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Self-Exploration

The first step in choosing a satisfying career begins with self-exploration. Self-exploration is the process of identifying your interests, skills, personality type, and values. To begin this process of self-evaluation, you must consider your own opinions and perspectives. 

Interests 

The process of choosing a satisfying career starts with identifying the things you like and those that have captured your passion. Start by asking yourself a few questions: 

  • What activities am I drawn to?
  • What topics do I like to read about? To study? 
  • What do I enjoy doing in my free time?
Skills and Strengths

A skill is something that you are good at doing or a characteristic where you excel in performance. Skills can be cognitive strengths, such as creative problem solving and analysis, or can be physical such as communication and time-management. Identifying you're skills and strengths can help you narrow down potential career options.Those who use their skills and strengths in the workplace, report six times higher satisfaction with their careers! 

Internships are a great opportunity to gain and apply your skills. When choosing an internship experience, be intentional about accepting an experience that will help you enhance a talent or skill you already have or help you develop a talent or skill that needs more focus.

Click here to access a quick assessment which will help you identify fulfilling careers based on your skills! 

Personality 

Personality is another important factor to consider when deciding upon a career. Personality type is comprised of how people think and act based on inborn tendencies. We all show certain patterns or preferences of behavior and thinking over time. It is important to know our own pattern of behavior and how our behaviors interact with other people and different environments. 

Consider taking the Do What You Are assessment to learn more about your inherent personality type! 

Values and Beliefs 

Of all the areas of self-exploration, students are most likely to choose a career based on their individual values. Values are defined by what one judges as important in life, and often fall into two types: work values and lifestyle values. Work values are associated with job success and satisfaction, such as: 

  • Prestige
  • Job security
  • Creativity in the workplace
  • Working with like-minded people
  • Making a difference in the world
  • Earning a large salary

On the other hand, lifestyle values are considered in a broader comprehensive sense, such as: 

  • Having time with family
  • Ability to work from home
  • Leisure time
  • Geographic location

Determining your core values and beliefs will help you realize what you want in a satisfying career. Consider using a Value Sort, to help you identify your core values.