What are “Values” and Why are Values Important in Career Exploration?

Here are some thoughts on an important topic: What are “Values” and why are values important in Career Exploration?

Why are Values Important in Career Exploration

What are “Values” and Why are Values Important in Career Exploration?

Sometimes homeschooling parents and their homeschool high schoolers feel perplexed by a seemingly contradictory discussion about Career Exploration:

  • One one hand, we encourage our teens: How can you identify and develop your gifts and interests?
  • On the other hand, we encourage our teens to think practically: What career will pay the bills, support a family and support the work of God in the world?

The social media world calls this the battle between:

  • Career *passions*       versus
  • Career *possibilities*

As a mom of 5 homeschool graduates, almost 2 decades of advising homeschool high schoolers and a professional Career Coach, may I address this “battle”?

In the idea of *passions* vs *possibilities* homeschool high schoolers who have studied philosophy or critical thinking will notice a *forced dichotomy* (or another term: *false dilemma*).

A forced dichotomy forces things that are not at all at odds with each other, to appear as if they are at odds with each other. A silly example would be: If I was a classical homeschooler and you were a Charlotte Mason homeschooler and I decided that YOU weren’t REALLY a homeschooler because you educated your children with a different method. In reality, homeschoolers are simply people who educate their children from a home base, no matter what the method.

Career passions are not *against* career possibilities! That is a forced dichotomy!

Career Values: What's Important to Me? 7SistersHomeschool.com
Click here for information on 7Sisters’ Career Exploration curriculum.

What is a the center of the debate is the idea of Career Values. Simply put: Career Values are “What’s important to me?”

As homeschool high schoolers pray about their future and learn about themselves, they need to seriously examine the idea of values. You and your teens should discuss ideas like:

  • How important to me is time for community and church involvement?
  • How important to me is having money for big vacations?
  • How important to me is having time for dinner together as a family?
  • How important to me is climbing the ladder of success?
  • How important to me is having a big house?
  • How important to me is a college education? (and how much of a college education is important to me?)
  • How important to me is having a simple, structured work environment?
  • How important to me is working with my hands?
  • How important to me is job security?
  • How important to me is having a simple life with simple funding of expenses?
  • How important to me is contributing to a field of expertise?
  • How important to me is *changing the world*?

A homeschool high schooler who most highly values job security, easy employability and paying the bills will be satisfied in a number of careers. They don’t need to worry about *passions*! They can visit Career One Stop to find the *Bright Futures* careers (those with the highest job availability in the near future) and pick one of those careers.

A homeschool high schooler who was born with powerful interests (passions) and/or high-level talents, will probably most highly value careers that allow them to explore and invest in their passions and giftedness, even if that means LOTS of education or not-quite-so-much income.

Neither of these choices are wrong. As we 7Sisters say: There’s not ONE right way to homeschool…thus, there’s not ONE right way to choose a career!

Career exploration bundle

I encourage you to help your teens think and pray through these important choices and to provide a good Career Exploration course for them. A good Career Exploration course includes a look at Values. That’s why 7Sisters’ Career Exploration Bundle has been so popular: We spend time on *What’s important to me?*

Why not download a copy of Career Exploration Bundle for your homeschool high schoolers?


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What are “Values” and Why are Values Important in Career Exploration?


Vicki Tillman

Blogger, curriculum developer at 7SistersHomeschool.com, counselor, life and career coach, SYMBIS guide, speaker, prayer person. 20+year veteran homeschool mom.

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