Should You Have a Plan B?

When you are setting goals related to your career or business, should you have a Plan B? There are successful people who argue that you absolutely should not. Actor Will Smith says, “There is no reason to have a Plan B because it distracts from Plan A.” (1) Sunny Nunan, founder of Core24, a business […]

How to Become a Freelance Writer

Dear Dr. Civitelli, I am a former newspaper journalist who was finally affected by all the layoffs in my industry. I don’t have a lot of savings so I need to make a career decision fairly quickly. I’ve read about hundreds of careers and the only thing I really want to do is write, but […]

Avoid the Sunk Cost Trap

Sometimes my educational backgrounds in economics and psychology converge. One of those times is exploring how to avoid the sunk cost trap in making career and life decisions. In the field of economics, sunk costs are costs you already paid and that you cannot recover no matter what you do. Examples of sunk costs are […]

How to Use Journaling to Make Decisions

For many people, writing is one of the best ways to increase clarity about your true feelings about different life and career choices. This article explores how to use journaling to make decisions that are aligned with your values, interests, and goals. I also recommend keeping the journal so that if you question yourself later, […]

Success Story: Career Interest Assessment

Brian Stewart was uncertain what career to choose so he decided to use career interest assessment to help him make a career choice. Brian took an assessment that uses a Holland type code to categorize his interests. (This is the same type of code used in the most widely used career interest assessment, the Strong […]

Advice on Turning Money-Making Hobbies Into Careers

I asked people with money-making hobbies what advice they have for people considering whether to keep their hobby as pure pleasure or as an income-producing career or business. Not surprisingly, they had very different things to say about their experiences and their advice varied. That’s because there isn’t one path that is true of everyone, […]

What to Do About Ambivalence

If I were asked to pinpoint one dynamic that keeps people from achieving career happiness, it is ambivalence. Because so many people ask me how to resolve this, here are some thoughts about what to do about ambivalence: First, recognize and name your ambivalence for what it is. Ambivalence is a psychological condition where you […]

How to Use a Decision-Making Matrix

A decision-making matrix is a great tool to compare alternative paths using criteria that are most important to you. This decision-making method is credited to Benjamin Franklin, who called it “Moral or Prudential Algebra” in personal letters in 1772. I adapted his method to decision-making about career paths or job options. For this tool to […]

What Do Career Counselors Do?

One of the most common questions I am asked is, “What do career counselors do?” Usually people ask this question for one of two reasons: (1) They are considering becoming a career counselor themselves and they want to know what the day-to-day job is like, or (2) They are considering hiring a career counselor and […]

How to Become A Career Counselor or Career Coach

Dear Dr. Civitelli, I think I might want to do the same type of work you do, but I don’t know how to become a career counselor or career coach. Can you please tell me how to get started? Thank you, Future Career Counselor or Career Coach Dear Future Career Counselor or Career Coach, One […]