Evaluating the Testdrive

A week or so after your testdrive is the time to start doing serious evaluation. Your feet will be nearing the ground, your head will be clearer, you’ll be back in the real world, where you can make more calculated decisions. This is the time for asking yourself hard questions – and giving yourself honest answers.

The purpose of the evaluation is to determine if this is, indeed, your dream career. Perhaps you already know in your gut that it is or isn’t. Do a formal evaluation anyway. Asking yourself the targeted questions below will help you look closely and honestly at everything you learned and will give you important information for going forward.

The hardest thing about evaluating your vocation may be being brutally honest. By the time you’ve done your research, found a mentor, talked it up with friends and family and done your dreamjob, you’ve invested a lot of time, energy and hope in this career. Consciously or unconsciously, you’ve created a vision of your future, and a big part of you is now counting on that vision coming true. That creates a lot of pressure to bend the career to what you want it to be – or to bend yourself to fit the career. This is a great time to get your cheerleader involved. Her job can be to help you resist that pressure.

As you think through the questions, ask your cheerleader to discuss them with you. Encourage her to push you beyond your initial answers, to probe the feelings underneath. She may hear things in your replies that you don’t hear yourself and encourage you to be more honest than you might be on your own. If your cheerleader can’t talk through the questions with you, write down the answers. Writing enforces a mental discipline that may make you consider your feelings more carefully.

A word of caution.  As you do your evaluation, focus solely on how you FELT about your dreamjob. DO NOT – i repeat – DO NOT – consider the impact on your family or your finances, or the steps required to realize your dream career. Unless you’re single and independently wealthy; pursuing a dreamjob is going to be fraught with family and financial implications, and there will be dozens of steps to take that seem all but impossible. Your ‘yeah, but’ voice will be all over that crying ‘You can’t do that! What about your family? What will you live on? But you don’t know the first thing about running a business? Those are excellent concerns. They need to be adressed. But they don’t need to be adressed right now.  They don’t need to get in the way of deciding if this is really the job for you. If this is the perfect job, you can work on finding a way past those hurdles;  if it’s not your dreamjob, there’s no point wasting energy on them now. So do yourself a favor; don’t sideline yourself before you even get started. Figure out how you felt about your dream job before you tackle the practical concerns, because often, when we really, truly want something, we find a way to make it happen.

Evaluating the Testdrive:  Ask Yourself….

  •  What did I love about this dream job?
  •  What surprised me the most during my testdrive? Does that change my feelings about the dream job?
  •  What did I not like about this dream job?
  •  What did I not like about this dream job?
  •  Do I find myself thinking, if only X were not part of the package…? Is X so problematic that it reduces my desire or ability to do the dream job?
  • Can I do this dream job day in, day out?
  •  What parts of the dream job are apt to get ‘old’ after six months or a year? How will I feel about the job then?
  • How does this dream job match up with my list of ‘essentials’.  If I sacrified essentials to pursue this dream job, would the sacrifice be permanent or temporary? Is the trade-off worth it?

Your Travel Guide


Story teller Peter de Kuster is the founder of The Heroine’s Journey en The Hero’s Journey and an accomplished speaker worldwide. His books and stories about the Hero’s Journey – making money doing what you love – have reached millions of creative professionals worldwide in the last decennium.

Read on for a detailed breakdown of The Hero’s Journey in Paris – Testdrive Your Dreamjob

What Can I Expect?

Here’s an outline of The Hero’s Journey in Paris – Testdrive Your Dreamjob.