I was talking with my career coaching client, Margaret, the other day. She was giving me positive feedback on our career coaching process, which of course is always great to hear. One of the things we discussed I wanted to share with you, because it’s something you can do to help you define your ideal career direction. Many people I encounter have thought about their career direction but wind up confused with either too many or not enough ideas. I find that many times, the problem is they’re not digging below the surface of their ideas to help them get to the root of what appeals to them for a career.
Here’s an example: I had a career coaching client, Chris, who thought of being a landscape architect. When I asked him why, he said because he liked being outside. This is one reason it was appealing to him but didn’t give us much to go on in terms of career direction. When I asked him for more details and to dig further into this idea, we were able to come up with much meatier answers.
These are some of the questions I asked him that you can use for your own purposes: Why did this appeal to him in addition to being outside? What did he enjoy about being outside? Does he really want to be outside all day every day? Or was this idea more about life balance for him and wanting to be able to go outside when he wanted to?
Ask yourself the WHY questions as much as possible, to get to the heart of what you want. Don’t just skim the surface of your ideal career.