Combining Interests

Live Up To Your Full Potential:

Five Principles For Guiding Your Career Exploration

John F. Kennedy defined happiness as The full use of your powers along lines of excellence. To find happiness it is important to combine your mental, physical and spiritual energies. As over 90,000 hours of your lifetime is spent working, a lot of your happiness will be derived from the pleasure you take in your career. You should therefore take a number of things into consideration before making an informed decision about your future career.

If you have taken or are considering taking the JVIS, then you must be taking your search for a rewarding career seriously. The JVIS is a career interest measure that helps guide career planning for both adults and students. The JVIS matches your own personal interests with related occupations, making your decision easier. You must, however, interpret your JVIS report with caution. A career decision should not be solely based on your interests. Career exploration requires information from a variety of sources. For example, if your JVIS report states that you would enjoy a career in a health profession, yet you cannot stand the sight of blood, focus less on the applied, 'hands-on' health careers such as a nurse or a doctor. Although your interests may indicate one career, other aspects of your personality may indicate another. There are a number of factors like this that may determine your future job satisfaction, success, and happiness. The value and weight placed on each of these factors, however, will differ for each individual. To help you in making the best decision possible, listed below are five important factors that may influence your choice of career.

Your own personality will directly influence the amount of satisfaction that you will derive from your job. If you are shy, a career in dramatic arts (despite what your interests indicate) will not make you happy. You will have to make a compromise between your interests and personality characteristics. For example, if your interests indicate that you would enjoy a career in business, but your personality scales indicate that you are low on risk-taking, it would be best to rule out a career in stock trading. However, a job as a banker could satisfy both your interests and personality.

Everyone's decisions are guided by their own religious, cultural, and family values. A strong family attachment, for example, may limit your possibilities of career movements, physically and financially. You may choose to devote less time to your work and more time to your family, which may result in fewer opportunities for promotion. In addition, you may not be able to relocate for a job because of your family members' current attachments, such as a spouse's job or a child's school. It is best to find a balance between maintaining your values and achieving success.

Often a career choice is driven by extrinsic rewards, such as money, power, and prestige. Some occupations will offer several rewards, whereas other jobs may necessitate a tradeoff. For example, a job as a minister might offer respect and power, but not wealth. Although the possession of many of these factors may be gratifying, they must be balanced with job satisfaction.

When choosing a career you should also take your own abilities into consideration. For example, if you do not perform well in an academic setting, it would be best to avoid hierarchical occupations where continuing education is essential to success. Seek a career that will maximize your strengths and minimize your weaknesses.

Finally, your own personal interests play a large part in determining which career you select. Many newer jobs combine interests once considered opposites. Web-designers, for example, combine artistic and technical interests. When examining your JVIS results, combine your interests and then compare them to these important factors to decide which career meets all your needs.

Choosing the right career is dependent on hard work and good decisions. Making your career decisions based on the satisfaction of these factors should lead to happiness and prosperity inside and outside of your job.