According to the survey conducted by the US Department of Labor, each American changes a career 3-7 times in his lifetime. If this is true, is considering changing careers normal? First, the early findings seem too broad. To make it more concise, younger individuals changes career more often than individuals in mid 30’s. from the year 1996 to 2008, the number of people who stayed with the same employer for long term ranks less than those who work from one employer to another.
As they say, the things that you want at age 18 may not be the same things that you still want at age 30. When you were younger, your considerations were limited and therefore you were willing to take on any job thrown at your direction. As you grow older and with the experiences that you have, your consideration for employment, standard of living and job satisfaction broadens. These factors prompt the thought of changing careers.
To answer the question, is a career shift normal? Yes it is. It is natural for a person to seek for greener pastures. A change in career is normal especially when the other job offers stability, increased salary, and more benefits. However, there is a point when frequent career shifts become a problem. When throughout your lifetime, you did not feel contentment and are not able to stick with the same job and employer for more than 6 months then you need to re-assess.
- What do you really want to do?
- What will make you happy?
- What is your strong personal asset?
- What are the things that you consider you are good at? Are you good with organizing or traveling?
- What transferable skills do you have?</
The thought of changing career may stem from lack of challenge at work, mid life crisis career change, stress, pressure, dissatisfaction in work place, and conflicts among co-workers. According to surveys, employees primarily seek for challenge at work. This is a driving force for many to continually experience fun at work. Another factor is the mid life crisis career change. A this point, the individual will take a look at his life and see whether his goals have been achieved, whether or not the life that he has lived is in accordance to how he planned to live his life. It also has a lot to do with age and thinking about retirement. The thought of whether the savings that he has will be enough to sustain him as he age.
If you feel that you need to change careers and that you are not happy with your current job anymore, think twice before you consider changing careers. With the country facing its current economic challenge, it is far more risky to quit your current job and look for another. Before you make any final decision, it will be helpful if you take some break like a week-long vacation or several days of rest. You might realize that the only thing that you need is a week of break.