If you’re reaching the midlife years and experiencing anxiety about switching new career, chances are this isn’t the first time you’ve thought about making changes to your work life. But there isn’t a law that says it’s too late to go after your dreams. However, changing careers at any age can come with many fears over whether it’s worth it to take such a considerable risk. Still, if you’re bent on changing the course of your future, there are definitely more calculated risks you can take to make it happen.
Decide Why You Want A Career Change
What’s your motivation for wanting to try a new career? Is it because you’re feeling burnt out by your current job, or because you’ve wanted to take this path for many years? Knowing the answers to questions like these will give you a better idea of whether you really want to change careers or you’re just fed up with your current work situation. If it’s ultimately a problem you can fix by getting a new job in the same industry, then maybe going after a new career altogether is not for you.
Decide What Your Career Is Going To Be
If you don’t already have a clear idea in mind for what you want your new career to be, you’re going to want to do some soul searching. It’s probably been a long time since you last had to choose a career path, so you need to assess how your desires and priorities have changed over time. You can also try things like personality tests, self-help books, or looking through job listings to pinpoint what you like. Dive deeper into the topic of midlife crisis with a variety of resources from BetterHelp here.
Do Research On This Career
Once you’ve listed out the roles you’re most interested in; it’s time to do some heavy research on each of them. Look for each position’s job and education requirements. Do you need to get a degree, or can you take a certificate course? You can also look up professionals on websites like LinkedIn that have the job you aspire to and take a look at their qualifications and job history to get a baseline idea of what their career trajectory looked like.
Analyze The Skills You Already Have
Take a look at the skills you’ve already acquired and built up as a result of climbing the ladder in your current career. You may have transferable skills like problem-solving, time management, or leadership. You don’t necessarily have to have any of the technical skills, but this, of course, is a huge plus! For example, if you’re an animator who wants to get into film editing, you might already have some knowledge of editing software to take with you.
Learn New Necessary Skills
There’s a significant chance that you don’t have all the necessary skills to break into your desired industry, but that’s okay. You’ll just need to have a realistic outlook on the kind of work you’ll need to put in to acquire said skills so you can at least get into an entry-level position. If you’re worried about time, look into potentially joining short intensive programs that are designed to teach you the basic skills you need for your new career without any of the fluff of, say, a full-time degree program, like a coding boot camp, for instance.
Network With Individuals In Your Desired Industry
You have a better chance of landing your dream job if you can get someone to refer you. Begin attending industry-specific networking events or reach out to current contacts with experience in your desired industry to start building valuable connections that will help you get to where you want to be. If you’re not too keen on going to an in-person event, you can also take advantage of virtual meetups to start talking to the right people.