How to Figure Out What Type of Job You Really Want to Chase

Are you considering a job change, but you keep putting it off for one reason or another? Fear of change, leaving something comfortable, or maybe just not sure what you really want to chase? When this happens, it is easy to become complacent in your current situation and possibly miss out on that dream job without even realizing it.

If you feel stuck or unable to clarify what is next in your career, below are some questions to help you shift your mindset into what possibly could be next for your career and overcome the obstacles of indecision and not knowing what you want to chase.

Answer these questions:

What is it that you DON’T want to do? Oftentimes, identifying what we don’t want can shine a light on what we do want, simply by considering the opposite. This is a great opportunity to clarify what you did and did not like in past jobs so you do not fall into repeat patterns. Ask yourself the top three things you don’t like doing in your job or what may disrupt the work-life balance you may be seeking. For example, if you absolutely hate the commute, working closer to home or even at home might be preferable.

Some other questions to consider:

  • What do I like least and most about the current leadership?
  • Do I fit in with the company culture and values?
  • What do I like least and most about my co-workers?
  • What new skills have I learned that provide growth in my career?
  • What is the most challenging thing working there?

Answering these questions honestly will help you to uncover patterns that have not been working for you and that maybe it is time to move on to new opportunities.


What work environment do you want to work in? Consider if you want a highly competitive environment or more collaborative. Do you want friendships outside the office and some social scene with workers, or do you prefer working remotely? If you thrive working on teams, then you may want a company with a collaborative approach. If you prefer walking alone, then you may prefer contract work or independent freelance projects.


Do you hate conforming to rules and regulations? Maybe something that would allow you to work under your own initiative with your own ideas would be ideal. In your present position, do you feel restricted in presenting new ideas and hear often, this is how we do it with little room for change?

What is your risk tolerance?

Do you like more stability?


Are you putting yourself under pressure to conform to someone else’s perceived impression of you? For example, do you have thoughts like these:

  • I should have a professional position.
  • I must have at least this much as a salary because of my background.
  • I should have a title that other people will respect and admire me for.

Check your feelings to see whose rules you are actually following. You will never be happy unless you follow your own passions. Are you really prepared to let others dictate how you should spend your life and make a living and what opportunities may be restricted?

What if anything was possible? What would you do with your time? Try thinking without restraint or limitation. What would you do if absolutely anything were possible?

  • Would you travel?
  • Would you build?
  • Would you create?
  • Would you write?
  • Would you buy and sell?
  • Where would you go?
  • Who would you go with?
  • How much money would you make?
  • Do you want a real work-life balance or are you willing to work long hours if it pays off?


What would you be like if you reinvented yourself completely? Ask yourself:

If you could turn the clock back and unload all the junk that you’ve collected in your mind and heart so far in your life what do you envision?

  • Where would you be and what would you be doing?
  • Who would you be doing it with?
  • Where would you be doing it and why?
  • What if you seized some of the opportunities you’ve turned down and refused some of the opportunities you’ve taken? What would your life be like now? Where would you be? Who would you be with?  What would you be doing?  How does that feel?
  • What would this brand new look like? What kind of work would you be engaged in? How much money might you be making? How much joy would you have in your life? Where would you live? Why there? Is this new you inspiring?


What if your new career wasn’t grandiose, world-class, or life-changing? Would that matter? What if it was modest, relatively inconspicuous, but followed your passions and brought you that inner happiness?

  • Just because some ideas are bigger, it doesn’t automatically make them better. What you are searching for here is a perfect fit for you, not for someone else.
  • Think about what your true interests are, not just what sounds lucrative or high powered on paper. Will you wake up with that Monday morning enthusiasm?

With a little reflection, self-awareness, and honesty to the above questions, clarity will set in to help guide you to following the career that will bring you that true inner happiness and success. You may even realize that is right within your reach.