We spend an average of eight hours a day, five days a week at work. And that’s an awfully long time if you don’t particularly enjoy your job or get some sort of fulfillment from it. As the new year approaches many of us feel the need to make a change in our lives, and perhaps that change might be in the form of a new career?
There are many careers that can bring about rewards in the form of spiritual fulfillment, and one area that I’m going to take a look at in this blog post is social work.
Social work is a humanitarian role so if you have a deep desire to help others then it’s certainly an avenue worth pursuing. Social workers provide much needed help and support for individuals who are left vulnerable to changes within society.
The kinds of people they work with include vulnerable children who may be in need of foster care, adoption or child protection, the elderly, people with mental health needs, those with physical and learning disabilities, young offenders, people suffering from alcohol and substance abuse issues, the homeless and victims of domestic violence. These are tough issues to deal with, but the rewards are great.
The role of a social worker is absolutely vital in helping to improve the lives of those who are vulnerable or less fortunate, enabling them to become happy, functioning, successful members of society. If you have empathy, care about others and want to make a difference to the world we live in, then this could be the career for you.
Helping the community
The role of a social worker is very varied and generally people embarking on this career choose to specialize in either children’s or adult’s services. Social workers work for a wide range of organizations, from hospitals, mental health trusts and community or youth centres to detention centres and charities.
Social workers form relationships with people and help them to find solutions to their problems as well as ways to live more successfully within their local community. Not only do they work with individual clients, but they also work with their families, friends and organizations such as the local authority, the police and schools. Social workers help to improve their local community and the results of their work can be seen in every neighbourhood.
Social work isn’t going to be the right career for everyone, and certain personal qualities are necessary, such as:
- Patience and the ability to remain calm in a crisis
- Having the flexibility to adapt to new roles, tasks and situations
- The ability to work on your own initiative
- Strong observation, analytical and listening skills
- The capacity to absorb legal/procedural information
- The ability to negotiate/mediate/interpret on behalf of others
- Empathy and a desire to improve the quality of the lives of others
- The ability to think on your feet and make difficult decisions under pressure
How to go about it
If this sounds like the career for you, it’s essential to get the right training. The minimum entry level requirement is a bachelor’s degree in social work, but the Masters in Social Work (MSW) has become the standard entry requirement for most positions. Do some research on the internet to find the course that’s right for you.
If you can’t give up work to study full-time, then you might want to consider an online course like MSW online. A qualification like this can help you obtain social work licensure, help advance your career and create a positive and lasting impact on others. Good luck!
About the author: Liz Parry is a writer specialising in holistic health and wellbeing, personal development and spirituality. Follow her on Twitter and Google+
Originally posted on December 5, 2012 @ 7:05 am
Wow, interesting article. I didn’t expect it to be about social work. As a social worker myself, I agree that it can be rewarding – so long as you find the right fit in social work, which may take time. That’s not to be discouraging, but to be realistic about finding your niche, training, etc.
Prior to social work, I had found myself in unfulfilling jobs, not feeling like I was making much difference in the world. I’m happy to say that I’m positively impacting others in my work now, although I try to continue giving back beyond the boundaries of work in other ways.
I’ve been doing a lot of social work since that’s the nature of my job, and I like it.