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Do You Have a Career or Is It Just a Job?

Career or Job? That is the question most people want answered. Many people stay in a job because it’s a paycheck or it’s easier to stay than to leave your comfort zone and figure out how to make a change. But hating Monday mornings because you have to go to work causes stress. If you don’t like your job, you may not be engaged or passionate about what you’re doing. Ultimately you’re setting yourself up for failure. What’s more, it can be emotionally taxing and stressful.

Let’s start with definitions and a small check list.

job– jäb/noun

1. 
a paid position of regular employment.

Let me help you figure out whether you in fact have a career or just a job.

  • You’re staying in your role primarily because it’s a steady paycheck.
  • There is no growth potential for you.
  • You understand the work but are bored out of your mind.
  • You don’t really care about the organization.
  • You don’t even like the work you’re doing.

If these statements hit home you can be fairly certain that you have a job not a career!

But the real question is “How do you feel about doing what you do now for the rest of your working life?” Whoa, pretty heavy.

Let’s go to the next definition:

ca·reerkəˈrir/noun

noun: career

1. 
an occupation undertaken for a significant period of a person’s life with opportunities for progress in knowledge, responsibility and fulfillment.

A career is a vocation, profession or calling.  It’s something you WANT to do.

I’m going to take a leap here and assume you do want a career; a role you can feel passionate about. An occupation that interests and excites you. You want growth, success and something that makes you happy.

How would it feel if you could figure out why you don’t like your job or effect a small change which could bring back a passion for what you do every day? What if you had a career instead of just a job?

How to upgrade your job to a career

Your first task is to figure out your strengths; what it is that you have to offer an employer. Then you rank them according to a happiness factor… If you are outstanding at math or number crunching but hate doing it, that’s a happiness factor of one. If you love it, I mean really, really enjoy it, that’s a 10.  Maybe you’re outgoing and enjoy working with people but you’re a customer service rep and dislike the stress involved: great skills, wrong job.  In what other capacity can you use that skill-set?

Get the picture?

Once you’ve figured out where you excel and what you actually enjoy doing, you can start to research your next career.

So what’s stopping you?  Start your own checklist of strengths and the roles to which they apply to see where it leads.  Then make sure there is growth potential in the field so you can continue with your chosen career path.

Career or Job?  I think we all know the answer we want.

About the Author Terry DellaVecchia

I’m a certified professional coach specializing in career with 35 years of corporate information technology and 5 years of transportation management behind me. I’ve traveled to 10 countries within 4 continents as an IT director and enjoy working with other cultures. My traveling and working with my diverse department is actually what led me into coaching. I realized that I received more enjoyment working with people one on one than learning more about technology. Connect with Terry through Noomii and her website.

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