On Changing Careers

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We’ve all been there. Playing the what-if game that involves us not working 9 to 5 in an office but taking still photos of penguins or cooking in the kitchen of a 5-star hotel or piloting a jet or… You get the picture.

We all have dream careers that we imagine would make us happy and satisfied. But somewhere along the way, reality catches up with us and we lose the guts to pursue them. The good news is, it’s not yet too late for you to change careers (if you want to). You just have to think very hard and consider the following:

What makes you want to get up in the morning?

Most probably, one reason you want to change careers is because you don’t want to spend the rest of your life regretting that you didn’t do what you actually love. Are you passionate about playing baseball? How about organizing an event? Maybe you love composing songs? Whatever it is that you love doing, it’s a good basis of what career you should switch to. This way you won’t have to “work” a day in your life. Ask yourself: What’s the thing that you would work on even without pay?

What are you good at?

Let’s talk about your strengths and talents. What comes as second nature to you? Is there something that you do really well that people compliments you for it?

It’s important that you’re not doing the switch just because, for instance, you’ve seen a very good bartender and thought it’d be fun to do it for a living. Believe me, that person is in his element so of course he’s doing it excellently. Find something that you’re good at and become an expert in it. In case you already have a target career in mind, make sure that it’s something along the lines of your strengths.

We all have different gifts and talents so it’s important that we discover them and use them to play our part in society. No, really. Remember: It’s very difficult for a fish to be a flying pro.

In your current financial state, can you manage the transition period?

Changing careers is not a spur of the moment decision that you make just because some co-worker got on your nerves. It’s all well and good if you have ample savings that you think can last you throughout the job hunting process, otherwise, you better face reality. The reality that says you have to eat three times a day and help your family.

There are always opportunities in any career, but sometimes they are not easy to come by. Plus, you have to remember that you’re basically going to have to start from square one, experience-wise. It takes time to build a track record in a new field so you have to make sure you can survive until you started earning again.

All of us dreamt of doing something else, at some point in our lives. But only a few of us actually get to do it. Perhaps because the others fail in the most important thing: Are you prepared to take the risk?

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