What is Career Counseling?
You may be wondering, what is career counseling and how does it work? Career counseling is a process designed to help you discover your passion, choose satisfying careers, build career management skills, and improve your ability to market and promote yourself in the job market. We utilize a “whole person” approach to career services, meaning we recognize that you and your career are inseparable.
We are interested in helping you achieve greater satisfaction in your life and will help you align your career goals to match your personal goals and desires (i.e., greater work-life balance). This includes recognizing when career difficulties are a reflection of personal difficulties. We also can help with removing obstacles such as fear of failure, lack of confidence, and procrastination so that you can grow and move forward in your career. What is career counseling? It’s having an objective partner helping you move towards your dreams one step at a time.
Career counseling is not a job placement or recruitment service although we can help you find one depending on the career path you select.
How Does Career Counseling Work?
Career opportunities and career paths are more diverse than ever. Few people stay with the same career over their lifespan and our career needs change as our lifestyle changes. Whether shifting to full-time work, a home-based business or entrepreneurial pursuits, understanding your priorities, values, strengths and fears, and developing skills to adapt to a changing environment are key.
Effective career counseling is much more than personality and career assessment tests, though they can offer a place to start. At Eddins Counseling Group our career services approach integrates concepts and exercises taken from solid research and theory in the areas of psychology, coaching, and career development. We have synthesized this information based on what works for long-term career satisfaction and combined it with a practical approach based on real-world experience.
Our process generally involves discovering the answers to the following questions: who am I, what do I want, where am I going, and how do I get there?
Because everyone seeks assistance at different points in their life, the actual process is customized to your particular needs and you may touch on each of the four steps concurrently.
Who Am I?
This step involves clarifying your unique gifts and strengths, recognizing beliefs that may impact you in your life and career, identifying what motivates you, and deciding how you want to use your strengths.
As you prepare to seek out opportunities, this information will be the foundation of how you communicate about yourself to others. By focusing on your strengths and how you can solve problems, you shift the focus from “how can you help me” to “here’s how I can help you.”
What Do I Want?
This step involves exploring how you would like your personal life to be and deciding what you want more of in your work life. A key aspect is identifying your most important values. Values serve as the anchor to what’s most important to us and provides a clear picture of what brings satisfaction in life and work. Values also move us in a direction away from fears. Clarifying what you want also includes practical issues and preferences, such as salary and which skills from your career history you want to build upon.
As you work towards clarifying what it is that you want for your career and take steps in that direction, you may find yourself getting stuck at certain points. This often has to do with fears arising along the way, which everyone possesses. You will learn to identify and address those fears and use your values to keep you focused and on track.
Really clarifying what you want occurs before you can begin to set tangible goals. The actions you take stem from knowing your desires and aspirations and deciding how your career and life work together to achieve them.
Where Am I Going?
This step involves exploring career and life paths and opportunities. It also involves looking at how you do what you do so that you can increase the likelihood of achieving your goals. The key is to continue to move forward by taking committed action and setting tangible goals. We will focus here on getting very clear and concrete about your plan and career direction.
How Do I Get There?
This step involves practical strategies to find a job or get started with your business ideas such as how to access the hidden job market or focus your business goals. It might even involve developing additional competencies or taking on new roles in your current position to prepare for your next transition. In this stage of the process, we will get specific about concrete steps you can take to move forward, focusing on the simplest and most do-able action steps.
Our Career Services Assumptions:
- Each person’s talents are enduring and unique.
- Each person’s greatest room for growth is in the area of his or her greatest strengths. Focus on your strengths not your weaknesses.
- In today’s society there are unlimited possibilities you can create for a purposeful career and multiple paths you can take.
- We’re not about asking a small question, “What do I want my career to be?” We’re about asking a bigger question, “What do I want my life to be, and how does my career fit into that picture?”
- While it’s very human to wish that someone else would make difficult decisions on your behalf, you are the expert of you.
- Career management is a never-ending process. The more you learn about yourself and the outside world, the more you will re-evaluate your values and life needs.
What Should I Expect in Career Counseling Sessions?
You play the active role in managing your career and will be largely responsible for the outcome. However, you can expect motivation and support through the process as well as practical assistance in “how to get there”. Collaboratively, goals will be set and action plans established to provide direction and help you achieve short and long-term career goals. In order for you to get the most out of career counseling, it is helpful if you start thinking ahead about the things you want and don’t want out of your life. Your career counseling experience will be unique and tailored to your specific needs and career goals.
How Long Does Career Counseling Last?
Career counseling services are based on the client’s individual needs. Length of time involved can range from a brief consultation on a specific question (i.e., how to address a gap in your resume) to a complete individual personality, interest, strengths, and values assessment and assistance with making a career transition or job search campaign.
What career counseling is for you is largely related to what you want to get out of the process. Often, it can be exciting in the beginning to discover new possibilities for your career and insights about yourself. However, it can get difficult when you begin to apply the steps to move into a new career direction. This can be where working with a career counselor is most beneficial. The process can begin with help to find a career and continue with help to keep forward momentum and realize your career potential.
My schedule is busy, how can I access career services?
Scheduling is flexible and convenient, based on your individual needs. Appointments may be conducted face-to-face in Houston, Tx or via telephone or videoconferencing from the comfort of your home or office.
How much do career services cost?
The session fee is $150. Additional fees apply to vocational assessments. Fees are paid per session (whether by phone, or in person), which is typically 45 minutes. Brief sessions are also available for consultations on a specific question. Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, personal check, and cash are accepted forms of payment.
Also, you can ask your counselor for a receipt because career counseling services are tax-deductible if you itemize expenses on your tax return.
Contact a career counselor and start creating a richer, more fulfilling life. Career counseling services are available face to face in Houston, Tx and online or phone, specify your preference when scheduling.