“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.” Maya Angelou
While money is one measure of success, enjoying what you do is another.
If you gravitate towards this point of view, here are four ways to (re)discover your interests:
1. Take an interest self-assessment
According to O*NET Data: Interests, occupations can be categorized into six work environments:
- Realistic – Work activities include practical, hands-on problems and solutions; often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery; many occupations require working outside; do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
- Investigative – Work with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking; can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
- Artistic – Work with forms, designs, and patterns; often require self-expression; work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
- Social – Work with, communicate with, and teach people; often involve helping or providing service to others.
- Enterprising – Startup and carry out projects; can involve leading people and making many decisions; sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
- Conventional – Follow set procedures and routines; can include working with data and details more than with ideas; usually a clear line of authority to follow.
Many occupations satisfy more than one work environment. For example, Carpenters interest code is RCI: primarily realistic because work is practical, hands-on, and deals with real-world materials; conventional because carpenters need to follow procedures and routines, work with data and details, and there is a clear line of authority to follow; and investigative because carpenters also work with ideas and figuring out problems mentally.
Consider taking O*NET Interest Profiler to discover more about your interests and occupations related to those interests. Another version based on O*NET Interest Profiler is CareerOneStop’s Interest Assessment, which takes about five minutes to answer 30 short questions. To learn more about CareerOneStop’s Interest Assessment, review its Interest Assessment Help.
2. Answer questions/brainstorm about your interests
Answer any or all of these questions to expand your opportunities: What activities do you enjoy/love to do? What activities make you lose track of time? What subjects interest you? If you could do anything, what would you do?
3. Create an interest board/collage
Collect pictures, quotes, words, poems – images or words that captivate you. Glue/tape them on a piece of paper or poster board. Hang it on your wall and add/make changes whenever you like. Spend time meditating on what you’ve created to motivate you to find work you enjoy.
4. Reflect on inspirational quotes
Positive quotes have a way of awakening our psyche. Reflect on these quotes from time to time for encouragement.
May you find work you love and enjoy.
Josie Toth is a Regional Facilitator for Workforce Solutions. She facilitates job search skills and career exploration classes in the 13-county Houston-Galveston area. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies and enjoys encouraging others in their pursuit of meaningful work.