Setting career goals requires two type of information:

  • knowledge about yourself
  • knowledge about career options


Self-exploration is a process that includes learning about your interests, motives, personality traits, values, skills and competences:

1. Skills and competences: what do I know, what can I do, what I am good at

Competences can be divided as professional and specific or as general and transferable competences. The process of acquiring them is present in any time and everywhere (in school, with hobbies, with sports...)

 2. Personality traits: what kind of person I am? What traits do I have?

Personality traits are relatively stable characteristics of an individual. We can’t define them as good or bad. It doesn’t matter if we are sociable or if we are more of a loners, both traits can sometimes be an advantage and sometimes a disadvantage. If you would like to know more of your personality traits, there exist lot of self-assessment psychological questionnaires that can help you identify your personality traits.

3. Interests and motivation: what makes me happy, what interests me, what do I enjoy doing?

People have different interests that can be differently defined. There exist a lot of questionnaires that are can give you an insight in the expressiveness of your own interest. The most used questionnaire is a questionnaire made by John Holland ( ).

4. Values: what is important to me in life? What directs me?

Values are concepts that are very impoprtant to us and towards which we have very strong feelings. They are shaped throughout life by our experiences, enivronment that we live in, our emotions and by our family. 

Within the field of career and career development we know so called work values. For someone is very important to have job secutity and clear structure oof work. Meanwhile others prefer the independence and diversity of the work. Awareness of the work values we have is very important because it helps us when planning our career path. Non-fulfilment of our work values often results in dissatisfaction with the job we have. m


Life mission

Knowing our life mission is an important aspect in the process of self-exploration. Life mission goes beyond our everyday life, our occupation or career. We could call it some sort of vocation-that we make a contribution to the world to make it a better place. Life mission helps us when deciding about what to study, where will we work, in which other activities we will be involved, what our hobbies will be and what kind of relationships we will have. Life mission is inseparable from the lifestyle that we as individuals have.