Making that important decision of what you want to do for the rest of your life is never an easy one – especially if you are making this decision when in Matric! A lot of us forget that you can always have a career change so don’t be scared to start something as you can change direction at a later stage. Often, this decision has to be made before we even finish school and let’s face it, we have no clue what we want to do with our lives at that stage. So we choose our careers based on what our parent’s dreams are for us, or what we see on TV, or based on advice we receive from others In reality, it’s a big decision and we can never truly be certain of the field we want to enter into.

It can sometimes take a bit of time to discover where your true passion lies. Usually this happens when one enters the working world and is exposed to various industries. We get to see just how many career options there are out there that we were never even aware of! Sometimes we may even base a career choice on what we thought we knew where our passion was. It may turn out that the reality of the working world brings us to the realisation that it is not really what we wanted after all. Whatever the case may be, it seems that most of us reach a certain point in our lives where we have to decide if this career choice is really what we want to do for the rest of our lives.  This realisation can cause a lot of inner turmoil, depending on what stage of our lives we are currently in.

If we are early in our careers, it may be easier to change direction. If you are in a more established stage of your career, this decision can be a bit more difficult as there are many factors to consider such as age; family responsibilities; the thought of starting all over again; leaving one’s comfort zone; a mortgage etc. I remember one of my passions in Grade 11, was to become a nurse. I applied for an opportunity to do some voluntary work at a hospital, to add to my credibility later. It was then that I discovered that I could not handle blood in large amounts – and by large amounts, I mean watching an experienced nurse extracting two viles of blood from a patient…. It was definitely time to rethink my career choice! Hello to the World of IT!

I have met many people over the years, who at some stage decided to make the same decision. Psychologists who have decided to become Recruiters; Lawyers who have decided to become Developers; Doctors turned Singers; the list goes on and on. Personally, I respect that. I respect the fact that these individuals are brave enough to be true to themselves and follow their dreams and passion. Once the decision is made to make a change career, you have to analyse what needs to be done in order to make this a reality. For example, do I need to study something specific in order to earn a diploma or a degree? Are there courses available that I could take in the interim? A wonderful online study option can be found at www.alison.com, they offer a variety of free online courses.

Your next challenge is to find a company willing to take a chance on you. Maybe speak to your current employer to see if there are opportunities available within the organization that could assist you in gaining the experience and exposure you need. Perhaps enrolling in an internship program may help. The reality is that it is never too late to follow your passion. A wise person once said: “If you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life”. This is so true. if you consider the alternative; waking up every morning to go to work and do something that you are no longer passionate about – it just becomes a job. However, if you wake up every morning with the purpose of doing what you are passionate about, something that lights your fire, you will never feel like you are going to ‘work’.

Find your passion and do whatever it takes to make it work, it’s never too late! Get in touch with me on natashas@itsaboutpeople.co.za, I could assist you to make this happen!

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