You might think that a career change is quite risky. However, once your body and mind tell you that they can’t handle the pressure anymore, it’s definitely time to reconsider everything.
Opting for a career change can definitely be more beneficial than you think. No matter how old you are, it’s important to prioritize your mental and physical well-being. If your current career doesn’t offer you a chance to do so, you need to go for another, more favorable profession.
To help you out, we prepared a comprehensive guide on the meaning of career change that can help you understand whether you need to change your job and how to do it easily. Read it and find the answers to all the questions you may have!
- No matter whether you’re in your 30s, 40s, or even 50s, it’s never too late to change your career.
- Before looking into different career options, try to network with people from different industries. This will help you narrow down your list of potential jobs and concentrate on the best options.
- Be aware of your skillset and think about how you can utilize it in your next career.
- Tailor your resume and cover letter based on your career change. This way, you’ll have a customized application for each job.
How to Know if You Need to Change Your Career
Here are six signs that will tell you it’s time to change your career:
#1. You Feel Overwhelmed
Constantly feeling overwhelmed is the number one sign your job may be too stressful. If you genuinely can’t wait for the weekend to come and consistently have to go through the Sunday heebie-jeebies, then you’re definitely due for a change.
Your body and mind will start to feel anxious because they know what awaits them on Monday. So, if you notice that you constantly have problems with breathing and your head and muscles continually ache, it’s time to let go of the career you’re in and change something.
#2. You Lost Motivation/Passion
Although it is impossible to feel motivated every single working day, it is also not normal to always feel terrible. There will be times when a project or task will seem tedious and overwhelming, but this shouldn’t be how you feel about all aspects of your job.
Once you start losing passion, you will forget why you even started your job to begin with. This will result in lower energy levels, and you will lack the motivation and creativity to continue with your work.
So, if you tried everything to get your passion back but it just isn’t working, a career change might be a better option for you. It can benefit you greatly, no matter whether you’re looking for a career change at 30, 40, or even 50. It’s never too late to regain that passion!
#3. You Are Thinking About Quitting
A career change is definitely necessary when the only thing that’s holding you back from quitting is a nice salary. You don’t need to stay at your current job just because it’s financially secure. While you’re still working, consider other careers that can both pay well and make you happy. Chances are you may even find one that pays you even better than your current one!
#3. You Have Become Self-Conscious
Once you notice that you’re not passionate about work anymore and have no motivation to do a good job, you’ll start feeling self-conscious and start self-doubting. This will affect your work quality, which can result in many more problems, so it’s definitely never worth it to stay in a career that makes you question yourself and your abilities.
No matter what salary amount your current career is offering, it can’t pay for the emotional damage you may experience because of it. After all, you should remember that a good career is supposed to boost your confidence—not bring it down.
#4. You Have Changed as a Person
If you are dissatisfied with your job, you will become more irritable and begin to bring your work problems home with you.
Your family and friends are the first to notice your change in behavior. Once they start noticing that you’re not the fun and creative person you used to be, these circumstances can affect your relationship with them.
This is a desperate call for action, and you need to make a decision as quickly as possible. Think about what matters more to you—your personal relationships or a career that is destroying you—and make a wise choice.
#5. Your Dream is Something Else
Have you been daydreaming of other jobs lately? Or have your friends told you about how much they enjoy their jobs, and you just can’t seem to relate to any of them? If the answer to these questions is yes, it means you’re in need of a change. Listen to what your heart is saying and go for something that sparks your interest more than your current profession.
How to Change Career
Once you’ve realized that you do indeed want to change your career, it’s time to take action—and here’s how to do it:
#1. Do a Self-Evaluation
The first step is to understand what you enjoy doing, what you like and dislike, what keeps you motivated, and what you are passionate about.
Think of what interests of yours will help you get out of bed without trouble on Monday. You can also make a list of things you actually enjoy doing and find out what careers fit your list. So, in other words, you should find some common links between your values and interests and see how they can fit into an actual career.
The final result should be finding an opportunity that will provide you with both financial stability and happiness.
#2. Set Career Goals
Next on the list is setting up your next career goals. These represent the next steps you need to take to choose a new job. Try to think of what kind of life you’d like to live and what job can help you achieve that lifestyle. Also, it can be helpful if you think of your values and motivations in your personal life and connect them to your professional life.
#3. Assess Your Skills
Once you have a clear understanding of what you want to do career-wise, it’s time to assess your skills.
Your next career choice will mostly depend on your current skill set. For example, if you want to start a career as a teacher, you should ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you have enough patience to deal with students?
- Do you have great communication skills?
- Do you have any leadership skills?
Asking yourself skill-based questions is the best way to find out if you have a shot at the desired career choice. If you’re lacking any important skills, it’s still not a reason to worry or give up—you can always take some classes, attend courses, or get more training to excel at them.
#4. Utilize Your Network
With all of the other steps out of the way, it’s time to consider asking your network for help. Networking can help you get a clear understanding of the industry you’re interested in and learn how to transition from your current career to it.
Think about whether you know any people who are currently working in the field you’d like to work in. If you don’t know anyone, ask your family or friends to connect you with someone they know instead.
This way, you will get hands-on experience and knowledge from people who know the industry the best. Once you have the necessary information, you can decide whether the career you chose is the right fit for you.
#5. Job Hunting
After you’ve evaluated whether the profession you picked is a good option for you, the next step is to start job hunting. To do so, you can make a list of your preferred career choices and research any companies that are offering positions within those fields.
After that, you can head over to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. It will provide you with updated and general information on different careers, opportunities to grow in specific positions, job requirements, and the average salary for each job.
#6. Tailor Your Resume & Cover Letter
Lastly, try to match your resume and cover letter to the job position you’re applying for.
Based on your research on the industry, you’ll find out what skills are usually required for the specific type of job you’re looking for. Take note of these criteria so that you can figure out how to tailor your job application to meet them. If, for example, you want to switch from a sales job to a graphic design one, try to emphasize your creative and technical skills instead of mentioning your sales skills.
Benefits of Career Change
Here are some of the benefits that a career change can offer:
- Better salary. If you’re financially stable in the job position you’re currently in, a career change may seem risky. However, you’ll never know about other (and even better) opportunities if you never try.
- Increased satisfaction. Once you let go of the uncomfortable work environment and the job you don’t enjoy doing, you will get more interested and motivated to do something else.
- Feeling happier. Once you decide to change your career to something you actually enjoy doing, anxiety and stress will likely leave your body, and you’ll start feeling way happier.
- A chance to expand your network. Changing your career means working in a new industry with new teams and individuals. This will give you a chance to meet different types of people and make different networking relationships.
- A chance to learn new skills and gain more experience. What’s better than having the opportunity to learn new things? Once you decide to change your career, you will get the chance to gather new knowledge and utilize it in better environments where your work will be appreciated.
Although it is widely known that a career change is risky and can make you feel uncertain about the future, it can also be one of the best decisions you can make for both yourself and your professional growth.
It is definitely not worth it to dread every time a new working week begins, as this will have a huge toll on both your mental and physical well-being.
To successfully change careers, you should look into your skill sets, make a list of things you actually enjoy doing, and see how you could profit from any of them. Doing all this will get you one step closer to landing the job of your dreams and kissing the stress goodbye!