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Are You in the Right Career?

Topics: Career Advice
Right Career
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No matter if you’ve been on your career path five minutes or five years, you might at some point wonder if you’re doing the right thing for yourself.

Doubting your choice of career is OK! Many people change careers throughout their lifetime. In fact, a 2017 study showed that more than 40 percent of U.S. workers were thinking of changing careers or were actively looking for a new job.

But how do you know if you’re in the right spot (or the right spot for “right now”)? There are ways you can reassure yourself you’re on the right career path. Here are a few of them:

You’d like your boss’s job someday

Not just because of the big office, but you feel like you’d like to do what he or she does for a living. It’s something you can see yourself doing and smiling while you do it. Maybe you just need a few more years’ experience, or maybe you need some extra training, but you’re in the pipeline to get there at some point. That’s a great sign that you’re into what you do, with the drive and pluck to get to the big chair one day (and maybe even the chair that’s bigger, behind the one your boss sits in).

Do You Know What You're Worth?

You connect with the mission (of your employer, of the industry, and more)

Some of our jobs aren’t great, but you repeatedly say “I love what they stand for” when pressed for why you stay. If you’re working for an organization that you really love, sometimes the late nights, low pay and crappy coffee are worth it. Folks who work in public service often feel that way about their work, and it keeps them coming back day after day.

Says commenter Mae23 in response to an article in the Washington Post:

“Public service is the most rewarding job you will find in this country. Along with the job comes sacrifice for your country and family. I am straight talker when it come to being a public servant. From 1971 to 2008 is a long time to serve the public in many forms. During this journey I learned 14 job skills. America needs dedicated young people to be dedicated to be a public servant. Job titles such as Public Affairs, Financial Manager, Analyst, ParaLegals, Contracting Specialist, Human Resource, Safety, Casualty Officers, Firemen, Police Officer, Security, etc. Job skills to be learned, leadership skills to be used, goals to be attained, but most of all public service means dedication to society.”

You make enough money to live on

Want to know what you’re worth? Check our PayScale Salary Survey for the latest on what job should get paid what no matter where you live.

You either love what you do or have time to do the things you love

Psst — it’s totally OK to have a day job! You don’t have to have one job and that’s what defines your life. Maybe you have a desire to clock in and clock out, but then your day really starts. If you get to pay your bills and then volunteer with an animal rescue you love and get all the tiny kitten kisses to warm your heart, then that’s great! You know you could never make it doing the work you call your “passion project”, but your job affords you the ability to do both. That’s a win/win.


What are your reasons for staying in your current career path? Or are you looking for a change? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

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What Am I Worth?

What your skills are worth in the job market is constantly changing.