Identifying Career Wants and Don’t Wants

Identifying Career Wants and Don’t Wants

Career Wants and Don’t Wants: Honing Things Down


career wantsThis is the follow up to the rediscovering you exercise. We are going to be identifying career wants and don’t wants. Once you’ve done that,and this will take around a week, gather those patterns together.


Make a list of the ones that stand out on a regular basis. Who do you enjoy spending your time with at work? Who or what drains you? What habits aren’t serving or, or could be tweaked? Are there tasks that you can you drop – ones that you are doing out of obligation? What sort of work or projects you’d like to get more of? Which clients energise you?


Doing that alone will provide you with some interesting food for thought. But that’s not all. your next step is to create this visually so you can see at a glance where you should be focused your attention. You can do that with a chart that looks like this:


Career Wants and Don’t Wants Chart


Have but don’t want Don’t have and don’t want Have and want more of Don’t have but want Ideas



From here we can create your manifesto.

Have but don’t want

What are the things about your work that you currently have, but would rather do without. These could be things like a rush-hour commute, weekly meetings that waste time, having to make presentations, travel that takes you far from home. Don’t be afraid to be honest with yourself – one person’s love of glamorous international travel  is another person’s frustration at having to spend hours in airports.

These are the things you could make consider ditching or delegating in your current role, or perhaps looking for new work or a career where you don’t have them – something closer to home, or eve working virtually, to avoid the commute perhaps.

Don’t have and don’t want

Obviously, we will stay clear of these, but be careful how easily things can creep in. You may not have and not want any international conferences booked in at the moment. You’ve young children and you don’t want to spend any more time any from them than you have to. And yet, you can easily find yourself roped into going to one at any time. Knowing that you don’t want this, you can set boundaries around that, and only consider new roles where that wont’t be an issue for you.

Have and want more of

These become your goals. How did you get them/it? What did you do to get there and who can you get more? They also become the things to protect, whether that’s in our current job or looking for a role or career where we can still benefit from these.

Don’t have but want

These are also our goals. What’s missing? Things that previous clients have identified include more travel, working from home, the ability to pick the kids up from school, access to training, and, of course, “work that gets me excited”.

Put all these together and you will have an idea of what you want in your life, and what you really want to get rid of! As an aside, you can also do this exercise from a whole life perspective, which can have very interesting findings. If you’d like to progress through the Career Pause process together, contact me to arrange a free of charge intake session.



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