The key is loving what you do and still being able to make money. It is hard to build a bridge between the two, especially if you are in college or just graduating and you have to make such a huge decision quickly.

So here are some suggestions if you are on the fence and trying to discover your career. There are three basic steps:

Step #1 – What do you like to do?

The first thing to think about is what makes you happy. Doing a job just for the money almost never turns out well. In fact, if you’re not passionate about what you do, you probably won’t put in the extra mile that’s needed to earn promotions and progress your career.

The first thing to do is start make a list of all the things you like. Here’s a list of some things that I like, in no particular order:

  • Working out
  • Playing sports
  • Hanging out with friends
  • Gardening
  • Website Creation
  • Reading
  • Building RC cars

Keep the list simple. Write down what quickly comes to your mind and then move on to the next step. Don’t dwell on one answer, just keep moving.and write what comes organically.

Step #2 – What are you really good at?

A lot of people think that they are talent-less, but the truth is, everyone is good at something. Now, I want you to make a list of all the things you’re good at.  It’s best to keep this list morally positive and encouraging i.e. don’t write down that you are good at being being schedule. Here are some things I feel like I’m good at, in no particular order:

  • Building stuff
  • Hitting the gym
  • Communicating with others
  • Paying bills on time (i’m financially savvy)
  • Fixing Computer Problems
  • Helping people find jobs

Again, keep listing things until you can’t think of anything else; it’s really important that you get it all out. More than likely, you’ll have a few things you like that you also feel like you’re good at. We will come back to this idea. Some of these will line up and help you discover your career.

Step #3 – What do people and businesses need?

Or in plain terms what are people willing to pay for? This is going to be the hardest question to answer. It’s not what people think they want, it’s what they will pay for.

For example. if you ask people if they want great gourmet meals while flying, they will probably tell you that they do, but if you add on $50 on to their ticket price, few of those people that responded positively before will actually purchase these things and they would prefer a cheaper ticket. (See why Southwest Airlines is doing so well?)

It depends on where you live in the world, how the economy is behaving, and a huge number of other external factors. In any environment there are things that people will always need. Here is my list:

  • Food
  • Clothing
  • Websites
  • Health
  • Education
  • Jobs
  • Financial Security (More money)
  • Entertainment

Then go back and look at the answers for #1 and #2. Add any that could be a part of what do people need. Here’s what I selected from my other lists:

  • Website creation
  • Financial Savvy
  • Building stuff

Now here is the real work. Once you have a list of what you like to do what your good and what people need see if anything is intersecting. For example Website creation and financial matters are interesting to me in all in multiple locations. Try this out and see if you too can use this technique to help discover your career.