You may think you should choose a career path based on what you’re skilled at. However, when your personality matches your work, you will find more satisfaction. Your interests are the foundation for a successful and satisfying career. Combining this, with an understanding of your motivators and skills, will indicate satisfying career paths.
Imagine if you took a slow plow horse and swapped it out for a Thoroughbred racehorse. The racehorse would feel restrained and likely come to hate the farmer and the plow. The plow horse would come in last every time. And why is that happening? Is it because it has different talents than the racehorse? It does after all have a different build. But it also has the slow, plow horse personality. Even if it had a different build, it would still not win a race on the track.
It is the combination of talents and personality types that makes up the most basic factors in feeling job satisfaction. The more your personality matches your work, the happier and more successful you will be.
Doesn’t My Personality Change Over Time?
Many people believe that your personality is flexible and constantly changing. It changes and molds through growth and experiences. Friends may change radically, become more caring, more effective, or are less constrained by their gremlins but they still remain the same person.
Your temperaments might evolve, or you might step into a fuller life where you are more authentically you, but you still remain the same person with the same temperament. The difference is you have new tools and skills for more effective living.
Baby You Were Born This Way!
We don’t know how much of our personalities we are born with compared to what we have learned. Were you born feeling introverted and now enjoy living like an extrovert? Did you make the change because you were influenced or because you consciously felt the pivot?
We change to fit in better with cultural norms. We want to be liked by others and desired. But there is nothing cool about rejecting your authentic self to be seen. It is one thing for an introverted person to learn to become more effective or comfortable in social situations. That is certainly a worthwhile project.
It is yet another to try and change into someone you are not. Although the plow horse I talked about above might dream of being a racehorse and might enjoy racing with other plow horses on the weekends, it would not have as much fun it if actually had to compete with the Thoroughbreds.
Can’t I Reach for the Stars?
I am in no way saying you can’t reach for the stars – in fact, I encourage it! So much of our thinking is embedded in how we are influenced in life. I wrote a while back about being influenced in so many areas of our lives – spiritual, mental, emotional, physical, social, and environmental.
These influencers also can affect what type of job we have. The family insurance business might be what you are feeling like you are supposed to take over. Yet you have no desire. You are dreaming of a completely different career in engineering. But you want to make the family happy, so you start working in the family business. Only to discover years down the road, you are completely unfulfilled and miserable.
Even those of us whose natures are slow and steady are going to be more attracted to be a racehorse than a plow horse. We have ideals and standards about personality, just as we do about everything else. And too often people pick the wrong career because they are paying attention to their standards rather than getting in touch with who they really are.
Stop Fighting Mother Nature
You will likely not get very far if you spend a lot of energy resisting or doing battle with nature. If you have patterns you need to change, points of view, or behaviors that do not serve you, then master them. But, please, choose a career that perfectly fits your personality as it is now.
If you recognize your personality traits from the beginning and reach for careers where your personality matches your work, you will undoubtedly be happy. There are various stages in the Design Your Dream Career program where we define your interests and personality type. There are countless free tools on-line to help you gain a better awareness in this area.
If you read this and want to dig into your personality type, let’s hop on a call and chat. It is important to gain this information from the beginning of your career search process. By doing so, you will automatically set yourself up for success!