Passion and purpose are words often thrown around when searching for direction in your career. What people don’t tell you is that it can take many years to figure out what the right path is.

This process takes time to explore and to learn from failures and mistakes that come from your experience as well as those of other professionals.

If you’re looking for direction, start by examining what currently interests you. Is there a specific industry or position that stands out? If so, take note and search for the types of people who fit those categories. You’ll start to see patterns in terms of types of education or skillsets that will help you fine-tune what you need to look at.

Focusing on passion and purpose right off the bat creates unrealistic and high expectations for where you need to be, especially since this is different for everyone.