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chelle21689's avatar

How do I choose a career I want in life?

Asked by chelle21689 (7008points) March 31st, 2010

I just graduated with an associate’s in Interactive Media but I’m not really liking it. So, I’m deciding to go back to school but I have no idea what for. I’ve taken career tests, I’ve looked at different majors and researched them, and none of them really interest me. Photography interests me but honestly, I want something that starts off with a decent salary as a beginner and have something stable.

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23 Answers

RandomMrAdam's avatar

From my experience, the type of college degree you have does’t necessarily reflect on the type of job you can get – for example I have seen biology majors working in IT or any other field not involving Biology in the slightest. If you are not sure of what you want to do, you should schedule a meeting with a career advisor at the school you are interested in and see what majors produce the kind of jobs you think you would be interested in.

gailcalled's avatar

Do your own inventory for free.

Do you prefer the indoors to the outdoors?

Do you like set hours or a more flexible schedule?

Do you like to do research?

Do you like dealing with lots of people?

Do you like to dress for work or hang out in your pjs.?

Do you like to write?

Do you like kids?

Can you speak in front of a group of people?

Are you a chief or an indian?

chelle21689's avatar

Do your own inventory for free.

Do you prefer the indoors to the outdoors? Indoor

Do you like set hours or a more flexible schedule? i like both doesn’t matter

Do you like to do research? not too much of it

Do you like dealing with lots of people? yea even tho they can be mean haha

Do you like to dress for work or hang out in your pjs.? i can dress for work no prob i dont prefer it tho

Do you like to write? nope

Do you like kids? i deal with them now at a daycare hahaha i handle them well but i dont like it too much

Can you speak in front of a group of people? yea

Are you a chief or an indian?

gailcalled's avatar

@chelle21689: Do you like managerial responsibility or prefer to follow a set of rules and regs?

Are you a problem solver or does having to come up with a creative solution make you sweat?

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@RandomMrAdam is on the right track, I think. (And @gailcalled is giving you some good questions for your own insight. The ‘chief’ / ‘indian’ question is about whether you would prefer to be a manager or not, as in “Too many chiefs, not enough Indians.’)

If you don’t know what kind of work you want to do, the best way to find out is… to start working. I wouldn’t go back to school because of that—but your school should offer career counseling or even an alumni association that can help to guide you to the job that’s right for you, and maybe even alongside fellow alumni from the same school.

Along with @gailcalled‘s questions, you can ask your own (of yourself):
Do you prefer working with numbers or with people?
Machines or people?
People like yourself or ‘all kinds’ of people? (That is, ‘like’ you in terms of age, gender, race, economic circumstance, culture, etc.)
Do you like to analyze or empathize?
Do you have artistic, design or craft aptitudes that you’d like to build on?
Are you more interested in finding a job that you love (no matter what it pays—assuming you can scrape by), or would you prefer to work at a job that pays very well, even if you don’t necessarily care for it that much?

You have to ask and answer your own questions, but these might help you get started.

marinelife's avatar

Spend some time looking at want ads for jobs. See what types of positions and industries interest you, and what have a starting salary you consider OK.

Then look up those careers and see what the educational requirements are.

BoBo1946's avatar

—do what you love to do—then, it is not work…and you will be successful!

CaptainHarley's avatar

There is a really excellent book on this very topic: What Color Is Your Parachute? I highly recommend that you buy it and perform all the exercises outlined in it. Good luck!

Cruiser's avatar

Apply at a temp agency. They are pretty good at “reading” applicants like you and could place you in a variety of jobs in a very short period of time. You will be able to see the inside of companies you may later develop an interest in working at. Often temp positions can lead to full time employment.

Grisson's avatar

Think of your education as the basic foundation for whatever you will be doing,not as a map to particular career. Most people I know had some surprises along their career paths and either stumbled into their careers or had their career choose them, rather than the otherway around.

“Bloom where you are planted.”—Mary Engelbreit

whyigottajoin's avatar

I have the same issue.. O_o! I don’t know what to choose either but I think I’m gonna make an appointment with someone from a school who can give me advice about what might interest me. You could do the same.

The_Idler's avatar

Take a “Myers-Briggs” or “Jungian” personality test on the web, the longer the better, and get back to me with your “type” and I’ll give you some suggestions.

EDIT: I like this one
it has some obscure words on it, but it also has definitions of them when you hover your cursor over.

davidbetterman's avatar

Best to do something you enjoy,so it will feel less like slavery than working a job you hate.

Idknown's avatar

@BoBo1946 Doing what you love is not for everyone. As @chelle21689 has mentioned – she likes photography, but wants to do something with a bit more kick of a salary.

I am in IT Consulting. I do wedding photography on the side. I love photography – but I can’t eat off of it. So I must slave. It is the way it is.

@chelle21689 I would get a job, and move through them as an alternative to investing money to go back to school. There are many jobs out there that no one in college ever thought they wanted. Case in point – All my graduating friends wanted to be in the Finance/Accounting world. My ex became a Project Manager at some translation firm. We all got paid more than her. She made very little, and then on day – her bonus was bigger than what any of us made.

You get little surprises along the way. She still hates her job, but so do I. We are both looking to move on – and that’s okay. Remember the life isn’t as short as people say it is when it comes to career happiness. Don’t be afraid to be wrong. I was always afraid of being wrong, I got my degree in Business, got a job in Business, and not even 2 years in – I want OUT. And don’t want to go back…

wundayatta's avatar

If you want to make money, go to a trade school. Computer stuff is fairly lucrative.

gailcalled's avatar

The people in my ‘hood who make really good money are the plumbers, electricians, and first-rate carpenters and people who do small home repair projects (and come when they promise.) They have waiting lists as long as those of orthopaedic surgeons.

The_Idler's avatar

Yep, self-employed skilled trade is the way to go if you want money, your own rules and contracts, freedom to work in the manner you desire, a chance to be valued based on your actual abilities and a skill which could not conceivably become useless.
Also it’s generally an honest day’s work, with no bullshit.
No tie, no office politics, listen to your own music and swear however much you want.

Thing is, you do have to be good. But, if you get satisfaction out of a job well done, and you have pride in your trade, you can make enough money to be called lower-middle class by the time you’re 40.

BoBo1946's avatar

@benthe_idlerimew—a glitch in their “getty-up!” loll

—do what you love to do—then, it is not work…and you will be successful!

anbobo1946im (4133)

BoBo1946's avatar

@benbobo1946drewim lol…my pic has changed again…reported this to the mods! Must be a glitch in the system!

BoBo1946's avatar


@BoBo1946 Doing what you love is not for everyone.

True…just answered the question based on my experience!

whyigottajoin's avatar

huh my name and profile pic has gone crazy.. whaats going on? =P

BoBo1946's avatar

Loll.have no idea! crazy

whyigottajoin's avatar


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