When was the last time you thought about leaving your current career behind? Many of us have had daydreams about rage quitting in the middle of a particularly irritating meeting or shift, but that’s just leaving your job. Leaving your entire career can be a little different. For some, your career is what you went to school for. It’s what you have certificates or degrees in. You might still be paying off those student loans. For others, it’s just something you stumbled into that you’ve kept doing. Either way, many of us reach a point where we want to try something new. We’ve pulled together a few tips for changing careers to help you get to where you want to go.
Take an Interest Assessment
There are tons of these that you can find online for free. They’re meant to help you figure out the types of work you might particularly enjoy (and the types you should probably avoid if you want to stay happy).
Talk to Your Circle
See if you can chat with some of the people in your circle — your friends, family and acquaintances — so you can start brainstorming different career ideas.
Pros and Cons List
Take some time to list out what you like and don’t like about your current career or job. There will always be some amount of overlap between careers on certain topics, such as how much time you spend talking to people.
Consider Your Hobbies and Passions
You do NOT need to turn every hobby into a money-making venture. However, if you’re ready for a change it’s not a bad place to look for ideas. Consider what you like about your hobbies. Do you like interacting with other people? Being physically active for all or part of your day?
Look Up Lists
If you were to look up a list of career ideas right now, we can almost guarantee that there would be some things on there that would surprise you. If you don’t know what you want yet, just start highlighting anything that seems interesting.
Know the Requirements
You may want to become a veterinarian as your next career, but it’s important to know going in just how much time and money this will take. Will you need to go back to school? For how long? Will you be able to (or want to) get loans for it?
Try Side Gigs
Still not sure about what you want? Try some side gigs out to see what you like and dislike about those, too. There are many online platforms that make picking up these jobs a bit easier.
Try One Class
If your potential new career would require some amount of additional education, try just one class to see how it goes.
Read and Listen
Check out some books, articles or podcasts by people who have made big career changes themselves to see how they did it.
Check out options for different jobs at the company you currently work for. You may be able to make an in-company job change to a different type of position.