Home Career Tips How to Do a a Career Change at 40: Steps and Career Choices

How to Do a a Career Change at 40: Steps and Career Choices

by Lisa A. Yeager

Do you think about a midlife career change?

If so, you’re not alone. The average American worker will change jobs 12 times during their career, and many decide to change fields completely. There are many different reasons you might want to change career paths when you’re 40 or older. As we get older, we often realize that we want different things or that our current career doesn’t make us feel fulfilled. The good news is, it is never too late to make a career change. Here are five things you need to do and consider before you make a career change at 40:

How to Do a a Career Change at 40: Steps and Career Choices 2

1. Assess Your Career Needs

The first step to a successful career change is determining exactly what you want in a new job. For example, do you want to work directly with people, or would you rather work alone in an office?  Create a list of must-haves in your new job. Think about what makes you unhappy in your current role and what jobs or new career fields could help fill these gaps. You should also list the skills you currently have and how these skills apply to your new career choice. This will be helpful when you start to create a new resume and apply for jobs.

2. Determine If You Need Further Education

When you want to change career fields, you should factor in that you may need additional education or training. Some career changes won’t require a completely new degree. For example, getting a life coach certification can work for almost anyone, no matter what degree you have or the field you currently work in. However, if you’re looking to make a switch to a healthcare role, you may have to put in many years of education and training before you can start working.

3. Meet With People Who Work in the Field

Networking is key to make sure you can find a job in your new field. Try attending networking events for professionals in your area that work in your target job. Meeting with people is helpful to ensure you’re making the right career change. It’ll also help when it’s time to apply for new jobs. Breaking into certain career fields can be a challenge, so a well-established network can help you land job interviews.

4. Create a Budget

Many people have to take out loans to finance their education. However, there are some things you need to consider before you take out loans at 40 to finance your new education. Taking out thousands of dollars in loans during the middle of your career could impact how much you have saved for retirement. Retiring with a lot of debt can make life difficult, so it’s important to budget carefully and ensure you’re not taking out more money than you can pay back.

Learn More About Making a Career Change at 40

Making a career change at 40 is possible, and you’ll be glad that you took a risk when you feel happier and fulfilled at work. Make sure you check out the rest of our website for more career advice and resources that will help you make a smoother transition into a new job.

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