No idea where to start

by Elana
(Canada)

I definitely require a career change, for personal and financial reasons, but have no idea where to start.


I've read all kinds of books, even attended career workshops but the answer to 'what should I do ?' is never clear either because some career paths are financially challenging or interfere with my lifestyle (single parent)....I am willing to break barriers but not at the expense of my family's sanity.

As a person with many interests and passions it is not clear cut...How can I break it down (my talents, skills, passions, strengths) into a clear career goal? What I really need most is confidence and support.

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No idea where to start
by: Cherry

You clearly have wide ranging interests and are reluctant to be pinned down to one thing, so you may be one of those people who Barbara Sher has called 'Scanners'. Follow the link to read how she describes them. (http://bit.ly/nPp2H3) Does this sound like you?

If you are struggling to come up with a single, clear cut career, then don't try. The idea of one perfect career waiting to be discovered does not work for everyone. You may need to look for a way of working that allows you to use a range of skills, strengths and interests in different parts of your working week ? a portfolio career in other words. Break free of the idea that you can only do one thing at a time.

So make a list of all the different jobs you'd like to do if you could live your life over several times, then prioritise them according to how achievable they are in the short term. This gives you a focus for this year, but you keep the other ideas in mind and aim to integrate them next year or the year after.

And remember that there may be things you can start on a part-time basis as a small, working from home enterprise. Take a look at And What Do You Do? 10 Steps To Creating A Portfolio Career by Katie Ledger and Barrie Hopson (http://amzn.to/eKRgqm) to get you started.

You say 'I am willing to break barriers, but not at the expense of my family?s sanity'. So who decides what will be OK for your family and what will be a step too far? Depending on the age of your kids, this is something you can and should be discussing openly with them.

If you are frustrated with your current role, that will quite possibly be affecting them adversely and a change in your work could result in you being a nicer Mom to have around the place!

Finally, I agree that support is an essential element in making a successful career change. So as well as getting the support of your kids, find someone outside who will encourage and push you. This could be someone who also wants to change career so you can be a support to each other. Follow this link (http://bit.ly/nAXUCj) to read more information about co-coaching.

So what small step will you take tomorrow to begin to make your career change really happen? It will only happen if you take that first step.

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