Getting a job is hard enough, but if you’re playing the long game for career fulfillment and success, it’s never a good idea to rest too long on your laurels. Rather than getting lazy and complacent, why not stay hungry and strategic, and keep your eyes on that ultimate prize, whatever yours may be.
Here are 6 things you should always keep in mind if you want to look back and not have any career regrets. Click for more.
Don’t always put money first
Obviously, it’s important to make enough to support yourself and whomever else you need to care for. But constantly making moves in order to maximize what you make? That can lead you into all sorts of unsatisfying situations.
Once you reach a certain threshold of financial comfort, ask yourself with each potential move: is this going to make me happier or just more rich? Focus on work that keeps you interested, challenged, and smiling on your way to work. Rather than the drudgery or soul-selling for the fancy pay-out. It’s also a great way to avoid burning out.
Push your own boundaries
Every so often, push yourself out of your own comfort zone. Try taking an opportunity you might ordinarily say no to, or learning a skill you didn’t think you’d ever need. The broader your interests and skills, the more you’ll get out of your work life.
Trust your gut
If you sense impending shake-ups or lay-offs or feel you’re on a sinking ship, be smart and start looking before disaster strikes. If a position doesn’t smell right for some reason? Take your time and look elsewhere. Learning to hone (and trust!) your instincts can be an invaluable skill that will help steer you straight for your entire career.
Keep ‘em sweet
If ever you have to leave a hell job, or quit on a demon boss, resist the temptation to burn bridges. Take the moral high road, keep it classy, walk out with your head held high having done everything you could to stay respectful. You never know when you might run into former colleagues or supervisors again down the line. Gain a reputation for professionalism, not pique.
Keep a constant eye on the trends in your field. That means watching out for new systems and software, participating in additional training, keeping on top of new qualifications you can acquire. Staying devoted to learning will nurture you in multiple ways, but will also keep you fiercely marketable.
Shoot for the moon
You know, in nice and steady, measured, incremental shots. Do have a big dream and do pursue it. Just try to do so as smartly and well-preparedly as you can. Put your big dream on a hidden post-it somewhere and keep that in mind as you go through every humdrum workday. Eye on the prize.
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