There's No Such Thing as a Dream Job—And It's Great

There's No Such Thing as a Dream Job—And It's Great
If you're asking yourself "What's my dream job?" you're asking the wrong question. Instead, focus on your core values to find what makes you tick. 
You know you’re on the cusp of something great if you’re constantly thinking about following your passion and getting paid for it. You see images of business owners and read profiles of high-flying men and women with careers you’d like to have, thinking you could surely do the same.

But sometimes, these feelings can be more discomfiting than exciting. They leave you wanting more, so much more that you end up dissatisfied with your current career. There are several reasons for the discomfort you feel and thankfully, some ways to leverage them to get a job that challenges and excites you.
Your first venture into a new field might not be as successful as you imagined it, but be patient with your progress. Fail gracefully by learning from your failures.
I like to lead articles with the saying “discover your strengths and your passion will fuel them,” but I don’t want to mislead you. While you should definitely follow your passion, operating on mere bravado is dangerous for you and your career.

Before you make any professional leaps, you don’t need to know your ideal career. Instead, do one thing: discover your "why." 

1. FIND YOUR WHY 

Your "why" is the reason you do what you do. Your skills and passion will intersect with your core values, and your core values determine what you want, direct your decision-making process, and control your ethical responsibilities. The reason you’re dissatisfied with your current job can vary widely—it could be as simple as an annoyance with a colleague, a steady irritation towards a lengthy commute, or a gnawing feeling of being called to do more in life. If you’re not content with your career, pay close attention to your feelings.

You don’t just fall passionately in love with what you do. There are no lightbulb moments—yet— and there are no shortcuts to success. The truth is that there is no standard 1-2-3 formula to finding the ideal career because it’s likely you don’t know you want it.

2. MAKE YOUR OWN LIGHTBULB MOMENTS 

It’s rare to get the luxury of “stumbling" into something ideal, and looking to your current job won’t give you the answers. Instead, you develop a habit or form a pattern of living based on your core values, which when consistently followed, help give you those elusive lightbulb moments. 

That’s why you need to figure out your why. These lightbulb moments, when revisited, will lead you to discover what you are really meant to do with your life. 

3. RETHINK YOUR DEFINITION OF A "DREAM JOB"—IN FACT, THROW OUT THE TERM ENTIRELY

For some, a dream career allows them to work from home or get all government holidays off. For others, it’s all about traveling and visiting exotic places. As you continue to grow and gain experience in your professional and personal life, you’ll make several detours. As a result, you might have to make changes to how you define your ideal career. 

Your evolving definition will steer you towards opportunities that closely match your core values. When there is a match for both sides, you’re likely to take the huge leaps. {click to tweet}
The truth is that there is no standard 1-2-3 formula to finding the ideal career because it’s likely you don’t know you want it.

4. EMBRACE YOUR SURVIVAL INSTINCT

Pay attention to every personal victory and sorrow you’ve experienced. You will discover an astonishing pattern of pain, struggle, discovery, and success—but also that finding your way forward depends on your resilience and your primal instinct to survive. 

Finding the right career comes in stages. You’ll discover who you’re meant to be, what you’re meant to do, and who you’re meant to serve. While at times these stages can feel painful, they’re also necessary to getting you to become the person you are meant to be.

5. PAY ATTENTION TO LIFE'S CURVEBALLS—ESPECIALLY THE BAD ONES

Life throwing a curveball can actually work to your advantage. Some businesses and careers have been birthed as a result of the founders’ recent brush with death or a harrowing experience, which made them take a moment to step back and review how they’ve been living their lives. 

Am I saying that you need to endure unbearable suffering before you discover your dream career? It’s definitely not a requirement, but sometimes the worst moments can bring out an unexpected fighter inside of us. Often times, the internal and external conflicts that rage in your mind as you decide what to do with your life become part of your narrative—which amplifies your personal brand and ushers you into a new, unexpected career.

6. DON'T SILO YOURSELF

Thinking about your goals is a good step in the right direction. However, it’s important not to limit yourself to just one career path. 

Give yourself a chance to do something different. Pick a project that lights you up and solves a problem. Your first venture into a new field might not be as successful as you imagined it, but be patient with your progress. Fail gracefully by learning from your failures.

7. SUSPEND ALL SELF-DOUBT AND DISBELIEF

The key to finding the career you never knew you wanted is being open to reinventing yourself. This is the fundamental principle to discovering a purpose you never knew you had. It’s the key to breaking new ground—giving yourself the opportunity to start again. {click to tweet

Once you have identified your why and are ready to move in a different career direction, suspend all doubts and judgment until you have taken flight. Only make frequent stops when you feel the need to refuel and recharge and continue moving forward.

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How do you convince yourself to let go of uncertainty in order to take creative or professional risks?