Some people hate their current jobs, but they don’t know what they would do instead. Here are 5 questions you can ask yourself to find out what you really want to do for a job. Grab a piece of paper and jot down your answers to these questions.
1) What did you want to be when you were a child/teenager? When you were young, you didn’t have to worry about the practicalities of living, working or earning money. When you thought about your future it was not constrained by reality, so you believed you could do anything. Write down all the things you wanted to be or do when you were young, however impractical. What do these early choices reveal about your personality and what you might want to do now?

2) What are you passionate about? What do other people say you are good at? What specific skills do you have? Write down these things and consider whether you could make a living from these. The ideal job is to find something you love, and figure out how to get paid for it!

3) What parts of your existing job do you enjoy? What do you want to keep in your ideal job? For example, the holidays might suit you, or the commute, or your friends, but you might not enjoy the actual work. How can you combine what you enjoy with a different job?

4) What do you definitely NOT want to do? Identifying these things will help you whittle down your ideas to more specific jobs. For example, you might think you want international travel as part of your ideal job. But you know you like being at home with your family, so actually you don’t want to work abroad. You might not like blood, so being a doctor/nurse is out, and if you are allergic to pollen, you won’t be a gardener.

5) What do you want to achieve, and by when? This is your practical question where you consider how much time you have and what resources you will need to get to where you want to be. You may have identified that you always wanted to be an Olympic athlete, but you are 38 and a bit on the heavy side. Is it likely you will make the Olympics and do you want to put the effort in to achieve this? You may want to retrain as a Doctor but do you have 7 years and the money to fund this program of study?

Read back over your answers and add anything else that comes to mind. Some ideas should be sparking already. This list will give you an insight into some of the things you want in a job, and what is important to you. Use it to start researching into what jobs you might be interested in pursuing.

Author's Bio: 

Joanna Penn is the author of “How to Enjoy Your Job”. Packed full of strategies, ideas and tips to help you enjoy your job and your life now!
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