Making a career change is a daunting prospect as it is often hard to assess when you should leave your current job to pursue a new line of work which can be both a confusing and stressful time. This article shall provide an informative guide on how to assess when it is time to make a career change.
Influence of Current Job On Mental and Physical Health
Usually, when you are attempting to change jobs, you are unsure about making the move into unknown territory which sometimes can feel like a gamble. However, in the long run, changing jobs and even professions can be extremely rewarding and bring with it greater job satisfaction.
The first step to knowing when it is time to make a career change, as simple as it sounds, is to take a step back and ask yourself why it is that you are thinking of changing jobs. Considering changing jobs can range from a whole host of reasons such as not liking the company that you currently work for to feeling underappreciated in your role and wanting to make a career change internally. In many instances, individuals feel that their workload is a primary factor in influencing their decisions as they either feel over-worked or not mentally challenged. It can be helpful to try to pinpoint one or two specific reasons and assess the extent to which they are logical reasons for precipitating a career move. For example, dealing with challenging co-workers could be resolved by discussing the issues with your manager whereas an issue such as the job negatively affecting your personal life probably merits a career change.
Assess and Reflect On Why You Want a Career Change
A vital sign that it is time to make a career change is when your job is negatively affecting your health whether that is physically, mentally or both. While many people get in a rut with their work and it is common to sometimes not feel overly enthusiastic towards your job, if your work is causing you to feel drained of energy and permanently exhausted, it may well be time to re-assess the situation. The British mental health charity Mind states that at least one in six workers experience common mental health problems such as anxiety and depression in the workplace. If your job is causing you to stay awake at night and you are finding it hard to get out of bed in the morning this is a surefire sign that your job is taking its toll on your mental health.
Burn out from stress can also manifest itself in your physical health as your immune system becomes less effective in fighting off colds and viruses. Stress can reveal itself in a range of symptoms from insomnia to cold sores to migraines. Therefore, if you are finding that your job is affecting your health it is crucial to address this and make the necessary changes.
Assess the Pros and Cons of Moving Jobs
An excellent way to assess and come to a decision about whether it is the right time to make a career change is to split a piece of paper into two sections and list both the pros and cons of leaving your current job for the one that you have in mind. Such a big life change is always going to be a step out of your comfort zone but weighing up the factors with a logical mindset will help you come to a decision.
Some of the factors that should be taken into consideration involve how long it would take to commute, the comparison of salaries and the likelihood of how much stress the new job would entail. Writing these factors down on paper will help you to come to a well-balanced conclusion.
Ways to Make a Career Change
There are several ways to prepare you for looking for a career change that will help to make the transition smoother. Ensuring a plan of action such as establishing when you intend on handing in your notice and will start to look for jobs will help you to feel as if you know what you are working towards. Saving money is also a good idea as it will ensure that you have finances to tide you by until you get paid in your new job. Researching into new career paths and employment is a helpful step to take to allow you to figure out if there is a particular job in another field that you would be better suited to having.
Another good way to prepare you for making a career change is to get advice off others whether that is from a friend, family member or a career adviser. It can be overwhelming to make such an important decision alone so seeking out advice, especially professional advice, can help you realise what options you have on the table. Career fares and networking events are a beneficial way to receive information and discover how you can upgrade your current skill set to widen your career prospects.
Wondering if you should make a career change? Don’t spend any more time fretting and instead assess how your current job is making you feel and make a plan of action to help you land your dream job.