Thinking of changing careers but not sure what direction to turn to?  Feeling stuck?  Relax, it’s ok.  These six questions will help you start getting unstuck and help you begin to move forward.

Just remember, what you may decide is right for you now or next in your career, may not be right for you forever – and that’s ok too.

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Question 1: Ask Yourself What is the Question I’m trying to Answer?

Are you trying to figure out what is the next step for you in your career or are you trying to figure out what you are going to work at for the remainder of your career?  My recommendation is you ask yourself the first question.  

We put so much pressure on ourselves to get everything right and we sometimes look at things as being black or white.  Allow yourself to explore the grey.  Maybe you don’t have to figure out what you want to do for the rest of your career.  Start with figuring out what will be the right next step for you.  That might last for 2 years, 5 years or 25 years.  Just begin to explore what makes sense right now.

Question 2: What Am I Currently Skilled at Doing?

If you don’t already know, figure out what your strengths, likes and skills are.  This is a great place to launch from.  One of the best ways of doing this is by evaluating your past.  What have some of the projects been that you’ve worked on that excited you?  When we work with our strengths, we feel more alive and energized and it’s where we do our best work.  It’s what I refer to as our “sweet spot”.  By identifying these sweet spots, you can begin to identify your strengths and interests. 

Question 3: How do Others See Me?

Ask yourself – is there something that my friends come to me for on a regular basis?  Are you the friend who they can call upon whenever they are having a technical problem?  Or maybe you are a really good listener.  Perhaps it doesn’t matter what it is, if they have a big project and they are feeling overwhelmed at completing it, maybe you are the friend they call upon for moral support and encouragement?  If you aren’t sure, ask your friends or relatives what they think some of your skills and strengths are.

“The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.”
—Steve Jobs

How to Manage a Possible Career Change

When considering any change including switching careers, it’s useful to have the following deliberate approach to the process:

Question 4: What are the Things that are Important to You?

This question isn’t about pay.  It’s about your personal values.  What’s important to you and what would you like to see reflected in the kind of work that you do?  Identify three to five things that are must haves.  If you can’t find meaningful work to support your values, what other ways could you achieve this?

Strategy 5: What New Experiences Are Important to You?

Begin to look for opportunities that interest you.  What is it about the new role that would support you better than where you are today?  What is it that you think you will get out of the new role?

Remember the old expression “the grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence”?  Remind yourself of that.  Do some serious reflecting about yourself before you decide to shift gears.  Once you have asked yourself these questions and have come up with answers, if they are leading you into changing careers – go for it.  Don’t be afraid of trying something new and learning new skills.  The more skills one has, the better qualified and the more marketable you become.  If upon reflection you decide that it’s not the right time to make a career shift, honour that. The timing might not be right for you.

Question 6: If Money were No Object, What Would You Want to Do?

I can already hear my readers – yeah, yeah, fine and dandy but money is an object and it is necessary!  I’m not disputing this fact.  What I’m trying to get you to do by thinking this way is exploring options you might never have considered because of some possible limiting belief you are holding about that particular profession.  For example, some people have a belief that if you are working in the not-for-profit industry, you can’t get rich.  Think again…there are lots of people in this sector earning a really good salary while standing up for the cause they believe in.

It is my belief in this day and age, many of us will be exploring multiple careers in one’s lifetime.  No longer is it the case where we will stay in the same career for decades at a time.  It is therefore necessary to stop and reflect from time to time to see where we are currently at and where we are wanting to go.  What might have worked for us in the past, might not work for us going forward, and that’s ok.  Embrace the process!!

“The best thing you can do is the right thing; the next best thing you can do is the wrong thing; the worst thing you can do is nothing.”
—Theodore Roosevelt

We are going through a time unlike any we have seen in our lifetime. It’s natural to have questions and to be struggling with the answers. However, you are not alone. There is assistance out there.  Get in touch with me to learn more.

You can arrange a no-obligation chat which can help you decide if you would get value out of working together. I understand the challenge of dealing with changing jobs during this difficult period and I have the training to help you navigate them.

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