Is it time for a career change?

The idea of changing career based on a strong feeling appeals to lots of people, and for good reason. We all know life's passing quickly and that we can't expect to be happy and feel fulfilled if our career doesn't most often make us feel good. Meaning, purpose and fulfilment come from how something or someone makes us feel.

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If you are being drawn to a career change based on a feeling, I'd suggest two things.

1. Trust yourself

Most of us get used to an 'outward-in' life growing up; learning to do what we think we should do, rather than what we love to do. So much so, we don't even know who or what we feel love, joy, passion and excitement about anymore.

Sometimes we also come away from the feelings we want, to avoid the pain involved in growing up. To feel nothing to avoid feeling anything, though, means you end up just surviving life rather than living it.

You may be unhappy as an adult, not because you're doing too much, but because you're not doing enough of what's meaningful to you.

When you're not doing what you love, feelings like fear, anger and despair also fill the vacuum. These then go on to underestimate your skills and talents. They always remind you to forget both how safe and capable you are and, that, as similar as we all are, you're unique and therefore have something unique to offer the world.

Fear about what other people might think also often stops us from changing career. Doing what makes you happy isn't selfish, it's your responsibility now. It's your responsibility to make sure that, if feelings like love, excitement and pride draw your attention to something, you trust and pay attention to it and make time to cultivate it. Life's too short to spend it trying to fit in with invisible 'norms' or the expectations of other people. Remember people judge far less than your fear thinks they do anyway.

You might know you're unfulfilled, but don't know where you'll find meaning and fulfilment yet. If that's the case, then try to pay less attention to who and what you don't like in 2022 and more to what you're doing and who you're with when you feel your best. Both looking out for people, stories and things that inspire you and looking in to know what 'inspiration' feels like in your body.

2. Trust chosen others

Connecting with like-minded people in whatever area you're drawn to is the other key. You'll find your tribe where you find what you love. Some people will be neutral about any career change, a few might criticise it, but people are going to think what they're going to think and say what they're going to say. Try to pay more attention to the ones who are excited about where you want to go, going towards where you're valued and to the people who share your values.

It's also helpful to see other people as sources of connection on the way, rather than as competition. Try to build other people up and let them build you up, building your new community in the process. Take risks here, sometimes you might get hurt in the process, but most often it'll bring out the best in you and the people you choose to trust.

All in all, if you're unhappy in your career, it's never too late to make a change based on what you feel. If you struggle to believe that now, I'll hold the hope for you until you realise it yourself. Maybe make it your aim in 2022 to come around again with your career and, this time, with feeling.


To find out more about me and my own career change (from lawyer to therapist), you can visit my YouTube channel

Counselling Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.

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Cobham, Surrey, KT11 2BH
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Written by John-Paul Davies, UKCP Accredited, MBACP, PG Dip
Cobham, Surrey, KT11 2BH

John-Paul (www.thistrustedplace.co.uk) is an experienced therapist running a busy private practice from his home in Cobham, Surrey. He has also published a well-received self-help book, 'Finding a Balanced Connection', currently available on Amazon.co.uk and recently released an online self-help course 'Life Unlimited' available via his website.

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