A mid-life career change can be a challenging project. Think about the possible results after you make the career change. The rewards should bring you new job satisfaction and fulfill a range of personal and financial needs.
Midlife career changes occur for a variety of reasons. One reason not to stay in your current career is that you’ve achieved some success and you then rationalize staying in a job as you are becoming more and more disillusioned and miserable. Another thing you might hear is that you shouldn’t be changing careers because at your age it either can’t be done and you should be satisfied “you do have a job don’t you.”
Leaving one career for another for the wrong reasons will not fix the problems; it will just transport them to a new location.
As you develop your midlife career change plan here are 7 steps to consider:
1. Where are you now? Carefully consider you current career. Is there anything you can do to make the situation better? Can you transfer to another career with the same employer? Is it the employer or the career that’s the problem? If it’s your current employer that’s the problem, should you consider staying in the current career with another employer?
2. Self-Assessment and Research: Review your skills and knowledge. What do you enjoy doing? What do you not want to do? Why? Do you have any interests that translate into a new career? Are there parts of your current career you really enjoy? Do not enjoy? What skills and knowledge are required in prospective careers? What possible gaps do you have to fill to qualify for the new career?
Gather information about prospective careers by talking to those currently working in the field, reading job descriptions and other internet resources. After you’ve analyzed your situation, looked carefully at your likes and dislikes and sketch out a possible direction building a new career plan. As you research possible new careers you should write out new career goals. Stay flexible and be willing to move in another direction if you reach a dead end.