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At a Professional Crossroads? How to Choose the Path That’s Right for You

Making a career choice and sticking to it is not as easy as it sounds, especially in today’s economic climate. It can be nerve-wracking to go through the process of choosing a path, especially when you’re not sure if it’ll take you to a long-lived career.

So how do you know which path to take? How can you be sure that going in a certain direction is the absolute best thing to do?

Consider these thought processes to help you make the career choice that's right for you:

1. Believe in the worth of your efforts. Only you know how much work and effort you’ve put into making yourself ready for the ideal career. And, as the saying goes, “You get out what you put in.” If you are genuinely satisfied that you’ve made the most thorough preparations, then pat yourself on the back and go for it!

· Consider how your achievements measure up to others in positions similar to the one you want to be in.

· Determine if the success you’ve achieved has equipped you to take the path you most want to take.

· Trust that you’re good enough for it!

2. Know your career goals. One of the most significant aspects of choosing the right career path is determining what you want to achieve from it. Take a look at the options in front of you. How well do they measure up to your goals?

· Do you see yourself becoming the youngest CFO in the Northwest if you choose Option 1?

· Will the recognition you desire be forthcoming after two years working in Option 2?

· Can you safely say either option will allow you to reap the financial rewards you’re aiming for?

3. Do it for all the right reasons. When chasing success, it’s very easy to get sidetracked by all the frills that seem to come with it. In fact, you may even lose sight of why you’re chasing a particular goal! Why would you choose a particular path? Is it to fit in with peers? Is it to prove to naysayers that you actually have what it takes?

· Always choose the path that makes you happy and gives you pride in your achievement.

· Make choices that work out best for you and your family; forget those people on the outside looking in.

4. Never compromise your beliefs. Above all, what’s ultimately important when at a professional crossroads is sticking to what you believe in. It can be really tempting to jump at an offer that seems to have everything you ever wanted, with the “small” exception that you have to step on toes to get to the top!

· If you believe there’s a right way to achieve the professional success you want, stick to it!

· Usually, the choices that are the hardest to make are the best ones to make. It might not seem lucrative now, but you’ll never know what’s around the corner!

Remember that all that glitters isn’t gold! Sometimes the best road is the roughest road because at the end of it will be all the goals and successes you always dreamed of. Always remember to stay true to yourself and your goals; success is inevitable if you do!

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