• Who am I and how does that impact the career(s) I choose? Do I see myself having one career or multiple careers throughout my working life?

  • What skills do I have or want to develop and how does that impact my career planning?

  • What realities in my life do I have to consider when planning my career?

Career planning is an ongoing process; a journey, not a destination. As we change as individuals, it would make sense for our career to flow and transition with us. In doing this, it is important to consider careers that align with the multiple factors that make us who we are (no just one!). We are complex and so too are careers; therefore, it is important for us to reflect our complexity onto different careers and assess for a good fit.

In Part 2 of this blog series, we will highlight strategies for career planning to help make your goals into a reality. If you need additional support with your career planning process, our Psychologists at Calgary Career Counselling can offer expert advice and coaching.

Once we have researched, reflected, and determined some potential careers that would provide us with fulfillment and leverage our unique abilities most effectively, we must then transition from intangible reflection and consideration to tangible, goal-oriented, action. Goal-oriented action is one of the most important elements of career planning because it brings the intangible goals and desires into reality.

A study out of Switzerland identified that career planning and career counselling improved career optimism and subjective career success for individuals (Spurk et al., 2015). In addition, career resilience and the ability to respond positively to changing career circumstances has been identified to improve when individuals engage in ongoing reflection and engaging in career planning and development (Hodges, Keeley, & Troyan, 2008; Tusaie & Dyer, 2004). Furthermore, career planning has been identified to support individuals by increasing career satisfaction, self-efficacy, and self-determination (King, 2004).

This can seem like a challenging and time-consuming process, and it is. However, the benefits of this time and energy commitment are far reaching and a valuable investment in yourself. We must push back against pressure to make a hasty career decision in an effort enter the world of work, in a fear that it will leave us behind, because it won’t! We create the world of work; the world of work does not create us. Seek to enter the world of work with confidence in who you are and how you can most happily and meaningfully contribute.

Aaron Telnes
Registered Provisional Psychologist
Calgary Career Counselling
Synthesis Psychology


  • Hodges, H. F., Keeley, A. C., & Troyan, P. J. (2008). Professional resilience in baccalaureate prepared acute care nurses: First steps. Nursing Education Perspectives, 29, 80–89.
  • King, Z. (2004). Career self-management: Its nature, causes and consequences. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 65, 112–133.
  • Spurk, D., Kauffeld, S., Barthauer, L., & Heinemann, N. S. (2015). Fostering networking behavior, career planning and optimism, and subjective career success: An intervention study. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 87, 134-144.
  • Tusaie, K., & Dyer, J. (2004). Resilience: A historical review of the construct. Holistic Nursing Practice, 18(1), 3–8.