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Top 7 Tips to Find Work you Love

THE PATHFINDER: How to Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success People who are both successful and satisfied at work spend their days using their top strengths and talents in a career they enjoy and care about, doing work that fulfills their goals and values. Adapted from the new fully revised and updated edition of the bestselling book THE PATHFINDER: How to Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success (Touchstone, OSD Jan 3) author Nicholas Lore offers up his Top 7 Tips for how you can design and find work you love:

  1. Make it a project. If you don’t need a new job right away, forget about job hunting until your target is clear and specific. Design your career first. Then search for the job when you know exactly what you are seeking.
  2. Give it first priority. You will spend more of your life working than doing anything else. The wrong job will give you a life of unnecessary suffering. Put in the time and energy now to choose work that will fit you as well as your most comfortable shoes.
  3. Become a career detective. Look for clues about how you and the workplace best fit together so you don’t wind up squeezed into the wrong job. The best clues are all about you. After all, the whole point is to choose work that fits YOU. Since employers pay you to perform specific functions, the first place to look is what you do happily, naturally, perhaps even brilliantly: your innate talents.
  4. Ask and answer the big, central questions such as “What do I most want from life?” “What workplace rewards would fulfill my most central values?” “What would fit my personality and style?” “What kind of an environment would support me to perform at my best?” “What could I do all day and not wind up bored or burned out?” “What is realistic?”
  5. Design your career step-by-step. Make smaller decisions that turn clues into definite specifications such as “I will definitely work for a small, fast-growing technology company.” Or, “I won’t work behind a desk all day.” When you have enough definite puzzle pieces, dig into figuring out what sort of work fits your specifications. Another advantage: our brains like certainty. People stretch farther when reaching for a definite, clear goal.
  6. Research careers that seem to fit. Read, search online, and talk with several people who do exactly the job you are considering. Keep whittling down until you can decide on one specific career. Even if nothing is 100 percent perfect, this method will get you to the best realistic fit.
  7. Conduct a smart job search. Few people find the perfect job through online job listings. Decision-makers prefer to hire people they know. The most effective strategy is to find creative ways to get to meet and speak with several decision-makers: people who could actually hire you to do the job you want. Then, when a job becomes available, you have something better than the perfect resume, you are known. You are more than just an anonymous resume.

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