Self-Assessment and Evaluation
As technology continues to make advances in the field of health care possible, new jobs will be created and existing jobs will be expanded and changed to meet the needs and demands of the public. Consequently you will have many opportunities to grow and change throughout your career.
Some people seem to be born knowing exactly what they want to do “when they grow up,” and others struggle to find even a clue. One of the best aspects of health care is that there is such a broad variety of skills, talents, and abilities that can adapt well to a career and afford you an opportunity to combine your personal interests and talents with the skills and abilities needed to help people strive to improve their lives. This can provide you with one of the most rewarding and meaningful careers possible.
Not all health care careers will require an intense study of science and math, but most do require an understanding of human anatomy and basic bodily functions. For example, if you enjoy art, photography, music, dance, or even gardening, you may find that these talents and skills apply to health care careers and may not require such an extensive study of math or science.
Begin with a self-evaluation. How many of the following items can you identify as having a priority in your future career?
Working with a team or group
Working with your hands or using instruments
Precision and accuracy; detail oriented
Working with and/or helping people
Completing complex tasks with detailed steps
A need to see tangible results
Job security with ample employment opportunities well into the future
If five or more of these appeal to you, you should further explore opportunities in health care. There are more issues to be explored later that will serve to support this and to help you choose more specifically which aspect of health care you might want to explore.
But how do I know if I am suited for, or should even consider, a career in health care?
One of the primary issues you should evaluate is whether or not you like people and want to help them. Another important issue you should consider is whether or not you enjoy science and math. Most health care professions combine the art of caring with the skills of science and technology.
Think about the qualities and characteristics you would need for certain aspects of health care professions. These are not exclusive and, of course, they overlap, but they do tend to describe the individuals who migrate to these health care careers. Think about your skills and attributes as well as your interests. Where do they tend to fall?
Some of the characteristics of health care practitioners and administrators include being personable, objective, logical, resourceful, forceful, creative, organized, practical, and having excellent problem-solving skills.
Therapists, social workers, and counselors need to be persuasive, outspoken, motivating, innovative, personable, and determined, and they need to enjoy challenges.
Nurses, health educators, athletic trainers, medical writers, and photographers need to be creative, imaginative, emotional, sensitive, and reflective. They also need to be conceptual and abstract thinkers.
Biomedical engineers, health librarians, medical coders, and health scientists need to be organized, methodical, systematic, detail oriented, and controlling, and they must enjoy working with numbers and systems.