I made this change 18 years ago when I started my coaching business, leaving a lucrative corporate job where I had enjoyed tremendous success and prestige.
Was it easy? No. It took lots of soul searching along the way; courage, truth telling and being real. I learned many valuable lessons.
Some important things I learned along the way were:
Take a good vacation, preferably with a change of scene, before leaving your current career. Sometimes you just need to catch up to your self, get a good rest, and some needed playtime. If you have been spending a lot of hours on the job, you might just need a really good break and not a complete change. This will often give you a good new perspective and re-energize you and your attitude.
Do not leave your current job without finding a new one to go too. It is a lot easier in today’s market place to get a job if you have a job.
Prepare in advance. If you are the breadwinner in the family, make sure you have substantial savings in the bank to take care of the financial needs of your family. Sometimes people want changes, but don’t think about the financial ramifications. Don’t put your family at risk or leave them in jeopardy. Don’t act in haste. It might take you two years to leave your career, but by then you will have a well thought out plan, any additional education you need, strategies in place, a solid exit plan and hopefully, somewhere else to go
The grass is not always greener on the other side. Sometimes you need to water where you are standing. It is easy to take things for granted so look deeply at what is bugging you and make sure you have not fallen into a rut of complaining verses being grateful about the opportunities that are where you are. The change you might be in need of is sometimes what is needed within us, not outside us.
If you have not explored what else you would like to do, start now. You might want to work with a career of life coach. They are not vested in your outcome, but in your process and development. Sometimes we have grown out of our job and are ready for a new direction or position in order to be challenged, invigorated and to grow. We can get bored if we have been doing the same thing for years and our creativity and natural urge to advance and build are whispering in our ear.
I have worked with clients who have gone for additional education and received certifications that have opened doors into other positions and advancement that have been very satisfactory for them. For example, I worked with a client from Cal Trans who had been seeking a senior engineer position and had been passed over several times. She hired me to help her to advance and land a position at the level she wanted. We worked together for 90 days twice a week. I helped her see her strengths and contributions to her workplace and prepare for interviews through role-playing. At the end of the 90 days she had three job offers at the senior level. She chose to be the Senior Engineer who was head of all the bridges in California and she moved to San Francisco. Most importantly, she was able to meet her goals, retire a few years later, and enjoy her life playing a lot of golf and spending lots of time with her grandchildren.
You can make great changes and advancement in your work, just do it with forethought and your own well designed plan for your future happiness.