A career doesn’t have to be a straight line - Deepstash

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4 Rules for Identifying Your Life’s Work

A career doesn’t have to be a straight line

There are four basic career patterns:

  1. Linear careers, which climb steadily upward, such as the "corporate ladder" or the billionaire entrepreneur.
  2. Steady-state careers involve staying at one job and growing in expertise.
  3. Transitory careers are ones in which people jump from job to job or field to field, looking for new challenges.
  4. Spiral careers are like a series of mini careers. People spend many years developing in a profession, then shift fields seeking work that builds on the skills of their previous mini careers.

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Don't follow your passion
The main flaw of  “finding your passion” presupposes that interests and passions are fixed, rather than fluid and evolving as we age and gain wisdom and experience. 
The problem with following your passion
  • It ignores the market. Unless you have a trust fund waiting for you, you’ll have to feed yourself and others. 
  • It will turn a passion into a job. 
Learn from Startups
  1. Identify real needs in the market that are currently not being well met. 
  2. Assess your strengths: Whatever is easy for you that most others have a harder time with, that’s a worthy option.
  3. Match up these two in a constantly iterative process: This process takes many years if not decades.
Harmonious passion

It is a state of being where you are entirely absorbed in what you are doing, known as flow by modern psychological science, productive activity by humanist philosopher Erich From...

Obsessive passion

Setting a goal and doing everything possible to pursue it is a great feeling.
However, often it is the very striving to be great that gets in the way of actually being great.

The richer experience

When we are young and insecure, passion or striving often manifest as looking ahead and craving external validation (becoming a champion or lawyer or millionaire or whatever).

If we gain wisdom, the energy of our passion and striving becomes less about achieving the goal and more about where you are on the journey at present. It is about having a richer experience of the present moment. With this as a focus, you are more likely to achieve success.

When lifelong dreams crumble
When lifelong dreams crumble

All of us have hopes and dreams for the future that become part of our identity. But then reality gets in the way. Your passion may fade, or the obstacles to realising the dream ma...

Come to terms with your decision

As you let go of your dream, you may fear you're making a mistake.

  • There's no calculus for knowing when to give up. If pursuing your dream comes at great personal cost to your relationships and other goals in life (which is different from a 'harmonious passion'), that would suggest it was wise to give it up.
  • Success is not all or nothing. You may not have fulfilled your dream, but you likely learned much along the way, giving you a chance to redirect your energy and passions in new ways.
Goal adjustment capacity

Psychologists see goal adjustment capacity as a beneficial form of 'self-regulation' or 'self-management.'

It contains two parts:

  1. The ability to disengage from fruitless goals
  2. The ability to know when and how to change to new, more productive goals.

Those who are flexible and adaptable are generally happier, perform better. They often get promoted. If you are thinking of giving up your dream, it suggests you have a healthy willingness to adjust and adapt.