How do you find a career you love?
Our elder helps a letter writer who enjoys Computer Science now but worries that they might change their mind.
Hi, I am a senior in high school. I am thinking I want to go into Computer Science because I really enjoy it. I am kind of worried that I won’t like my career in 10 years, however. What is your best advice in having a career you love?
I would be happy to answer your letter. It can be hard sometimes to figure out what we would really enjoy doing in life. I would like to share with you some ideas that helped me find a career that I loved.
An old book that I found very helpful and recently has been updated yearly is What Color is Your Parachute by Richard Nelson Bolles. You might find it at your local library. It is a wonderful tool when looking for a career.
One thing I did to help me figure out what I wanted to do with my life from a career standpoint was to take a career aptitude test and I found that to be a very helpful tool. Now, so much of that information is online and it could be very helpful to you. You can look up “career aptitude test,” “career test,” “career assessment,” for a few examples and you’ll find many tests/assessments that you can take for free online. This can help you to find the skills you have and to find something you would enjoy. I really think that doing this will allow you to clearly see a path to follow.
Another thought is to talk to friends and see if they have any ideas. Sometimes friends can see skills in us that we never realized we had. We are sometimes humble about what we are capable of doing. They know from past conversations and observations that you are really good in certain areas. There are other adults you may know with whom you can talk – whether that’s a family member, a friend of the family, someone from the religious organization to which you may belong, a teacher/counselor at your school. There’s a wealth of resources out there that we often forget about. Most people are happy to try and help.
One thing you can do if more than one thing appeals to you is to make a list of pros and cons and see if that helps to sort things out for you. I have used that tool many times and it has always been very helpful. It’s important to be honest with yourself when you do this. If the results are too close, you can add a numerical value to each of your answers and that should help.
All of the above will help you to decide if Computer Science is right for you. If it is, go for it and if it isn’t you hopefully have found some other ideas to explore.
It’s important to understand that it’s not uncommon to change careers in one’s life. I did and ended up very happy. Unfortunately, the tools I mentioned above I didn’t use to find my first career. You are one step ahead in the process by thinking about all of this now. I commend you for that and I am certain you will be very successful and fully enjoy your career.
I hope that this has been helpful to you, and I wish you a great deal of luck and happiness as you move forward with your life. Think positive. I am great believer in that.
I would love to hear how things work out for you. I’ll be thinking of you.