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Choosing a Career

How do you go about choosing a career? When you are just starting out the possibilities are endless, and while on the one hand that freedom is exhilarating - you can be anything you want to be! - it can also be overwhelming. With so many choices, how can you possibly be expected to make a good decision?

For most people, the best starting point in choosing a career is to think about the things you like doing. Do you like animals? Maybe you could be a vet. Do you like working with people? Maybe choosing a career like retail, food service or working in a hotel would be good for you.

Sometimes people simply have an idea of a career that they think they would enjoy - maybe teaching, accountancy or engineering sound interesting to you. It's also worth bearing in mind that as fast as the world is changing, there are now many professions you may not even have heard of.

There are lots of good places to get information about different jobs and careers. One of the best ways is to ask people who are already working in the field - ask them what inspired in the first place, whether they enjoy their work, and what you need to do to succeed.

There is also a huge amount of information available on line, from the training and experience needed for different jobs, through to information on pay or professional organizations.

Most jobs these days require some kind of formal training and qualification - there are lots of places to get training, depending on the field and the training needs. You may find that you can learn at school, at college or university, or while you are actually working, in a job that also offers accredited training.

It's also worth remembering that when you are first starting out, no decision is final. Simply because you start out down one path doesn't mean you have to spend the rest of your life there.

Trying different types of work is, for many people, the only way to find out whether or not you like them. While there are some people who know exactly what they want and stick to it, for most people it takes time - and a few mistakes along the way - to find the thing you truly enjoy.

So remember that you have a whole lifetime of work ahead of you, meaning you have plenty of time to try out various different routes to see which one suits you best.