ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Choosing a Career Based on Natural Talents

Updated on January 30, 2017

One way to choose a career is to simply go with whatever is available at the time. That might work for some people. For most of us it will not or just be OK and just OK should not be good enough. This approach can even lead to total misery especially if you are also averse to change. A better way is to be more deliberate about it from the beginning. There are a great number of factors you can consider. Some of them may be more important to you than others. Others may not matter at all.

Career Choice Factors

Some factors can change over time. There are two that never change, so if job happiness is really important to you, it pays to pay attention to them. We could call them cornerstones. They are:

1. Innate abilities
2. Personality

Innate abilities are abilities that are special for you. Cheetahs are known for their ability to run really fast. Humans are usually more multi-talented, but may have one or two things they do extraordinarily well. It is natural for them. These natural talents come in two flavors:

1. Mental
2. Physical

The other important factor to pay extra attention to is your personality. For most of us, our personality is fully formed at the age of about three. After that, it does not change much. We will talk about personality as a career choice factor another day. Some other factors to consider are:

1. Interests
2. Values

Innate Abilities

Knowing your innate abilities is key to choosing a satisfying and fulfilling career. If what you do is difficult or unpleasant, you will burn out too soon.

In contrast to natural talents, acquired skills are things you have learned. They can change over time. Natural abilities do not normally change over your lifetime. At the beginning of your journey, try to separate natural talent from acquired skills. Later on, when you have determined your natural talents, combine it with mastery. Become and expert in that field.

What Is More Important to You?

See results

Interests

It is also possible to be good at something, but have little interest in it. The opposite, of course, may also be true. You can be interested in something but have no talent for it. What you want to look for is both.

Now What?: The Young Person's Guide to Choosing the Perfect Career
Now What?: The Young Person's Guide to Choosing the Perfect Career

Nicholas Lore is the leading expert in career counseling. If you are a young person just starting out, this book is a must-have. It very thorough and leads you step by step to a fulfilling career.

 

Discovering Your Natural Talents

For some of us, it is pretty obvious what our natural talents are. For the rest of us, it will take some effort to figure it out. One difficulty we run into is that we have never actually tried to do everything. The opposite is easier to figure out. Try to do something you are terrible at. No doubt, someone will tell you that you are terrible at it. That will hurt, so you are more likely to remember that this is not one of your natural talents so you can avoid it when choosing a career.

Natural talents tend to come in a very narrow range and positive feedback is harder to come by than negative. One difficulty trying to identify them is that it is so normal or mundane to you that you do not even notice that you have an extraordinary gift. Others, who may struggle with what seems so easy for you, may marvel at your ability and you will miss the obvious and therefore neglect to make it a component in your perfect career.

Childhood Clues

If you are having difficulty figuring out what your natural talents are, it might help to go back to your childhood. Try to remember what you did when nobody told you what to did. Your talents then are likely to be the same talents you have now. Going back to your childhood will also help reduce the possibility that the result of your inquiry gets tainted by acquired skills and interests you have developed later in life.

Friends and Family Clues

Another way is to ask your friends or family what they think you are good at. If you are not a very social person or find it awkward to do so, an alternative is to keep your eyes and ears open to what they say about you.

Clues Inside You

Most of us have an inner dialog going on in our head all day long. It is likely to be more or less the same one day in and day out. Pay attention for a few days. Listen for clues. Also listen to actual conversations you have with people. Pay attention to when it becomes interesting and when you tune out. That could be valuable clues.

Aptitude Testing

If all this fails to give you an answer, you can always resort to aptitude tests. If you are multi-talented, you might want to make this your first choice. Some are inexpensive or even free, but consider the consequences of getting this wrong. In this context, what's a few hundred bucks? We are talking about the rest of your life here, aren't we?

Selecting a Career

Figuring out what your natural talents are, however, is only the first step on the ladder. You also have to figure out a way to translate that into an actually paycheck, to make it part of your job. After, all, you cannot simply search for "running" or "analytical" and expect to get a list of jobs where running and analysis are core elements. All you know so far is that certain abilities you have should be a major component of your new job. It should come as no surprise to you that there is no instant gratification. Getting this right is hard and rigorous work. Go through the pain and the rewards for choosing a career where you will do what you do well at least some of the time are great.

Start with the abilities that most directly translate into an actual job. If you can, the work is basically done. Chances are that it is not that easy. More work is necessary. Do not worry if it does not happen right away, but do set that as a goal. The best and most reliable information comes from people who already work in a particular field. Do not be afraid to approach leaders in that industry. If they are passionate about what they do, they will be very happy to talk to you about it. It is not a bother at all.

In the meantime, hone those skills and tell everyone what kind of jobs you are interested in.

Commit to Getting it Right

All this sounds like a lot of work, doesn't it? You would be right. It is but really, isn't considering how important this is for your wellbeing. You do that with everything else that is important to you like the new stereo, the new car or the vacation you are going on next summer.

Nowadays, some people change jobs every few years. It is normal, but every move should be one step closer to your dream job. Don't fall into the trap of wanting to get this over with quickly. Take your time and be thorough even if the process takes years. It is a journey and you may have to make some course directions along the way.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)