Reinventing yourself and your career can be one of the most exciting and fulfilling things you can do for yourself.
You could be pursuing a career dream. It may be a hobby that you’re turning into a side hustle that could someday become a full-time business. Or you may be breaking into a new field of work, a new role or profession. Or taking those awesome skills of yours and applying them differently as you enter a new industry.
But it is not for the faint of heart.
Depending on the kind of career change you’re looking to make, there may be some hoops you might need to jump through.
You may need to get further education to get required certifications or degrees. Even if you didn’t have to go back to school, most career changes would likely need you to learn any number of new skills.
Your career change may require you to take a lateral move, or even an initial step-down, as you gain traction in a new field.
You may have to re-build your professional network, put yourself out there, and take a few new risks.
While these may sound daunting, most of these challenges are manageable. With the right tools, processes, and support, you can take these on, if not with ease, then at least with a level of confidence.
The most difficult hurdles are usually the ones that we set up all by ourselves.
Those questions and doubts—and seemingly rational excuses—are far more effective in delaying our decisions and actions.
When I wrote my last book, Break Free, I conducted research and talked to numerous people who changed career paths, as well as those who considered doing so but were stalled in their efforts.
The results of that book research confirmed what I had been observing from my one-on-one client work: there are common questions and doubts that trip people up.
Actually, I didn’t even need to turn to research to validate my observations. Those were already consistent with my experiences when I started my career reinvention in 2013.
In fact, these questions were the same ones I asked myself many times.
So let’s take a deeper dive on these questions.
The following is a list of the seven most common questions asked by those who are looking to make a career change.
Click each link for a further discussion on the topic, including tips on how you might address each one.
- How do I know if the time is right to make a change?
- What if I don’t have the skills for the career I want?
- Am I too old for the change?
- How do I know for sure that this is the right thing for me to do?
- How do I let go of my “old identity”?
- How and what do I tell people about my plans?
- How do I deal with my fears?