When deciding on a career direction, many people are not clear on where they want to go or what they want to do! It could be from lack of clarity in what they want, lack of motivation, getting stuck-in-a-rut, or overwhelmed with their current workload which makes the future so fuzzy!

Wouldn’t it be nice, if you could wave a magic wand and have the perfect future path arranged for you? Some days I’m sure it would! But with a little insight in what makes you tick and understanding these important elements of an Ideal Job, you’ll be well on your way!

In defining an Ideal Job, you want to take off the mask (and maybe a little ego) and start paying attention to what really motivates you and makes you happy.

Read more on Tips to Experience more Happiness in your Life

The higher the motivation, the more engaged you are and the better success you’ll have in the long run!

So, what are the 3 critical elements of an Ideal Job??

1) Motivation

The first critical element of an Ideal Job is all about “motivation”! What do you really love to do and what are you passionate about.

Don’t just take your current job into consideration but look at your whole work, personal, and volunteer life.

You can use this opportunity to reflect a little about the specific things or activities to really hone in on what aspects you enjoyed and where you do your best work!

Related: What is the Relationship between Motivation and Performance?

For example, you may love brainstorming a strategy with a team for work or a charity group, or the complex details of organizing a big project or event.
The more specific you can be, the more clues and insights you’ll get to your future!

2) Context

The 2nd critical element of an Ideal Job is the “context” or area of interest or setting that appeals to you the most.

Do you like a specific industry, or an area of a company, or a specific issue? Again, the more specific you can get the more useful and insightful it is.

If you like dealing with customers for instance, do you like dealing with any customers anywhere anytime? Or do you like creating an amazing customer experience, solving customer problems, or creating products/services that customers may buy?

Does it matter if the customer focus is related to marketing or technology? Or perhaps it is related to the finance, retail, or organic farming industry?
Getting to know the context will give you more clues to your Ideal Job.

3) Environment

The “environment is the 3rd crtical element of the puzzle and can make-or-break the enjoyment of your work or the success you achieve.

The environment includes things like the people, places, location, the values, the attitude that you work in. Just like Darwin’s Theory of Evolution, humans adapt to their environment (for the good, bad, and the ugly!).

So when defining your Ideal Job, don’t leave out the environment that you’ll be working in because it really does matter! Not only will it impact what you do and how you do it, it will also impact who you are and who you become!! Surround yourself with the best!
Now it’s your turn to wave your magic wand:

Step 1: The Brainstorm

Take 20 minutes and brainstorm on a piece of paper all the elements of your Ideal Job.

Write down “What is my Ideal Job?” at the top as your brain responds much better to a question! Then don’t edit or judge but write down all the words and phrases that resonate with you –

Include topics/industry/problems/people/context/environment that would be part of your Ideal Job (from the past/present and paid/unpaid roles/jobs)!

Step 2: Grow your Ideal Job List

Start by really paying attention to your current job and life this week. When you see activities/tasks/meetings that you really enjoy, pay attention to the specifics! What gets you interested,or gives you boundless energy or enthusiasm?

Keep adding to your list of specific things that you love to do. Don’t include those things that you “think” you like to do or those things that you are good at but don’t actually like!!. Keep the list open and add to it as things come up!

Step 3: Write an Ideal Job Description

Take all your brainstorming and notes and write your Ideal Job Description. Don’t get caught up in “reality” of what’s possible, use your creativity to make it something that you would truly love!

Now what?

The better you get to know yourself the better your Ideal Job description will be and more agile you’ll be at looking at future opportunities. It will become clearer and less fuzzy!

Use your Ideal Job description to evolve your current job by adding projects or activities that are more aligned to what you want to do. Then keep your head up your eyes “peeled” and seize opportunities that come your way or create one yourself :)!
Now is the time to Think Bigger and Act Bolder! Go for it!