by Jim Panos, author of “Find Your Passion”
Are you unsure about your next move? Do you want to discover your most fulfilling career path? Then, keep reading.
Career clarity is all about maximizing your self-awareness. You can accomplish the latter by identifying your No.1 passion as well as your unconscious biases.
1. Unconscious biases.
If you want to discover what you’re really passionate about, whether you work as an entrepreneur or an employee, you need, first, to change your mindset. By “mindset,” I mean not only the way you think, but most importantly, what you believe. The difference is that your beliefs are stored in your subconscious mind, whereas your thoughts, desires, and wishes are manifested through your conscious mind, specifically in the prefrontal cortex, which is the part of our brain that’s responsible for reasoning, analyzing, and rational thinking. Why is this difference important? Because 95%–97% of all of our daily activities are monitored by our subconscious mind. In other words, for most of the things we do — such as eating, dressing, and driving—we do them automatically, in a “default mode.”
How’s this relevant to your career clarity? Because each and every one of us has our own beliefs. These beliefs can be empowering or harmful to us. For example, an empowering belief would be, for example, “I can do work I truly love and be highly rewarded.” On the other hand, a limiting belief would be, “Work exists only for the purpose of making a living.” With this limiting belief, you eliminate any opportunity to enjoy what you do while also making a living.
You might believe that you’re “too young” or “not ready” to make this career change for yourself. Or, you might believe that you cannot do what you truly love because of your gender, sexual orientation, race, nationality, political, religious, or social beliefs. Perhaps you believe that you should be doing the work your parents, or anyone who was a role model for you, did or does, and for the simple reason that you want to show them your love for them. You believe you can only fulfil this by trying to be like them. However, remember this: You don’t have to be like the person you admire to show them your love for them. You can hug them, look them in their eyes, and tell them “I love you.” Yes, it’s that simple; but simple does not mean easy.
What are your limiting beliefs? What unconscious statements in your mind hold you back from finding your most fulfilling career?
2. Passion Awareness Model.
To discover your No.1 passion, you need to be aware of the 6 key elements of passion, and explore them yourself. They are:
- Favorite Skills
- Favorite Strengths
Your passion is at the harmonic integration of these 6 key components. All of them are unique and strictly personal.
Also called “principles,” one’s main values can be family, fun, and adventure, whereas for someone else, they can be social impact and justice. They can be anything. For example, a value of mine is “Think & Play Big.” What are your core values?
You have a purpose in this world. You have a mission to accomplish. A destiny to follow. A calling to serve. You name it. The bottom line here is that you, as a human, are designed by your very nature to serve something greater than yourself. And it doesn’t matter whether it has to do with climate change, tackling poverty, bringing more justice in the world, curing cancer, inventing something that improves or/and saves lives, or mental health. You can serve and change the world for the better in infinite ways! The question is: What is your way? Your purpose?
What is your vision, your ideal situation for your career, finances, personal life, and social contribution? I want you to go as wild as possible here! No restrictions. That’s why it’s a vision. Your vision.
What are your hobbies? What things do you love or like to do? What things do you dislike or despise? What are the challenges you went through in your life and managed to overcome? If you can answer the last question, you can turn the pain you have experienced into knowledge, the “know-how” to support others to overcome the same or a similar challenge you overcame! And yes, you’ll be blown away to know that you are not the only person who had this challenge, but there are so many people who’ve been in that specific situation!
What is more important though for you to know here is that there are people right now, and people who will be in the future, in that challenge you overcame. That means you can organize this invaluable life experience and knowledge you learned and use it to support others in the same situation. Your past pain and challenges can lead you to your passion by giving you new insights about yourself.
- Favorite Skills.
What can you do well? Not only in a professional concept, but generally things you’ve learned throughout your life experience, whether as a volunteer, or by helping your friends and family, or activities and projects you were a part of in and out of your formal education.
Which of them do you enjoy doing?
- Favorite Strengths.
What comes easy to you? What can you do well and easily without too much effort? What are your natural strengths and talents?
Which of them do you enjoy doing?
Tapping into your intuition before answering these questions is paramount because it is the most powerful tool you can use to maximize your self-awareness, including getting clarity on what you’re really passionate about. You can access your intuition through mindfulness as well as by remoting yourself to a place where you feel most comfortable and peaceful, away from distractions, and ideally in nature.
So, from now on, will you be “waiting” for your dream career? Or, are you going to start creating it?
Jim Panos is author of “Find Your Passion”, a Transformational Career Coach, and founder of Passion to Career Academy. Jim empowers career-driven professionals to discover their greatest passion and turn it into a more successful and fulfilling career. He went from depressed law school graduate trying to win his father’s approval, to having served professionals from the U.S. and seven different countries to discover and pursue their most fulfilling career path.