“I am 45 years old and I have been thinking about changing careers. Presently, I am a trader and the nine to five schedule is draining me out. I want to get hold of my time and I think I can do much. Plus, it’s no longer making me happy. My stress level is always on the roof and it’s hurting my family already”. Joey, Trader
Changing careers is common. The average person changes career at least 5-7 times and approximately 30% of the total workforce change jobs every 12 months. If you are like Joey, you should take consideration of the following:
- Do you have enough money for the transition period? Experts say that one should have at least six months equivalent of salary to help in the household expenses and other emergency situations while you are looking for a new job. If you haven’t reached this point yet, try saving for it before deciding to quit your current job. It’s always easier and you have much freedom if you have a standby fund to go to. Of course, you need to think of spending wisely which we’ll be discussing next.
- Control your spending habit. If you’re used to having Starbucks coffee every day, weekend night outs, or some quarterly trips abroad, it is high time to do away with this momentarily and embrace frugal living. There is no guarantee when will you have the next stable job or project that can bring continuous salary to your bank account every month. If you are still looking for a job, it is best to tighten up some reins until you are sure that you can afford to spend some extra dollars on leisure.
- Invest in your skills and knowledge. Changing careers is not just an overnight decision. If you don’t have the set of knowledge and skills required by your chosen career, then it will be difficult for you to land a job. Joey believes that he can do more being a freelance writer and can earn more by accepting writing tasks. Well, it is possible. But you must think of the other freelance writers in the market as well. There are thousands of writers who can just deliver the same task as requested. To give you a cutting-edge, learn other skills that can highlight your freelance writing activity. Get some training on how to write an e-book or making educational materials, etc. If you have more skills, your profile will be more marketable than the rest.
- Does your family have your support on this? It is critical to have your family’s support and everyone pitching in to achieve daily struggles. It’s not practical to change career if you are the only one deciding on it. It’s good if you are single and living alone, but with a family to support to, everyone is going to be affected by this. Let them know ahead of time on what’s your plan and involve them in this transition period. There will be serious changes to take place in the family and you need to explain this to them.
If you have some difficulty in decision making, you may need a career counselor to help you through this process. Career counselors are adept at guiding persons who have a dilemma in changing careers. They can provide advice on what’s the best possible thing to do and assist you while you are in this situation. BetterHelp offers 24/7 assistance on serious matters just like this one.