Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Mapping Your Next Steps

As summer comes to an end, many of us are thinking about what the next step in our professional lives should be. Some may be preparing for another semester at school, others may be preparing to graduate and enter the real world or are looking to take on a different job than the one they have now. Each of these phases can be scary, but are much easier to process and manage with a little planning ahead. Whether you are looking for your next internship, first job or are looking to switch jobs, here are some tips to get you started:

Remember your goals: Your long and short term goals should always be guiding factors when making new decisions. Make a list of short and long term professional goals that you would like to accomplish in the following weeks, months, and years. Nothing is too big or too small. A short term goal could be as simple as starting a blog or updating your portfolio, and a long term goal could be to get published or go to work for a large firm. 

Plan to take risks: Don't be afraid to step outside of your comfort zones when planning for your future. This may mean planning to take an internship in a different city that you're unfamiliar with, or relocating for a new job. You never know where opportunity can take you.

Get inspired: Sometimes it can be hard for us to think outside of the box. Sit and talk with friends and other professionals to see what some of their future plans and goals are. You never know when someone else's vision will inspire your own.

Don't get stuck: Life may cause us to take detours and veer off of our mapped out plan, and that's ok. All that matters is that we do not allow ourselves to get "stuck" in any place. If you aren't settled doing what you love, you should be planning a way to get there! You should be just as passionate about your professional life as you are your personal life.

Have you set future professional goals? Share them with us!

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