Strategies for owning your career and obtaining your career goals

Much of life is spent at work — finally take charge of your work, and your life. All it takes is learning how to own your career. Know what you want, get focused, and don’t ever let anybody tell you what you want. Your goals are attainable, and now is the time to start working towards them.


Cartoon with check mark

  • know what you want
  • write it down
  • get focused
  • remember that you are in charge
  • have a plan

Cartoon with x mark

  • allow others to tell you what you want
  • get into the stuck-rut mentality
  • let past failures dictate your future
  • work only for the money
  • ever, ever, ever give up

Beverly D Flaxington‘s recommendation to ExpertBeacon readers: Do

Do know what you want

It’s easy to find the things you dislike about your current situation, but what do you really want? Identify those things that matter to you, that you enjoy doing and that would be satisfying for your career. Focus both on what you are good at, and what you like to do. Draw upon past experiences and your likes and dislikes to identify what you want.

Do write it down

It’s not enough to have the idea of what you want, you must reduce it to writing. Putting things in writing helps you to clarify and paint a clear picture of success. Be as specific as possible.

Do get focused

Instead of facing each day with drudgery and wondering, “is this all there is?” get focused on what you want. Put your positive energy into play. Now that you have written what you want, put your mind on it. The mind is a goal-seeking mechanism so focus where you want to go.

Do remember that you are in charge

Often times it can feel like everyone else is running the show: the boss, the economy, the government, your family. Ultimately you are the one who has to make the right decisions for you. No one else is living your career. Only you are — take charge of doing what you need to do in the way that you need to do it.

Do have a plan

To get to where you want to go in your career, you need to have a plan of action. It’s not enough to wish hard, or hope that things will change. Create a step-by-step plan whether it is changing your current situation, or finding a new one. Know each day what you need to do.

Beverly D Flaxington‘s professional advice to ExpertBeacon readers: Don't

Do not allow others to tell you what you want

It’s amazing how many people have an opinion about other people’s lives. To own your career, it must be a career that fits you. Don’t listen to the people saying you “have a good job” or “need to stay put” and so you can’t make any changes. Whose life is this?

Do not get into the stuck-rut mentality

Many people wake up in their 40’s, 50’s and 60’s wondering how they spent the prior few decades doing a job, or in a career, they hated. It’s easy to stay stuck but miserable to experience. Recognize that to move out of the rut, you have to decide you want to do so.

Do not let past failures dictate your future

Life is learning. Learning means making mistakes. Lots of times those mistakes have to do with job and career. If you didn’t make past mistakes, you wouldn’t have the information you need to move forward with confidence. Look at your past as the learning it is but don’t get fixated with it.

Do not work only for the money

This one is hard for most people. After all, bills have to be paid and daily needs have to be met. Don’t make a foolish decision to just quit your job after reading this article, but don’t focus only on the money when trying to own your career. Be smart about your decisions, but living in the paycheck to paycheck mentality keeps you where you are — permanently.

Do not ever, ever, ever give up

You can make changes to your existing situation, you can find a new situation. Life is all about reinvention and change. Just because you don’t own your career today, doesn’t mean you can’t tomorrow. Every moment gives you the possibility of change.


Owning your career starts with knowing what you want, and being willing to commit to writing and create the plan to get you there. It’s about having a clear focus and knowing what steps to take for success. Most people spend the better part of their lives at work so it’s important not to get into a “stuck” mentality and stay there. Move forward — to a better career for you.

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