Most people come to career counseling with the hope that they will be able to take a few tests, narrow possible career options, and be given a neat answer for the career and specific job that fits them best. In a general sense, anxiety is usually prevalent in times of uncertainty. It makes sense that a person desires a quick answer that will give him or her direction, purpose, and a balm to sooth the painful feeling of anxiety.
The career diamond is a helpful visual aid to show you the process of expansion that plays a vital role in your career search. The beginning of the diamond represents the hypothetical point at which self-awareness and external awareness about the world of work are limited. When you contemplate the career diamond, you will agree that it makes little sense to try to begin your journey at the middle, like most people do, and rule out the various options until your ideal career is the last one standing.
You are at the beginning of your journey. The more you are willing to learn about yourself, about how your values and beliefs are influenced by cultural and family norms, and about ways in which you and your behavior are guided by unconscious forces, the better chance you will have to find the ideal career match that leaves you feeling fulfilled.
The same goes for the world of work. Many people have very little practical knowledge about what a career or a specific job within that career actually entails. They have not interviewed representatives from the various careers, they have preconceived notions about gender roles or how their personalities would not fit, or believe a career would not meet their criteria for social status, for example.
The process of expansion is fun and exciting, but also scary for people in therapy. They have to gather the courage to look at themselves and their lives honestly, and allow another person into their personal spheres. This is definitely the stage where a counselor with psychological expertise in many areas gives you the most bang for your buck. Instead of relying on on formulaic tests and tired interventions, you explore areas of your life using world renowned psychologies.
Take a look at the career diamond again and try to make an honest appraisal of where you are in your process by marking an “x” somewhere along the top line between awareness and self as well as the bottom line between awareness and world of work. Wherever you are in your process, we can use psychology to move you forward and get you to a point where you can begin realistically deciding amongst options that fit you well.