Another Monday morning approaches. How happy are you in your current job? Do you dread getting up and going to work each and every day? Do you feel stagnant, stuck, or that you’ve reached a dead end? Do you feel intellectually stimulated with your current position? Do you enjoy the people you work with? Do you watch the clock all day and hope the minutes will pass by quickly?
Many people are just like you. They feel trapped, unhappy, unfulfilled. It may feel like being on a treadmill that won’t let you stop. Steve Jobs, in his 2005 Stanford commencement speech, said:
“You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And 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.”
It may feel like making a drastic change is impossible, but it is not! A career change is possible and YOU can make it happen. It doesn’t mean that you have to risk everything.
Start with small steps. Start by thinking about what makes you happy. If you are having difficulty sorting through all your ideas there are online assessment tools such as the Strong Interest Inventory that can provide you with tons of useful information about your interests in relation to people in successful and happy careers who have similar interests to you. This first step is crucial in leading you to the next one. Things can happen gradually and change can occur in phases.
Sometimes volunteering, taking a continuing education course, joining a non-profit organization or a club can be a great way to learn about a new type of career. Think about people you know with interesting jobs; maybe you can observe them in their job if it looks appealing to you. Talk to people, go online and research average salaries for the career you are considering, what the job market is like in that field, and what the educational or experiential requirements would entail.
If you can break down the process and start with baby steps, it won’t seem as overwhelming. Just remember that it is never too late. Change can happen but you can’t just wait around for it to happen to you, YOU have to make it happen.