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Finding success in our career takes the right mindset, combined with the right skills, knowledge, and desire. It may take work to find a job or career that suits our personality and passion, but it is possible with the right approach. Here are seven strategies that anyone can apply to their professional pursuits to ensure that we are positioning ourselves to learn and grow as much as possible so that we can manifest career success in the present and future.

Look at parental advice like a handful of sand

It’s important to understand that while they may care immensely about us and our happiness, our parents don’t always know what’s best for us. Pressure from our parents to go into a certain career or industry can be overwhelming at times, but we should first work to be grateful that they care about us. We must treat career advice like a handful of sand, where we take a close look at it and reflect on its value, ensuring to keep ahold of the important “nuggets” that we identify as being the most valuable to us.

Aligning our skills, knowledge, and desires is the key to unlocking our potential

To achieve the greatest amount of success, we must ensure that we are chasing goals that are aligned with our true potential. Doing a thorough analysis of our skills, knowledge, and desire allows us to identify careers or industries where we are suited to excel in the present (or in the future). This also helps us to identify areas of improvement, so we can gain new skills and knowledge that empower us to thrive.

Work to gain practical skills

Taking internships or entry-level jobs as a young person is one way to dip our feet in the water of a particular industry, while also gaining real-world experience. These types of roles help us to learn what we do or do not enjoy about a career or industry, so that we can make more educated choices about our future, as well as provide opportunities to expand our network and knowledge base at the same time.

Learn to love what we’re doing

We can create more enjoyment in our job by looking to infuse passion and purpose in our day-to-day activities. Practicing gratitude and taking the attitude that we “get to” do something instead of thinking that we “have to” is a mindset shift that we can apply to any job or industry. When you learn to love what you do, you will also learn all of its secrets. This approach of finding greater meaning in our work invariably leads to better results over time.

Money doesn’t buy happiness

Many young people attach their emotions to the idea of landing a high-paying job, not realizing that they may be sacrificing their emotional well-being in the process. In reality, money cannot buy us happiness, it gives us the opportunity to shop for a wider variety of things. Shopping for the right things is what makes us happy, so that should be our focus instead of how much we are earning.

Life is not a zero-sum game

Taking an abundant approach to our lives and careers will set us apart from the pack. When we are living in a value-add world, rather than one of scarcity, there are more opportunities to connect and collaborate with others. Instead of being focused on our “competition”, we need to run our own race and focus on consistently providing more value than we ask for in return.

Look for the lessons in our experiences

One of the best things about being young is that we are better equipped to “fail” because we have more time to make up for these failures. We must accept that making mistakes is a part of life and be forgiving of ourselves when they happen, but the biggest key is learning from these experiences. By finding the lessons in our missteps, we can apply those lessons going forward and avoid repeating the same mistakes over and over.

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