How to Pick a Career

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong. ~ H. L. Mencken

What I often find interesting when someone contacts me about how to pick a career is that they expect the answer to pop out of the air as easily as a sexy girl or guy pops out of a cake.

Yeah right. It generally doesn’t work that way. If it did, they wouldn’t need me.

When someone contacts me about how to pick a career from the perspective of getting an immediate answer, the conversation generally goes one of two ways:

  • They don’t need to pick a career, they already know what they want and they are looking for confirmation that they are going in the right direction
  • They don’t have a clue about how to pick a career, they want the answer right now, and they don’t want to dig for it.

Guess who is more likely to succeed?

It would seem like picking a career the second or third time around would be easier than it was the first time. You’ve got knowledge, life experience and a clearer perspective about your preferences. Those are extremely valuable and worth keeping.

What makes it hard to pick a career the second time around is you also have beliefs and ideas about who you are and how life is that may get in your way. Not all of them are valuable. Some are well worn and long past their expiration date.

Only you can decide how to pick a career that brings you Passion, Purpose AND a Paycheck®. Only you can decide if the risk of questioning everything you think you know is worth the reward of living a life that’s worth getting up for every day.

The process really is that simple. And it will take some work. And you might want the assistance of a coach. Michael Phelps didn’t just jump into the pool one day, start swimming, and win a gold medal. He had to train for it.

Hard. And long. On days when he didn’t feel like it.

Simple doesn’t always mean easy. And you may get it wrong sometimes on the way to getting it right.  You’ll find it to be much more enjoyable and rewarding the second time around if you treat picking a career more like a journey than a destination.


Are you wondering how to pick your next career? There are some great tools, like our Behavior Style Profiles, that can help you look in the right direction. Contact us at 949-212-4345 for info or email