Did you know that full-time employees work, on average, 47 hours a week? This equates to approximately six out of seven days. That means that we’re spending more of our time at work than we are at home or engaging in leisurely activities.
If you’re an American that started working at age 20 and you retire at age 65, with an average of two weeks vacation per year, you will have worked over 90,000 hours in your lifetime. That’s a huge chunk of your waking hours spent at work. So, what point am I trying to make?
If work takes up a majority of the waking hours in your lifetime, you better find a job you enjoy! Not everyone can do what they love, but you don’t need to stay in a dead-end job with coworkers you don’t agree with, a boss whose main objective appears to be making your life miserable, an awful commute, and crap pay. No, there are ways to find a job that you both enjoy and pays you what you need to live comfortably.
Don’t believe me? Check out a few ways to find a job you actually like doing.
One of the first things to consider is what it is you want to do. Are you stuck with the same question people face at all different times in their lives - what do I want to be when I grow up? Here are a few tricks to help you find the answer.
What Did You Love as a Kid?
That’s right, it’s time for a flashback. When you’re a kid, you basically only do what you want. So take a look at your past. Were you a kid that loved art class? Perhaps something creative is what you need. Photography is a great profession with a flexible schedule and the ability to travel and explore your artistic side.
Were you into cars and tactical activities? Maybe you have a future in mechanics or even selling cars. If building was your thing, a natural progression might be a carpenter, contractor, or even an architect! Your past can tell you a lot about your future.
Money Isn’t Everything
This may, or may not, hold true for you. But if you’re able to accomplish this, try not to make your decisions based solely on money. Of course, you need to budget and have the ability to pay your rent and buy groceries, but choosing a profession based solely on pay can result in a lot of resent and misery later on. Consider jobs you can see yourself doing every day, and also pay what you need. If you have to, maybe consider getting two jobs to compensate for your expenses. Two jobs you love is better than one you hate!
Look for Inspiration
Do you have a mentor or someone you look up to? Is there a friend or family member that you admire? What does their career offer that yours doesn’t? Can they inspire you to try something new or different? Pick their brain about how they chose their path and ask about the pros and cons. Sometimes an idea is just under our noses!
Now that you know how to start brainstorming career choices, here are a few tips for finding a job that you love.
We all know that reviews can be subjective and that they aren’t always accurate. But, visiting sites like Glassdoor and CareerBliss can really give you some insight as to what former and current employers have to say about the company.
How do employees feel about the work environment? Is there room for advancement? Do they feel appreciated? Do employers follow through on what is promised in their job posting? Reviews can tell you quite a bit about the companies you consider.
What is Offered?
If you do need a certain salary, benefits, or perks before accepting a job, you’ll want to research these ahead of time. What is the base pay for the position you want? Does the company offer raises and if so, how soon? What types of employee benefits are offered? And do you receive paid vacation? If these factors will weigh heavily in your decision, ask up front.
How far is the office or place of business that you’re applying to? Commuting can cause wear and tear on your vehicle, and on your body. Did you know that extended commutes can actually impact your mental state? This is something to consider when accepting a job offer. If you don’t have a vehicle, are there alternative forms of transportation available? Most cities have trains and/or bus services for workers. But how much will this cost? Is it worth it? What happens in bad weather? You’ll want to determine if the commute to your new job is one you’re willing to do every day.
Picture Yourself There
This really is the key to finding a job you enjoy. Can you picture yourself working for this boss, with these people, and performing this same job day in and day out? If the thought alone is enough to make you run the other way then the answer is likely no. If you can picture yourself doing the job for at least an extended period of time, then you can likely consider this position. And if you jump and down in delight at simply the thought of being hired, well then, you’ve hit the career jackpot!