7 Paths to Your Occupation

Hey there friends!!

Often people (particularly those in their adolescence or going through a mid-life crisis) will ask me, “How do I know what I should do?”… “I don’t have a calling or special talent” they exclaim.

You have many choices.  And part of the fun is uncovering all the different choices you have, like so:

1. Childhood Fantasies

Think back to when you were a kid.  What was your favorite pastime?  What would you daydream about?  I remember that I first wanted to be a pilot and fly around the world!  Later I found out that it would be necessary to have very good eyesight to navigate an aircraft, and had to choose another path.  Chances are, you could re-live your childhood fantasies.

2. Parental Guidance

While we may frown upon aggressive parents who have old fashioned views (doctor/lawyer/engineer only), their big picture love of you could be the guiding light you’re seeking.  Over generations, skills and talents get genetically encoded in your genealogy…  Think of last names representing occupations, like “Smith”, “Miller”, “Taylor”, “Hunter”, “Mason”, “Marshall”, and “Fetcher”.

3. Community Serendipity / Inquiry

Do you belong to a Church choir, participate in your Parent-Teacher Association, or love playing social online games?  Go to your local Rotary Club, neighborhood Center, or organizational reunions.  Today it’s not so much about finding a job as it is creating a job through networking.  So think of a place you’d like to be, and then hang-out and volunteer there (regardless of whether it is corporation, non-governmental organization, charity, or movement).

4. Brainstorming Session

Some people just think, and don’t necessarily write down their thoughts.  Write down everything without filtering, censoring, or judgment.  You never know how a bad idea can be transformed into a brilliance idea.  Having a visual landscape of all our options gives us the capacity to choose more wisely.  The Passion Test is a great exercise that allows us to order our options in such a way (through intuition) that we can resolve what we are most passionate about.

5. Ceremonial Ritual

Aboriginal and native cultures have a variety of ways to help us determine what it is we are seeking.  Participating in a sweat lodge, a vision quest, or doing some excursion that takes us into a completely new and unfamiliar environment, allows us to be free of attachments and constraints that may have been holding us back.  For some, traveling to an exotic location without a detailed plan, gives them their life adventure.

6. Dabbling Everywhere

We know we’re going to change careers many times now, so we need not be so attached to any decision that we make today.  Flowing from one vocation to the next may allow us to effectively integrate our skills so that we could provide a much more holistic service to others.  There’s value in being a jack of many trades.  How else might you know what you don’t like?

7. Inner Search & Patience

David Whyte wrote a beautiful poem that may guide you on your current fork:

Stand still, the trees ahead and bushes beside you are not lost, wherever you are it’s called here
Stand still, the trees ahead and bushes beside you are not lost, wherever you are it’s called here
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger must ask permission to know it and be known
Listen, the forest breathes, it whispers I have made this place around you
If you leave it you may come back again saying here
No two trees are the same to raven
No two branches the same to wren
If what a tree or a branch does, is lost on you, then you are surely lost
Stand still, the forest knows where you are
The forest knows where you are
Stand still, the forest knows where you are
You must let it find you
You must let it find you

Let’s love the world together…

Love,
Danish Ahmed, blind visionary

P.S. Here’s a funny path to your occupation.