I struggled with career uncertainties for years before I found something I absolutely love doing. So I can relate to the angst many of you feel early in your careers, and sometimes, many years later. As a lifestylist, I now use a lot of my natural skills and strengths. I get to explore things I’m interested in, can work 10 hours and feel refreshed at the end of it, and thanks to my career, I’m growing as a person in ways I wouldn’t, doing something else. Finding the best career for you can be a truly impactful thing! It’s work worth doing.
The “Who am I?” question
Before you can find your career fit, you need to know who you are. The Who Am I question can help you figure this out. I have two simple methods that anyone can use to answer this question for themselves.
The first is the “What I love” method….
It’s what pointed me in the direction of my perfect career. I thought about what I’ve always loved and what came naturally to me. Decorating and lifestyle ALWAYS excited me. My first magazine subscription (when I was in high school) was Self Magazine. I would read every issue cover to cover. I’ve also always loved philosophy and learning how things and human nature work. Temperament-wise, I can be lazy. A nice way of putting that is to say I’m cerebral but in all honesty, I hate basic work. I need a little excitement and variety in my workday. Like the pieces of a puzzle, I laid out all these things to come up with my career fit.
The second method is the “What I hate” method…
When you don’t know who you are, I say start with who you know you’re not. The polar opposite of what we’re against is often who we are or want to be. An artist friend once shared with me that just the thought of working in an office or for a corporation made her feel stressed. Actually, she said it makes her break out in hives. Make a list of things you know you would dislike in your work life and write down their opposites. Then consider your temperament (your natural strengths and drawbacks).
One of the best things I discovered along the way to finding my niche, is that you can create your own career. You do that by drilling down—what’s called niching. With niching, you get more specific. You refine the details like, who you work with, what you want to say, and how you want to say it. You may also look at our personality, values, interests, and strengths and find ways to leverage them. The goal here would be to use as much of yourself as you can in your work.
After I did the “What I love” exercise, I had a general direction, but I didn’t know how to create a brand or what I wanted to say. Doing niching work, I started to think about what would bring me the most fulfillment. I explored a few career options including psychotherapy but nixed that because I would hate having to sit down every day listening to people tell me how their past made them who they are today. So, what was the opposite of that? Helping people build a great future! I love encouraging people to achieve their goals and I love supporting others to emotional health. See how that works?
The process of figuring out your niche is not a one-step one. It may take you several steps, but I encourage you to figure out a way to love the process (i.e. don’t fear it or stress yourself). Before becoming a lifestylist (someone who promotes positive lifestyle habits and helps people incorporate them), I was a life coach. As a lifestylist, I get to make an impact quicker. I love it so much that I started a magazine on the side and have a few other related interests that I want to explore.
The career that’s right for you may not even exist yet, but by drilling down, you can create a whole new field or put your own stamp on an existing one. And you can call yourself a lifestylist when most people still don’t know what that is.
If you like the video or want Life Coach Abbi J’s to help you find your perfect career, link with her @ajlifehacks_
Christine is a lifestyle coach living in Los Angeles. She believes the way we live predicts our future health and motivation. Email email@example.com to find out about working with Christine.