These 12 simple guiding principles will turn your dream career into a reality

The world is changing- and fast! In such dynamic times it can be very easy to get lost in tasks, interests and duties. Sometimes, forgoing your career goals and dreams. Balancing school, work, family and self-care is a whole occupation on its own. It makes you wonder, when do you get time for your career. It feels like everything is out of your control. Don’t fret. We’ll tell you why.

In order to build and secure a career designed by your values, skills, interests and abilities it is important to understand certain principles. These principles are prompts that will guide you towards turning your dream career into a reality.

That design that will overhaul trends? It needs these principles. That business idea that will transform industries? It needs these principles. That concept that will disrupt an entire market eco-space? It needs these principles.

Here are 12 simple guiding principles that will turn your dream career into a reality.

1. Play Long Term

Many of us think short term- what will I have for lunch, when is pay day? This easy principle of thinking long-term singles you out from the sea of short-term thinkers. A wise man once said, “When in doubt, zoom out.”

2. Develop filters for advice

Yes, most advice is well-intentioned but most of it suck. Do not use another’s map of reality to chart your own. Learn to filter advice from others, even if they are experienced.

3. Be your Boss’s anchor.

Observe your boss, figure what they hate doing, master how to do it and take it off their plate. You do not only add value but make your skills indispensable.

4. Do the “Old Fashioned Things Well”.

Simple things like courtesy and ethics stand out in the 21st century where almost everyone uses ‘self-care’ to cover selfishness. Be on time, be true to your word, hold the door, have a confident handshake, be kind. These things never go out of style.

5. Learn to enjoy being wrong.

You cannot always be right. Find the truth is more important than not being in the wrong. Retrain your mind to embrace new information. Open mindsets are limitless.

6. Build your own board of advisors.

Looking for a mentor is a formal and long stretch in today’s world. Looking for a patron even worse. Have 5-10 persons whose achievements inspire you. These are the ones you should run questions over with. Their feedback is always a resource that will help you on your career path.

7. Work hard now, work smart later.

If you want to accomplish anything, you need to work hard. Build a reputation for your hard work- relish it. Then leverage on that reputation to work smart.

8. Closed mouths don’t get fed.

Don’t sit back and wait for good things to happen. They rarely ever do. If you want something and you worked for it then stand on that and ask for what you’re due.

9. Learn to sell.

To have a successful career you need to either be a builder, a seller or both. Learn to sell yourself, your ideas, your achievements and your vision.

10. Focus on asking more questions

Asking great questions is how you uncover truth. The smartest people don’t have the smartest answers but they sure as heck ask the toughest questions.

11. Don’t compare yourself to others.

Naturally, we are prone to compare our achievements with others. This person made X. This person has built this in X number of years. This person has attained X number of accolades. Stop it! It doesn’t help you in anyway. Just stop!

12. Prioritise people and relationships.

Everything comes down to people and relationships. Cultivate deep relationships. You can go far by being someone that people love being around.

Photo credit: Photo by Katerina Holmes

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