Career with purpose – Career change
American psychologist Abraham Maslow tells us that “If you plan on being anything less than you are capable of being, you will probably be unhappy all the days of your life.” Reference.com notes that workers in America spend as much as one-third of their lives at their jobs, often sacrificing passion for security. However, lately, many have chosen to exit the “safety net” of the corporate world to take the plunge into pursuing or even developing a career with purpose.
Create the Stepping Stones for Change
“Taking the plunge” into a career change or starting a business implies doing it quickly and spontaneously, but it doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, unless there are mitigating factors, such as your current work negatively impacting your health or your personal relationships, it’s likely best to avoid a sudden career abort. Rather, take a realistic look at what you want to do, where you want to be in a few years, and then take measures on what you need to do to make that happen.
For example, if you want to switch professions to pursue one that pays less, you may need to downsize your expenses. Can you move to a smaller apartment, or sell your current home and buy a smaller one? Review your monthly subscriptions – from streaming video and television services to convenient meal delivery services – and be firm about what is a “must-have” and “nice-to-have.” If you’ve shunned preparing meals at home for dining out, it’s time to hone your cooking skills and scan the weekly sales ads at your grocery store. Move some of what you’re saving with your reduced expenses into your savings account; you’ll feel more comfortable knowing that nest is there and growing.
Cutting expenses is also prudent if your plan involves releasing the budding entrepreneur that’s been locked inside you. FinMasters points out that there are steps you can take to get your new business rolling while you are still working at your current job, such as developing your business plan, creating and registering your business name, and selecting your business structure. The type of structure you select is important and should be carefully researched. For example, the Internal Revenue Service has very strict rules on nonprofit formation and operations. For private businesses, you’ll want to consider your tax and personal liability, and whether you’ll have business partners.
Once you decide on the structure that’s right for you, you’ll need to research the business formation rules in your state or hire an attorney; or, you can take advantage of one of the online formation services that can help in creating an LLC at an affordable cost, including filing your state’s required paperwork.
Examining your professional qualifications is important whether you’re changing professions or starting a new business. If you are entering the legal field, for example, enroll in online courses for paralegal certification, or to become a court reporter. If you are the detail-oriented type and want to be a project manager at a large consulting company, project management courses will add credentials to your already existing instincts and skills. And, the hopeful business owner will never go wrong by pursuing an MBA or even basic business management courses.
From there, it’s also important that you maximize efficiency. For instance, if you’re having trouble maintaining records or collecting payment from customers, use a free invoice maker. Such a tool allows you to use a wide range of templates to customize invoices with your logo and other business-specific graphics, which in turn helps your branding efforts. And if you’re working from home but having trouble maintaining concentration, set aside an office area and work to keep your personal and professional lives separate.
Growth requires room
It’s tough to leave a comfortable space for the unknown, even if you believe in its potential and promise. Giving yourself as much time as possible to prepare for your plunge into your passion can help remove the doubt, while still leaving enough mystery for you to unravel on your new adventure. Remember, Maslow also said, “You will either step forward into growth, or you will step backward into safety.”
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Tags: Career with purpose, Career change