Design the life you want

  • Do you know what you want to do when you finish uni?
  • Are you unsure about what career would make you truly happy?

While some people really do know what they want to do with their lives, the large majority of people have to try a few things out and learn as they go. But how can you fast-forward to the best possible career and minimise making costly time-wasting mistakes?

‘Design the Life You Want’ is an extra-curricular program that will help you answer these questions. In four easy to follow self-paced online modules we provide a framework and tools to work on these questions. Simply pick one module that you find interesting, or do all four!

The program uses design-thinking to help solve the “wicked problem” of designing a life and career that is happy and satisfying.

Here at Western we are offering a program based on the popular ‘Designing Your Life’ book and course currently offered at Stanford University in the USA. Our program will be facilitated by fully accredited ‘Designing Your Life’ coach and Career Education Consultant Patricia Parish.

All exercises are available online and there are some face-to-face workshops and activities that will become available to you as you work through the online exercises. They all involve getting to know yourself, generating a variety of options, and learning useful practices to help test your assumptions about working in a range of different roles. This is a hands-on program for discovering what you want, designing your way forward and taking action to create the life you dream of!

TOPICS

Begin your career planning journey by getting to know 'you'

In this module you will explore your workview and you lifeview to build a life-compass that you can use to guide your current and future career direction decision-making and planning. By having a clear and coherent sense of what is important in your life you are better equipped to make good decisions from the start.

Identifying all the things you could do with your life

There is no ‘one perfect job’ out there for anybody! Each of us is capable of following a number of different careers. We may sometimes need a bit of help to generate ideas about what’s possible, or may find it difficult to choose which way to go. In this module we will offer you some exercises to generate ideas for future career possibilities and start to discern what is right for you.

How to develop low risk ‘tests’ to inform your career decisions

So you think you know what you want to do, but how can you test this in a low risk way? In this module we will help you generate ways for ‘prototyping’ and testing your career ideas. We will help you to ‘think like a designer’ and build a plan for starting out carefully. There are a myriad of ways to ‘try before you buy’ in the world of careers, and this module will help you find a way that’s right for you.

Taking action to test your assumptions and learning from ‘failures’ to ensure future success

This is the fourth and final module in this series and will work best if you’ve completed the first three. However some of you are ready or have already started testing your ideas about future careers. This module will help you consolidate your learning and give you the motivation to keep going even when some of your attempts might end in failure. Designers thrive on failure…each attempt to build a product is an opportunity to ‘fail forward’, to refine and improve until the ideal solution is found. When designing your life we apply the same approach. Take small steps, test things out, and learn from those small ‘failures’ in order to discover the ideal career for you.

DESIGN YOUR LIFE TODAY!

DESIGN YOUR LIFE FAQs


How is this program different to other activities and programs offered through Careers?

How is this program different to other activities and programs offered through Careers?

Western Sydney University Careers service offers a range of career development tools and programs. The ‘Design the Life You Want’ program is based on a specific text ‘Designing Your Life’ (Burnett & Evans 2016) and offers a unique approach to career planning based on the concept of ‘Design Thinking’. Design thinking was formerly only applied in the world of commercial design, but has more recently been translated into a process for taking a designer’s approach to career and life planning. This is a new way of thinking about career planning and this program offers something a little bit different to the rest of our suite of resources.

Do I have to be creative or have knowledge and skills in Design to be able to do this program?

Do I have to be creative or have knowledge and skills in Design to be able to do this program?

Anyone can do this program. It is suitable for students of all disciplines and no creative skills are needed. This is a program about taking control of your life and applying the principles of design-thinking to help solve a problem that we all struggle with from time to time…how to build a satisfying and well-lived life.

Do I have to start at the first module?

Do I have to start at the first module?

You can pick any module to start with depending on your interest, but if you’re really confused about your future we recommend you begin with ‘Start Where You’re At’ to help you clarify your career direction.

Can I do the modules more than once?

Can I do the modules more than once?

Yes, the modules are designed to give you some tools and exercises to help you clarify your goals and take action to move them forward. You may want to do these exercises over and over again depending on where you’re at in the career decision-making process.

Can I gain credit for doing these modules?

Can I gain credit for doing these modules?

These modules are a self-paced, online learning experience and designed to be taken alongside your other study commitments or even perhaps before you begin or after you finish. You can’t claim any academic credit for completing these modules, but you will accumulate points and be awarded a certificate of completion if you finish all four modules.

Is this the same program that is run at Stanford University?

Is this the same program that is run at Stanford University?

Our program draws on similar content to Stanford’s’ Designing Your Life’ course and is facilitated by a careers consultant who has been trained and accredited by the Stanford University team. We use the text ‘Designing Your Life’ (link) as a reference, but we don’t offer the full semester-long accredited training that Stanford currently does.

Will I need to buy any textbooks or spend any money to complete this program?

Will I need to buy any textbooks or spend any money to complete this program?

We recommend that you purchase your own copy of ‘Designing Your Life’ by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans (2016) but it is not compulsory. You will be provided with everything you need to complete the program.

Are there any opportunities to meet with the facilitator and/or other students face to face?

Are there any opportunities to meet with the facilitator and/or other students face to face?

Yes, participants in this program will be invited to attend exclusive workshops and other events designed to enhance the learning experience. To qualify to attend any of these face-to-face sessions, students will be required to have completed some prior online activities. As you progress through the module of your choice an invitation to relevant upcoming events will be sent to you. If you cannot make that particular event, but would like to attend a future one, you can let us know and your name will be placed on the mailing list for future similar events.

I would like to start at module 3 or 4 but I can’t seem to access the registration?

I would like to start at module 3 or 4 but I can’t seem to access the registration?

Our first two modules, 1 and 2, are offered from the 11th March 2019. The final two modules are still under construction and expected to be available from 15th April 2019.

I am having trouble accessing the modules or the program online, what should I do?

I am having trouble accessing the modules or the program online, what should I do?

Please check your CareerHub profile information to make sure your details are correct, and if you have any further issues with access please contact our Careers team at careers@westernsydney.edu.au or call our reception on 02 4736 0424.

How can I find out more about the program and what to expect?

How can I find out more about the program and what to expect?

You can contact the Careers service at career@westernsydney.edu.au for general questions about accessing the program, or contact program facilitator Patricia Parish on p.parish@westernsydney.edu.au for details about the program content and structure.