National Photography Month and Captured Memories: The Moment One Chooses a Career

small child in a wooded area at dusk

May is National Photography Month (whatever that means!). I’ve mentioned I’m a photographer hobbyist, but have I mentioned I also capture memories in my journal? More than giving me creative outlets, photography and journaling give me opportunities to record moments and re-live them each time I flip through my images or journals. Take for instance the photo in this blog; it’s my younger daughter walking through the woods last year when we lived in Japan. I remember the exploring we did that day; the frigid air we endured, the fingernail-sized red insects we watched, and the fenced-in ponies we were surprised to come across.

Another good memory I have recorded, this one in an old journal: I called my mom before buying a movie ticket and asked for her advice. “Mom, a professor (Dr. Lewis from the Florida State University) talked to our class about what it’s like to be a teacher of students with visual impairments. It sounds like something I’d love!” My mom encouraged me to pursue it and there I went.

Do you have a mental picture of the moment you chose a career to pursue? If so, I’d love to hear about it. I’d like to know what led up to that moment and how you decided the career would be a good fit for you. Please take a few minutes to type it out in the comments section because I know others can learn from your story.

If you don’t have that memory because you have yet to decide on a career, I can prepare you for that moment. Here’s the typical progression:

  • Get to know yourself. Know your likes, dislikes, values, and skill sets.
  • Get to know career options. Explore jobs and their requirements, responsibilities, and compensation.
  • Think about which careers complement your unique likes, dislikes, values, and skill sets.
  • Decide if you’re willing to pursue the requirements (training, schooling, experience) for each of the careers that complement you, if you are willing to perform the responsibilities, and if the compensation is a livable, reliable wage.
  • Get a snapshot of the careers left in the running to visualize if any is a good fit for you: volunteer, talk to a mentor, and/ or pursue a job-shadowing experience.
  • As I did, seek the counsel of someone who knows you well.
  • Pursue the career by setting goals that lead to the final destination. As a person with a visual impairment, goals will include learning necessary job accommodations.
  • You’re ready to find a job and succeed at work.

Get a picture of where you want to be, create that memory.