Written by: Audrey Bartolomei, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
I recently made a survey on social media, asking what you would like me to write about in my next article. The majority of you (more than 50%) said, ‘How to get a job I love?’ So here we go!
In this article, I propose to talk about the ‘HOW.’ That’s why I designed it like a mini-workshop that we will do together. Be kind to yourself. You won’t find all the answers today. But even if you do one exercise, it will already be a step towards the job of your dreams.
Before we get started, I would like to share with you WHY it is SO IMPORTANT to do a job we love.
"For several reasons and mainly for one: We spend ⅓ of our life at work. "
Even nowadays, work has almost become life as it is so present in our home. The line between home and work became very thin. Since the pandemic, my living room has become my working room as well. How will it be in the future? It is still uncertain. One thing is for sure, our approach towards work will evolve, and I am convinced that doing a job we love will become even more important for our life balance and well being.
If we put it into perspective, we work for the biggest part of our life. I often give the example of my Dad. He is doing a job he hates for more than 30 years now. He will be retired by the end of the year, and he literally has a countdown on his phone! I don’t even talk about the sleepless nights, medicines, financial and personal worries he had to suffer all these years. The result is here today at 63 years old: he cannot anymore.
"Now, tell me how old are you?"
If you are less than 45 years old, it is still worth it to change towards a career that will fulfill you. You still have a minimum of 15 years to work!
Making the steps to the job you love today is very important because TODAY, you can change something. Don’t wait for retirement to save you from all this! Take the chance to live a fulfilled life. This will also allow you to shine and spread this happiness to people around you: your family, your friends, your colleagues, but also to people that will benefit from it: your future clients, your potential partners, etc.
If you are more than 45 years old, don’t stop reading this article now! It is never too late to find inspiration, a passion, something that will bring joy in your life for the coming years. Your ‘active career’ may soon be over, but a new career will start soon: the one you choose for yourself! Not for your family's financials or well being, not to prove anything to anyone, but because you want to do it for you! Talking about my dad, he will now start a totally new chapter and become a politician!
Knowing all that, it goes without saying that having a job we love is crucial to be happy and live a meaningful life. Therefore it is important to take action today to reach this amazing goal.
So, how to get a job I love? Take a pen, a piece of paper, and let’s get started!
1. Define your values
"Our values are at the core of everything we are, and we do."
They drive us to act in this or that way. Being aware of them is key in the process of finding a job that we love. I can tell you for sure that it is impossible to love a job that doesn’t align with our core values!
So what can you do now?
Prepare a list of 10 values that are the most important for you. For inspiration, you can have a look at this list.
Next to each value, write down why they are so important. Example: Curiosity is a great value of mine. I think that curiosity gives life no limit; there is always something new to learn! By learning, we grow as individuals and become better people.
Then classify them by order from the most important to the least. List them by priority. For example: If ambition and justice are two of your core values. Which one will be more important in case you get promoted over a colleague of yours that should be the first one on the list? Think about concrete situations that happened to you, and look at which value took over to help your ranking.
Write them nicely in your journal or on a piece of paper and put them somewhere in your house, where you can consult or see them regularly. They need to be alive, like you!
Be proud of them! They are so precious. No job should ever shake your values.
This list will help and guide you while looking for the job you love. In your job search, never disconnect from it and always refer to it as a precious golden book.
2. Identify your drivers & motivations
To identify our motivations, it is interesting to look back at what motivated us in the past.
Find your motivation through your previous jobs.
Here I suggest taking a few moments to look at your previous jobs and understand what was driving you in each job. Why were you happy to go to work? What was your motivation about?
Make, what I call, a ‘360 wheel’ on the different elements of your work:
work environment | tasks & purpose | work domain | financials & other benefits (holidays, flexible working) | others
For example: In my previous job, I loved that I had great colleagues, the place where I worked was beautiful; I was independent in my job, etc.
All these drivers should be closely related to the values you defined earlier. In my case, harmony is very important for me, and I can see that through what I loved about my previous jobs.
Find your inner drivers/motivations through the lens of your inner child.
A powerful tool to know your drivers is to go back to your childhood life: What did you love to do as a child? Where did you love to hang out? What were you drawing? Which game were you playing? Who did you want to become?
The answers to these questions hide so MANY treasures.
I give you a concrete example. When I was young, I wanted to become a teacher. I always wanted to ‘play teacher.’ Today, it is not about saying that I should be a teacher, but to analyze this information: What did I love so much about being a teacher?
I loved to explain things, pass on knowledge, talk to an audience, help other people, etc.
If I look at my job today, I can find many of these ingredients: I explain a lot of things/concepts to my coachees, I share with them the knowledge I have acquired as a coach by writing and talking, I talk to an audience by organizing workshops, making videos, etc.
Do you understand my point?
So now it is time to do it for yourself:
Think about the questions above and write down the answers that come to your mind.
Then ask yourself: What did you like so much about it? Make a list of all the ingredients that were present back then.
Write down potential jobs that have these ingredients. Whatever comes into your mind right now. There is no right or wrong; it is a brainstorming session with yourself! :)
Now I am curious. How was it to do this exercise?
It is interesting to see how our inner child can come up with simple answers to complex thoughts in our head, don’t you agree?
Exploring your drivers certainly gave you a lot of insights about yourself! Now it seems a bit overwhelming with all the information you have. That’s why it is important to structure it into an action plan.
3. Prepare an action plan
"Thoughts need to be followed by actions to have an impact."
That’s why I suggest putting your ideas into an action plan.
I advise you to use the following guidelines and write down:
What you will start doing: looking for new jobs you didn’t think about, searching for formations, hiring a coach to help you go further in the reflection, meeting a person that does a job that interests you…
What you will continue doing: Being curious about jobs, increasing your network, etc.
What you will stop doing: Applying to job offers that are not motivating you, spending hours reshaping your CV, etc.
Here I am only giving examples of some actions, but you should create your own action plan. The actions you write down need to make sense for you. Don’t forget that all the answers are inside you.
When writing down your action plan, think about what is going on in the world right now with the COVID situation: what will be the future trends? The needs of our society? How will you have an impact doing what you love? Integrate these reflections into your action plan. In my case, for instance, I had to rethink the way I wanted to coach & market myself: online coaching is now the trend, digital content creation is key for visibility, networking online is critical as events are not happening, etc.
Once you have written your action plan, share it with someone else. It is very important to say it out loud. It holds you accountable. Share it and talk about it as much as you can! Then you will be trapped in the ‘do what you say,’ that’s what we want ;)
So guys, this is what I wanted to share with you to get the job YOU love. YOU have all the answers in you. You have to dig inside to find them!
I hope these concrete exercises will help you, and if you want to go further, keep in mind that I am here to help as well, so reach out!
Last but not least, if you have read this article until the end, that means that you are very motivated to find a job you love. My advice to you is: don’t give up on this dream! Continue to search and search and search, and I promise YOU will find it! My mom always said to me:
‘Who seeks finds!’
One thing is for sure, if you don’t do anything, nothing will happen.
You are driving the ship.
Don’t forget, it is a journey. Enjoy the ride and be kind to yourself.
Audrey Bartolomei, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Audrey Bartolomei is a passionate leadership & career transition coach. After living in several countries across Europe and South-East Asia, she recently settled in Switzerland. For many years, Audrey didn't find a purpose in her professional life until she reconverted as a coach 3 years ago. She decided to make it her life mission to help people find their passion. In her coaching, she uses modern and customized techniques. Her favorite one: the exploration of the inner child. She is convinced that it reveals many hidden, often forgotten, treasures and natural motivations. Today, Audrey is working with top-ranked business schools & leading international outplacement companies. Apart from being a coach, Audrey is a wife and a mom, two very interesting roles that are giving her a lot of inspiration!