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Saturday, January 16, 2010

Job/Career Change: 10 Easy Steps

Are you looking for a new career at mid life? No doubt, a midlife career change is for you. Changing career at 30, 40, or even 50, is possible. In fact, the average person will change career somewhere between four to six times in their lifetime. And the reward of the right career is long term joy and job satisfaction — it fulfills your professional, financial and personal needs.

Whether you’re facing a fading occupation or just tired of your current job, you are no different than others who are experiencing similar midlife crisis. If money was not an issue you are starting to build a more meaningful second half of your life. The pressure of social status and meeting the expectations of significant others are no longer your highest concern.

Unfortunately, because you have already achieved some success you might have made some excuses for staying in a job you did not like. What’s more, some people in your life may tell you to stay with the job. You may hear that you shouldn’t be changing careers “at your age” and that “it’s a job, you aren’t supposed to like it.” But both of these are very false.

If you want to get a second chance but you don’t want your situation to become worse, thoroughly assess your situation and find a career that is right for you. Think it through and take things one step at a time. When you do that, not only will you have all the ammunition that you need to combat that naysayer who wants you to stay where you are but be on the path to a brand new career and loving every minute of it.

My midlife career change advice consists of 10 steps:

1. Current Position

Take a look at your current position, both professionally and personally. Is your current job satisfying? Do you actually like your job? Do you have to drag yourself to the office or store or whatever each day? Do you dread returning to work after a day off? Those are the most basic questions to ask and ones that are often overlooked.

Are you stuck in a rut? Do you feel stifled or held back? Do you feel as if you are going nowhere? The need for a job change can be due to many things such as poor management, boredom, or lack of motivation. If you feel that you just can’t get any more out of your job after utilizing your existing skills or that you may have hit a professional plateau, it may be time to think about a new career plan.

Keep a log of how you react to various job issues. Jot down various thoughts that you have about your job throughout the day — those that are positive as well as negative. Don’t just focus on the tasks; also think about the company culture, your co workers and other factors. For instance, do you work for a corporation but you are more idealistic in nature?

However, make sure that you are in a new career for the right reasons. A career change is not an effective way of fixing a problem that you may be having at work. As a matter of fact, that is a pretty good way to go about possibly messing up your life even more. If you can deal with the fact that you can’t run away from your problems even with a career change, your life will be much better for it.

Once you analyze your situation remember to set up your personal goals. These should be your first career planning step to a new, perfect career. You do deserve to enjoy a career success as well as a meaningful life. By setting life and career goals you’ll enhance your career plan to the next level since your career has an undivided relationship with each area of your life.

2. Skills, Interests and Values

Have you found your ideal career? If you haven’t, take some career tests and make a self assessment. Your values, personality, interests and aptitudes as well as your overall qualifications are useful for two reasons. Not only will these help discover your perfect career, these also uncover your true reasons for switching to a new career.

Take a hard look at your skills and values. Is your current career addressing them? There are lots of free skills assessments and interest assessments that you can take on the internet. Think about things you have done in the past that you enjoyed including volunteer work, activities you did in college or school and jobs that you really liked.

Click here to read part 2 of this article

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