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Start your career research early in Sixth Year

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By Niamh Dwyer, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors

It’s a bit of a shock to the system for everyone, but it is very important to hit the ground running in terms of your work rate and approach to study and revision from early on. The same applies to your career research. Many of you will have done some career exploration in Transition Year and Fifth Year which is really valuable. If you haven’t, don’t worry there is still plenty of time. Students who have done the Leaving Cert previously will tell you just how quickly the year seems to go. Before you know it the time will come to make decisions about what direction you want to take next. You don’t need to be told that this is a really important decision, which means you don’t want it to be a rushed one. Starting your research early in Sixth Year will allow you to take time to look at all the options available to you which will then enable you to make an informed decision when you need to. I’ve no doubt that many of you are already feeling stressed and overwhelmed at the thought of having to decide what you want to do with the rest of your life. You don’t need to make that decision now, but you will want to decide what form of education or training you would like to pursue for the next couple of years and what career areas/sectors interest you in the foreseeable future.

Seek out supports and valuable resources

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My advice is to start by making an appointment with your guidance counsellor in school who will give you some great suggestions of pathways and courses that might suit you, answer any questions you have and support you through the decision-making process. Ultimately you will have to decide what direction you want to take after school, but using all the really good supports and resources available to you will help hugely, that and taking the time to do proper research!

Steps for successful career research

Step 1: The research starts with yourself; consider your likes, dislikes, interests, skills, strengths, personality traits, values, aptitudes, competencies and subjects you are good at. Think about what motivates you. If you are finding this process difficult, look at some of the free self-assessment tools available online on websites such as www.careersportal.ie, www.qualifax.ie, www.yooni.ie and on the Exit Entry App. They will help to get you started and will give suggestions on broad career sectors as well as specific careers and courses that are worth looking in to. However, you will need to do further research!

Step 2: Explore the world of work, the career sectors and actual job titles. Think about the work settings that appeal to you and those that don’t! The sites mentioned above have extensive information on lots of career areas. Take a look also at the weekly webinars on various career areas from @synergycareers.

Step 3: Look at the education and training options that will help you to develop your skills, knowledge, expertise and experience in a particular area to start you off in your career. You will be continuously building on these over the years. Think about the many options – apprenticeships, traineeships, post-leaving cert courses, CAO courses, study abroad options and more. Then look at the detail of what you will be studying by looking carefully at modules, how they are assessed and the breakdown of practical and theoretical learning. Make sure all of this suits the type of learner you are. Register for the open days, many of which will be virtual again this year, starting from the beginning of October. Put any questions you have to college staff who are only too willing to answer them. You will find details of all career events on a weekly short video by @classroomguidance and lots of really informative Podcasts on courses and colleges on @leavingcertguidance.

Remember there is not just one pathway for everyone, there are many – make sure to explore them all early in Sixth Year and then make an informed decision that you will be happy with.

Niamh Dwyer is a Guidance Counsellor in Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra, Rathmore, and Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors. She is also a Careers Advisor - For details see www.mycareerplan.ie or follow @mycareerplan on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

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“I’m not fit enough”

How many of you have said or thought “I’m not fit enough” or even heard others say it? Quite frankly it grinds my gears. That mentality is going to hold you back. Change your “I’m not fit enough” to “I will get fit”. Break free from this limiting belief If you think you are not […]

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How many of you have said or thought “I’m not fit enough” or even heard others say it?

Quite frankly it grinds my gears. That mentality is going to hold you back. Change your “I’m not fit enough” to “I will get fit”.

Break free from this limiting belief
If you think you are not fit enough then you never will be, and let’s face it, you’ll never know if you’re fit enough to do something unless you do it! You can achieve so much, much more if you have the right mindset, and that this is a mental hurdle to overcome, not a physical one.
Everyone must start somewhere, and that can be as simple as aiming to sit a little less and move a bit more.
More gentle exercises that don’t require too much skill such as walking, and housework can help start you off slowly and build up gradually. You will still be making progress, physically and mentally, and will enjoy it more. A common mistake is trying to achieve too much, too soon. If exercising feels too hard, you will be put off.

Visualise success
Visualisation is an athletic tool that has been used for decades. By closing your eyes and imagining what it would look and feel like to achieve a goal or to complete an exercise, we can prepare ourselves physically and psychologically for the task at hand.

Certified fitness instructors add to the cost of your workout, but they can also add a lot of value. An expert can design a program based on your goals, show you how to use equipment, and provide tips on nutrition.

Log your workouts by recording distances, weights, and other objective milestones in your fitness journey, you will be able to see progress on paper. That record can come in handy when you are feeling uninspired or lethargic

Don’t over-promise. Having goals, even lofty ones, is key to anything you want to achieve in life. Make sure the bar is reachable—even if it means aiming for just 15 minutes on a bike—so you are not overwhelmed. Don’t forget to celebrate the small wins along the way!

Research on the placebo effect has focused on the relationship of mind and body. One of the most common theories is that the placebo effect is due to a person’s expectations. If a person expects a pill to do something, then it is possible that the body’s own chemistry can cause effects similar to what a medication might have caused.

For instance, in one study, people were given a placebo and told it was a stimulant. After taking the pill, their pulse rate sped up, their blood pressure increased, and their reaction speeds improved. When people were given the same pill and told it was to help them get to sleep, they experienced the opposite effects.

Meaning when you believe something, it can and will happen. That is the power of strong mentality.
If you keep thinking you are “not fit enough” then you will believe it, but if you start to change your way of thinking and change your mindset to “get fit”, you have made a huge step in the right direction. Take small steps to start new habits no matter how small they may be, and you will start to see some remarkable results.
If you would like help with any of your health and fitness goals please contact us at www.activate.ie

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Lack of street lights a concern

By Sean Moriarty Two roads in the wider Killarney area will not get any additional street lighting despite requests to install them by Cllr. John O’Donoghue. Mr O’Donoghue called on the council place extra lighting on the Muckross Road near the old Whitegates Hotel. “The area is considerably darker now and is presenting a serious danger […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Two roads in the wider Killarney area will not get any additional street lighting despite requests to install them by Cllr. John O’Donoghue.

Mr O’Donoghue called on the council place extra lighting on the Muckross Road near the old Whitegates Hotel.

“The area is considerably darker now and is presenting a serious danger to pedestrians crossing the road, particularly between Woodlawn Cross, and what was formerly the Whitegates Hotel,” he told a recent meeting of Killarney Municipal District.
The council said that the area was subject to a recent upgrade and that additional lighting would not be installed along this section of road on top of the 19 LED lights already placed there.”
“The lighting was installed, commissioned, light levels checked and provides adequate illumination to meet the relevant lighting design standards,” a council spokesperson told the meeting.
Mr O’Donoghue also called for a new street light to be placed on the junction where the L.3015 meets the slip road by Glenflesk National School: “to facilitate the safe passage of school children walking home during the Winter months.”
Kerry County Council reviewed the request but said: “This proposal would not comply with Kerry County Council’s Public Lighting Policy.”

COMMENT BY KILLARNEY ADVERTISER

While this Killarney Municipal District meeting took place hours before the horrific murder of Ashling Murphy in Tullamore, it drives home the importance that all our citizens are entitled to feel safe in their locality. The addition of a few extra street lights in the areas mentioned is not too much to ask.

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