Can I change my career after thirty?

Woman with head on desk - http://lucystanyerlifecoach.com/2016/08/can-i-change-my-…eer-after-thirty a blog post by Lucy Stanyer Life Coach - Can I change my career after 30?Monday morning, you drag yourself out of bed, force yourself to work and shuffle listlessly around the office. You stoically ignore the clock, knowing how little time has passed.

You wonder how your bloodstream can be 90% pure caffeine yet you can’t keep your eyes open…

Finally home, you’re so exhausted, frustrated, disappointed and simply bored with life that you haven’t the energy to do anything fun, so you sleep…

And then the alarm goes off, and it starts all over again…

You’re burnt out.

You crave freedom.

Passion for your work.

Autonomy.

Flexibility.

Some kind of work-life balance that allows you to actually enjoy your time off, rather than spending it recovering from work.

It’s time for a change, but you’re afraid…

“It’s too late to change my career.”

“It’s too great a risk.”

“What will people think?”

You don’t have experience in anything else.

You don’t have the qualifications, the training, or the money you would need to start something new.

You’re too old.

The thirty year itch

The truth is, many of us fall into careers without much thought. A degree leads to a job, leads to a career, but it’s not the career you envisioned. It’s the career your parents wanted, or the dream you had as a teenager and no longer enjoy.

You’ve outgrown it, and that’s a good thing, but if you get stuck, it will quickly become a bad thing.

Many of us reach our thirties or forties at a loss as to how we ended up in the job we are in. We spent our childhood in school. We spent our twenties unsure of ourselves, and often grateful to simply have a steady pay-check, a roof over our heads, and enough money for pizza and a bottle of Prosecco at weekends.

Some of us were so blindly ambitious that we forged ahead down one path, achieving great success, only to reach our goal and find it…lacking.

Sure, you’re good at your job, but is your job good for you?

The average person spends 35% of their waking life at work, until they retire.

That’s more than a third of your life that can either light you up or drain the life from you.

Many people don’t find their true talents and passions until their thirties, or even later in life. Yet I work with many career changers in their thirties and forties who feel thirty is the point of no return.

When asked what’s holding them back, they invariably reply, “It’s too late. There’s not enough time. I’m too old to change things now…

And so people with thirty plus years of work left ahead of them are remaining stuck due to the false perception they are too old.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

In fact, age is the least problematic factor to consider when switching careers.

Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

Change – any change – comes with a certain degree of risk. Career moves are no different.

Woman with head on desk - http://lucystanyerlifecoach.com/2016/08/can-i-change-my-…eer-after-thirty a blog post by Lucy Stanyer Life Coach - Can I change my career after 30?Switching to an entry level position on a new career path, setting up as a freelancer, or launching a Startup, all carry an element of risk.

Yet it is a fundamental fact that you will never grow without change, and you will never change without risk.

It’s natural to fear change, to fear things coming to an end, but every ending creates new beginnings. Every new beginning builds on that which came before.

Change really is good!

Still, you may feel it’s insanity to ‘throw away’ your existing career, so let’s reframe that fear for a second: You’re not discarding your hard work and experience, you’re not throwing away your career, you’re recycling it.

Better, you’re upcycling it.

You’re going to take something that is bringing you down and transform it into a vital, fulfilling, nourishing part of your life.

No more burnout.

No more Monday morning dread.

No more staring competitions with the clock.

If you’re going to spend 35% of your life for the next thirty plus years doing something, shouldn’t it be something that fills you with passion? That inspires you? That sparks your imagination? That makes you feel proud and accomplished?

And whatever your new path is, the experience you’ve had to date, good, bad, great, and ugly, will help carry you forward. You won’t be throwing anything away.

The Decision to Change

Making the decision to change such a fundamental aspect of your life is extremely difficult. In many ways making the decision to change careers is the hardest part of the whole process. There are so many things to consider. And once you have reached that moment of clarity, in which you know something has to give, it can be even harder to settle on a course of action.

What should you change to?

You have an idea you love but is it really viable? I mean, is this even a thing? Can people seriously do this as a career?

How exactly should you go about this?

What’s the first step?

What are all the steps after that?

If it all goes horribly wrong, where’s your safety net?

Do you have a financial buffer?

How can you minimise the risks?

And is it really going to be worth it?

These are all important, difficult questions. Sometimes it’s easy to know change is needed, but figuring out the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ isn’t so simple. It’s tempting to grab the first available opportunity, to pursue the first idea you have. It’s something tangible you can focus on, it gives you something to do, you feel you’ve begun. But change for change’s sake won’t solve your problem.

Making the right change for you

A change isn’t always as good as a rest!

You must make the right change, or you will have the same problem, in a different situation.

Talk to people doing what you’re thinking of doing. Know your numbers. Nail down every detail of the life you want, in terms of income, lifestyle, and future advancement. Will your new path take you where you want to go? Is it possible to achieve everything you want?

Take the long view: don’t settle for anything less than the change that will lead to the fulfilment of your ultimate dreams.

If you’re unsure you’re ready, do one simple thing: imagine spending the next thirty years in your current job. Picture it in minute detail. The challenges of a career change can be managed, the risks reduced, especially if you work through them with an experienced coach.

Nothing will make up for losing 35% of your life to a job you hate.

“Is it difficult to change my career after thirty?”

Yes.

But the difficulties involved are inherent to any major life change, any career change, anything new and unknown. They are not contingent on your age.

Ditching a job you despise for a career that fills you with passion and fire is difficult, but it is so, so worth it.

Career change coaching

Investing in coaching with me can help you to explore your options and make that decision with confidence.

Through my career coaching programme we’ll uncover what you really want from your work life – and work-life balance – and which career direction is right for you.

We will brainstorm your ideas, strengths and skills, and explore the training or networking that could fast-track your career shift.

Most importantly, I will help you build a brilliant action plan to make your career dreams a reality.

Free discovery session

Book now buttonContact me for your free discovery session to find out how coaching can help you get the clarity and confidence you need to make your career change and make the most of your work-life balance.

There’s no obligation and no charge for this 45 minute discovery call. If you like my approach, then we can book your first session and start your journey to making change with confidence.

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