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About 53% of Americans are unhappy at work. If you think about it, that’s literally half of the people that are working in our country.
Making the choice to switch to a new career is scary if you’re just starting out in a field or if you’ve already been there for 30 years. Regardless, it could make you happier and you’ll never know if you don’t try.
Are you interested in another type of work, but don’t know where to start? Is it finally time for you to adjust your norm?
If you want to know how to change your career, keep reading to learn more about the steps you need to take to make it happen.
How to Change Your Career in Five Steps
Although there are five main steps to changing careers, it probably won’t be something that comes quickly or easily.
Changing your career takes hard work, but if you’re dedicated and want to make a change in your life, it will be worth the struggle.
It’s important to check in with yourself throughout the process to make sure you are still happy with the choices you’re making.
Consider keeping a journal and writing down what you think and feel about the choices you’re making. This will help you reflect on your career and yourself.
Remember that you’re doing this for you, so if you don’t feel good about it, that’s not a good sign!
1. What Don’t You Like?
The first step in changing careers is figuring out what is making you unhappy with your current career and work situation.
What you would rather be doing instead of what you’re currently doing? Are you sure you wouldn’t be happy in the same field, but in a different role?
Some of the common reasons you may not be satisfied are:
- The career is too overwhelming
- The career requires a lot of work with little reward
- The career doesn’t have a lot of advancement opportunities
- The career has low pay no matter where you go
- The career isn’t impressive to other people
- The career requires too much of your time
Think about the reasons that you want to change your career in the first place and imagine what situation you’d be happier in.
2. What Do You Want to Do?
The second step is determining where your interests are and what skills you have. This will help you figure out which field may be a good fit for you.
Part of this is figuring out what type of personality you have as well.
Are you someone that loves working with other people everyday or would you rather work alone? Do you want to have a job that includes working with numbers or are you a more creative type?
In order to be happy with the work you do, it has to motivate you and make you want to work harder.
Choosing a career that is a better fit for you makes this less difficult.
3. What Can You Imagine?
The third step in a career change is thinking about job possibilities and starting your research.
If you’re struggling to come up with some alternative career options, you may want to reach out to a career counselor.
Many of us consider pay an important part of our jobs, so when talking with your career counselor, you may want to bring a copy of your paystub. You can use a free paystub generator online to print one for your appointment.
You may also consider setting up some informational interviews in different fields to get a better feel for what the work is all about.
4. How Does It Feel?
The fourth step is to set up a job shadow and actually “test the waters” in the new field. Consider volunteering for local organizations related to the field or trying some freelance jobs to see how you feel doing a similar job.
This may not give you the perfect idea of what it would be like to have a career in the new field, but it will give you a better idea of how you feel doing a different type of work. That’s important when you’re narrowing down the job you plan to get later.
Doing these small tasks can also help you become more marketable when it’s time to job search, so it is a win-win situation for you!
5. Where Can You Grow?
The fifth step is to work on the skills you already have and learn new skills to become more marketable.
Since you’re just starting out in the new field, it can be difficult to get a leg up without any type of required skills or experience.
It might be worth it to invest in some local or online classes to get the knowledge you don’t already have.
Remember that you don’t necessarily have to go back to school to get into a new field, but depending on what type of change you are trying to make, it could be something to consider.
Ready to Make a Change?
Now that you know how to change your career, you may feel more inspired than ever before to actually do it.
When it’s time to change careers, you are going to feel nervous and maybe even a little scared. Remember that you’re making this change for the better and “future you” will be proud.
Are you looking for a career change? If so, use these tips to get yourself set up for success.
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