Calling all young people and parents of young people!
Choosing the right career path
Please correct me if I'm wrong but it seems that more young people get to a conjuncture in education and are overwhelmed by the amount of options and choices being asked of them. Is this simply because we have an outdated way of helping develop talent?
From recent experience with clients, many young people mightn't actually be too sure of what they want and so start to look around at the broad base of categories of what people do and go, well where do I fit? Is it really a surprise that the young feel deflated in such a process?
And isn't it strange, how we sort of assume that we're just meant to figure these career progression decisions out ourselves? Isn’t that interesting that you're sort of just meant to somehow figure that out with no real contemplation of the bigger picture? And so strange considering we now live in a world full of readily available news, reviews, information and data where you will think long and hard on whether or not to buy a 90p app! The amount of time I spend digesting reviews on car insurance, holiday resorts, restaurants or films is crazy. I mean, I clearly need to get out more but, is it not true that most people consult at least 3 phone providers and think long and hard before they know which model of phone to buy? And then when it comes to thinking about something that could affect the rest of our lives and either contribute to our happiness or not, it’s like your just meant to figure it out by yourself! Isn’t that weird?
Take one of my friends Ross for instance, he made his choices rather haphazardly and he felt a lot of pressure from his peer group who were all doing financing based subjects and so forth and you know his parents were in finance and he thought that would be a reliable career - so he did financial mathematics, one of the hardest degrees there is to do. He slogged it out at university, got through it somehow, worked his way right from the bottom of a company and it took him 5 years to get to a place of stability. Now he’s 30, that’s the whole of his 20’s gone and you know what he realised? He realised its not for him. He realised that he never wanted to have that career.
What a waste, spending time and energy pursuing a path that did not provide him with happiness. This experience saddened me but actually helped me produce a service that I feel has been lacking for many young people for far too long.
And just like Ross it’s really natural that when we get to a conjuncture at any point in our lives, we start looking around as to who could advise us, who’s got some ideas? But what if all of those people are biased by their own life experiences as well? Think about it, those people are of course going to project their own pains, pangs, distortions or even enthusiasm onto you without even consciously meaning to. Not to mention how outdated their reality might be. I mean my parents grew up with the story that if throughout your upbringing, you worked hard and did well to get a university degree, you’d then get a job. Unfortunately as many of you may already know, this is not a guarantee any more. And most importantly what if they don’t know what is truly important to you, what your talent is and how you could be rewarded by it?
I’m not saying there are clear cut pathways to follow, in fact I'm saying there is more uncertainty than ever. But what lives in uncertainty? Possibility!
In all that uncertainty with how the world is today there lies possibilities for young people to do the things they love by learning how to channel passion, develop talent and to then leverage it all in order to be rewarded really well!
The world we live in today is beyond 'stay in school, get a good job'. You need more! The Government have made further education more expensive so get smart, use what you have to your strengths. This is the information generation, we can connect with 2.4 billion people without even travelling anywhere. You are living in the most niched generation ever. Technology is growing faster than ever and young people are the digital natives. The normal systems out there are outdated for you. It’s up to you to adapt your skills around the current systems the best way you can. You can easily do that if you find, develop and keep that passion and talent in mind.
I just don’t want young people to be in the factory line, in the cookie cutter of career advice being told ‘you need this to get through that, to get a chance for this’ etc. There’s more to it than that, so what I’m saying is to stop for a moment, step out and think about it in an intelligent way.
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Caroline Wellingham - Accredited Career and Life Coach, NLP PractitionerJuly 12th, 2017