What Should I Do With My Life?: 4 Helpful Tools

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For most of us, there’s at least a few years in our lives when we wonder, “What the hell should I do with my life?” It’s an existential question that we generally associate with work. When we ask young children what they want to be when they grow up they often pinpoint specific career paths instead of describing the type of person they want to be. (You probably wouldn’t be surprised if a kid told you “I want to be a fireman!” right?)

Of course, there’s more to life than work, and while there’s plenty of shoddy rhetoric hinting that millennials are lazy and don’t want to clock a serious work week, there’s plenty of well-researched evidence showing that millennials aren’t such a disparate generation after all. One important way that millennials are very much like our predecessor generations is that we want to have a positive impact on the world and for the organizations where we work. In this way, it’s not so crazy to think that the most important life choices do indeed revolve around work. And considering the economic landscape remains grim for many recent college grads, it’s worth prodding our youngsters early about what kind of work lives they’d like to lead.

Read on for a few popular tools to answer the question What should I do with my life?

  • The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is likely the most well-known career assessment tool around. The Myers-Briggs is a psychological self-report test that aims to suss out what kind of personality a test-taker has, and consequently, what type of career might suit them accordingly.
  • SkillScan is another popular career assessment too, but it takes a decidedly different approach than the Myers-Briggs. Skillscan advertises itself as a test that helps employers, educators, and more “[identify]transferable skills.”
  • The Values Card Sort by Richard Knowdell is billed as a low-stakes career assessment tool especially valuable to potentially “test-shy” employees or students.
  • Pymetrics is the only test here that’s supposed to be fun. The company has designed different neuroscience games that purport to lead test-takers down the appropriate career path.
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Jay is a Philadelphia-based freelance writer and music journalist.

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