We all set ourselves goals for next step in life or even the ultimate goal… how you want to be remembered. Of course setting a goal to plant a seed in your back yard it’s going to change how people remember you but it’s a start, and in conjunction with all the other goals you reach, you’re on the track for a better life!
The following paragraphs explore this.
The great psychotherapist, Alfred Adler theorized that humans are driven to complete goals and that our behaviours are tied to the purpose of our goal. He explained that when we feel that we have a purpose we have a sense of meaning in our lives.
Having a purpose drives us to lead a better life that gives us confidence and security.
One of the most challenging areas of work for Case Managers is helping people connect with employment when they have little to no idea of what it is they want to do.
In many cases clients are stuck because they have an unhealthy self-esteem often brought on by unemployment. When people lose a job or have spent long periods of time looking for work they start to blame themselves.
This lack of self-esteem reduces an individual’s personal agency. When we think about the word agency, we think about organizations. But its meaning is really about a person’s sense of power in the world. These clients believe they can’t make a change because they have little control over their own lives.
This is no surprise. Psychologist, Abraham Maslow figured out that our primary needs must be met before we can think about our higher needs. If a person doesn’t have food and shelter then it’s hard to consider the need for security. If we don’t feel safe then it’s hard for us to think about developing our career.
A career gives you agency – a sense of personal control. Careers are different from jobs. A job is owned by the employer. A career belongs to the worker. You nurture your career with professional development. You invest in your career with new technology. You commit to your career by moving to a new community or making financial sacrifices to put yourself through school.
Gaining a sense of agency makes us more resilient against crises. Our confidence and assertion gives us the surety to solve our own problems and puts us in a position where we can deal with the challenges we face in life.
We may still want to consider finding a job, if only for the short term. A job still pays the bills. It brings in cash in return for labour. It is also a great way of getting started on a career path. Jobs can be stepping stones. In some cases that work may give you a better idea of what it is you want to do. And can tell you what you really don’t want to do.
So taking a job can lead to finding the right career. This in turn leads to a healthy sense of self and a feeling of competency and personal power.