Do you wake up in the morning, eager to start working? Is your job rewarding, and do you feel as if your reward is directly related to your willingness to work hard? If your answer is no, and you find these questions to be quite depressing, you aren’t alone. That’s the bad news. The good news is that you don’t have to continue grinding away for someone else’s benefit. It’s possible to work on your own terms! Follow these tips to get started in the right direction.
Develop The Right Talents
If you want to work on your own terms, you have to have marketable skills. That doesn’t mean you should run out, and learn the most popular coding language, or work towards whatever the ‘money’ degree is at the moment. Do these things, and you risk becoming a commodity, only valuable as long as your skill is ‘hot’ or can be automated. This is also a good way to find yourself working in a high paying job that you hate.
Instead, look for your sweet spot. That’s the intersection between something you enjoy doing, and something that is in demand. Then, do your research. Learn what it takes to gain longevity in that field. Once you know that, you can begin educating yourself, and learning how to pursue the work you want to do.
Work to Create The Life You Want Not The Life You Are Expected to Want
There is no right or wrong way to approach your career choices. One person may choose to work 40 hours a week in a stable job. In return they get the psychological benefits of stable employment, the ability to buy a home, and comfortably raise a family. That doesn’t make them a sell out. Another may choose a low pressure job that doesn’t require much of them, and pays accordingly. They enjoy leaving work behind at the end of the day, and living simply. They focus their energies on friends, family, and interests. They aren’t directionless. A third person decides to build a business around their talent. They work tirelessly, and sacrifice many things to pursue their goals. They grow their business in a scalable way through Brick House Blue coworking, but also take on a significant amount of risk. This doesn’t make them a detached workaholic.
Each of the people in the examples above has consciously chosen work that allows them to live how they want. Before you choose your path, consider the lifestyle you will lead as a result. Then, remember that you aren’t unsuccessful if you choose a path that is unconventional to others.
Know Your Worth
“What are you looking for in terms of salary?” “How much would you charge me to do this work?” All too often, fear drives the answers to these questions. Instead of responding with an amount that reflects their experience, talents, and accomplishments, many workers low-ball themselves. They don’t want to be rejected, and lose an opportunity to earn money. To prevent that, they undercut their worth in hopes that they will land the work. This may work in the short-term. It’s understandable when there are bills to pay. However, it’s a terrible long term strategy. Employers and clients may not assume they are getting a good deal. Instead, they’ll simply believe that’s what you are worth. Know what you are worth, and charge accordingly. If you must underbid, consider seeking out additional perks to make things worthwhile for you.
You won’t create the work life you want over night. You have to do a bit of self-examination, develop your skills, and make some brave decisions. Once you do those things, you will be amazed at how you can transform your career path.