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The best course to study is the one that leads to your overall career goals and objectives. Thus, I would imagine you do not have anything specific at this time. So many individuals enroll in college programs without a specific goal in mind. As such, many become miserable in their work which is not good for them, or their employer. If you want to be successful in your work and personal life, carefully consider the following.

To be successful in your work, you must acquire a vision. A vision is a clearly articulated picture of the future you intend to create for yourself. In other words, it's a dream. However, if the dream does not have direction, it will always remain a dream and will never become a reality for you. That vision should create a passion within you, a love for what you do and the benefit it will bring to others as well as yourself. Make sure the vision is specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and tangible. Let us look at this closer. When you believe you have chosen an appropriate career goal, look at it in SMART fashion as follows.

  • Specific - Make sure your career goal is very specific. For example, "I would like to be a teacher," is not specific. "I would like to be a high school Biology teacher in New Jersey (USA) in an urban school by 2012" is.
  • Measurable - Make sure you can measure your progress. How will I know I am progressing in the right direction? This is where the development of short-term objectives comes in (discussed below). You will know you are on the right path as you accomplish each short -term objective.
  • Achievable - Is the goal achievable considering my current life situation and circumstances?
  • Realistic - Is what I want to do really realistic. For example, "I would like to be a middle weight boxing champion, and I am 63 years old." That is not realistic.
  • Tangible - What will I - specifically - have at the end? What will I be (exactly)? It must be very specific.

Once you acquire that vision your path will become clear. Still, you will need a mentor, counselor, or coach who will be able to help you develop a road map embedded with short-term objectives leading to your overall career goals and objectives. The achievement of short-term objectives will indicate you are moving in the correct direction, and will also give you energy and excitement to carry on towards your overall career goal. It will take some research, but you most likely have some ideas already. Follow them through, look at the nature of the field, the everyday routine, the required education, the salary, the occupational demand and the related fields. When a career sparks an interest, try to shadow an individual who is actually doing what you think you might like to do. You can pick up valuable information this way. Thus, the following.

  • Acquire the will to change circumstances.
  • Acquire the vision (dream).
  • Develop a road-map embedded with short-term objectives leading to your overall goal and objective.
  • Just do it and do not let go until it becomes a reality.
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Q: Need advice on what graduate degree to obtain?
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