Social work is one of the more altruistic careers out there. At the center of it, social work is all about bettering people and communities’ lives by providing support and solutions during unfortunate situations. Due to this, succeeding as a social worker requires commitment, strength, and genuine care for the community.
If you are looking into a career as a social worker, then here are nineteen signs that you would be exceptional in the role.
1. You Enjoy Learning
To get your licensure as a social worker, you must first complete your education. You can become one by attaining your bachelor’s, but many decide to get their masters, too, as this means you can become a clinical social worker. If that is the path you want to take, then an MSW online will get you there without the need to travel to college.
Naturally, a love of learning will help you succeed in your studies. To be an exceptional social worker, however, your studies must carry on far past the day of graduation. You will need to continuously keep up with the goings-on of the community to provide the best possible care for your clients. Plus, each day brings a new situation, and you might find yourself researching to better your solutions.
2. You Care About the Community
While social workers work primarily with individuals and families, the overarching goal is to improve the community. By dealing with unpleasant situations such as drug addiction and abuse, you help create a more positive and comfortable place to live.
If you have previously done charity work or helped out in community events, the chances are, you would make an excellent social worker. It takes someone with a genuine passion for the area to thrive in the role.
3. You Love Working with Others
Social work is anything but a lonely career. Even when doing your MSW online, you will be communicating over the web as well as working with people during your placements. Then, as a social worker, you will always be around your co-workers and your clients.
People who prefer to shut themselves away when working wouldn’t thrive as a social worker. However, if you work better when you’re surrounded by others, social work is a career that allows you to do that. There are great benefits to working with others – you’ll never get lonely, your communication skills will improve, and you will always have someone there to give you a push when you need it most.
4. You Keep Calm Under Pressure
While many careers are high pressure, those who work in human services experience pressure like no other. After all, as a social worker, you are responsible for other people’s well-being, and you must come up with a solution that benefits everyone involved (or hurts the fewest people).
It is not easy. There will be times where you feel like the weight of people’s lives is pushing down on you, and this is an extremely demanding situation to be in. For this reason, to be a successful social worker, you must be able to keep calm in high-pressure situations.
5. You’re Great with Kids
Social workers work around many kids. Often, these children are in unfortunate situations and desperately need the help of a reliable adult. If you are given a job that involves children, you must be able to make them feel better and give them the best chance possible. If you are naturally great with kids, then this skill will help you massively. Even if you can make a kid laugh just once, it can be enough to give them the boost they need to get through the difficult time.
When studying your MSW online, you will learn how to deal with people. It would be beneficial to also research the best ways to deal with children.
6. You are Always on Time
Any job requires someone who has great time management skills, but when you are responsible for vulnerable individuals, it becomes even more important. If a client is going through a difficult time, you don’t need to make the situation any worse by being disorganized and showing up late.
A great social worker is one who holds themselves to extremely high standards and ensures they are always on time, if not early, to every meeting they have. If you are someone who has a great track record, that will help you become a responsible and trustworthy social worker.
If you do have trouble with time management, you should improve your skills when doing your bachelor’s or MSW online. Even when your course is online, you can still get into the habit of always being ahead of your deadlines and showing up to online meetings before others have clocked in.
7. You Like to Stay Busy
The life of a social worker is anything but calm. There will be days when you feel completely overrun with tasks, and you barely have two minutes to think. Some people would find this too stressful, but it is a perfect fit for those who like to stay busy.
If the idea of a job where you spend a lot of your time twiddling your thumbs terrifies you, then social work could be the role for you. You’ll spend your days problem-solving, talking through situations, and meeting with clients. Your mind will always have something to work on, and you most certainly would never feel even an ounce of boredom.
8. You Have a Lot of Empathy
Empathy is a trait that no social worker should ever fall short on. After all, when you work with vulnerable people who desperately need help and solutions, you must be able to understand their point of view without judgment.
If you have always prided yourself on your natural empathy, then a career where you help others would be one of the most satisfying and enriching paths you can take. If the idea of spending your working life bettering the lives of those around you fills you with joy, then you should consider applying for an MSW online.
9. You Are Motivated
Passion is important for social work; without it, there’s not much point starting. Passion doesn’t always push you through the tough days, though – that is where motivation must come in.
If motivation comes naturally to you, then you would thrive in a social working role. From the moment you start your MSW online, you will experience tough days. There’ll be times when you feel the pressure, the workload seems too high, and all you want to do is stay in bed. It takes a certain level of motivation to be able to push through without burning yourself out.
If you’re not sure if you are motivated enough, then think about the times in your life when you had a giant workload. Did it overwhelm you to the point you pushed it to the side until the last minute, or did you face it head-on, determined to complete it on time? If you fall under the latter, then you are the kind of motivated individual needed to become an excellent social worker.
10. You Look After Yourself
Many people who work in the human services sector experience burning out. It is something that happens when a person has experienced too much pressure and pushed themselves too hard, resulting in mental tiredness taking over. While it can happen to anyone, there are ways to avoid it.
Great social workers must find ways to avoid burnout so they can consistently provide the best care possible. So, if you’re thinking about becoming a social worker, then ensure that you know how to look after yourself. Some ways to do so include:
- Eating a healthy diet
- Exercising often
- Taking regular breaks
- Keeping positive people around
- Finding a hobby you love
- Listening to your body
If you consistently look after your body and mind, then you ensure that you are always in the right state to give clients the quality of care that they need. If you do decide to become a social worker, then practice looking after yourself as soon as you start your MSW online. The longer you keep a habit, the stronger it becomes.
11. You Are Patient
As a social worker, your patience will be tested as you have never experienced before. No matter how much you desire to help people, you will still face moments where your clients will test you. Unfortunately, it is part of the job, and it takes someone with boundless strength to manage it well.
Patience isn’t always easy, so if it comes naturally to you, you could do well as a social worker. It would help you get through dealing with difficult clients, and you’ll find that your outcomes end up better because of it.
12. People Trust You
When working with clients, your goal is to have them trust you completely. This will help you understand what is going on in their lives, bettering your ability to provide apt solutions. Of course, there are ways you can get people to trust you, but it helps to be a naturally trustworthy person.
If, throughout your life, people have found it easy to tell you personal facts and feel comfortable in your presence, then your job as a social worker will be made all the easier.
13. When You See Someone Struggle, You Help
There are two types of people in the world – people who pass by a person in need and those who stop everything to help them out. If you are the latter, you are the exact type of person a social worker should be.
While people can fake compassion, it can only last so long. To thrive for a long time in a social work career, you must be the kind of person who has a genuine desire to pull people out of their struggles. So, if you genuinely want to lift others, then consider applying for an MSW online.
14. You Are a Problem Solver
When thinking of a social work career, many people envision the part with the clients, but actually, most time is spent problem-solving. Once you have met with clients and understood their situations, you will have to figure out a way to provide the best solution.
When doing your MSW online, you will learn how to apply your problem-solving skills to certain situations. If you naturally have a brain that loves to come up with a solution, then you’ll find this part of the role that much easier.
15. You Can Handle Criticism
From the moment you start your MSW online, you must be comfortable receiving criticism. Those who take criticism as an insult will not thrive in the world of social work. Feedback helps you grow as a person, so if you receive some from your teachers or co-workers, you must take it on board.
You will also receive criticism from your clients. This won’t always be kind or helpful, and there may even be times where you are on the other end of verbal abuse. Due to this, you should know how to handle it and not take it personally.
16. You Are Open-Minded
Social workers must be open-minded. When working with a group of people, all of which come from different backgrounds, you must be non-judgmental and able to see events from all points of view.
If you already have an open-minded perspective, then a career where you help people is an ideal fit.
17. You Want to Be a Social Worker
Most of all, if you want to be an exceptional social worker, you must truly want to be one. No matter how empathetic, organized, and patient you are, you will not thrive in the role if you don’t have a genuine desire to be there.
If you are determined to become a social worker and better the community, then there is little doubt that you will be an excellent one. If this is the case, then apply for your MSW online and start your journey towards improving the lives of others.