Do You Feel You Made the Right Career Choice?
It's an easy question to ask but not so easy to answer. There are plenty of times when you may hate your job and other times when you feel like it's the best job in the world. Everyone's feelings fluctuate, but it is not always easy to discern between a bad day and a bad job. How and when will you know that you have chosen the right path?
Is It Your Dream or Is It Your Compromise?
We all had career dreams when we were children, and although some may have been doomed never to happen, sometimes your original idea isn't that far off. Say you wanted to be a professional chocolate taster when you were a child. It would be wonderful if that dream came true. Well, if you grow up to be a baker or a specialty fudge maker, you've made a career out of tasting chocolate and living the dream.
Say you wanted to be a pilot but decided the courses would be too rigorous once you decided to apply for aviation school so you became a ticket taker instead. That's a huge compromise.
When asking yourself if you've made the right career choice, you have to dig down deep and ask yourself if you are truly happy. Picture yourself in 5 years. If you feel you would be happier going the extra mile and moving up where you work, then you may be in the right place. But if the thought of the same line of work makes you a little queasy, then perhaps it's time for a change.
It's All About Satisfaction
Sometimes it's not the work you're doing but the work environment. Perhaps all you need is a change in company if you like what you do but hate going to work every day. The Mayo Clinic lists bickering co-workers, low payment, conflict with a supervisor, lack of opportunities for promotion, boring work and work that doesn't tap into your education as just a few reasons your job satisfaction may deflate. If any of these sound familiar to you, it may be time to make a career move and get on with another company and a better position.
You Don't Love Anything About Your Work
OK then, what would you rather do? The money may be good, the benefits may be good, but you're just so unhappy and unfulfilled. No matter how secure you feel, it's all a waste if you don't enjoy doing what you do every day. Changing your career is a scary endeavor, but scary endeavors are what make the world go around. How terribly sad and boring it would be to have never challenged yourself. The going may be rough in the beginning, but if you start working towards that dream, the rewards, both emotional and physical, will be endless.
How Do I Change My Career?
Start saving. You've got a job you hate so put some motivation behind it. Start saving as much as possible from every paycheck. When you've got about 8 months worth of bills and living expenses into your savings account, start building a new resume geared towards your new career. Volunteer, go back to school or do freelance work; but whatever you do, don't sell yourself short. That's how you got into the wrong career in the first place. Keep your eye on the prize, and if it's the right choice, your passion will lead the way.