Lots of people feel trapped in jobs that they don’t enjoy. The fear of starting over is more powerful than the slow drain of working in a job that doesn’t challenge, excite, or reward you over the course of years. Of course, if you have a family to support then the decision acquires a new weight – you need to weigh your continued happiness at work against the risk to your ability to feed and clothe the people depending on you!
That makes it all the more important to reflect early in your career: is what you’ve chosen and trained for really working for you? If you need a career reinvention, then the sooner the better, so let’s take a dive into this topic.
Reasons for Dissatisfaction
It’s important to reflect on the reasons you’re feeling dissatisfied with your career, and whether a change will really address how your feeling. If you’re feeling stressed and overworked, then you might simply need to re-address your work life balance, and find engaging, recharging things to do outside the office, rather than starting to build a whole new career from the ground up.
If the causes for your feelings of unfulfilment are deeper seated, then you might need more radical action. If what really gives you a feeling of reward is helping people, not a big salary, than it may be time to back away from the sales roles you’ve been pursuing and start looking at Occupational Therapy jobs. You shouldn’t feel that because retraining as a doctor is unrealistic, a career directly helping people is off the table – occupational therapy, and other allied health roles, as well as social work are attainable jobs, even if you’re approaching training later in your career, with the Open University supplying training for a huge number of social workers.
Using What You’ve Got
A career reinvention doesn’t mean pulling the plug on all the skills you already have! If you’ve spent a career working in big corporations, then the skills and experience you’ve acquired could be an asset in your next venture! If what you’re looking for is more independence and control over your own life, reinventing yourself as a consultant in the industry you’re experience in could be the step you need!
Even if your skills aren’t directly transferable the confidence you’ve derived from building one career can roll into starting with a new one. Facing difficult situations, managing a budget and leadership experience are all valuable in any industry, so make sure you value yourself highly!