Bronnie Ware was a nurse who found that when people realise that their life is almost over, they are able to look back clearly. Throughout her career she noticed several recurring themes and in 2012, decided to turn them into a powerful book. Most people will agree that at the end of their life they want to be able to look back and smile at what they have done and be pleased with what they have achieved, both in their career and in their life generally.
Consider the career mistakes below and strive to avoid them so that you can look back without regret on your career:
- Working too hard – this was second on Ware’s list. How many people do you think will look back over their lives and wish that they had spent more time in the office or at work? Too much time at work can cause you to neglect your health, friendships and family. This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t work hard, but that balancing your priorities is important. Or, as some might say, it is important to maintain a good work-life-balance.
- Waiting until you retire to do and enjoy the things you love. Tomorrow never comes, do these things now! This is especially important as the retirement age may continue to rise.
- Staying too long in a company or role that you don’t enjoy or find fulfilling. This can let the negativity build up, which isn’t healthy.
- Chasing money and only looking at salary and compensation package. This can lead to job hopping and a lack of fulfilment.
- Ignoring your instincts, especially when they say “don’t accept this role” or “stay put.” Many people say that something “didn’t feel right,” and that they wished they hadn’t ignored the feeling.
- Not taking responsibility for your career. You can’t expect your company or manager to be in charge of your career and rely on them to offer you opportunities. You should take control of your career, as no one else will.
- Not planning – you wouldn’t get in a car or on a train without knowing your destination. By planning and spending time thinking about your career, you will enable yourself to make decisions based on your plan and what you have decided is important.
So how can you avoid some of these career mistakes? Take control and plan your career. Understand what makes you happy and don’t neglect your life outside your career. Then make a plan and start taking action.
Many people enjoy their careers, although they can seem to be in a minority. Have a look at these interviews with people who are genuinely inspired in their careers:
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