At some stage in our life, we all feel the need to try something entirely different than what we are doing. It might be because of our curiosity, or because of our unfulfilled expectations. We all have different reasons to opt for a transition and whatever the reason may be, there is always a way out. After all, life is all about exploring the road less traveled. But, the idea of career or industry change can be extremely daunting. How will things work out? What will happen if you don’t land up somewhere better than the current scenario? How will you figure out what works best for you? How can you analyze the best in you? All these questions and doubts create a tangled loop of thoughts in your head.
One of the most important things that you should regularly remind yourself is that your work history doesn’t limit you from branching out into new territories. Moving on to something new and starting afresh is never easy. But having a perfect strategy along with certain elements like perseverance, persistence, courage, commitment, which are not as easy words as they look when applied in real-life situations, can make this daunting task into an explorative journey. With the help of these skills, you can easily walk miles on the less traveled road.
To better help you out in making the right decision for yourself, here are a few key pointers that can help you get started:
- Take a break from your past
- Build clarity on “what” you want to do next
- Do a SWOT analysis
- Surround yourself with supporters – Family, friends and social network
Take a break from your past
Your past is a beautiful place with great memories. It brings back all your memories, helps you make future decisions with the help of your experiences, and lets you determine your capabilities. But sometimes, you need to move away from it and give yourself a chance to make new mistakes. This is very much relevant if you want to take a path that’s totally different from what you had been doing earlier. Being stuck in your past will only make things complicated and will further drain your energy. You are not expected to just forget your past, but when you are trying to chart a new way – it helps if you give yourself an opportunity to think fresh.
Past always holds its importance – as the only skills and resources you may have right now is from your past. However, at times past can become very limiting and binding. Since thinking and walking in a new direction is really challenging, our dependence on the past can keep bringing us back to our comfort zone. Staying in that comfort zone reduces your ability to jump in the battle. Also, your past experiences are only confined to the industry you had always been working with. Moving on from your past will give you a chance to learn new things and move into a new zone. Remember you can never change your past but you can always update it with your present learnings.
Clarity on “what” you want to do next
Clarity is required at every stage of life. Without clarity, you can never look at the future clearly. Things will always look blurred to you if you don’t have a sense of clarity regarding your objectives. This is the most important stage when you have to decide what actually you want to jump into. To have this clarity, You may want to start by asking yourself: What is it that you are looking forward to at this stage of your life and career?
Is it because you’re feeling your skills are going unused, or is it because of personal dissatisfaction from your current job?
You have to get answers to all these questions before heading out on the new journey. While trying to figure out your next step, you may even want to get adventurous and contemplate activity or plan that may seem unattainable but even if it makes no sense based on your previous experience, aim it. Start with the dream, see where it leads you. Aim for the stars, even if you fail you will at least land on the moon. However, you’ll need to be realistic about your first step once you firm up your way forward. Setting up goals that are easily achievable will give you the confidence which is much needed while foraying into a new space. Remember, it’s these small steps that make way for a big success.
Do a SWOT analysis of yourself
SWOT-analysis helps you make those big decisions in life with ease. Having a clear sense of your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats can help better analyze yourself and your career move. It will give you a sense of purpose, will drive you towards your goal and give you the ability to predict and take on any problem you face while creating a new space for yourself. Your strength could be anything that motivates you for the greater good. It can be your talent, your resources, your skills, etc. Identifying your weaknesses and accepting them is a mark of maturity. It helps you determine the area where you need practice or guidance. Your weaknesses also give you a better idea about your working process and prevent overconfidence from getting to you.
Opportunities never come and knock at your doorstep. You, yourself have to create an opportunity for yourself that enables you to grow. Identifying the zone where your skills will help you, or the places where you’ll get that much-needed satisfaction is a must while making your next move. Threats are the predicted losses which can hamper your growth or which will create a roadblock in your path to transition. These are not meant to discourage you but instead, these help you in finding a solution beforehand to the problems which haven’t arisen yet. Knowing your threats in advance clears your head and reduces the pressure when you’re fighting head-on with those problems. Knowing yourself and your decision in-and-out will give you the desired push and motivation for taking on anything that you wish to.
Surround yourself with supporters: Your family, friends, and social network
It is a privilege to have supporters, who help you be what you are and encourage you to do better in your life. These supporters stand by you through thick and thin. These may be your family members, loved ones, friends or people with whom you socialize. They all have a role to play in keeping you grounded, helping you stay afloat as well as enabling you to reach higher in some way or the other. While you prepare to move to your next step – you need to be sure of your supporters, and you need to generate a list that will help you plan your next move better.
This will also highlight somethings that you may be missing and you need to add on at priority. Your supporters will help you in better identifying yourself, build a social network that will be very helpful in knowing about different industries and their related information. Your supporters will also help you in staying motivated. They will always be standing behind you, supporting you, enabling you to move ahead in life. Keeping your supporters close is a must if you want to keep on fighting your battles. As they say, it’s always better to have an army when you go to a battle.
Once you have addressed these aspects, you need to start connecting the dots and just move ahead with your plan forward. You should never hold yourself back from achieving your dreams. The trick for a better career transition is identifying your dream and desire. While you may want to document your plan in detail – the first step in the direction is really important as it is a confidence builder, and also motivates you. Once you have gathered all the courage and formulated your plans, you should never lock it in the cupboard. Move ahead with your plan. You might fall down once, but the falling itself is an experience and learning. Even if you don’t achieve your desired success, you’ll always be satisfied with yourself for following your dream. After all, We only regret the chances we didn’t take.