It’s no secret that deciding what you want to do for the rest of your life can actually be really intimidating. This is why I’m going to – in the best way I can – help you reflect on certain things that will hopefully make it easier for you to know how to choose your trade. However, a lot of people don’t realize that it’s much easier to figure out then you think. By breaking down a few things on what you like and don’t like, you can ensure that you’ll find the right trade to basically match your personality.
Inside or outside?
This is a big one. Are you someone who enjoys to be exposed to the natural elements or do you burn in the sun and melt in the rain? I, personally, become miserable indoors, so outdoors was a must. Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t do any trade, but from there is comes down to where you will be working. Example, if you want to be an electrician and work outdoors, I would maybe suggest looking into powerline technician rather then just residential.
Physically demanding, mentally demanding or both?
When joining the trades, I knew I wanted to stay very active. Choosing carpentry was an easy one for me. While still be mentally demanding, it is one of those trades that there’s many task that after a while, basically becomes muscle memory, but in the end, always physically demanding. Where as other trades, there’s a bit of physical but a lot more mental, note that these are also the trades that often require certifications. You can always inform yourself by contacting a local company to find out the requirements in your area.
Social or Anti-social?
Do you like working with people or no? In certain trades, being a good team player is huge but not wanting to is fine, as long as you’re in the right place. Like being a carpenter, some may say other wise, but for the majority of it, it goes 10x better when having a partner or even a few. However, I’ve seen many plumbers, electricians, welders, mechanics and more – often work alone.
Do you want people to see you work?
Now this might sound like a weird one, but it might be the most important one. Some of us have a little inner artist in us. You might already know this, you might not, but if the thought of no one ever being able to see your work bothers you, chances are you have a little inner artist. This comes done to carpentry, interior/exterior finishing, bricklaying, painting, cabinetmaking, autobody and so on. In the end, every trade is an art, it’s just a matter of what will make that heart of yours happy.
Stay home or leave.
Until you’ve decided on this one, the categories above won’t even matter. If you live in a very small town with no new developments, no mill, no factory – you’re options will be much smaller. This is where becoming a jack/jill of all trades comes in handy. Unless you’re willing to leave. Having the mental strength to leave home can be easy for some and absolutely impossible for other. If you are unsure of what are the options near you, you can always contact the local job board, visit websites like www.indeed.com.
Find your balance.
In the end, it will always somewhat be intimidating when you take your first step. You must also know that regardless of the job, you’ll sometimes have to be outside/inside a bit. There are going to be some task that are physically/mentally demanding in every trade. You are also going to have to deal with people, whether it’s a client, your boss, your coworker or employee. But every trade is an art as well, regardless if someone see’s it or not. It might be powering a house or a town, building a home or a road, pouring a foundation or painting a bathroom. They are all really important to someone that you might not even meet one day.
So it all comes down to who you are and what you want. It’s also important to remember – if you don’t like it, it’s never to late. So now I’m going to shoot you with this giant cheese ball and say – Follow your heart.
List of some of the trades
- crane operator
- house painter
- heavy equipemnet operator
- sheet metal