Changing Careers: 4 Things you must consider first

iStock_000025043162XSmallWritten by Dave Cullen

Many people avoid changing careers simply because of the stress and fear associated with such a significant life upheaval. You may be unhappy in your current job but the prospect of taking drastic steps to change your life, start over again, re-skill and reinvent yourself could fill you with feelings of uncertainty and apprehension. It’s no wonder that deciding to stay put is the more attractive option.

The following is a list of 4 tips to help you successfully transition into a new career path while keeping your cool.

What do you want from life?
This is an important question to ask yourself. Before you decide to make radical changes in your professional life, ask yourself if there is anything you can change about your current situation that will bring the fulfillment you’re seeking. Carefully think about what is important to you, family, work / life balance, living standards  and material possessions. How will each of these elements of your life be affected for (better or worse) by your change of career?

Address your concerns
The fear of change can be an inhibiting obstacle and and one that can diminish your motivation and ambition. However, fear is a necessary emotion when used to highlight concerns about your new career path plan. To help use fear productively, grab a pen and paper and write down all of your concerns and anxieties, for example, you may be worried about the potential financial implications of changing career. Once you have produced a complete list of all of your fears, begin to address each one individually and develop a plan of action to deal with each one. This strategy helps to make the task of changing careers seem more manageable.

Understand your worth
When embarking on a new career, it is important to recognise your skills, talents and abilities as well as the experience you have gained in previous jobs. Try to identify which skills are transferrable to your new target industry, this will help you to understand if you are suited to moving into a new role and sector. When considering your strengths, also think about your weaknesses, do you require additional education in order to further your new career plan? Perhaps taking additional courses or gaining valuable experience through internships would be a useful way of improving your prospects.

Is Money your motivator?
While you may be attracted to a specific career because of the considerable financial benefits, be aware that many well-paid roles come with a catch. These positions will often come with a weight of high expectation and significant day-to-day stresses. You may be asked to make sacrifices with regard to your personal time also. However, if your dream job happens to be a low paid one, you must also think about how lower wages will impact upon your future lifestyle. Will you be able to live your life to the standard you currently enjoy with less money?

For more information on changing career paths, check out our blogs: Considering a Career Change? and How to write a career path plan.

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One Response to Changing Careers: 4 Things you must consider first

  1. james says:

    Good advice,the biggest problem at the moment is that most people have not made this choice they have been forced into it and confidence plays a key factor as it’s at an all time low as some of us have been trying to re-skill ourselves as little training and less work around which makes you more pessimistic about the future!

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