Career Guidance: How To Help Your Child Choose The Right Career

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Many people are unhappy with their jobs. Why is that? If you look closely, you will notice that the main reason is that they failed to choose their career path based on their passion. Instead, they chose their occupation based on popular opinion, how much money they could make, or what they have been pushed to do. Choosing your career based on what people say is bound to leave anyone disgruntled, incomplete, and hating their job. When it comes to the future of our kids, we want the best for them. How can we help them choose the right career that will enable them to become happy, productive adults?

If we choose the wrong career, we may find ourselves feeling miserable half the time. When we feel this way, we are more likely to constantly find reasons to quit our job or to find a better job. Doing this contributes nothing to living a happy life. As parents, we want to protect our kids from going down a similar path. Helping them make the right career choice might be challenging, but it can be done. By playing an active role in helping them decide on a career early on or before they head off to college without being overbearing will help to make the right choice.

4 Smart Ways to Help Your Child Choose the Right Career Path

     1. Help your child discover their strengths.

One of the greatest things that can happen to your kids is discovering what things they can do best. Assisting your kids in choosing the right career requires realizing their strengths and then maximize them. Start by finding out what they enjoy doing and have them try different things. This should be fairly easy since they have enough time to do so before going off to college. Once you are aware of what they are passionate about, start helping them get the most out of that passion.

     2.  Enable your kids to cultivate their skills.

One of the main reasons that children give up on their most cherished dreams at a tender age is because they lack proper support and guidance. Ensure that your child continues improving their skills by making the environment conducive to cultivating the skills they possess. In order to achieve this, it is very important to frequently offer words of encouragement for their progress. Enrolling them in short courses can also help them to gain in-depth knowledge and stay up to speed.

Encouraging internships or advising your children to join boot camps is also a  great way to ensure they have a working knowledge of what they are studying. If your child keeps changing courses, don’t get discouraged. You must remember that moving from one program to another can help them find what they are truly passionate about. This is better than sticking to something that will make them miserable throughout their adult life.

     3.  Don’t pressure your kids to choose the same career you have chosen.

Most parents wish their kids could be in the same line of work as they are, and there is nothing wrong with wishing for that. Of course, you should never overdo it. How can I know that I am overdoing it? You may ask. When you find yourself pressuring your child to become a lawyer because that’s the profession everyone else in the family has chosen, then know that you are overdoing it.

If you find yourself saying things like “You were born to be an engineer”, know that you are overdoing it. If you want your child to be truly happy about their job let them select their own path. The only thing you should offer is non-overbearing guidance, wisdom, and funding (where needed).

     4.  Support their decision in choosing the right career for them.

Helping your kids choose the right career involves supporting their decision even when you are not ecstatic about their choice. For example, if you are not quite thrilled about your daughter’s decision to become a photographer when you want her to be a doctor, support her anyway. At the end of the day, the only thing that matters is your child’s happiness. Imagining your kid 15 years from now doing what she loves, happy, satisfied, and thriving with her job is all you need to help you come to terms with her career choice.

Recommended Reading

What Color Is Your Parachute? 2020: A Practical Manual for Job-Hunters and Career-Changers


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Otto, Luther B. Helping Your Child Choose a Career. JIST Works, Inc., 720 North Park Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46202-3431, 1996.

Kathy Adams, Author

Kathy Adams

Hi, I'm Kathy. Thanks for visiting Your Guide to Parenting. As a parent myself, I understand the challenges that we all face when trying to help our children along the road to maturity. I'm here to help make the journey a little easier for parents and...

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