For some individuals, picking a profession is easy. They have a path they want to follow, and they know exactly how to do it. It’s much more difficult when someone is unhappy in their current role, and not sure where the next step lies.

We’ve got 9 questions you need to ask yourself to guide you towards your perfect career. These questions are only the start of your career search however, but they might help find your strengths and start to narrow down the list of jobs you’d like to pursue.

The next step is to research, study, gather details and obtain as much info on the profession you believe is the best fit.

 1. What are your passions outside work?

Start by thinking of what you like to do in your spare time or what’s interesting to you at the moment. What are you studying, reading about, or watching on TV? Don’t concerning yourself with what sort of job your passions might lead to, what kind of wage you would make, or what abilities you require at this point, all you’ll do is care yourself out of a career change. Rather, focus purely on your interests in life, this is only the first step in finding your prefect career.

2. What are your personal qualities?

Ask yourself two simple questions: What kind of problems do people bring to you to solve? What do people appreciate you for most in your current job?

The qualities you possess don’t necessarily have to qualify as skills, but might lead you towards a new career nonetheless. For example, are you an unbelievable cook? Party planner? Money whiz? Confidant? If people see you as a friend and asset, you might just be able to turn that into a new career.

3. What tasks do you enjoy?

Ask yourself how you want to spend your day. What things do you find rewarding? Look past the money or the work hours and try find something that you’ll enjoy doing every day. You might enjoy the more creative aspects of your current role, or you might like more routine tasks with clear-cut goals. Consider what roles might accommodate the type of tasks you prefer.

4. What industries do you find interesting?

Find sectors that you naturally are attracted towards. Talk to individuals in those industries and discover what industry-specific knowledge you might need, which roles are in demand, and where the market is headed.

5. What values would you like to express through your work?

The litmus test for job satisfaction is what work you would be willing to do despite just how much you were being paid. Some desire the challenge of having every day be different. Others like to be imaginative in their job. For others, it could be about giving back. While money might motivate you for a little while, you’ll need a bit more than that to get out of bed in the early morning day after day.

6. Who are you?

Finding work that matches your character type is an important consideration when searching for the perfect career fit. Whether you are confident, outgoing, social, or introverted, you’ll want a job where those qualities will mesh with your work environment. 

7. What sort of work setting are you looking for?

Do you want to work alone or in a team? Do you mind long commutes? Are you happiest in a big company or a start-up? What sort of people do you work best with? Think about what kind of social environment you work best in and factor that into your job search.  

9. What is your perfect salary?

What salary would make you feel valued and as though your time spent is well worth it? Mapping out your base expenses and what you’d like to save each month is part of the job-finding process. Some career adjustments might mean taking a pay cut, so knowing what the bare minimum income you to need to get by is crucial.