People early in their career should learn from computer science: meander some in your walk (especially early on), randomly drop yourself into new parts of the terrain, and when you find the highest hill, don’t waste any more time on the current hill no matter how much better the next step up might appear.
Great article by Chris Dixon about how people say they want another career but remain, even years later, doing something they aren’t passionate about. And these are smart, talented people, in most cases. We’re not talking about aimless folks who don’t care to know better.
As humans, we tend to put greater value on short-term rewards than long-term. I’ve often argued that the reversal of this thinking is what wisdom is all about. Regardless, psychologist and behavioral economists have explored this phenomenon through the ages, and it remains as true as ever. (I know because I was a victim of it for a good, long time.)
Worth reading the whole article, if only for some good career perspective.