“What Do You Want to Be?”


Sit up straighter

"What do you want to be?"  That’s what I ask people who are looking for a job, seemingly don’t have a goal, and need something to work toward," says Sheree Sorrells, an employment counselor at a North Carolina JobLink Center.

"It may be the first time anyone has asked the person that question in many years. Often, I notice his or her first reaction is to sit up straighter."

. . . sit up straighter . . . what does this tell us about what that person may be thinking or feeling?

Sitting up straighter could be the first in a series of behaviors leading to preparing oneself for a job. As we’ve all heard many times: "A long journey begins with a single step."

When I hear the question "What do you want to be?" it thrusts me into my imagination, and my dream. "I want to be a nurse, a firefighter, a chef, a business owner." Imagining myself in one of these roles pulls me up in my seat. It pulls me out of my present an into a different future. It pulls me to do the work to make that future come true.

Usually, people are asked what they want to do. Try asking someone you care about what they want to be. You may just be giving that person a handle to pull himself toward his dream.