A lot of people have an idea of what their dream job would be. Unfortunately, not everyone will do what they want for a living. But how much of that is due to a lack of effort on their part? Can you work your way into something you absolutely love?
However, it’s going to take more than wishing for it to happen. That perfect position or freelancing career isn’t merely going to fall out of the sky and into your lap.
What’s Your Dream Job?
When you love what you do, it doesn’t really seem like “work.” Time passes quickly, and you fully enjoy what you do for a living. A lot of people would love to get to this point but will often work crap jobs instead.
But it’s those crap jobs that will help you get to where you need to be, especially if you manage your downtime well.
In reality, you don’t need to keep working those “bad” jobs your whole life. Keep your options open and look for that dream job while your crappy one is paying the bills.
Is it Really Your Dream Job?
What you view as a dream job today has a good chance of not being so at some point down the road. For many of us, our attention will change for a variety of reasons.
I’ve seen a lot of people quit writing after a few months because it wasn’t the glamorous career they thought it would be. Some quit because they didn’t think it was worth the effort for the amount of money.
My point is that your idea of that perfect job can quickly change once you start working. And that’s OK. People change with time, and you just need to alter your focus towards something that makes you happy.
About 10 years ago, I thought running my computer business was my dream job. But here I am today, a freelance writer and author, with a new idea of my perfect career.
How to Get that Dream Job
As I said, what you view as a dream job isn’t going to jump in front of you. It takes a lot of effort to get to where you want to be in life, in any regard.
And the steps you take right now will help you walk the path. But you’ll still need to put one metaphorical foot in front of the other. Or else you’ll stand there and watch everybody pass you by.
Step 1: What Do You Want to Do?
This is perhaps one of the hardest questions to ask yourself. If you’re like me, you still have no idea what you want to do simply because you want to do it all.
Writer, actor, singer, musician, Uber driver, YouTube, gamer…these are all fantastic dreams for many. If you don’t work on any of them, though, that’s all they’ll be. Dreams.
But once you decide on something, the rest of the steps fall into place.
For the sake of this article, I’ll use myself as an example for the rest of the steps. However, the following will work for just about anything in life.
Step 2: It Starts with a Plan
OK, so how do you get from point A to point B? If you structure a plan of action, the path becomes far more clear. It just takes a bit of serious brainstorming.
Spending time hammering out the details will help guide you to that dream job.
Ask yourself, “What all do I need to reach my goal?”
I was curious if I could turn into a freelance writer. After all, writing is something I’ve always loved to do even at a young age.
Since I didn’t know how to break into that career, I started at the beginning. In this sense, I started with content mills to see how well I could handle articles and clients.
Mind Mapping Helps
I’m a big fan of mind mapping and what it offers for creating strategies. I use the Mindomo mind mapping app quite often to plan out everything from blogs to Wattpad stories.
It’s a good way to explore different ideas and get a sense of how to accomplish your goals. In this case, you can plan out each step you’ll need to take to reach your dream job.
I uploaded a video on mind mapping recently to show viewers how they can structure their own ideas and how it helps.
Step 3: Research What You’ll Need
You can’t just simply say, “I want to be an actor” or “I want to be a writer.” You need to put in the effort to research what you’ll need to do to become those things.
Sure, you can show up at casting calls and cross your fingers. But how much of a boon would it be to show up knowing the part inside and out and what it entails? What kind of actors does the director like to use in other movies?
I spent hours upon hours learning everything I could about writing in AP Style. I researched writing for search engine optimization, how to create perfect blog posts, and much more.
I want to offer the best experience I can for what I do. So, I research every aspect of my dream job.
Step 4: Take Action
You’re not going to get anywhere unless you begin walking the path, and you cannot be afraid of failure. You will come across things that will to trip you up.
Just make sure you’re still putting in the effort to keep yourself in forward momentum.
Besides, nothing is truly a failure as long as you learn from the experience.
For me, the first steps involved working with Textbroker and putting in the effort to improve my writing skills. Before I could land those high-paying clients, I knew I had to work on the quality of my work.
Step 5: Revamp Your Strategy
The plan you developed earlier will work to get you started. However, you will undoubtedly need to change it up if you truly want to succeed. That’s because there is a myriad of things that will happen to alter your course.
In fact, you may find yourself traveling down a different path altogether depending on the circumstances.
The reality is that you’ll probably have to revamp your strategy quite often. And that’s a good thing. You’ll learn more as you go and grow as a person in general. Which means the plan you had before may quickly become obsolete.
In the beginning, I thought I would always write about computers and networking. However, I found I had a penchant for marketing and business.
Today, I am working on publishing more creative pieces. Your views of a dream job will change over time.
Step 6: Take Action, Again
Once you revamp the strategy, keep walking the path. Never stop pushing forward even when things look grim or hopeless. You never know what awaits you around the next corner.
I was content with making what I needed as a freelance writer on Textbroker. Then, I was offered an incredible opportunity with GreenGeeks. Today, I am the Content Marketing Team Lead with a few writers under me.
That’s a completely different path than when I started. But, I love my job and wouldn’t trade it for anything!
And yes, I am still keeping my eye on the creative path…which is running parallel to my current career.
Step 7: Keep Yourself Practiced
Never assume you’re good enough at your dream job. There is always something more to learn and ways you can improve yourself. And you might find you have other talents you wish to explore outside of your perfect idea for work.
I created WriterSanctuary.com as a way to share what I’ve learned and keep track of my progress. Textbroker editors would point out what I needed to work on and I would take to the blog to practice writing.
Want to be a full-time Uber driver? Learn the city and get a feel for driving the best routes.
Want to be an actor? Why not take to YouTube and practice your skills at engaging an audience?
Don’t rely on raw talent alone. You need to sculpt yourself into something if you want people to notice. I mean, would Michelangelo’s David be the same if it was still a block of stone?
Step 8: Do Some Networking
An important aspect of finding that dream job is to get yourself out there and know the right people. Being social can open doors you never even knew were there.
And I’m talking about going above and beyond online social media. Don’t get me wrong, being a part of online groups is helpful. But, engaging people in real life can take you much further.
Go to meetups, join offline local activities, attend seminars, do what you can to get yourself in front of as many people as possible. You might come across someone who can put you into your dream job.
Step 9: Manage Your Time!
Perhaps the most vital step of getting that perfect career is making sure you manage your time well. Your day should be spent on projects and tasks that further what you want to be.
Sitting on your computer playing games or binge-watching Netflix isn’t really helping you get that dream job. In fact, these things are probably holding you back.
One of the things that helped me become a better writer and the success I am today is the effort I put into making each moment count. If I wasn’t working for a client, I was blogging about it.
If I didn’t have work in Textbroker, I either looked for work on WriterAccess.com or researched how to become a better writer.
My point is that my time was full of things that contributed to improving myself.
Yes, I had my moments when I wasted a large amount of time. But for the most part, I am a success today because I focused on what I needed to do to improve my abilities and knowledge of my dream job.
Getting Your Dream Job Boils Down to Effort
In the end, it all comes down to the amount of effort you put in to find that perfect career. If you put in a half-assed effort, you’re going to get a half-assed result.
Don’t try to reach your goals all at once. For most of us, it can take months and even years to reach specific heights in our careers. Start with what you need to do today to make it happen.
The rest will become available as you travel the path.