Everyone gets frustrated with their job at one point or another, but when it feels like we spend more of our time feeling negative rather than positive, the balance needs to be addressed. While in some cases it may be the case that you can change aspects of your current role, it may be time to consider a complete career refresh. You may be looking to pursue a passion or make use of a talent, or you could be aiming to increase your income or improve your quality of life. Whatever your motivation, changing careers is not a decision to be taken lightly. Here are 6 steps to follow before you make any drastic decisions about your career.


  • Take a closer look at your current job


You are dissatisfied in your current work, but do you understand why that is? Start keeping a record throughout your working day of what you find irritating or what you are enjoying. Are you unhappy with your work because of the tasks you are performing, your colleagues, your management or something else? When you can pinpoint what you want to leave behind and what you enjoy, you will be better equipped to find a more suitable career.


  • Be honest with yourself about your skills and interests


Think about roles and projects you have enjoyed in the past, whether on a professional, voluntary or personal basis. What key skills have you developed throughout your career which will be an advantage in your new job market? Often the highest level of career satisfaction comes when people are passionate about their career on a personal level. What would get you up in the morning regardless of salary?


  • Brainstorm potential career paths


Now is the time to brainstorm some potential ideas and discuss your ideas with friends and family. Others may have great suggestions for you things which you have never thought of before. Alternatively, a career counselor may be able to provide tailored advice and guidance. 


  • Conduct in-depth research into your target careers 


When you have narrowed your possible careers down to 1 or 2 options, it is time to intensify the research. You can find out a lot of information about specific industries and careers via the internet, but it’s also worth reaching out to people already working in those industries. They will be best placed to give to you advice and information about your potential careers and may even let you interview or shadow them at work.


  • Consider studying for your new career 


Depending on the career you have chosen to pursue, you may need to advance your education level to give you the knowledge you need to change careers. You can study for a variety of professional degrees via UVA online so you can continue to work while you study at home.


  • Volunteer your time 


There may be opportunities to work freelance or on a voluntary basis in your new field so you can give the new career a trial run before making any permanent changes. For example, if you are interested in working with animals you could volunteer at a local shelter.