Career Is a Lifelong Endeavor

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A career can be a life-long endeavor, with the need for continued training, education and experience, therefore choosing a career can be difficult. Even if a person knows a career they want to pursue, it still takes time and planning to get there. Once education is completed, this provides a broad area in which to further specialize. A career plan can assist with this by providing clear insights into what a person requires.

Each person has different plans and goals in mind of their career, it can be the same career path, but no two people are alike. Work values and career skills vary per person even. Some might be more administration based, whereas others are more client based. Both will intertwine and have mixed results of both needs. Yet, one may have a calling to do more than the other. Five work values to show the most interesting aspects of a job can help outline what you want your career to give to you. It can be hard to pick just five but with work it can be done. Picked for these work values were autonomy; flexibility; help others and society; impact, and working with others.

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Autonomy is an important part of a job and most people should have the ability to be able to do this, but some feel the need to have this an important aspect of their job. Allowing little to no supervision unless required gives the individual freedom to make their career the most fulfilling for themselves. This could be a large responsibility that some people do not have the structure to follow.

Flexibility is slowly coming into the field. While owning your own business allows you to set your own hours, more companies are noticing more production out of employees when they schedule themselves to come in. This can help a large group of people and could be a benefit in a career. A mom is more likely to work harder in a career for the hours she picks as it would be less involved with limiting the time she does have with her children.

Helping others and society, is also a work value. Many people who go into the psychology field wish to help people. Yet, in what way? A work value in this is seeing that the work they do for the community seen in continuing the betterment of that community. Doing so is a very rewarding thing for many people. Seeing their hard work help others is extremely rewarding and can give a feeling a great happiness.

Impact follows closely behind helping others and society. They want to feel that sense of accomplishment. This doesn’t need to be as large as a community. This impact can be small like a workplace or self-impact.

While some people want to work alone and avoid working with people. Others enjoy being a part of a team. Feeling like their co-workers and themselves are all working towards a common goal. This can be found often in the psychology field of work. As everyone is working towards one common goal, the health and support of the patient.

A career is a give and take. While you look at what you are given and rewarded with while working, like mentioned before with the rewarding aspects of your career. There is a take aspect as well. What do you bring to the table of your career? There are skills everyone has but it is different for everyone as well. Strengths and weaknesses are different for everyone. Each person needs to reflect on themselves and pick their strengths that they bring to a career. Communication is the biggest thing people see and state is a strength. Though it isn’t the only thing employers are looking for in an employee. Can you deal with sudden changes and the unknown? This is something that is a needed strength within parts of the psychology field, like case workers for children.

Attention to details is also needed as when going into some fields even the smallest of detail will matter. In a lot of fields, the saying: “make sure you dot all your i’s and cross all your t’s” is a very real thing to worry about, a simple piece of information could be the difference between failure and success. Problem solving is something that most people have to learn to work towards when working with anyone besides themselves. Within the psychology field there are even more things that require problem solving to succeed in getting the tasks done. Each case is different and has its own individual problems that need to be worked out.

In the child service field where you are helping children, it can be anywhere from protecting a child from an abusive parent, to helping a parent with depression get the resources they need. Being able to solve these problems is extremely important and a required competency within a social service career, but it is needed in many other fields of employment as well. Finally, following procedures is critical as each place will have their own procedures. The APA provides a set of minimum procedures that everyone within the field of psychology follows, such as the Code of Conduct but beyond that the procedures set by one place could differ from another and the ability to learn them and act on them in an efficient manner are important to providing the service.

Goals and career plans can be a difficult thing that one can struggle with. At first maybe you do not know what you want to do or not sure how to even reach the goal. Maybe your goal seems so far off that it is unable to be reached. Each person has a professional philosophy they follow. This personal professional philosophy is something every person has even if they don’t realize they have it. It can be anything from being caring and child centered to the needs, skills, opportunity, engaging, communicative, and impactful philosophy they have. My professional philosophy is child-centered, trust, relationships, caring, supportive, hands-on, engaging, and satisfaction. My short-term career goals are to enter the social service realm of employment. I would like to start off by helping children and their families during times of need and for many, rock bottom. My career plan is to work in this field until I am comfortable within it and have at least 5 to 10 years of experience under my belt before going into graduate school. My goals then expand away from children, in particular, and back more towards the parents, and in more depth, to be specific, the mom.

My very long-term goal is to work within hospitals and serve those who are in times of grief. This grief in the events of child loss, anywhere from early stages of miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, or still birth. This is a very personal goal for me as I suffered from an ectopic pregnancy and there are no mental health services in my area here to help those who are going through this very mentally trying time. These goals and career choices align with my life values and interest because I have been there. My goals and career will allow me to help those who are there and give them a buffer for when things no longer look up for them.

We have these services available for those who go through other traumatic times, like rape. A woman or man who is in the hospital for rape will not be touched by staff or officers until a specialist who is trained comes in and talks with them. They will make sure they are aware of their rights, their choices, and walk them through everything the staff is going to do to them. Along with holding their hand and being there every step of the way. Yet other things like still birth and ectopic pregnancies that feel like your whole world is now flipped on its head, people are expected to walk through it alone. My goal is to change all of that and no longer have anyone walking alone. I can at least help and assist those in my area.

Having a plan is all well and good but to achieve that plan takes work and motivation is a key need in succeeding in this plan is motivation. The Coalition for Psychology in Schools and Education (CPSE) has four psychological principles: intrinsic motivation; mastery goals; teacher expectations; and goal setting. For teacher expectations, this is likely to be of little motivation during a career plan, although a teacher may have expectations of their students beyond their teaching, this may not be as impactful a factor during later career progression.

Setting goals, including mastery goals gives specific targets to aim for. As a person achieves these goals, they not only feel successful but understand that they are mastering the task they have set themselves. The use of SMART goals provides achievable goals by being Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time bound, these goals ensure that a person does not become overwhelmed and unable to feel motivated.

The most important type of motivation, however, is intrinsic. This motivation is based on the wants of the person. Without motivation rom within, a person can set as many goals as they want – which is likely zero as they are not motivated – but unless they want to achieve something and have the motivation to do so, they will fail. A person must want to do something for themselves, not because others want them to do so.

It is recommended that to make a good action plan you think SMART. To start with these smart goals, picking a specific thing is needed. Getting involved in the social work field as a volunteer will get the time requirements that most employers are looking for. Along with making yourself seem more employable as you have already gained experience within the field and know what you are up against. After getting one to two years of experience with volunteering, I will then work my way into joining the place I’m volunteering at and get employed by them.

After this point, it would be a case of gaining more experience over a number of years until I felt comfortable to enter graduate school and obtain my Master’s degree and finally my Doctorate. Upon achieving this my final goal would be to open my own business within five years to allow myself to start my final career as a grief counsellor.

Careers are a huge part of a person’s life and choosing the correct one can be difficult. With planning and the right motivation, the career path of a person can be well laid out and easily completed. Even so, a career path may not work out for everyone, it can be derided due to outside factors that cannot be planned for. Motivation is a key part to achievement and will well thought out goals, it can be smoother than anticipated.

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Career Is a Lifelong Endeavor. (2022, May 13). Retrieved from

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