It can feel tricky when you’ve worked hard to forge a career, you’ve invested time and energy into it, you’ve climbed the ranks.
Then you realise you just really don’t want to do it any more.
I do believe this very thing is what creates a lot of the solo business owners we have now.
This comes again from a listener question about navigating this specifically in your late thirties.
And here’s the kicker. If you’re in your late thirties it’s highly likely that what was instilled in you at school was that you decide what you’re going to do for your whole life aged 16-18.
You get the grades, perhaps the degree, you get the job and then you stay there and work your way up.
This is a broken model because the amount we change as humans throughout our lifetime is huge.
You cannot and should not be expected to stick in the same career for your whole life.
It doesn’t take into account any of the nuance of human existence.
Your priorities will change, your values will likely change, What’s most important to you will change, what you actually want to get out of and feel in a career, will change (whether that’s a job or a business, the same applies) YOU will change!
The issue is our beliefs and fears around that change. As usual so much of it comes down to our habitual thinking patterns and belief systems.
For example, if you believe it would be intolerable to have a lower salary or job title…you’ll find it harder.
If you feel that starting at the bottom comes with shame and a feeling of failure, you’ll struggle to do it.
But if you can shift the way you’re looking at it all, guess what happens? It changes what you see.
It’s also not inevitable that changing careers will always mean a step down or change in income. Transferable skills have a lot going for them!
The other issue is that the majority of women will only apply for a job if they tick 100% of the boxes of a job description, whereas Men will give it a go if they only tick a few.
It’s like any change really. What are you making it mean about you?
What can you not tolerate about it?
You may have another 35 years of working ahead of you. You have to be happy doing it, or it has to GIVE you something in return.
You can retrain if you want to.
You can go to or back to university if you want to. A gorgeous friend of mine, Chloe Burroughs, starter her new career and it’s teaching non-traditional students. She literally created a career change to help other, older students change theirs.
If that’s not proof it’s possible I don’t know what is.
Of course there are often other factors at play. If you’re in your late thirties, as my lovely question asker is, there are usually a lot more responsibilities.
There are potentially mortgages and bills.
BUT…i’m a big fan of asking ‘how can i?’. Thinking ok, this isn’t ideal but my happiness and wellbeing are important so what would need to happen and what could happen that means i’d have more flexibility in my finances to change careers.
Of course, this is only if you need that. It’s absolutely possible to do it without having to take a big dip.
Asking yourself and being really clear on what is an essential need vs a want.
Asking yourself and challenging yourself around what would really make you happy.
Asking yourself what assumptions you might be making is also helpful.
It’s a common belief that you need to start at the bottom. You might remember what it was like when you were first starting out. But it is NOT the same situation. Whether you’re learning and starting a new business or a new career you have SO many transferable skills under your belt, it’s totally different.
People in their thirties are actually what Gallup calls the job hopping generation.
Think about who you could talk to in your network who might be a way in.
Think about your passions.
Think about what you really want your ideal day to look like.
How do you want to feel in your career?
Speak to a careers advisor to see if there are careers based on your skills, experience and passions that you might not even know exist!
There are so many avenues to go down and it’s FAR more prevalent than you think.
The biggest thing I see getting in the way is the beliefs around it ‘meaning’ you’re a failure. Or the feeling that you will be judged as not as successful.
Fear of change and risk.
You need to recognise that it could be a complete identity shift in a lot of ways so you’re ego is going to flare up big time.
If you’re thinking you’re too old to change I urge you to seek the many, MANY stories of people who’ve totally started over and thrived in their thirties, forties, fifties and way beyond.
Life it too short to believe you have to stay in an unhappy situation. That leads to so many more problems in the long run. Not to mention the toll it takes on you mentally or physically.
Age ain’t nothin but a number baby!Don’t believe the hype from society. Keep making decisions for you simply as a human being who deserves to be happy and fulfilled.
It’s never too late to make a different choice.
Fran Excell, Success Mindset Mentor at www.franexcell.com – Helping Business Owners & Executives Overcome Stress & Self Sabotage so they can get back their time, get off the emotional rollercoaster and feel more in control.
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