Choosing the wrong career

Ever taken a multiple choice test where you were none of the answers you were allowed to choose from seemed correct? And so you wished you were allowed to write down your own answer, because it would be way better? Careers are exactly like that.

Ever taken a multiple choice test where none of the answers seemed correct? And so you wished you were allowed to write down your own answer, because it would be way better?

Careers are exactly like that.

Choosing a career can often feel like having to jam a square peg in a round hole.

Of course, it’s possible that you don’t feel like that at all.

Maybe you identify perfectly with one single job title. You’re just a [insert job title], nothing more, nothing less. Simple. Neat. Wonderful.

But chances are, you’re not.
Chances are you don’t exactly fit cookie cutter job titles.

Maybe you’re pretty good at design, but you also love social media marketing.
Maybe you’re proficient at writing code, but you can also teach quite well.
Maybe you have some skill in sales, but you also have a knack for efficient project management.

Whatever it may be, chances are you are a versatile and multidimensional human being, and choosing one predetermined job title for yourself feels like wearing an ill-fitting jacket.

You can do it, but it’s awkward.
Uncomfortable.
Just doesn’t feel right.

What do you do then? Will you always be in the “wrong” career now, because none of the cookie-cutter options are a great fit?

Life would be so much simpler if you were just a round peg that would fit perfectly in that precut round hole, right?

It’s understandable if you feel that way.
But it’s a rookie mistake.

Why?

Because that intersection of skills and interests that you have, actually makes you more valuable, not less.

Sure, it’s harder to find that odd shaped hole that your peg fits into, but at the same time, the more unique the shape of the hole, the harder it is to find a peg that fits it!

Alright, I’ll stop talking about pegs now, I promise.

Here’s some simple math to drive the point home though.

If one percent of people know all the ins and outs of crypto, and one percent of people are good at sales, that means that only 0.01% (one in ten thousand people) would be a great fit for selling crypto-products!

In other words, for the jobs that you’re uniquely suited for, the ones that would fit your unique intersection of skills, you’d be a super valuable catch.

This is why we always tell you to only apply to jobs that are super interesting to you.

Not only is it more fun to do what excites you, but the more the companies and roles you’re going for match your unique intersection of skills and interests, the more valuable you will be to that company as well.

Hint: more valuable usually translates to more money.
Not to mention a higher likelihood of winning the job in the first place.

So stop trying to force-fit yourself into a category, or a job title, like a straight jacket. Especially if you had already chosen a different career path before, and now you’re looking to switch, don’t make the same mistake again by choosing a different cookie-cutter career this time.

Instead, lean into your unique combination of skills, interests, and experiences. Find a company where that combo would be uniquely valuable, and pitch yourself.

Pitch your unique combination of skills like the hyper-rare value proposition that it is. Because that’s how you create that match made in heaven.

As a smart person once said, life is the ultimate open book exam.

Luckily, it’s not a multiple choice test. You don’t have to check a box.
So think hard about who you are.

And write down your own answer!

This post originally appeared in the DJH newsletter.
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