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Dr James O Connor


In the context of psychological health, vocation concerns people’s development within their learning environment. Their primary infancy and childhood learning experiences, formal schooling and educational formation within which ambit people learn to situate themselves by means of various adaptive methodologies.

The kinds of interests they developed, engagements in self comparison, learning to compete efficaciously, gaining self-knowledge regarding applications of intellect, strategy and energy within perceived capabilities and limitations. ‘ Knowing thyself ‘ in oracular terms. The resultant specialist subject choices made, courses taken, performances, achievements and indeed failures endured with or without attendant refocusing. Choices of career path, courses to attain goals, educational / applied, relevant decisions, easy, difficult, struggles, forced choices internal and external or indeed no real choice at all.

How various goals were achieved - careers founded, employment positions / jobs attained, promotions, progressions and attendant frustrations. Where people again have come from in this regard, where they’re at now and where they’re going. The perceived choices available to people and the extent to which they have such choices and are in control of their vocational path.

Vocation can change of course, through adaptive choice and /or necessity throughout life but it is always necessary – an essential commodity at any age. Boredom is not just a prerequisite of say beginning a career in youth but rather in any form of redundancy as in job loss in middle age for example or indeed retirement in the elderly.

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