Career Success is Within Your Own Control
Creating your future career success can take hard work, but the right mind set can help you to stay motivated. In fact, your own beliefs about yourself can be crucial to your success in career related matters.
Pursuing career success requires commitment and a steadfast internal belief that you can make it happen. If you’re wondering why you may not have achieved your career goals, one question you might consider is this:
Do I believe that I control my destiny, or do I believe that external forces, like chance or the actions of others, control my destiny?
Your answer to this question hinges on a concept called your “locus of control.”
People who feel that their success is largely dependent on factors outside of their control are said to have an “external locus of control.” People who believe that, for the most part, they hold the keys to their own success are said to have an “internal locus of control.” Psychologists have actually complicated this concept a bit more than that, but for our purposes here, this definition is thorough enough.
So, how does having an internal locus of control have anything to do with predicting your future career success?
People who have an internal locus of control typically do better in maintaining motivation and achieving career goals.
An internal locus of control (where you believe you have a lot of control over your success) will set you on your way to achieving your future career success because you’ll be less likely to give up when the going gets tough.
Building a career can be full of challenges. When a challenge arises, you’ll look for ways to address it if you feel you have control. If you feel that most things are beyond your control, you’ll be more likely to give up since there is not much point in trying if you feel you can’t impact the outcome. You’ll lack the all important motivation it takes to look for another way around the challenges that arise.
It’s worth taking a bit of time to consider whether you feel you have control over your future career success or whether you feel that people with great careers are just lucky, or happened to know the right people.
A simple test of your own locus of control is to think of a time when you had a disappointment related to your career and ask yourself if your reaction was to think something like, “I’m just not lucky.” or “I wish I could just catch a break.” Thoughts like that indicate that you feel that you don’t have a lot of power to impact the success of your career.
If you think successful people in your field are just lucky, then you could have a harder time seeing and building your own path to success. You’ll feel you have no control and will believe that building career success depends on pure chance or luck.
On the other hand, if you believe that successful people in your field worked hard and smart, used every tool they had available, and ultimately created their own luck, then you’ll be better able to see what tools you have available to create your own career success and your own luck.
It makes sense that if you don’t believe you have the power to influence the success of your career you’ll be less likely to dig in and solve problems when challenges arise. On the other hand, if you believe you have the power to greatly influence your career success, it will be easier to do what it takes to work through and even thrive in the face of challenges and setbacks. That frame of mind will pay off as you pursue your goals and your future career success.