Out With the Old, In With the New: How to Change Careers

Springtime is in the air! And as COVID-19 is in a lull (for now), we are not only spring-cleaning our homes and relationships in this season, but our careers as well. Life is different now and we are wrapping our heads around this fact. Many people are looking for a new experience and want to know how to change careers. As the great resignation continues, how do we go about making change?

Career Assessment

It’s time for an audit! How are things looking in your current career? What story are you telling yourself about what you’re capable of? What story are you telling yourself about work?

How much money are you making versus how much you want to make? Many of my clients hesitate when I ask them how much they make and how much they want to make. Let’s face it, it’s awkward, and it’s not something we’re typically this blunt about. As your Career Coach, I make a point to have “the money talk” (here, featured on Farnoosh Torabi’s So Money podcast) with my clients ASAP.

Aside from money, there are other reasons someone may be considering a career change, especially in midlife. According to Joblist’s Midlife Career Crisis survey, the top four reasons are

  • the last career was too stressful
  • seeking better work-life balance
  • they wanted a new challenge
  • because they were no longer passionate about their field

How does your job stack up when reflecting on these four areas, plus remuneration?

A healthy career includes lots of pivots. Some are cultivated opportunities that you’ve been working toward and others are what-the-heck? opportunities that you choose to take advantage of. So don’t you wonder if it’s too late, if you’re too old, or if you just plain “shouldn’t”. Because P.S– it’s never too late to change your life.

So, if you’ve done an audit of your current career and feel it’s time to pivot, good on you! Here are some things to keep in mind for a successful career change. If you’ve done your audit and still are unsure, here are some questions that can help you decipher when it’s time for you to change careers.

Career Change

A few ways that TopResume suggests to refresh your career in time for spring, are by giving yourself a performance review, re-assessing your salary, freshening up your resume, taking stock of your network, pruning down your to-do list for greater focus, and professional spring cleaning for a stronger year.  

As a Career Coach, I want to help you dig into what your goals are this season. If you’re like many of my clients, you know that you need a change, but don’t know what exact change you need. For example, I once had a client who was concerned about her finances. She said that she wasn’t being paid enough, and I asked her how much she needed to make to feel comfortable. Her response, “That’s a good question. I should know that, shouldn’t I? I can’t believe I don’t know that!”

And then we figured it out. It’s easier to achieve a goal when you know what the goal is. And as her Career Coach, I helped her set a S.M.A.R.T goal.

No one wants to make a life changing decision like a career change and feel like they are going to flop, so here are some ways to ensure a successful career change according to 50 people that made a pivot:

  • accept that no shortcuts exist
  • commit to a steady march
  • take small actions, even (ha, especially) imperfect ones
  • explore without expectation
  • embrace your unique journey
  • selectively craft your new narrative
  • avoid relying solely on your existing network (see chapter 5 of Personal Revolution for tips on expanding your network)
  • define your clear walk-away point
  • pursue energy instead of passion
  • trust your instincts.

Sounds easy enough right? Even if it does, it is always nice to have the help of a professional to guide you along the process.

A career change can be one of the most exhilarating times in our lives so let’s get an answer to the question you’re probably thinking, “if not this, then what”?

Career Placement Test

Lucky for us, our good friends over at Indeed have an answer for us. Follow this link to 8 Free Career Aptitude Tests.

Career placement tests are all the buzz these days and they can help you identify where your career interests lie. Here, the Muse identifies 13 career tests and quizzes to help you find your dream job.

Changing Careers

So now it’s time to put this into action. If you see the writing on the wall and it says – let’s make a change, a big change, and you’re past the point of pivot and into a completely new career, well, it’s likely you’ll need the support of an accountability partner to provide a little oxygen and keep you committed to your new path.

As a career coach, I often have a client come to me with a great idea for their career change. A very early question I ask is, “What are you prepared to invest in learning this new craft?” I know, because I’ve changed careers several times, from dot com marketer to chef to TV host to author to coach. I know that you start on the bottom and skill up big time as you climb to your goals. I went from making six-figures to minimum wage (that dot-com to chef change was a doozie). Plus, you may have to pay even more to account for additional schooling and certifications.

As I’m sure you already know, here is an active depiction of what it can feel like starting over:

Because of that, I want to set you up with as many chances as possible for success.

Yes, it is totally possible to pursue your dream, but we are going to do so with strategy. We can even help your spouse find a better job, as well.

Why? Because changing careers doesn’t have to be this big, scary thing. Will there be nerves involved. Heck, yeah. But you’ve got me to guide you along.

So here’s what’s next. If you’ve already decided you want to work with a career coach, click here to book an introductory session. If you’re not quite there yet, but you’ve found your dream job, whipped your resume into shape, and talked with people in your new career field, do not be afraid to apply!

Make a Change

It’s time. Your current job totally drains you, and at the very least, it makes you wonder if there is something better out there for you.

You can find a job you love. When working with me as your Career Coach, I can help you fine-tune the list of potential careers that are of interest to you, help you figure out where you want to go, and get you there. You don’t have to stay stuck.

If you’ve elected to figure this thing out yourself, here are 25 ways to spring your career forward this week.

And if you might like the support of a coach like me – whether you want to find better work doing what you do now, pivot, do a 180, or create your own business, I’m looking forward to helping you get those results.

Click here to book your intro session.

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