6 Actionable Tips : Life Kit : NPR

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Changing your career.
Changing your career.

Most people spend a third of their lives — or 90,000 hours — at work.

When all those hours include stress due to wage gaps, societal pressures, commuting (or endless Zoom calls), it can be a lot. And if it feels like you should be doing something more with your life, you probably should.

Cue the BIG career change! (Pretend you hear trumpets as you read this.)

After many years as a healthcare professional, I switched careers and became a podcast producer and host. And what’s wild, now that I’ve done it once? I anticipate another big career switch down the road in my lifetime.

But it doesn’t start off so easy. It takes an immense mindset shift, planning, and decision making that will affect you and the people around you.

I’ve gathered some of the tools that helped me over the years, and invited my friend and feminist career strategist Cynthia Pong to unpack these tips too.

1. If you don’t know where to start, identify what you really need to change.

Be clear about what the problem is. You may not need a full-on change to get you into the space that you want.

Pong says, “Try to be as specific as possible. Is it the people you work with? Is it the schedule that you have to work? Is it your supervisor?”

Take incremental steps to pinpoint the issue. If it’s your boss or co-workers, think about switching departments. If it’s the whole place, leave the people behind and do similar work elsewhere.

When we’re unhappy or in crisis, it’s hard to think of the options we may have to pivot away from our current specialty or try a different department.

If you’ve exhausted all options, it’s time to shore up your resume.

2. Consider less-traditional ways