PART ONE: TAKING INVENTORY
Do you wish you’d chosen a different profession? If you’re one of the younger boomers, ages 50 – 64, with this regret you have lots of company. According to a recent AARP survey, 46% of those younger boomers wish they had chosen a different profession compared with only 29% of those over 65. And according to the survey, you may be feeling more stressed – partly because you aren’t as well off financially as you might wish.
If that is one of the major challenges facing you, it’s not too late to make a change and create a plan, rather than just wishing it were different. I coach individuals in their 20, 30’s, 40, 50’s and 60’s to find more meaningful work that pays well.
If you have regrets about your choice of profession and a less than adequate retirement fund, it’s not too late to make a change. Creating a plan for finding more meaningful work need not be that difficult. There are a few keys and perhaps you’ll discover some surprises for yourself about what you are currently doing and where you’d like to be.
1. Take an inventory of likes and dislikes in your current profession.
Include in it:
- What you actually do on a daily basis, the skills used, the tasks performed.
- Where you do it – is the environment conducive to you doing your best work?
- Who are the colleagues and customers or clients who allow you to do your best work?
- Why do you do it – as in what are the intrinsic and extrinsic rewards? Are you meeting your financial goals? Are you serving others or a cause that you find meaningful?
2. Sit back and reflect on your responses. And now you can start to evaluate and prioritize those responses. Who else but you can do this review? But it’s okay to ask for input from your spouse, best friend or a colleague. See if they agree or can add to what you already know about yourself.
3. Make some choices abut the information:
- Do I like what I do most of the time?
- Is my work environment supportive or toxic?
- Do I have more positive or negative feelings about the people I work with on a regular basis?
- Do I feel rewarded and content at the end of a week that my priorities are being met?
A positive response in general can indicate that maybe a total career change isn’t required. A good tweaking of your personal profile with a career coach can help define new opportunities emerging in the changing labor market in your current or a related field. You can now create a plan for doing just that – staying in your profession but finding a new and different spot to flourish in for the ensuing years. If your answers indicate a deeper unhappiness it’s NOT TOO LATE TO MAKE A CHANGE.
Stay tuned for next week’s blog where I’ll talk about WHAT YOU CAN DO NEXT, HOW SERENDIPITY PLAYS A ROLE.
Don’t let the spring energy be wasted!
If you haven’t already, please take my Career and Life Work Satisfaction Survey and let me know your results.