Making important life decisions is never easy. There’s so much riding on the outcome that the pressure can paralyse you.
Whatever the decision you’re making, whether it’s where to live, what to study at university or what career to pursue, or even whether to start a family or make a lifelong commitment to your partner, there are lots of factors you need to consider. In many cases, the financial implications will be important: a change of career might be tempting, but if it leaves you unable to pay the bills then you may have to rethink.
Another key consideration is what motivates you. It’s especially important when you’re making job and career choices, and it’s not quite the same as ‘what makes you happy?’. Motivation is what drives you to get out of bed in the morning, what makes you think that what you do is worthwhile. Being stuck in a job that doesn’t motivate you can be a very depressing experience, and rob you of the energy and confidence you need to find one that suits you better, whether you’re looking at criminal justice jobs or a career in the creative arts. Answering this question gives you one of the most important bits of self-knowledge you could have in your arsenal and is a vital tool for your decision making.
Looking to your Character
One of the best ways to decide what motivates you is to look at how you behave: what are you drawn to, and what makes you feel like you’ve really spent your time well. If you plan even your leisure time carefully, budget for every purchase and derive your satisfaction from working through a to-do list, it suggests you’re motivated by security: and a job with clearly defined goals and progression in a sector that’s not given to major shakeups and lay offs would suit you.
We’re culturally discouraged from admitting to being motivated by sheer financial reward, but you shouldn’t discount this. There’s nothing to be ashamed of in having a monetary motivation – we live in a world where money buys food, shelter, qualifications and security! A sales-based role could be the best thing for you. If you earn based on commission then you’re directly rewarded for the work you do in the way that most speaks to your core motivation. Knowing that if you put the hours in, your take home pay will go up could be the perfect thing to make you feel like your work is right for you!