5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Jumping to the Next Opportunity

5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Jumping to the Next Opportunity

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what should i consider before taking a new opportunity
Image Credit | fastcompany

If you want to achieve your dreams, sometimes you have to turn down opportunities. There may be a time when you are offered an opportunity, like a job or promotion.

The successful and powerful person making the offer talks about how this will be your big break, and how this can help you become what you want to be. This can be very exciting; money, prestige, or security dropped into your lap.

But stop to think for a moment before you take the opportunity. Does this opportunity really help to advance you toward your goals? The successful person who made the offer seems to think so. But they also have a need to fill, and their idea about what your goals are might be influenced by their need.

How can you tell if the opportunity presented is one that you should take, or one that you should pass up?

Here are five ideas for you to consider before jumping on the opportunity:

1. Is the opportunity the right fit for you?

Is this opportunity the right fit for you? When you think about what you want out of life, does this opportunity really let you contribute the best of yourself?

Humans are logical creatures, and we are great at rationalizing. When you look at the opportunity, your brain will rationalize and try to make it fit you. Really listen for the nagging voice in the back of your mind. Listen to your heart. Is this something that you really want? Or are you being swayed by the arguments of the presenter?

Look at other people who are doing the role that you are being offered. Is that the sort of person that you want to be? If so, this opportunity may be a perfect fit for you. If not, you are better off waiting and working toward what you really want.

“Find something that you love doing. If you make a lot of money, that’s a bonus. And if you don’t, you still won’t hate going to work.” – Jeff Foxworthy

2. Are you afraid of what might happen?

How big of a role does fear play in your decision? Are you considering this opportunity only because of the fear of what might happen if you pass it up?

Fear of the unknown is a common fear. Often the known route will seem safer or more secure simply because it is known. But it might be that the unknown route will be easier. Or, it might be more difficult, but the rewards for taking that journey may be much greater.

Don’t take the opportunity merely because you fear the unknown.


3. Are you only jumping on the opportunity because it’s easier?

Some opportunities seem to make good sense because they are just easier. If you are struggling to build your business, and somebody offers you the chance to make money doing something else it can be tempting to take the offer.

When you are starting your own business you have to do everything – marketing, manufacturing, sales, accounting, even janitorial duties. It could be so easy to just take the money to work for somebody else. You need to carefully examine what is being offered. Be suspicious if it is too easy.

Will it help you move toward your real goals, perhaps by offering you some training that you need? Or will it cause you to stagnate and make no forward progress because you will be doing the same thing over and over with no real challenges?


4. Is someone making vague promises to make you more interested?

Examine the opportunity closely. Are vague promises being made that excite you and encourage you to take that opportunity? Many people have been led into a decision based on excitement for something that never came to be.

Look at the realities of the opportunity. Are they strong enough that the opportunity is valuable on its own right? Or are the vaguely promised extras what are leading you to want to take the opportunity?

If you can’t get the promises in writing, it may be best to turn this opportunity down.


5. Are you stuck in your own fantasies?

Look at your goals and dreams. Do they fall into the category of fantasies?

If your dream is to become famous, that is an example of a fantasy. It is something that you can take great pleasure in dreaming about, but it is not something that you can guarantee by your actions.

Examples of goals or dreams that are not fantasies are play guitar or start a business. Both of these things you can control. A wonderful side effect of pursuing these goals could be that you would become famous or strike it rich.

If your dreams are actually fantasies, and you are given an opportunity to take action doing something that you love, you should take the opportunity. Don’t let it pass you by just because you are busy daydreaming.

“As soon as you start to pursue a dream, your life wakes up and everything has meaning.” – Barbara Sher

Don’t let yourself be derailed from your route to success by openings that don’t do you any good. Find the courage and strength of character to do what is best, even if it might be difficult or frightening. In the long run you will be glad that you did.

What opportunities are you facing right now? Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below!
Susan de Jong is an app entrepreneur who loves to write software. Her apps include Lucidate, a brainstorming app that helps you explore your innermost thoughts, and Insight Personality Tests, a fun and motivational app. Download the apps today for free.


  1. This question is by far my go-to question for just about everything but in a challenging moment with kids it almost always grounds me and centers me to make a more rational decision. Ask yourself what your family needs most right now.

  2. Susan the questions you raised are so relevant for me right now. Your 4th point is the one that keeps tripping me up. Some people can often oversell you on an opportunity and it can be difficult at times without calling them a liar to understand just how real the opportunity is.

    I am pursuing many opportunities right now and I appreciate your article. Thank you.

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