When you’re searching for the right career to pursue, you may wonder if personality tests can help you determine a healthy path as you begin your work journey. If you are in high school or college, you’re probably (hopefully) starting to do some self-reflection, discovering your passions, and spending time determining what you’d like to pursue as a profession as you move into adulthood.
Taking into account your personality is a critical step when it comes to finding the right vocation. And today, many Americans are overworked, while they remain in a field they don’t enjoy.
According to 20 Something Finance, in an article titled, “The U.S. is the Most Overworked Developed Nation in the World,” you can see below that the statistics are staggering.
- 70% of American children live in households where all adults are employed
- 85.8% of males and 66.5% of females work more than 40 hours per week.
- The average productivity per American worker has increased 400% since 1950.
And, according to Business Insider, the average person spends more than 90,000 hours of their lifetime at work. The time Americans spend working can greatly affect their personal lives in almost every realm, and it will affect your personal life too.
Choosing the right career or industry for yourself can have a significant impact on your life-long levels of happiness, health, and fulfillment. Whether you’re an introvert, extrovert, or ambivert, it’s critical to understand who you are in the world, what you’d like to accomplish, and how you can add value to your chosen industry.
Where you choose to spend your 90,000 hours should be a place to thrive and grow, not solely a place to collect a paycheck.
Here are some essential things you should know that can help match your personality with the right field.
When you’re starting out in the real world, it’s critical to question the validity of all personality tests. Personality inquiries can help guide you toward different industries—especially when you’re in learning and discovery mode. While these tests can be entirely accurate, they still can’t replace real-world experience. The Meyers-Briggs personality test can provide you with precise information regarding your personality type and best industry fit. However, the information you learn about yourself can’t provide you with day-to-day life experience as if you were already working in the field.
Regardless, personality tests are important and should be an important part of your vocational toolbox.
Volunteer And Internships
If you’re not sure where to begin when it comes to discovering your career path, you can consider volunteering or interning. This way, you can experience different roles in an everyday setting with no holds barred.
Also, since volunteering is not something you are required to do, it can help you gain real-world experience in various industries without the pressure to produce. Also, you won’t have to make a serious commitment, and you can always change where and how you volunteer. When you share your time freely, you can gain valuable knowledge and experience—as well as discover ongoing networking opportunities.
Finally, as technology has changed our world, the transition into adulthood today can be a bit more challenging. Volunteering is one of the most significant ways to keep depression and anxiety at bay. When you help those who are less fortunate than you, you’ll most likely find great joy in helping and learning from others. Also, you have the chance to play a significant contributing role in society.
Keep An Open Mind
It is critical to obtain various opinions and learn as much as possible when you’re pursuing your profession. In addition to personality exams and volunteering, speaking to a career counselor can be of invaluable assistance. Many universities and career coaches can offer guidance to assist you with the right vocational choice.
You can also go on LinkedIn and find a mentor.
Pay attention to the predicted job market, and try to make decisions using both your head as well as your heart. For example, if you enjoy art and computers, think about a career in graphic design or web development.
One of the smartest ways to find the right career path is to make sure you take the time to get to know yourself well. Figure out how you stand out from the crowd. What makes you different? What different offerings do you bring to the table when you compare yourself to other candidates? How can you make yourself stand out? All of us have different and unique talents. Don’t be afraid to bring those unique traits with you.
Try new experiences, spend time shadowing many industries, and work with a mentor who can assist you in defining your brand. When you take time for self-reflection, you’ll have a much better idea of the kind of work culture that best fits your personality.
Hobbies And Networking
Also, try and arrange time to work on hobbies you enjoy, take classes, and attend networking events. When you have a hobby, you’re more likely to meet people in the same field as well, which can lead to many opportunities. Also, if you decide to take ongoing classes, you’ll find that life-long learning not only provides you with new skills—but can also bring the right people into your life when you least expect it.
While personality tests can be highly useful, remember that it is critical to figure out which career suits your personality best.
90,000 hours of your life is a long time, and you want to work where you can add the most value, and where you will thrive as a human being contributing to society.
When you can understand your personal needs along with your personality, odds are you will end up on the right career path.
This article originally appeared on Forbes and is featured here with author permission.