And then, after some minutes of gathering together in one “square-box” called a class room, the lecturer walked in to the front of the class, welcomed us into the prestigious – but dreaded – department and started to address us. No sooner has the address started than he delved into their common notion about incoming students: “I am sure a lot of you were thrown here either by JAMB or BASIC. This is not the course you initially wanted to study, but you’ve found yourself here whichever way. In fact, if you initially picked this course, let me see your hand.” With hidden rage and a self-pride refusing to be defeated, my right hand found its way above my head in split seconds.
As a student in the BASIC/pre-degree programme, I had a lot of folks question why I would decide to pick such a course to study. Even after gaining the admission and studying the course, I had tutorial students who, after savouring my Physics, Mathematics or Chemistry classes, would come with statements like, “Engineering would have been your best fit,” “Why didn’t you go for Medicine,” etc. With each of these comments and remarks, I’d smiled and told myself, “I may have the brain, but I don’t have the heart for those areas.”
The place of God in career choice
When God created you, He didn’t create you with a helmet as an engineer, neither did He put a stethoscope around your neck to be a doctor. He never put a calculator in your hands to be an accountant. What He gave you were the talents, natural abilities, a predilection, a heart that yearns in a particular direction. Man instituted disciplines and career fields, but God gave talents and natural abilities to prosper with.
While it is very paramount to be guided by God into a choice of what to study, it’s also fundamentally essential to find out what your talents/natural abilities are because, He put those things there to guide our choice. And then, you should never neglect you’re your kind of heart – what your temperaments are, your core values, etc. You may be a Chemistry & Biology genius, but without a heart that’s designed to be attentive to details, to care for and be patient with the sick. You may be a Mathematics & Physics guru, but you’re not a person of the field.
Other important factors to consider outside aptitude
It’s high time we began to look into the work demands and personality requirements before choosing a career path and not just the glamour, the prestige or the brain. It’s high time we first looked at the need our heart yearns to meet and our brain ticks to fix, before looking at the gold we can mine out of the field. People who succeed and make great histories in chosen careers are not just those with the brain, but those with the heart. If you doubt, check how many times Kevin Hart was rejected in the Hollywood before he finally became the highest paid comedian.
If checked against your academic aptitude, your personality type and temperament will definitely fit into more than one or two career fields. How then do you choose? Then comes the question of purpose. What need or lapses does your heart yearn for, the most? What issues around do you naturally feel the urge to address and that troubles you most? What career path will give you a room to follow hard after that cause? These are pertinent questions to help you find your career path as a student. Remember, your purpose is your life assignment, while your career is your life journey/experience. You can’t possibly separate the two if you must enjoy a fulfilling life and not just get ebbed in by the world’s definition of success.
Your career is a journey and as a journey, it’s too long to be based on just aptitude. There are several other factors to consider outside your aptitude. The gifts of God in you are also factors to consider when choosing a career because as far as God and humanity are concerned, it’s only when those divine endowments in you begin to find expression that you really begin to live.
I remain your clarity coach and your clarity remains my priority.