How to have a happy career: don’t analyze the past, do something now

James proves a better career counselor than Freud

Who is the most famous psychologist ever? You probably thought Sigmund Freud.

But just like Adam Smith is less famous but proved to be far more accurate about political economies than Karl Marx, William James has proved to be far more powerful in doing what psychology is supposed to do – help people – than Freud.

James, who actually is well known in psychological circles as the father of modern psychology thought it we are much better off working on optimizing unhelpful thoughts and behaviors *right now* than going on an archeological dig into the mysterious origins of our current neuroses.

In relation to career counseling, the number of unhappy clients who come to Career Counseling Connecticut trying to uncover the roots where they went wrong is quite high.  Our career coaching work is designed to redirect their energy to doing something helpful right now.

For example, Terry came to us in the midst of a career crisis.  In her early twenties, she was doing everything possible to gain entry into medical school.  Our health care career counselor listened as Terry explained that her parents always wanted to her to become a doctor.  During her career narrative – one of our pre-career counseling meeting questions – Terry spent a page unpacking her past and about three lines on what she thought about the future.  That ratio should be reversed.

What can you do now to make your next career move optimal?  That’s the work of Career Counseling Connecticut for career guidance.