Think Long and Hard: Taking the First Steps Towards Changing Your Profession

December 17, 2012  |  


Little may feel more frustrating and draining than working a job you hate. Leaving your current job might seem like an immediate solution, perhaps the only solution toward ending your daily drudgery. However, changing careers, especially during an economic downturn, might not always be the best option. After all, as Allison Green said in U.S. News and World Report at the beginning of this long and drawn out recession, “Switching jobs is always a risk, even in the best of economic times.”

An Honest and Personal Look at What’s Bothering You

To find out if it’s time to change careers, you’re going to have to be honest with yourself. Consider each of the specific factors about your current job you don’t like. If you don’t, you could change careers only to find yourself dealing with similar issues at your new job. For example, if you hate the fact that your supervisor doesn’t make herself available to meet with you, but you think the problem is colleagues who don’t socialize with you much, you could change jobs and still be unhappy.

Even with the risks, there are great rewards associated with changing careers: you could regain your enthusiasm, establish rewarding relationships with new colleagues, gain stronger work skills, and position yourself for promotions.

Signs It’s Time to Change Careers

Sometimes, the conditions at a company make it imperative that you change. There are some general signs that might reveal it’s time to switch careers. Among them:

  • Your employer is experiencing significant financial struggles, perhaps on the verge of filing bankruptcy
  • More and more jobs in your industry are moving offshore
  • Job outlook reports created by reputable agencies like the United States Department of Labor indicate that jobs in your career are declining
  • After attending training programs, workshops, speaking with a counselor and participating in a mentoring program, you still dread coming to work

Restoring Your Passions with a New Career

If anything in the previous sections rings a bell, it’s time to make your getaway. But bide your time. You don’t want to jump ship and lose a paycheck on a whim. Take your time and find that perfect job in order to make a smooth transition from one organization to another without any financial hardship.

To increase the chances that you’ll love your new career, consider your passions. Look for careers that help you fulfill your personal and life goals. After all, as Mark Quinn shares on Business Insider, you don’t want to travel to work and walk the halls just to get a paycheck. Transitioning into careers that allow you to do work you absolutely love, work you’d love doing for free, will restore your passion.

Quinn also says, “People who love what they do inject passion into the work, which often means they succeed at higher levels.” This passion can be seen by others, including new supervisors you work with. Passion for your new career can also give you the energy to generate new ideas and connect more deeply with clients and colleagues.

Rhonda Campbell, an East Coast journalist, is the owner of Off The Shelf radio and publisher of the books, Long Walk Up and Love Pour Over Me.

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