Making a career change is something you probably will consider once or twice in your life.
The truth is younger generations hardly stay in a single job all their lifetimes.
The reasons can go from boredom to looking for a more flexible job, or in most cases, breaking free from the toxicity of a company. So, if you’re considering changing your work environment, you’re not alone.
But, many doubts and challenges come along with a career change, so here before you take any step, read these 13 tips to make it happen.
13 Tips to Make a Career Change Happen
Prepare for Criticism
Look, not everyone understands the reasoning behind a career change. Especially if you’re over the age of 30… Especially if it’s to a less paying or less secure job. So, if you’re thinking about changing your job, you need to get prepared to face criticism and people opposing you.
The chances are your family and friends will have an opinion about it. Just make sure you don’t get discouraged. You don’t have to stick to the same job forever just because others do.
Be Willing to Learn
I see many people wanting to start a business or a freelance career after they get sick of their job, but they want it to happen magically, without them having to put in the effort. Making a career change often starts with going back to college, self-studying, taking online courses, or investing time in practicing new skills. Without that effort, you’ll probably stay stuck in the same type of job.
Everyone is Different
One thing I see online is people trying to follow the exact path of somebody else. This often can lead to difficulties and frustrations that can end up making you quit. Why? Because you’re comparing your own achievements with online models that only show you the bright side and the final result of making a career change, making you believe it happens easily and overnight.
It’s ok to have a role model, but never forget you’re different from that person. Your pace, your milestones, and your goals will come at different times.
Research Your Options
Whether you have an idea of what you want or you don’t, before starting your journey to change your career, you should find out about all your possible career options.
Either if you want to do transfer from one digital job to another, or change from being a nurse to being a teacher, you have to sit down and learn about all the possibilities first. You might think you know what you want, but you could find a new thing you’re passionate about.
It Doesn’t Have to Be Related
Many people think that to change your career means to change departments or to get a promotion. If that works for you then great! But, if it doesn’t, know your career doesn’t have to be related directly to what you do.
For example, you can be a health care professional and use your knowledge combined with new skills to become a health / medical freelance writer. Although you’re already using your knowledge, you aren’t working directly in a hospital. So, don’t limit yourself because of the job you already have.
Check Out the Job Offer
One of the first steps to make a career change is to check the job offer out there. For example, if you want to become a digital nomad, some careers are more popular than others. A copywriter might find more job openings than a historical writer.
Before you decide on what you want, look for what’s available. You wouldn’t want to end up worrying about work stability and income after a career change.
Put Your Research Skills to Work
Once a job catches your eye, then you start researching more about it. Does it have a high learning curve? How long do people in this career have to prepare?
Look for real-life examples like people on social media, or people that you know. Make questions about what they do and how they do it. This way, you’ll have an idea of what’s awaiting you.
Give It a Try
Changing careers is a risky business, but you will never know if you really like it if you don’t give it a try. You’ll want to get hands-on experience before deciding on something, so try looking for internships or volunteering options that allow you to execute the job you’re aiming for.
For example, if you want to be a blogger, you can help a friend with creating content or you can write as a contributor writer on a website. In the end, if you don’t like it, you can change to another career again. There is no limit to what you can do.
Most career changes will start slowly, with you assisting college again, self-studying in your home, or learning new skills during your free time. Be patient and most importantly, be consistent. You can reach almost any goal if you dedicate the right time to it. A career change rarely occurs overnight.
“Success is neither magical nor mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying basic fundamentals.” E . James Rohn
Stand in Your Strengths
Before doing anything, you need to know what your strengths and weaknesses are. Do an honest asset of your skills, your aptitude, and your attitude.
You can use a simple method like making a list and later analyzing it, or you can take a career test like My Next Move. Of course, your strengths will help in your goals and your weaknesses will let you know what could become an obstacle in your process.
Know When It’s Not Working
Not all career changes are going to be successful, and that’s ok. If you feel like you’re swimming against the current, you’re stressed out, depressed, and anxious, and you aren’t even enjoying what you do, then you might want to reconsider.
A career change must be an improvement from your previous job, it’s supposed to either make you happier, relaxed, or richer. If that isn’t the case, then continue exploring other options.
Celebrate Your Small Achievements
There aren’t any shortcuts for making a career change. The process itself can be very long before getting your first job experience. That’s why many people lose motivation on the way.
Whatever part of the process you are, either learning new skills or volunteering, make sure to celebrate your milestones. Whether you learn something new, complete a task on your own, or find your first job, celebrate the little steps.
Perhaps the most important step when you want to make a career change is building a support team. Either by discussing your plans with a mentor, a coach, or a friend, you need to have people around you that can support you when you need to.
This doesn’t mean you can’t achieve a goal alone, it means the path can be easier if you share it with someone.
Up To You
Starting a career change is never easy. The process will be slow, full of ups and downs, which is why most people give up. The key to success is consistency, patience, and a good support group.
What career are you thinking about? Let me know in the comments!