How to find your dream job

How to find your dream job

Here it is, what we all go through, the question everyone keeps asking but have a hard time finding answers to.

What do you want to do when you grow up?

What do you want to do after college? I have personally struggled with these questions my entire education, but at least when I was at school, I could always say "I'm pursuing my studies". Knowing that I would be enrolled in some education program after high school, bachelors after high school, masters after bachelors, was a relieving thought, since I did not have to settle on what I wanted to do at that very moment.

I ended up majoring in Physics Engineering and to be completely honest - I hated it. The reason for that was rather simple: I had no personal connections in the field and for the time being, my life was dreamless. Fast forward two years I got a job offer from my dream company, for the position I long yearned for.

How did I do that?

First off. Allow yourself to dream, and do never be afraid to dream big.

Try to think about these questions, without any precognitions. Get rid of all your parents and professors' expectations, it is your life, not theirs. Give yourself some slack, lift all those constraints, and doubts, and obligations, which are restricting your freedom of creativity and thinking outside of the box.

  1. What do you feel passionate about?
  1. What kind of world do you want to live in?
  1. Who do you want to make happy?
  1. What are the core values that you keep close to your heart?
  1. What kind of person do you want to become?

Try this exercise with me!

  1. What do you feel passionate about? I feel passionate about the environment, equal rights, peace, transparency in politics and sustainable economics.
  1. What kind of world do you want to live in? A harmonious world where everyday life is enjoyable, convenient, and stress-free. Where the citizens' voices are heard by their governments. Where politicians stay close to the people and speak with integrity. A world where the economy is in harmony with nature. A world where I want my kids to grow happy.
  1. Who do you want to make happy? The people around me, my family, parents, husbands or wives, my friends, or anyone really
  1. What are the core values that you keep close to your heart? Transparency, honesty, sustainability.
  1. What kind of person do you want to become? I want to be organized and productive, allowing myself to have time and energy to do whatever I want to do. Studies, hobbies, social life, family time, vacations, work and so on...! I want to be someone to whom people refer to as "good at what she does" and "reliable".

Nothing related to Physics Engineering, right?

Well... sometimes our major is not our destiny, would you agree?

I tend to think of it this way: our life's imperfections lead to perfections.

But enough of this cockiness. Whether your major is or not related to your actual dream, I believe you will find your path. Just be ready to start your job hunting journey to get that dream job of yours.

Now that you have let yourself to envision beyond the constraints, let us delve into your actual dream career.

When looking for jobs, students often make their selections either according to their passions, skills or income prospects. The sad thing is, we often think of these qualities as independent of each other. But what if there was a way to find the job that matches all of these criteria...? This could be the key to uncovering your dream career and it is represented by one simple word -  Ikigai.


Ikigai, written 生き甲斐, is composed of two words: iki, 生き meaning life and gai, 甲斐 meaning worth. Putting them together, we have "life's worth". Sounds beautiful don't you think?

Tim Tamashiro coined this term during TED talk, saying that: "ikigai is like a treasure map, and this treasure map can help you find your way to finding wonderful things about yourself that you can share with the world and the world will say thank you for it!" Pretty exciting is it not?

Ikigai has four directions:

  1. Do what you love
  1. Do what you are good at
  1. Do what you can be rewarded for
  1. Do what the world needs

It sounds simple but actually it is slightly challenging. No need to worry, we all have to start from somewhere.

To underline the challenging aspect of Ikigai, take a look at Number 4: do what the world needs. This may sound a bit confusing, as it is something that is not in our usual job-hunting equation. However, it is important to consider, because by doing something the world needs, you develop a purpose, which is all life is about.


How to find your Ikigai? Try this exercise!

  1. List up everything you love doing. Anything really.
    Tip: think of what you enjoy doing in your spare time, what you liked doing as a kid, or the things that make you lose track of time.
  1. Make a list of everything you are good at. Those are your skills.
    Tip: even if it sounds too simple, put it on the list. Remember these skills might come easy to you, while someone else might find them challenging.
  1. Make a list of the jobs/industries that pay well today.
    Tip: If your end goal is a high-income job, you can start by listing all the industries that pay well and start from there.
  1. Lastly, make a list of what the world needs.
    Tip: What does the world lack? What does it need to be a better place? How we can improve the world to bring happiness and add quality to our lives? You can refer to the first exercise we did to find inspiration.

Follow your heart and find the work you love, the one that brings you purpose and passion and that pays well too.

Even when you find your Ikigai, it may not be perfect at first, but at least you have taken the first step to plan your future, and what we learned about planing is "fail to plan, plan to fail."

I will walk you through the next steps of building your dream career. An important thing to keep in mind: where you choose to work is essential to build your career around your Ikigai and big hierarchical corporations are often not the ideal place to be.


Juliette Tempia

Content Writer and SNS Marketer

Harmony For Inc.

[Job Tree Japan]

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