Create a Career Notebook: Present

The Present section of your notebook contains information about your current Abilities, Interests, and Motivators (AIM). Together, they will aim you in a new career direction. (If you need to get a big picture of the notebook process first, then please start with the Overview.)

Present Sections:

Each section contains three parts: questions to answer, a list to select from, and a results page. On the results page you can record answers from the questions and list as well as from other tests, assessments, or exercises that you may have already completed. The outline below illustrates the different sections and parts:

A. Abilities: Abilities are what you can do. You might also call them skills or talents.

  1. Questions (open and print Identify Your Abilities)
  2. List (open and print Skills List)
  3. Results (open and print Results from Previous Abilities Testing)

I. Interests: Interests are subjects that you like, including domains of knowledge and fields.

  1. Questions (open and print Identify Your Interests)
  2. List (open and print Occupational Fields List)
  3. Results (open and print Results from Previous Interests Testing)

M. Motivators: Motivators might also be called values or desires. They are what you want.

  1. Questions (open and print Identify Your Motivators)
  2. List (open and print Present Motivators List)
  3. Results (open and print Results from Previous Motivators Testing)

Directions:

Step 1.

Go in any order. Complete two or three of the options from each section. For example, you could do the list and questions for Abilities; the list and results for Interests; and the questions and results for Motivators. Or you could do everything. The goal is to get a good amount of information collected about your present self.

Step 2.

If you haven’t done so already, print a Results page for your Abilities, a Results page for your Interests, and a Results page for your Motivators. Use the work you have completed for each part of Step 1 to compile a long list of your abilities, interests, and motivators, each on a separate page. Your long list may fill up more than one page!

Step 3.

Complete the Short Lists page (open and print Short Lists). To do this, look over the long lists on each Results page from Step 2 and select your top five to seven Abilities, top five to seven Interests, and top five to seven Motivators. Your selections should be the Abilities, Interests, and Motivators that you would most like to use or actualize in your future work. You should now have three short lists.

Step 4.

Now, look over your three shorts lists. Make sure that all your Abilities are verbs, something that you can do. Make sure that all your Interests are nouns, naming a field or subject that you can learn about. And make sure that all your Motivators are something abstract or concrete that you want. If not, correct each list so that it contains only appropriate items.

Step 5.

On your Short Lists page, highlight or star any item on your three short lists that is more important to you than others. You could highlight or star many items or only one; the items could come from all of the Abilities, Interests, and Motivators categories or only one category or any combination of categories. The only thing that matters is whether or not that item is more important to you than others, when it comes to your future work.

Step 6.

Congratulations! The Abilities, Interests, and Motivators that you have selected will aim you toward your future work. You’re ready to move to the Future section.