How To Overcome Your Barriers to Career Change

If you want to make a career change because you aren’t happy at work, what is standing in your way?

So many people justify maintaining the status quo, simply because they are scared to make a change. Are you stuck in your current job because of excuses?

Here are some of the common excuses that I hear, and some practical tips for breaking them down.

“I don’t have time”

The fact is that it does take time to make a career change, there is no avoiding this! But if you really want to make a change, then you need to make the time to focus on your career change.  So, if you find yourself saying ‘I don’t have time’, change your talk track to, ‘this is not a priority for me’. Because by not making the time, this is exactly what you are saying. Find yourself saying, ‘that’s not right, this is a priority’?  Well then, it’s simple – make the time.

“I’ll start next week (month/year)”

I often hear excuses around delaying starting a career change. Fundamentally this is procrastination. If this is you, you need to ask yourself why you are delaying something that you want to do?  And if you find that it’s still really important to you, then find small ways that you can start moving towards your career change. It doesn’t have to be about big change straight away – even small actions will start to build momentum towards your career change.

“What will people think?”

I get this, I really do.  When I walked away from my successful corporate career to start my own business, I was worried about what other people would think.  And this did hold me back for a while. But I realised that life is short, so you need to decide whether you want to live your life based on your needs and values or based on what other people might think of you.

“It’s too late”

I know it sounds cliched, but you are never too old to change.  The current generation of workers are going to be working longer than ever and the nature of work is evolving at a rapid pace.  Creating a way of working and choosing a career that fits with your stage of life, has never been more possible than it is right now. Look at work and your career differently.  Could you do contract, consult, create a portfolio career, or even set up your own business?

“No-one loves their job, so why should I?”

It always shocks me how frequently I hear this from people! And my response is usually; ‘just because someone else is willing to compromise their happiness, why should you be willing to compromise yours?’ Now I know that conforming, being like other people, is important to some. But if this is your excuse for not making a career change, I urge to really think about what this will cost you.

The longest journey  

There’s an old adage that the longest journey begins with a single step. And, indeed, making the decision to change careers can be the hardest part. Once the journey begins, you’ll find talents you didn’t realise you had, opportunities you didn’t know existed and the satisfaction of making good on a decision to improve your life.

Nobody says that changing careers is easy. But, ultimately, it’s easier than staying in a job you don’t want and being unhappy.

So go on and take the plunge!

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