Career Counseling

Updated January 12, 2022
Medically Reviewed By: Deborah Horton

We've all been there – you hate your career, or your career is stalled. You may want to start your own business but don't know how. Or you may love your career, but your ambition and bottom line are saying you need better career opportunities. 

Sometimes We Need Advice On Being The Greatest Version Of Our Professional Selves
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Career counseling can help you with your development by getting answers to questions about personal interests, skills strengths, and how to achieve your career goals.

Why Seek Out Career Counseling? How Can Career Counselors Assist Me Professionally?

Americans spend approximately one-third of their lives at work, and according to a 2014 study, only 52.3 percent of people are happy with their careers. If an individual is unhappy with their career choice, that could lead to anxiety, depression, physical health issues, mood changes, and other issues. Professional development is a lifelong process that includes developing skills, interests, and decisions that are influenced by heredity, personality traits, socioeconomic factors, etc. 

Counseling like career counseling allows a person to understand themselves and their role in the workplace to make educated life and career decisions.

In essence, this builds the foundation for decision-making skills you need throughout your life.

Career counseling happens with school counselors, therapists, life coaches, business-incubator organization representatives, colleagues, family members, friends, and more.

Why Get Career Counseling? What Can Career Counselors Do For Me?

Americans spend approximately one-third of their lives at work, and according to a 2014 study, only 52.3 percent of people are happy with their careers. If an individual is unhappy with their career choice, that could lead to anxiety, depression, physical health issues, mood changes, and other issues. Professional development is a lifelong process that includes developing skills, interests, and decisions that are influenced by heredity, personality traits, socioeconomic factors, etc. 

Counseling like career counseling allows a person to understand themselves and their role in the workplace to make educated life and career decisions. In essence, this builds the foundation for decision-making skills you need throughout your life. Career counseling happens with school counselors, therapists, life coaches, business-incubator organization representatives, colleagues, family members, friends, and more.

Career Counseling 

Benefits

You could reap several benefits from career counseling with a licensed professional to achieve your professional and personal goals. Working with a therapist on your professional aspirations could help you in the following ways:

  1. Gain more knowledge. You could choose to go back to school to get a new degree or certification, boosting your occupational skills and confidence. Career counseling will help you feel prepared and know the ins and outs of educational systems pertaining to your chosen field.
  1. Economic gains. Professional career counseling help could help you manage times of unemployment and be more productive. It could also cause you to seek more career opportunities that expand your professional realm. 
  1. Expand social connections. Counseling can help you to feel more satisfied with your career and at home. You could also increase your networking skills and decrease stress and other career-related factors.

Define Career Decisions

Several theories come into play when a licensed professional helps clients choose which methods are right for them and their jobs.

Here are some examples of theories that shape our opinions and beliefs about career counseling:

  • Albert Bandura's social cognitive theory: We watch what other people are doing or not doing around us as well as thought leaders. Our human thought process helps us to make job decisions.
  • John Holland's theory of career choice: Careers are a marriage between our environments and personality types. We want to have a job with other like-minded individuals.
  • John Krumboltz's theory: It's OK not to have a plan; sometimes, unplanned occurrences can lead to career opportunities and growth.
A licensed professional will determine the best method for a client or which mindset a client already has and how to build upon or change that theory.

Career Counseling 

What To Expect In Counseling

It's two-way communication process. Be upfront and honest about what you want and don't want. In turn, the counselor must talk with the client to see the best available options based on interest, experience, skills, and ideas.

Be realistic and honest about your job outlook. Be honest with who you are and what you want to accomplish. Making your own decisions will ensure you are doing what you want, which will lead to more professional and personal happiness.
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Be clear about your career goals. 

Before your meeting with your counselor, have some goals in mind. If you need more direction and don't know which career path to take, make a list of your interests and skills. 

Other Career Actions To Consider

If you go into your session with an open mind, that will pay more dividends. What works for some people may not work for you but always be willing to try or at least have a conversation about a proposed change

You are seeking out career counseling to help you figure out your first job, a major job change, or suggestions on how to be a more effective employee.

Career Counseling

Talk to a Licensed Therapist 

A study found online counseling to be as effective as face-to-face counseling. Fifteen university students participated in counseling, while 15 students had face-to-face. The result was that both modes of delivery yielded similar results of advancing students’ professional development. Online therapy can also help with stumbling blocks to pursuing the career you desire. Some of these stumbling blocks are depression and social anxiety. An online therapist can show you steps how to manage these symptoms while offering emotional support and understanding.

BetterHelp Can Help Your Career Reach New Heights

BetterHelp has provided in-depth online counseling to people working in search of various career advice. Sometimes talking to someone about your career goals and career aspirations through counseling may bring new light on actions you can take from another perspective. If you're feeling anxious, confused, or frustrated about your current career, or you want to discuss what could be holding you back from achieving the success you want, talk with an experienced counselor who cares. You will be able to meet with your counselor anywhere, from your home to even your car and at a time convenient for you. Learn a little more about online counseling by checking out BetterHelp's Instagram page and by reading the following reviews.

Counseling Reviews

"I worked with Erin for a couple of months while dealing with a stressful transition and major career deadline. I felt like I was in over my head, and I was anxious and exhausted. I thought that we established a good rapport right from the start, and Erin had helpful things to offer me from the first few moments that we worked together. Erin is warm and intuitive, and she brought a great sense of humor to our sessions. Erin provided an excellent combination of affirmation, doable "homework," and helping me understand myself and my reactions to my situation better. I recommend Erin incredibly highly!"

Sometimes We Need Advice On Being The Greatest Version Of Our Professional Selves

"David has been my greatest support in navigating issues that were simply holding me back from being happy. Before working with David, I was suffering from anxiety due to relationship issues and career changes that were putting me in a bad place. We worked on everything step by step and I can say, with great gratitude, that I feel much stronger and happier now, after only a few months. I've managed to rebuild that strength in time with his help. He's also never missed a session and always went the extra mile to help with everything he could. Thanks, David!"

Career Counseling

Career Counseling Conclusion 

Get your career goals on track by considering counseling for your career. Whether you want to change your current career or explore new advancement opportunities, this counseling can assist with assessing your career options. Get started today by working with someone who wants to help you through career counseling achieve professional success

Related FAQs

How effective is career counseling?

One study gave some insight into the effectiveness and found that most people who had it had occupation success. 

What is the purpose?

The purpose is to help those find a  job - whether you just graduated or a parent going back to work.

What happens in a session?

What happens in a session can depend. They may test you, giving you an IQ test or personality test to help determine which job is a good fit for you. This is especially true if you're young or undecided about what job you want. They'll help you find your skills and help you find an occupation that is right for your strengths.

Is the cost covered by insurance?

Those who specialize are usually not covered by insurance. With that said, mental health counselors are usually covered, and they're there to help you accomplish your career goals.

Why is it important?

Everyone deserves a job that makes them happy. Being trapped can cause burnout, and people who specialize in counseling can connect you to careers where burnout is less likely.

For Additional Help & Support With Your Concerns
Speak with a Licensed Therapist Today
The information on this page is not intended to be a substitution for diagnosis, treatment, or informed professional advice. You should not take any action or avoid taking any action without consulting with a qualified mental health professional. For more information, please read our terms of use.