Career Crisis: Why Does It Happen and What to Do
In our career-centered society, the matter of professional growth and developed are the top priority for many. Successful career presumes that you create a plan (for effective strategies and stages of career planning, see here: https://resumeperk.com/blog/planning-a-future-career-are-you-for-or-against ) and then gradually learn new skills and gain the extra responsibilities. However, in real life, the path to success is quite different.
These days, not only middle-aged professionals experience mid career crisis. Anyone of any age and career level can face its typical symptoms. These symptoms include the drop of motivation, lower efficiency levels, a feeling of anxiety and uncertainty, and even loss of meaning in life. What causes career crises and how to overcome it with minimal loss or even turn the down period to your advantage – below in the guidance of our certified professional resume writers.
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The reasons behind midlife career crisis
- The crash of expectation
This is what young professionals often face. Having spent a year or two in the job after graduation, they often notice that nature of work is quite different from what they have imagined. Or, they notice that the hard work doesn’t often lead to rapid career growth and promotions. It’s also typical that a young accountant or journalist realizes that their occupation isn’t something they’d like to devote their life to.
- The glass ceiling
After several years within the organization, a seasoned professional might realize that there isn’t room for growth for him in this company or even industry. These limitations can be dictated by the organizational structure (i.e. there are no positions for growth except for your boss) or the market. One way or another, a professional doesn’t see opportunities for further professional development.
- The well-known middle-age crisis
A middle-age crisis embraces all areas of life, and professional uncertainty is often the strongest negative aspect. A person can suddenly understand that the job makes them feel miserable and they want to make a cardinal career change, move house, etc. They can also face the loss of meaning, especially if they haven’t achieved everything they’ve planned for this age. The half of life is left behind, which makes them reconsider everything that they’ve done professionally and make new choices.
- Change in personal values
Our priorities in life change over time. Let’s assume that at the beginning of your career path your biggest ambitions were the opportunity to travel and build a great career rapidly (see how the adoption of successful personalities’ habits can improve your career: https://resumeperk.com/blog/professional-executive-resumes-habits-of-successful-people). Nevertheless, fifteen years after you got married and have decided to devote more time to raising your children, which makes your previous values contradict with your current goals and cause a discrepancy.
- Major change in industry
The change in the model of economy caused by the global takeover of the Internet introduces significant changes to the world of work as well. Some industries face a recession or significant changes to survive. Thus, more and more people face unemployment in the traditional industry and start considering a big change of career. To succeed in career transition, you need to have a really strong resume at hand – see what our resume writing company has to offer you.
The experts agree that career crisis is an aspect of modernity. Such a phenomenon barely existed over 50 years ago. These days, the generation of millennials is fascinated by the idea of perfection. We want the best, highest-paying careers, experience new countries and cultures and live the fullest life possible. (Think that your current job is too tough? You might be curious to learn the list of world’s hardest jobs). That’s why we can hardly tolerate the career that doesn’t bring us satisfaction and joy. Thus, if you’ve found yourself in the crisis state, it’s time to take decisive and confident steps to make your career fit your new reality.
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Career crisis: How to overcome
Despite the diversity of reasons behind the career crisis, the cure is pretty much the same. First of all, it requires brainstorming and strategic thinking to evaluate the current situation and analyze the prospective solution. Without a thorough assessment of the situation, you’ll likely get stuck in it and won’t source possible ways out.
- Distinguish career crisis from tough times
Dissatisfaction, anxiety, depression, feeling that your current job is the worst fit ever are definitely the warning signs. However, don’t hurry up to diagnose a career crisis.
There’s a simple test – if you don’t feel well about your current career situation, take a vacation for a week or two and give yourself a good rest. Don’t book exotic tours– it’s better to go somewhere to the country or seaside and relax, turning away from the routine of your life.
If after a week and something you’ll find yourself missing your boss and work, then you’ve just had an overwork. However, if the sole thought of getting back into office petrifies you, it’s high time that you plan the way out.
- Get mentally prepared for the change
If you are certain that it’s the crisis that is happening, keep in mind that the change is inevitable, and you need to make it. The longer you are going to wait, the more miserable you’re going to feel. So, get prepared that your life is going to change, and this change might be significant. Mental toughness is a must to undergo the change caused by professional crisis.
- Talk to your boss
Sometimes it’s necessary (and helpful!) to talk to your boss directly. If you need more responsibility, lack some sort of training, or even if you are stuck in a position and don’t see a way up – don’t hurry up to resign and discuss this issue. Talk about your aspirations and what doesn’t let you realize them. Maybe, your boss will manage to help you learn new skills or will find the way for you to earn more in current position even if there’s no way up the corporate ladder.
- Have realistic expectations
If you’ve decided to make a change eventually, make sure your expectations about career change are realistic. In other words, if you’ve decided to leave the job to start a new career or establish a small business, get ready that the routine of your life is going to change. You might need to study a lot in your spare time, which won’t let you spend much time with family or friends. Moreover, your income is going to suffer – keep in mind that it might take months or even 1-2 years to get the paycheck you are used to in the old and safe job.
For more advice on how to plan and successfully make a radical career change, read our tips here: LINK.
- Choose the right type of job rather than a profession
When facing the career crisis, most of us focus on choosing the industry or the profession. The truth is, there are lots of jobs that are good possible fits for you. Focusing on the character of job that you really enjoy is more effective and can prevent you from making ungrounded decisions.
Do you prefer working on short-term, discrete tasks or prefer issues where there are no clear answers? Do you need little oversight or ongoing guidance/collaboration? Do you need simple tasks or do you thrive in complexity and fast-paced environment? Defining the right type of job and focusing on what you enjoy doing most is an effective cure from career crisis.
- Review your list of goals
If you have a list of long-term goals at hand, read them to find out whether your current career helps with achieving them or, in contrary, pulls you back. These can be not only career goals – all of your lifetime purposes should not contradict with your career path. For instance, if you plan on getting married and having kids, and your finance consulting job takes you over 10 hours a day, you are definitely in a wrong career. Thus, when choosing a new one, make sure you’ve taken your long-term plans into account to avoid similar disappointment in the future.
- Prepare thoroughly for a job search
If your career crisis has led you to a decision of career change, you need to get 100% prepared for every aspect of job hunting, as you’ll have to compete with experience professionals in this area. So, you need to get serious about writing your resume and preparing for an interview. It’s a good idea to find professional resume writing service and receive professional assistance during the career change period.
- Take your beliefs and values into account
When choosing a new career or style of life, make sure you’ve given enough attention to your life philosophy. You need to choose the surrounding where your values will be shared and appreciated – this will contribute to your well-being and the sense of meaning. If an old career didn’t let you live in accordance with what you think is important, make sure you won’t make the same mistakes when changing the company, industry, or type of activity.
- Get financially secure before pursuing the change
If you’ve decided to realize the major change, make sure that your finance can ensure the smooth transition. It can take up to a year or even more before you get hired to a new job, learn the necessary skills and advance your knowledge. And, until you do so, get ready to a much lower paycheck that you are used to. If you support the family, you need to be even more considerate.
Cutting down the expenses, making savings and searching for extra methods of income while you’re job hunting won’t do you any harm. Probably, you will benefit from freelancing as it will let you plan your day. By the way, freelancers need a resume too – check what makes an eye-catching modern resume https://resumeperk.com/blog/must-dos-and-donts-for-modern-resume-you-should-know . Use your network to ask friends, clients or people you used to work with to help you with job – it will help you achieve your goals faster.
- Remember that it’s not the end of your career
Sometimes leaving a prestigious, well-paying job looks like the end of your career – however, this is barely true. If you want to realize yourself in a completely new field, it’s true that you’ll have to start with inferior positions and lower salary. Nevertheless, with the past experience in a demanding role and developed soft skills you will climb up the corporate ladder faster than your younger and less experienced colleagues.
If you’re a CEO, you can try making the transition to executive roles in similar industries. Writing an effective executive resume is an important step during this transition – see how to do it right here: https://resumeperk.com/blog/an-executive-resume-tips-from-online-resume-writing-service
- Do something new
Career change seems less stressful for those who are aware of the path they’d like to pursue and the life they are willing to live. What if you don’t want to continue your current career but aren’t sure of what to do next? If your goals aren’t clear, you will need some brainstorming before you get started.
- Write out the list of things you are really good at and the things you enjoy doing.
- Think of life you’d like to leave ten or fifteen years away from now.
- Monitor the labor market to find out which professions are in demand and how else your skills can be applied.
- Put the previous findings together to understand the future career path (or maybe, you’ll decide to start your own business or become a freelancer?).
- Decide on whether radical change is a must
Sometimes, when a job looks like a constant source of stress, it’s an obvious desire to quit this job and start doing something else. Still, there are much more possible (and flexible!) solutions than a radical change of career. If the current rhythm of life, professional responsibilities or work-life balance frustrates you, it’s a surefire sign that the change is inevitable. Nevertheless, burning the bridges and starting a new chapter of your life isn’t always the best solution. Here are a few hints on finding a way out:
- Change of industry – if you worked as a chemical distributor, there’s no reason to downgrade this experience as it’s transferrable to multiple fields;
- Independent consulting – have you reached professional heights as a teacher, finance director, or auditor? You can work independently and choose the amount and type of work, thus managing your life style. Freelancing resume has its peculiarities; keep them in mind before rewriting your one –
- Start a business – those with previous administrative/management experience already know a lot about running a business; so, starting your own one won’t require learning from scratch and can become much more profitable.
- Take full responsibility of the change
Change is scary. When you are about to make the change of the routine that used to last for 5 or even 10 years, it can totally petrify you. Nevertheless, you need to make a decision and take full responsibility of the change. Don’t blame the employer, the market conditions, the government or anyone else that things in your life aren’t as great as you had expected. It’s you who made decisions during our life, so basically it’s your decisions in the past that determined your current state. We are all humans, and nobody is perfect. However, when you take full responsibility for finding a job you will love and make your life balanced and happy, you’ll find it easier to develop a solution and stick to it. If you cannot cope with creating a masterpiece of resume for your job search, you can always rely on professional help of stellar resume writers.
- Don’t be ashamed of yourself
In our career-centered society, success at work tends to be seen as the constant way up. You are expected to move up through the ranks, earn bigger salary year on year, or even start a new business at some point of this way. Nevertheless, our life is seldom linear.
When you’ve achieved certain professional success, professional resume writers state that you’ll feel the social pressure when you face a career change. Your friends or coworkers might think it’s silly to leave a well-paying, established career to move to another state and try to pursue your dream of youth. Moreover, you can feel frustrated by seeing someone truly happy in their one and only career for over 20 years, while you’re making the radical change – but you shouldn’t.
Remember that if you use career crisis to your advantage, you’ll have the chance to improve your career and happiness. Don’t ignore this situation as some others do; if you are unhappy in your job, set the new goals and go toward reaching them. You’ll only benefit in the end.
- Focus on doing meaningful things rather than just paying the bills
Financial stability matters a lot for your career satisfaction. However, having faced the career crisis, you have probably realized that money isn’t everything. So, avoid making this mistake during the career change period. Don’t just chase highest-paying career paths and opportunities (if you have a feeling that you’re underpaid, check our advice on how to negotiate a salary raise). Work can give you a strong feeling of satisfaction and meaning, so focus on finding what will make your life meaningful. By the way, our company can provide you with an affordable resume help.
- Adjust to changes of the modern workplace
Modern technology is utilized more and more effectively at work. Laptops and smartphones are effectively utilized for professional purposes. Thus, if you wish to catch up with the modern working environment, you need to be familiar with the key things technology has to offer. Adjusting to changes at the workplace will help you overcome the crisis faster as you’ll gain PC skills needed for any industry. If you don’t know where to get started, master the art of effective e-mail writing : it’s a must for any industry these days.
- Recharge yourself before taking global steps
Career crisis exhausts you mentally and physically. You can feel depressed, miserable and unwilling to do anything for months. It goes without saying that taking decisive steps in a condition like this is hard, if not impossible. Consider refreshing your body in mind and having a good rest before you finally make a key career decision . When you are revealed from the ongoing pressure, you’ll evaluate the situation more objectively and will find it easier to define your future actions. Here you will find a short guidance on getting motivated and inspired for work: https://resumeperk.com/blog/10-ways-to-find-lost-desire-and-inspiration.
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Career crisis may look like a slight depression or can come strong and keep you down in months. Despite everything that you feel now, good times will come soon if you take appropriate action. So, it’s time to plan and realize the change – it will help you overcome the crisis and make your life happier and more meaningful. Take a good care of yourself and stay positive to make the change successfully.
Crisis isn’t the only reason why people quit, though. Here are some common reasons for job leaving you might be curious to know.
How a new resume can help you overcome a career crisis?
- If you are looking for a job in new field, a good resume can take you a plenty of time during the job hunting and ensure more interview calls. Thus, you will have more time to devote it to networking, browsing new jobs and making money. There are more ways to find a new employment faster – check tips to speed up job search.
- A professional writer will help you handle interview with brilliance, as you can purchase a list of interview tips along with your resume. Learn which questions to ask at the end of the interview to get remembered for sure.
- A resume is not only application document, but also a document to recollect and reconsider all your past strengths and achievements. When considering what to include into a questionnaire for resume writing, you recollect the forgotten information and prioritize what’s important for a new career.
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