The path ahead in any career can be daunting and a bit intimidating. While we don’t have the answers on how to navigate a successful career, we hope to provide a few broad points that may be helpful as well as some specific ideas that we have learned from our own experiences. Because everyone’s path is unique, the two of us probably have quite different ideas about the activities that shaped our scientific lives, what worked and what failed. We are united, however, in the importance of enthusiasm and commitment to the work, and the primacy of doing the science. We will also try to point out the pitfalls that we have avoided (or succumbed to) so others might watch out for them. And we will also give some of the reasons why, after so many years, we still find joy and wonder in our work and urge others to follow and surpass us.