With graduation looming closer and no job offers, I began sending out my resume to anyone who would take it in a panicked frenzy. A situation, I’m sure, many students find themselves in. After a few weeks of anticipation, I was relieved to find an interested employer’s email in my mailbox asking for an interview. After a short victory dance, I scheduled my first interview for my very first big-kid job. Minutes later, I received a similar email from a second company. Two companies. Two interviews. One me. This is a pretty good situation to be in, right?
Well, not if you lack decision making skills. I’m sure many of you, like me, probably get stressed out by simply having to decide what to wear let alone what company to begin your adult career, especially if both careers offer great opportunities. But fear not, my fellow over thinkers, for here are some helpful tips to guide you in this decision.
One of the reasons we struggle with making decisions is because we are often torn with what we feel we should do and what we really want to do. Maybe one position offers better pay but the job description doesn’t excite you? Don’t feel pressured to make that decision because it looks good but opt for the position that excites you more. Remember, you’re going to be spending a lot of time at this job, so it is important to enjoy that time and not simply tolerate it. Evaluate your skills and interests, really focusing on what type of environment they will flourish in. And if you’re unsure where your interests lie, your good friends at the Pomerantz Career Center can hook you up with personality assessments and strengths finder quizzes that allow you to look at yourself from an outsider’s perspective.
If you’re stuck between two positions, consider making a list of your top five priorities. Perhaps you want a job closer to home or a position that offers commission incentives. Maybe you just want to work in an office with killer camaraderie and catered lunches? Write down what is most important to you and see which position checks the most off from this list. This exercise will allow you to make a more informed decision as it gives you the chance to analyze how each one fits your needs and career goals.
Practice Making Decisions
If decision-making gives you anxiety, the best way to overcome it is to practice. You can start small by simply giving yourself thirty seconds to decide where you go for dinner or what movie to rent with your friends. Remember, not every decision is binding and you can always change your course if the path you’re on is lackluster. By doing so, you can begin to train yourself to make decisions faster and say goodbye to the panic in your gut when asked, “where should we go for dinner?” Your friends will thank you for it.
Not every decision we make will be perfect but action will always serve you better than inaction. Anything in life that allows us to grow and learn will come with some form of risk, whether it’s choosing to ask that super cool person you met in class on a date or determining where to jumpstart your career. Even if the position in question is not your dream job, you can still use that time to build your resume and grow your professional skills so that when faced with a better opportunity, you will be better prepared. Instead of pushing off making a decision, go confidently with what is best for you and put aside the doubts that keep you on the fence. The choice is always yours.
Written by student blogger, Hannah Ebbing