Helping your children decide on a career path for their future is a challenge most parents have to go through at some point in their lives. For some of us, that might involve an easy, smooth process in which our kids and ourselves will see where their passion meets their abilities; for some other parents, discovering and deciding our kids’ career path can be hard, frustrating and complicated.
In every single article we publish on this blog, we try to give you a hand. To offer you guidance and help find numerous things that can strengthen your kids’ skills, enable them to think differently, or even give you new insights on how to interact either with your children, or with the things they love the most.
On this occasion, we decided to take it one step further, and give you a simple but refreshing guide on how to help them decide what they want to become in the near future. Even if you know your children pretty well, these tips can be seen as new ways to relate to their interests, skills, and abilities.
In short, we are going to show you simple ways to help your kids decide on the right career path. But the right career path for them, as individuals. Because let’s not forget that there is no right or wrong in this story. Don’t you agree?
So, what do you say? Are you ready to assist your children in deciding on a career path they’ll love? Let’s go!
7 simple steps to help your kids decide on the right career path
As we said before, it is much simpler than you think. Helping your kids make such an important decision does not have to be a struggle or a reason for sleepless nights. Actually, when clearing out your mind and thinking of mistakes as learning experiences, everything works in a smoother and more pleasant way. What’s the worst thing that can happen?
May you have your kids’ happiness as the main focus, and may you understand that success and economic stability is a consequence of that. That’s the key!
Let’s cut to the chase!
1. Listen to them
There is nothing better than listening to your kids. Sit with them, go for a walk, or invite them to a fun place for lunch or dinner. Talk to them, ask them different and existential questions.
Go ahead and ask them what they’d like to be when they grow up, and what’s the thing they like to do most at school, or outside. Again, let them speak and put yourself in the position of a listener.
We know it can be hard not to judge or interrupt them with sentences like “no, but…”; so make a big effort and sit still while they express themselves freely. Make sure to create a relaxing atmosphere so they won’t feel rushed or overwhelmed.
Let yourself be surprised by the things your children would like to do. You might realize there are some aspects of their personality or goals that you were not aware of.
2. Explore different areas
Make a list of the things your children love the most, and go explore those areas. For example, if they mentioned they love performing arts, take them to the theater and go to your local public library to read, together, the best Shakespeare classics. Showing interest in their interests is the key!
We strongly recommend exploring different areas. They might have an idea of what a field of study looks like, but unfortunately, they have to be in that field to fully understand what it’s all about. Therefore, go and explore, before they make their decision.
Go to labs, visit different universities and colleges, if they like both arts and sciences, then go to a museum on Saturday, and visit a pharmaceutical lab on Friday. You’re right! It will require an investment of time and energy, but believe us… it will be totally worth it.
3. Find mentors and external inspirational figures
Let your kids talk and discuss with others who are not part of the family. Find some mentors or inspirational figures, who are at the same time experts in those fields your kids love, and let the inspiration begin!
When your kids listen to important people who have lots of knowledge about something your own children are passionate about, only good things can happen. If your children want to become animators or artists, for example, look for an animator in your local community who can mentor them along the way.
There is always someone, an expert in a specific area who is big-hearted, and will be more than happy to guide your children and serve either as a mentor or as an inspirational figure for them. Be sure to select someone with unimpeachable values. We know you will!
Your kids must get their hands dirty! There is no better learning than hands-on learning. The processes that involve experiential learning, and actually digging into the fields they love in first person, are proven to be much more effective than the most traditional ones.
Move your contacts, ask for help, and enable your kids to actually experiment in the area or the areas they’d like for their future.
Trust them, if they love what they are doing, they’ll do a great job. The worst thing that can happen – and actually it could be the best – is that they realize that the field isn’t what they were expecting. Isn’t that better than realizing it before making the “final” decision?
5. Don’t force. Suggest.
We’re dealing with teens who are exploring which kind of human being they’d like to become. Therefore, don’t force but suggest. Ask them for their opinion and offer your experience as a tool they aren’t obligated to use.
Suggest different ways in which they could explore these paths, and for a moment, let yourself be led by your kids. You might be surprised by the outstanding results you’ll get.
6. Find a balance between passion and abilities
We know you know this, but here we are to remind you of this once again: the key is to find the perfect balance between what your kids love to do, and what your kids are good at.
And now a short but shocking surprise: skills can be taught. Even if today your children’s abilities aren’t that strong in a specific area or field, with the right instruction and the perfect learning environment, they could become masters in no time.
For example, if your children would love to learn how to code but they don’t know a thing about programming, there are several live online courses in which they’ll be able to design an app while having a fun, engaging, and enjoyable learning experience.
That being said, one of the keys to success is finding the balance between what we are good at, and what we love doing. Don’t you agree?
7. Trust your children and their decisions
Trust your children. Nurture them with confidence, self-esteem, and a safe space for self-expression. Enable them to believe in themselves, in their dreams, and in a world where everything and anything is possible.
Boost your kids’ skills and encourage them to, always, become the best version of themselves. Because when you trust them, they’ll almost definitely trust themselves.
Coding can help with critical thinking!
Coding can help. If you want your children to be critical thinkers, enrolling them in one of Tekkie Uni’s coding courses might be a great option. In these courses, your kids will be part of a learning environment that constantly challenges and encourages them to become better and to look at mistakes as rich learning experiences.
Give your kids the tools they’ll need to succeed in the near future, regardless of the career path they pick for themselves. Critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving will be useful in every single industry, and coding can provide them with it.
The time is now!