Most high school seniors in Nigeria receive their diplomas after their senior year along with a heaping side of clichés, many of which are blatantly absurd. For instance,
“If you can dream it, you can do it.” alternatively, “You can be anything you want to be.” Furthermore, “With grit and determination, there is nothing you cannot do.”
Getting young people to set high goals or dream big isn’t the issue. The fact that I am 5’7″ tall should not be the only reason why I want to be the next Michael Jordan. A Greek philosopher who lived about 2,500 years ago, gave better counsel when they said, “To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.” This insight lies at the core of a new wave of aptitude tests created to aid everybody, including middle school and high school students, in better understanding themselves since there are hardly any career coaches these days to talk to. The lack of it is what makes the life of many in education difficult the way it is today in Nigeria.
It is not unexpected to learn that people choose their university major or professional route based on rumors, fashion, or after being ‘recommended’ to do so.
“This path is better, you should take this path,” someone said. “That path does not yield good income prospects.”
“Since I am paying for your university tuition, you ought to pay attention to what decisions I make for you,”
I don’t have the luxury of many options. We all know that people who follow that path too frequently (though not always) end up dissatisfied with no work fulfillment, no career happiness, and no career meaning. Burnout and exhaustion eventually set in, followed by the emergence of clinical depression, anxiety, OCD, tears that could not be seen and shared, resentment that could not be understood, and most importantly, the realization that “no one listens,” which then leads to other worse case scenarios. Of course, if our circumstances do not favor us in terms of employment opportunities, the career choices that emerge are typically necessary for survival, and we should give them priority consideration. Why so? Simply said, your stomach needs it.
Do we continue in these job routes without future advancements and developments, or even better, changes, regardless of the circumstances, such as when there are no professional prospects available to you or when you are under pressure to accept “advice” regarding the career path that has been chosen for you? The simple answer is no. If you don’t like where you are right now, move, said Chirag (2018). You are not a tree. However, you must first be able to secure yourself with solid ground before you can even move.
The Real Focus Should Be On You:Look Inward
Our preferences for job tasks and workplace settings across a range of industries are determined by our career interests. According to RIASEC, there are six categories of career interests:
- socially conscious,
- and conventional.
Realists like organized activities, while investigative thinkers are excellent at making innovative observations. While social helpers lead and influence others, artistic people produce art through unstructured activities. Successful people accomplish organizational objectives and generate financial value. People who operate traditionally love working with rules and manipulating data. Higher character traits are associated with higher job performance, making personality an important consideration in career decisions. Both transferable and non-transferable skills exist; the former is relevant to several industries and job categories.
Finding your unique set of skills might help you navigate the way to rewarding job possibilities. When selecting a career, it is crucial to take both internal and external considerations into account. You can choose a career with a realistic demand by working with a career coach or counselor.