Career Changers: Now is the time

If you want to change your career, NOW is the time.

The most common phrase I hear from those who come to Career Counseling Connecticut is that they should have started the career changing process much earlier.

One of the main reasons why our career counseling clients waited so long to change their careers was the mistaken idea that they would have to quit their jobs that day or in the very near future.

Deciding to change your career doesn’t mean you will quit your job.  Instead, it means that you will start planning to change careers. Quitting your job will be among your very last steps.  It is almost like a jail break. If you can remember Andy Dufresne from Shawshank Redemption meticulously planning his escape in secret, then you can appreciate that breaking out is the last thing that you will do.

This message was a great relief to a client from a couple years back who I will call Jeff.  He worked in a financial institution in Fairfield.  He said he woke up and was already bored when he thought about the day ahead. He trudged along because he was the primary breadwinner in a growing family of 4.  Like many, milestone birthdays made him reflective.  He just turned 37 when a couple people commented that he was almost 40.  That shocked him.  He took stock of his life.  Most things were in place except he really didn’t like his work.  He promised himself that he would find more satisfying work by age 40.  But he immediately felt discouraged. How could he quit his job?  His wife knew of Career Counseling Connecticut from one of her friends and she gave him an additional birthday gift of one hour of career counseling after he expressed his dismay.

Telling Jeff that he was merely starting to plan his career-changing trip rather than leaping immediately seemed to relieve an enormous amount of his anxiety.  Through some career testing and career writing exercises, Jeff almost immediately knew the general themes what he wanted next.   He planned, took night classes, and began working his network.

Jeff wrote me last week that he was about to quit his job and start his new career within a venture funded startup in New Haven.  His 39th birthday is next week.