Smart LivingThinking About Changing Your Career Path? Here's Some Important Advice
If you have been unhappy with your current occupation for a long time now, it might be time to consider changing careers. If you are considering entering a completely new field, there are going to be countless obstacles along the way that could affect your life in the future. Here is some advice if you want to change your career path.
1. Research, research, research
Research is critical in any career path, and it will be no different for your new one. Research the industry, the job market for this field, and even costs of living where you want to work — all this will help you figure out how much money you might be able to make and how much education will be required. If you don't, you just might find yourself with a useless degree and nothing to show for it, which can be devastating in the future. You can find information and courses all over the internet, and if you want a new career in school, you can get a master of teaching online with no hassle. There are master’s degrees for a lot of career choices, so you don't have to do only teaching.
Also, research the companies that are currently hiring employees within this industry or field that you might want to work for. A new job isn't guaranteed, and it's always good to have some backup options lined up in case your current choice doesn't pan out (that research process should also lead you there). This is especially important if this career choice would require retraining of some sort; even if the company ends up not being a good fit for whatever reason, chances are they will know of another place where their training could come in handy.
2. Networking and connections
Networking is extremely important if you want to get into your new career path — heck, it's pretty much always important. This can be done by talking with others that are already working in the industry (and don't forget to keep those connections afloat even after you've landed a job), joining groups within this profession whether online or off- as well as finding out about conventions and trade shows which might feature people from your field. Additionally, it wouldn't hurt to join some professional organizations specifically related to your area of expertise, so you can establish contacts and possible mentors who would help guide you through the ins and outs of this career choice.
3. Diversify your skillset
If you're looking to change your career, it's always helpful to have as many transferable skills as possible. This way, regardless of what industry or company you end up working for, chances are there will be something about your personality and/or skill set that could come in handy. That said, remember not to go overboard: if it doesn't relate somehow to your desired job, don't bother putting it on the résumé. Use online courses to your advantage.
4. Think ahead
What do you plan on doing with this new career path? Do you see yourself only in the short-term or long-term? Will this be a stepping stone in order to get into another field? All these questions should be taken into consideration, because the future may hold something completely different from what you have imagined.
5. It's okay to take things slow
Don't be tempted to overreach and rush into a field that you're not actually interested in just because of your circumstances at the moment. After all, there is nothing wrong with having a day job while going on auditions for acting gigs or taking an obscure class every few months until you find 'the one'. This way, by the time you've acquired enough experience and knowledge about your new career path/career goal, chances are it will already feel like second nature to you — at which point, jumping ship will no longer seem intimidating nor out of reach.
6. Keep your finances in mind
Get an idea of how much you are willing to spend on education, moving expenses, etc… After all, getting a new career ahead will require some sacrifices that you might not be able to bear for now or maybe even ever if the economy doesn't improve anytime soon. It would also help to have at least three months’ worth of living expenses saved up, just in case something goes wrong, and you're unable to work for a few weeks/months. But don't let this discourage you, either! Even if times get tough, remember why you wanted this so badly in the first place!
Is changing a career hard?
It can be hard at first, but it all depends on what you plan on doing about it. If this is something you've been thinking about for a while now, make sure to do your research beforehand — there's nothing wrong with taking some time off to think things over; after all, it's one of the biggest decisions you'll ever have to make. If the company isn't what you expected or if certain aspects of the job just don't work out, then that's okay! At least you know where to go from here, and chances are someone else will find your experience helpful.
Can anyone change a career?
Of course! You just need to be willing to put in the time and effort, so you can get closer to reaching your goal/dream job. And hey, if nothing else, it will provide an invaluable experience that you can use elsewhere (i.e., making excellent connections with professionals within your desired field). It's never too late to change your career path.
What are some perks of changing a career?
It's way easier than starting something new from scratch, and there are no limits to where it could take you. Also, the experiences that come with making such a big change in life will help you grow as an individual.
How can someone prepare for it?
The simplest way is to ask yourself, “what do I want in life.” It may sound like an inane question, but it's very important. When you're sure about the path you're taking (and how it fits into your bigger picture), everything else will fall right into place. Remember, there are no wrong decisions when trying to determine your future!
In order to make a good decision, people should be sure of what they want first. It's okay to take things slow because nothing is set in stone. Your dream career will wait for you, and you have time to think things through carefully and make a final decision.
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