Unlike so many other questions you have about your career, this one’s not quite as easy to lớn Google. (Or—shameless plug—to look up on The Muse.)

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The good news is, you’re not alone—in fact, I’ll guarantee that everyone has pondered their career path, finding their passion, or what they"re meant to be doing at some point. Và luckily, many of them are willing to share their advice. If you’re at a loss for what steps to take next, read on for the best pieces of advice from a recent Quora thread on this very issue.

1. Talk to lớn People

Meet or điện thoại tư vấn at least 50 people. They can be your friends, relatives, friends of friends/references. Call them up, schedule a meeting, go see them và interact with them on what they are doing. Don’t expect anything, don’t ask them to find you a job, don’t ask them lớn give you a job. Just talk and meet và have a normal conversation.

Gaurav Munjal

You’d be surprised at how much you can learn just listening khổng lồ other people talk. OK, yes, sometimes you might not learn much more than how badly traffic was backed up during rush hour. But other times, if you listen (and listen between the lines), you’ll get insight into people’s motivations, hopes, dreams, và ambitions. And when you piece all that together, you can learn how others got to lớn where they are today—and if that’s a path you want to lớn be on, too. (Try these informational interview questions if you have no idea where lớn start.)

2. Get Started

My suggestion is to vày something. Even if it isn’t quite the right thing, it is nevertheless movement that can give you an opportunity to lớn experience. You can spend a lot of time taking tests and getting evaluations for what you might be suited for; ideas always sound good on paper. But words don’t match experience, so acting on something is your best choice.

Kathleen Grace

Regardless of what you generally want khổng lồ do, it never hurts lớn start building something. Really anything. Start creating a portfolio, launch a career newsletter, or learn how Periscope works. There are so many things you can do for your career—even if you don’t know what you want to lớn do. And, just like the previous advice, the actual act of doing will help further clarify what paths you might want to be on, và which ones you should rule out.

3. Gather Inspiration From Others

Walk into your local bookshop & go straight khổng lồ the autobiography section. Buy three books from across different industries, societies, & cultures. Focus on biographies that document great & successful people"s early lives, before they were great. Read them before bed. Wake up in the morning and write down 10 things you could vì differently that day. Vị some of them. Bởi vì this the next day. & then bởi it again.

David Ball

No matter what you do, you probably want to lớn be successful at it. So what better way lớn get started than by learning how others reached their goals? Keep in mind as you’re reading that these people weren’t born knowing what they wanted to vì either. (Get more inspiration from this các mục of 30 things lớn read, watch, listen to, and do khổng lồ help you answer this age-old question.)

4. Prepare for a Long Journey

Expect that it is going to take a while & involve several iterations, or so-called “life crises” khổng lồ figure it out. For most people it’s a long và often unfinished journey.

Andrei Palskoi

One huge misconception about figuring out what you want to vị with your life is that you will have a sudden, magical moment of extreme clarity và then have your entire life planned.

In actuality, lives shift constantly, & you’ll need to lớn regroup & reconsider your journey as you go along. So instead of being surprised when you have to make new decisions, anticipate them, và dare I say it, be excited for them.

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5. Leave Your Comfort Zone

Try new things and widen your horizons. Try something you’ve always wanted lớn but never got around to, something that scares you, something that is very different from what you normally do.

Can Sar

Maybe you don’t know what you want to bởi because you haven’t tried what you’re meant to vày yet. Và you won’t know if that is true or not until you get out there & start ruling things out.

Seriously, it’s easy khổng lồ get into a rut & feel like you have no options besides what you are you doing right now. However, by taking a step outside your comfort zone, you might be surprised by how much you end up liking something that you never in a million years imagined you would.

6. Be Okay With Failing

Learn the skills that are needed to accomplish what you want lớn achieve. Most of us fail in first attempt. We keep failing & learning và growing. point khổng lồ be noted is that this is the time khổng lồ learn, experiment, grow, & fail without any substantial damage.

Anuj Kumar

Nothing will slow you down more in your quest to figure out what to bởi with your life than being afraid of failure. Yes, you’ve heard this before—but that’s because it’s true. You won’t ever be able khổng lồ nail down what makes you happy if you rule everything out because it sounds hard.

7. Enjoy Not Knowing

Enjoy the meanderings, the soul-searching, the loves lost, the time wasted. All of it will địa chỉ up lớn a complex & very quality ‘you.’ The more you appreciate right now, the more the future will become a fantastic reality. Don’t pressure yourself khổng lồ be in the future.

James Altucher

You know how math problems always seem impossible when you first look at them, but then, after taking a break, the answer feels so obvious? Figuring out what you want to vì with your life is kind of like that.

By focusing on other less-pressing matters, the obvious answer may just come to lớn you when you’re least expecting it—and it will be clearer than you ever imagined it lớn be.

Feel better about not knowing what you want to vì chưng with your life? A little? Just remember that you don’t have khổng lồ have it all figured out. Và that even when you do, you might change course a few times. So don’t worry about having all the answers—just thinking about it is a good start.

What other tips do you have for figuring out what to bởi with your life? Let me know on Twitter.

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Need More Help? Try this worksheet khổng lồ help you find your passion over your lunch break!


Lily Herman is a New York-based writer & editor. In recent months, her work has been featured in Teen Vogue, Glamour, Refinery29, Cosmopolitan, TIME, Newsweek, Fast Company, & Mashable. You can check out her website, LinkedIn, & Twitter.
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