from every mistake and keep growing and learning. There is merit to the idea that there are so many people who had no idea how close they were to their goals right when they gave up. If you don’t unfailingly believe in yourself, who will? You have to motivate yourself, you have to keep yourself moving forward, and you have to show strength in the face of adversity. Use any missteps as lessons to improve upon yourself, pick yourself up, and keep improving.
- If you have lots of ideas about your skills, strengths, and interests, there are several ways that you can go to narrow down the dream job for you. You can take a number of career assessment tests online. Some you have to pay for, but the truth is, they are usually of much higher quality, and you are investing in your future. Another is to go to a work or career counselor. They can provide you with materials and talk you through positions that might be a good match to your skills and interests. Many times, people do not even know that jobs exist that are a combination of these things. I have often had people take the online tests, and they will tell me time and time again how they did not know such a job existed, but they could see what a good fit that would be for them.
- Define what your greatest strengths and skills are. Make a list of what you think they are, and then ask those closest to you to do the same. Look for overlap and ideas. You will often find that there are commonalities in what others see about you, sometimes more accurately than what we see about ourselves. Look at these lists, take them to heart, do not write things off or struggle to take a compliment. Believe that these people speak the truth about what they see in you, and decide if it is in line with hopes and dreams you see for yourself. If these people really know you, and you are really honest with yourself, there will be commonalities among the lists, and maybe your dream job lays somewhere on those pieces of paper.
Whether you use one of these methods, or all of them, you are bound to be at least a step closer to your dream job than you were before. It is entirely within each of us to find and attain our dream job if we are willing to put in the time and effort. We may already be closer than we think, and if we just keep focused, and are willing to try new avenues we may get there sooner than we think.