10 things to do if you have no career goals

Are you facing a lack of career goals?

First, let me tell you that this is not something to be ashamed about; instead, it’s an opportunity to take stock of what you like, what you don’t like, and where your passions lie.

Second, it’s really important to keep a healthy perspective: life often presents us with choices, and we just need to decide how we want to handle the situation.

If you currently have no career goals and that’s causing you concern, here are 10 things to do:

1) Ask yourself why you don’t have any career goals

Sometimes, when a person doesn’t have any career goals, he or she is considered lazy or unmotivated, but that’s not always the case. In fact, it is usually not the case.

So, what is keeping you from setting career goals?

Is it because you don’t enjoy your work? Or, because you’re pleased with how things are going at your current workplace?

Is it because you don’t like lots of responsibility? Or because you don’t want to spend your time working towards achieving your goals?

Once you identify the main reason, there are several ways to deal with it. In case you don’t like your job or your profession, then it could be time for a change.

However, if you want to do something else with your time rather than achieve professional success, then you could try to find other ways to make money that allow you to focus on whatever you want to do.

Ultimately, this is about you and what you want to achieve in life. Maybe you still haven’t found your calling.

How do you find your calling?

Ever heard the saying “When you know, you know”?

Well, it’s true. You just have to listen to your gut. Start by listing the things that interest you and see how it goes.

2) Reflect on what (and why) you want to do in the future

Just because you don’t have any career goals, this doesn’t mean that you’re not happy with your current job.

If you are, then the solution for you could be to set up realistic goals that you can achieve short-term without too much struggle from your side.

By doing so, you won’t have to constantly pressure yourself that you don’t make any progress, or let others annoy you with this aspect.

However, if you’re not happy with your profession, here’s what experts suggest:

  • Reflect on how you’ve felt about your career in the past (maybe you’re just going through a phase).
  • Ask yourself what are you passionate about now (and if you can make money out of it).
  • Figure out how a career change could impact the rest of your life. Are you up for it?

It’s also crucial to understand not only what you’d like to do in the future, but also why.

Let’s say that you want to become a fashion designer. Is this a newfound passion or is drawing something you liked doing since you were little?

You see, you might not have any career goals because of what you’re doing now. Maybe the path you’ve chosen for yourself professionally is uninspiring.

But there could be interesting career paths that you haven’t discovered yet. Give them some thought.

3) Make a list of the things you’re good at

Look: You can’t really set any career goals if you are not aware of your strengths and weaknesses.

Also, you can’t figure out what to do about your lack of career goals unless you assess the things you’re good at and the things you’re not.

For example, maybe you discovered that finance is not your thing. You struggle with the most basic tasks and feel no interest in building a future in that field.

So, instead of going on with it, you could focus on becoming an expert in a field where you have passion and/or talent.

Another example: You might have found out that you are great at managing teams, but you don’t have any interest in that. This is exactly why you might not feel motivated to set career goals in this area.

In other words, it would be best to build a career on the things you’re good at, but also on the things you’re passionate about. This balance is going to bring you one step closer to naturally setting career goals.

4) Find flexible work that’s satisfying to you personally

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Another thing you can do if you have no career goals is to find flexible work that’s satisfying to you personally.

Like what?

This can be freelance work, side hustles, or other part-time jobs.

Having a flexible job that lets you pursue your own interests, schedule time for extracurricular activities, and spend time with friends and family may be a better fit for you than a traditional 9 to 5 job.

It can also help you avoid burnout and figure out what jobs you actually like.

You see, not everyone is meant to be a 9 to 5 employee. So if you’re feeling unfulfilled by your current job, try finding flexible work that’s satisfying to you personally.

When you’re stuck in a job that doesn’t excite you, you may feel like there’s no point in even trying to make a career change.

However, that’s not true.

It doesn’t take much to build a professional life filled with exciting opportunities and achievable goals.

Most of us hope for a life like that, but we feel stuck, unable to think beyond our daily struggles.

I felt the same way until I took part in Life Journal. Created by teacher and life coach Jeanette Brown, this was the ultimate wake-up call I needed to stop dreaming and start taking action.

Click here to find out more about Life Journal.

So what makes Jeanette’s guidance more effective than other self-development programs?

It’s simple:

Jeanette created a unique way of putting YOU in control of your life.

She’s not interested in telling you how to live your life. Instead, she’ll give you lifelong tools that’ll help you set goals and achieve them, keeping the focus on what you’re passionate about.

And that’s what makes Life Journal so powerful.

If you’re ready to look at things from another perspective, you need to check out Jeanette’s advice. Who knows, today could be the first day of your new life.

Here’s the link once again.

5) Take classes and learn new skills

Listen, some of the best career opportunities come from learning a new skill – and also learning how to apply that skill in a completely different career field.

This can be done through a variety of methods, including online classes, short-term workshops, or relevant side projects that can be applied to your desired field.

Taking classes will help you explore new interests, build new skills, and find out what types of careers are a better fit for you.

It’ll also help you build a strong résumé and impress potential employers – making it easier for you to get a job in any field you want.

And if you don’t know where to start, there are plenty of online tools to help you find classes in your area.

Make sure to choose something that sparks your interest, too, not just something that pays well.

6) Network and learn about other fields

If you don’t have any career goals, it can be tempting to stagnate in a profession that you don’t enjoy.

However, this is not the best way to set yourself up for success.

And you’re not alone; many people experience this problem and feel stuck in their current job.

We’re here to tell you that it’s time to break free from this trap by networking with people in different fields and getting a better understanding of what they do.

You can do this by joining professional organizations, attending conferences, or even starting a conversation with someone at a networking event.

This will help you gain insight into what these fields are like, what you like about them, and what you don’t like about them.

It may also inspire you to consider a field that you previously had no interest in.

Additionally, learning about other fields will help you identify which skills you have that are transferable to other fields. This may help you decide on a new career path that’s a better fit for you.

7) Commit to something that excites you

Have you considered the fact that you might not have career goals because your current situation doesn’t inspire you?

If this is you, then try committing to something that excites you. This can be a hobby, a volunteer opportunity, or an extracurricular activity.

Look for something that fully consumes your time, and that you can really put yourself into.

This will help you discover your passions, build new skills, and explore other interests that you may not have thought about before.

Committing to something that excites you will also help you get out of a rut, and promote overall self-growth.

What’s more, a new commitment to something that makes you happy can make a career change feel very achievable.

To be more precise, when you look forward to getting better and better at something, you no longer see it as a chore.

You see it as something that you want to be excellent at, something that you’re going to enjoy – and, most importantly, something that is both interesting and beneficial to you.

8) Determine whether you’re afraid of change

It is possible that you have no career goals because you’re scared of change. How so?

Well, setting career goals can feel overwhelming if you’re afraid of change.

Maybe you’re worried that you’ll have more responsibilities and stresses if you move up the ladder.

Or maybe you’ve never been promoted and simply feel unfamiliar with it.

And this is totally okay. If this is you, then it might be best to take some time to wrap your head around the possibility of change.

You can do this by talking to others who have achieved one career goal after another, or by educating yourself on what it would actually look like.

For example, you can read books, attend seminars, or talk to successful professionals who have achieved different goals.

9) Take a fun career quiz to find out more about yourself

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Not having career goals is not the end of the world.

Who knows, maybe you’re looking at the situation the wrong way. Maybe you’re not actually uninterested in career goals, but are just unsure about what job is right for you.

If this resonates with you, then take a fun career quiz to find out more about yourself.

These tools can help you discover your strengths and interests – which are huge factors when it comes to choosing a job or a career path.

Additionally, they can help you gain clarity on whether or not you need to change careers entirely.

No, these quizzes are not for fun only. They can be very effective at figuring out what job or job path is right for you.

10) Get yourself a mentor

Unfortunately, not everyone has the benefit of a mentor in their life.

This can make it very challenging to figure out an ideal career path that’s right for you – especially if you don’t know what you want to do for the rest of your life, or how to figure it out without a career coach or mentor.

If this is you, then try finding someone who can serve as your mentor – such as a family member, friend, teacher, or coach.

You can also look for a mentor online. For example, you could ask a local business owner to be your mentor if you want to become a small business owner yourself someday.

No matter who you choose, it’s important that this person has the skills and knowledge that you need to achieve your goals – and that you feel very comfortable asking them questions.

Is it OK to not have a career plan?

While not having career goals may seem a little lacking, it’s important to remember that it’s OK to not have a plan.

We advocate for setting at least a few goals at the beginning of a new career path.

However, we don’t think it’s necessary to have one specific long-term goal or objective in mind before diving in.

If you’re feeling lost and unfulfilled at work, take these tips to heart. They may spark a desire to make some changes.

And if you don’t have a career plan, that’s okay. Just remember that it’s important to keep an open mind and give yourself time to figure it out.

So keep working towards being happy with your career, even if you don’t have any particular goals in mind.

Why is it important to have a career goal?

Having a career goal is the first step toward achieving your dreams – and moving along your chosen career path.

So if you don’t know what you want to do when it comes to working, then there’s no way that you’ll ever be able to achieve anything specific.

Learning about other career paths and finding one that interests you is the key to unlocking your potential.

But if you don’t know what you want to do, then it’s very possible that you’ll only be able to settle for jobs that have low career satisfaction.

If this ends up being the case, then that’s also totally okay. You can always work towards changing your career direction within your current job later on.

Why is it so important to have a career goal?

  • It motivates you to learn a lot (constantly), which will contribute to your professional and personal growth;
  • You have something to look forward to, which will help you feel positive and excited about what lies ahead;
  • It will show others that you have short-term and long-term plans and ambitions, which is a great way to increase your chances of getting a promotion.
  • If you achieve your goal, you can get a higher salary, which is a great financial motivator;
  • You can grow along with your career goals, which will help you reach your maximum potential;
  • You won’t have to keep worrying about what to do with your life.
  • And on top of that, you’ll become more confident while working towards your career goals.

And when it comes time to figure out a new career path, having career goals at the beginning will make it much easier to do so.

So remember: having a career goal is just about maximizing the good stuff in your life – and not getting hung up on what you don’t have.

Final thoughts

By now, you should have a clearer understanding of what you can do if you have no career goals.

The points above can help you make sense of the situation and give you a roadmap forward. Moving in the right direction is never easy – but it’s definitely worth it!

While there’s no need to panic or feel lost, it is important to think things through. It’s a good idea to plan out your next steps and make some plans.

Picture of Daniela Duca Damian

Daniela Duca Damian

I’m Daniela, a passionate writer with an academic background in journalism. My work is based on research and facts. In recent years I have focused on the study of interpersonal relationships, analyzing, and writing about aspects related to social connections, romantic relationships, but also personal development. My goal is to decipher the most confusing concepts so that anyone who is interested in living a better and fulfilled life can apply them. When I’m not writing, I challenge my friends with meaningful questions about life.

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