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Thinking About Career Change: Do Your Homework

By Michael Deane

June 11 2020 - You’re thinking about a career change? People seek to change professions for a lot of different reasons.

Maybe you want to have more flexible hours. Or, your career values and goals have changed. Or maybe you just want to make more money.

Before you make a decision, however, you need to do your homework. This includes evaluating your current situation and exploring available options. The following tips should make the switch a bit easier:

The Importance of Having a Satisfying Career

We spend a lot of our time at work, commuting to work, and thinking about work. Therefore, our jobs play a tremendous role in our lives.

Having a job that makes you feel unsatisfied and bored can and will take a toll on your mental and physical health. Knowing that yet another day of doing something you hate lies ahead will make you feel stressed and frustrated. If you feel like you’re stuck in a job you hate and there’s no way out of it, you might end up feeling anxious or depressed, too.

There are two solutions to this problem. You can either try to find joy and purpose in a job you hate or swap your career for the one you’ll feel passionate about.

Explore Your Career Opportunities

The first thing to do when contemplating a career change is to think about what drives you. Focus on your passions and interests. This kind of thinking opens doors to careers you otherwise would never think about.

Focus on Your Interests

Is there anything you really like doing? What’s your dream job? No matter how improbable it looks, write down everything that comes to mind.

Look for Clues

Pay attention to times when you’re feeling really happy. Ask yourself why particular activities feel enjoyable to you. Take note of topics and projects that excite your imagination.

Be Patient

Keep in mind that finding the right path takes time. Introspection and patience are bound to help you with determining which activities make you truly happy.

Overcome Obstacles

Considering a huge change in life is always challenging. There could be a number of reasons why one might think changing careers is impossible.

However, overthinking and underacting won’t get you anywhere. Each of the potential obstacles can be prevailed over - here’s how:

Changing Careers Takes Too Much Work

This is true - switching to a new career field requires a substantial time investment. However, it can become more manageable if you break down larger tasks into a few smaller ones. The payoff is definitely worth it.

I’m Too Old For a New Career

Those who worked doing the same thing for a long time often feel that they’ve put too much effort and time into their careers to change them so suddenly. What’s more, they’re often worried about health benefits and retirement.

However, the more time you’ve spent in one career, the more skills you can transfer to a new one.

I’m Not Skillful Enough for a New Career

When it comes to this, keep in mind that you may be unaware of some of your skills. Or, maybe you’re underestimating your skillfulness due to low self-esteem.

Consider skills that you have learned from other life experiences, such as volunteering or hobbies. There’s a good chance you’re more skillful than you think.

Changing Careers is Too Risky in Today’s Economy

In today’s climate, changing careers may seem like a risky move. Keep in mind that there’s no need to quit your current job until you’ve found the one you really want.

Researching other options brings long-term benefits, especially if you’re not happy with your current job. You may even end up with a career that’s more stable than your current one.

Research Thoroughly

In case you’ve already chosen your new career, you should research it thoroughly. Fortunately, the Internet offers a wealth of information about every possible job. You’ll be able to find everything from estimated future growth to average salaries.

However, nothing beats the information you can get from someone working in the career you’ve chosen. Talk to someone who is already in the industry of your choice. Besides getting all the info you need, you’ll also start to build the necessary connections.

Determine Your Transferable Skills and Strengths

Another important part of the "homework" is figuring out what skills you have.

There’s a pretty good chance you won’t be starting from scratch - transferable skills apply to almost all fields. These may include computer literacy, management experience, foreign language fluency, program planning, and others.

If you’re unable to determine your transferable skills on your own, brainstorm with trusted mentors, colleagues, or friends. They may be able to help you identify them, as well as to recognize the ones you overlooked.

Takeaway

Finding satisfaction in your professional life is incredibly important. By taking some time to identify your passion, figure out your skills, and research the opportunities, you should be able to start this new chapter of your life in the best way possible.

About the author

Michael has been working in marketing for almost a decade and has worked with a huge range of clients, which has made him knowledgeable on many different subjects. He has recently rediscovered a passion for writing and hopes to make it a daily habit. You can read more of Michael's work at Qeedle.




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