Making a career transition is not a fast process. It can take the time to realize that you feel stuck in your current job and then to acknowledge that something can be done about it. This is followed by the process of getting clear on a more aligned career path that would energize you, and lastly, is the creating and orchestrating of a plan to make a smooth transition.
Tips for Survival During a Career Transition
How To Survive During a Career Transition
At times, the feeling of being “stuck” in our jobs heightens during the career transition process. While we may be feeling restless and ready for change, varied reasons keep us at the current job while we set the path for the new one. Grown up issues such as money, health insurance, general timing, and getting very clear about our new path before we embark on it can be important reasons many do not simply “Up and quit”. Career transition is a process.
Here are 8 SURVIVAL TIPS to help you to stay excited about the future you desire as you finish up your current job like the champ that you are:
Create a vision board (learn how to here!) about your near future to hang at work and remind you where you are heading. A vision board can be helpful to glance at when you are feeling restless and stuck in your current situation. The vision board can be made of pictures and words representing your new path and can be your little secret at work!
Create a mantra to say to yourself when you feel the negative wash coming over you. It can be something like “Change is coming!” or “My future awaits me!” or something more specific to your situation. Make it into an artistic slogan and post it somewhere for you to see during the workday. It can be your go-to phrase when your hopeless feelings set in.
Create a countdown system. Count the days (as long as they are not beyond triple digits!) and devise a fun way to remind yourself daily that you are one step closer to the change you desire. Don’t allow the countdown to interfere with your general mindfulness, but rely on it as a means to prove the process of change is in motion.
Focus on leaving the elements of your current position in the best order for the person who will replace you. See this as an act of kindness and the maintaining of self-respect. You will benefit from leaving your current situation with your head held high and felt like you did the right thing.
List the things you like about your current job or situation and see if you can do more of that in your closing weeks or months.
Network with people in your new field/career direction. Spend time cultivating those relationships and learning more about your new path as a means to maintain your connection and enthusiasm.
Use your personal or sick time. Not in a reckless, disrespectful manner but if you have time, build in a mental health day or two and don’t feel guilty! Go ahead and use a day to enjoy a sunny picnic outside on a glorious day, or to visit a museum or to cultivate your new network as mentioned above. Maybe you can shadow someone in your newly desired field? Or visit them for an informational interview?
Be sure not to burn bridges! Don’t rub your leaving into the faces of colleagues. Don’t talk badly about your company or boss. Maintain a work ethic that truly represents your standard, one you can feel a sense of pride in even if it not full throttle. Leave your job with excellent references and a positive attitude and with intact relationships. With these suggestions, you win in the end! And one never knows where the future may lead and whom you may meet or need again.