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Tips for a Successful Career -- Loving Your Work and Life

Work and job satisfaction impact our lives, including our demeanor, health, relationships. Use these career tips for a life of career satisfaction and fulfillment.

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by Randall S. Hansen, Ph.D.

Let's face an important truth. The degree to which you like your career and current job have a direct impact on your life, including your general outlook and demeanor, your physical and mental health, and the quality of your relationships. Yes, your work life has that much impact on the rest of your life! If you are genuinely happy with your work, you are generally happy with life.

Because we spend at least a third of our days at our jobs -- and some of us as much as half our days -- our work must be something we value, something that we want to do and something that gives us a sense of purpose. So, if your work and your job are a struggle for you right now, this article should help. This article provides a variety of straight-forward tips for helping you achieve a successful career.

Successful Career Tip 1: Get it Right

No matter your age or your current employment situation, if you are unhappy with the type of job you perform, it's eventually going to have a bad effect on all aspects of your life. Take a weekend -- or a couple of them -- and complete some self-reflection on what you really want to do with your life. Once you discover your career passion -- your career purpose, develop a plan for achieving it. Make sure you also research the corporate cultures of the organizations where you want to work to make sure they fit with your values.

Successful Career Tip 2: Find a Balance

There's a difference between being ambitious and hard-working and simply overdoing it. Your life -- and your career -- will be so much better if you can carve out a balance (that fits you) between work and home. While certain employers and careers are much more balance-friendly, almost all employers recognize the value of retaining happy and healthy employees. And if fulltime employment is no longer an option, consider job-sharing or telecommuting. For some great work-life balance tips, check out these Empowering Work-Life Balance Resources.

Successful Career Tip 3: Make Friends... Network

The most powerful tool in job-hunting is building relationships with people. People with whom you have some kind of relationship are in your network, including family, friends, co-workers, associates, bosses, and the like. Keep expanding your network -- and keep up with your current network -- and new career opportunities will find you. (Network with people in person and online.) You should belong to at least two professional organizations and two social organizations -- and not just belong, but participate (and build those relationships).

Successful Career Tip 4: Know How to Negotiate

One theory of why the gap between the salaries of men and women is as wide as it is deals with the theory that men much more enjoy the art of salary negotiation and thus, while women may accept an employer's first offer, men will ask for more. The trick to salary negotiation is research -- knowing what you are worth in the market and what the employer is willing to pay. And remember that almost all elements of a job offer are negotiable -- not just the salary.

Successful Career Tip 5: Market Yourself

You probably know this fact already, but the best candidates are not always the ones selected for a new job or a promotion. The folks who get ahead are the ones who track their accomplishments and make sure their bosses are aware of them -- either through informal discussions or during annual reviews. Also consider becoming an expert by writing articles in your field and serving as an expert for the media.

Successful Career Tip 6: Never Stop Your Career Quest

Most of us will work in multiple careers -- with numerous jobs with a variety of employers. No one stays in one job with one employer anymore. So, you must see your life as an on-going quest for career happiness and success (however you define these concepts). Don't stop being active in your career just because you are happy now in your current job -- because things can change overnight, and it's always best to be prepared for the next step in your career rather than having to make rash decisions. Having a plan may help you be better prepared.

Final Thoughts on Having a Successful Career

Everyone should be able to find work that they respect and value -- with an employer who respects and values you. Our work does not need to define us, but we have to accept the power that our job satisfaction has on the rest of our lives -- with our demeanor, health, and relationships. Using the career tips in this article should provide a foundation for a life of career satisfaction and fulfillment.

My hope is you'll use the resources on this site to empower yourself to a better career, a better job -- and a better, healthier, happier, and longer life.

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Avid wellness guru Dr. Randall S. Hansen Randall S. Hansen, Ph.D., is an avid bicyclist, adventurist, environmentalist, and student of wellness and photography, with a mission of empowering others to lead great lives. He is Founder and CEO of EmpoweringSites.com, a network of empowering and transformative Websites. Dr. Hansen is also the founder and caretaker of this site, EmpoweringRetreat.com, as well as founder of EmpoweringAdvice.com, MyCollegeSuccessStory.com, and EnhanceMyVocabulary.com. He is a published author, with several books, chapters in books, and hundreds of articles. He's often quoted in the media and conducts empowering workshops around the country. Dr. Hansen is also an educator, having taught at the college level for more than 15 years. Learn more by visiting his personal Website, RandallSHansen.com or reach him by email at CEO(at)empoweringsites.com. You can also check out Dr. Hansen on GooglePlus.

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