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6 side effects of pursuing a new career.

6 side effects of pursuing a new career - photo of a gondola passing by a restaurant.

There are many benefits to making the decision to change your career.

It’s scary, exhilarating, terrifying, liberating, expansive, eye-opening and fear inducing all at once and I very much doubt you’ll ever regret it.

If you’re prepared to dig in for the long haul I think you will be surprised at just how much can change when your career does.

Here are some of the side effects I have observed.

They are not the kind of jaw dropping, awe inspiring explosions of change, but more the seed that sprouts over time kind, with roots that go deep and stems that grow strong and tall. 

1. You will build your bold muscle.

As you journey through exploring a new career, you will start using your network to explore different options that appeal to you. This requires you talking about what you are up to, asking for help, chatting to people you may not know to gather information and even making requests. 

All of these require you to go out on a limb and be brave and bold, which can be especially tough with those you know! 

As you practise using your bold muscle, you will find yourself being more courageous in other areas of your life too. Maybe you’ll try out a class you’ve been thinking about joining or you’ll set up a coffee chat with someone who you think you can build a friendship with or maybe you’ll ask for a discount on something you’ve been wanting to buy!

2. You will explore opportunities.

Instead of shutting things down as they come across your path because they don’t appear useful, fulfilling, worth your time etc, you will be able to pause and ask yourself ‘what if something interesting is on the other side of this?’ 

You will know that exploring an opportunity, however big or small, can lead to unexpected results – a new contact, some information, the chance to work with someone, a new experience. So, you will invest a little time in the opportunity and get curious. 

Who knows what may happen?!

3. Your will take more risks.

Ah this is a big one. 

You can take more risks because you know how to go about things in a way that feels safe (well, as safe as it can when you feel a little afraid!). 

Changing career can feel like an enormous risk but breaking the change down into small experiments that enable you to test things out de-risks it. 

This same approach works for other areas of your life. For example, you want to invest your savings? You’ll find a book on it, sign up for a one-off workshop, start investing with £100 to build your confidence in applying what you’ve learnt. 

If you need more information or a different way to learn, you’ll recognise your needs and find the resources that are right for you.

4. You will live in the present.

For most people, finding and then pursuing a new career takes months and more likely a few years. 

You may be able to decide on what you want to change your career to reasonably quickly but it’s making the change that can wear you down. 

The antidote to this is accepting it takes time and creating a plan that focuses on slow and sustainable change which allows for plenty of time to live in the now

This is definitely about enjoying the journey on the way to your destination. You then won’t resent your responsibilities and the demands on your time and energy because you have them all considered in your approach to implementing your new career. 

You can relax, let your plan unfold and enjoy life.

5. You will uncover new (and old) interests.

To find a new career, you need to dig deep within yourself to discover all the hidden treasure; the things that interest you, fulfil you, your skills and strengths. 

Building on this you discover themes which then become areas for a potential career. 

Through this process you will discover and re-discover interests that you won’t want to turn into a career but that you do want to pursue as a hobby. 

In the same way you conduct small experiments to test out potential career options, you can explore these interests and decide how you want to pursue them (and to want extent) in your everyday life.

6. You will let go of some things.

When you make a big change such as in your career, it often results in awareness unfurling about other parts of your life and there is often some letting go to make space for the new. 

You may be aware that this will occur, but where and when may not be so clear. 

It may not happen as you explore what your new career might be, instead it might actually come later, but all the work you do on understanding what you want out of a career (and your life) will set the wheels in motion. 

I wrote this blogpost about how I realised I was pursuing a measure of success that wasn’t making me happy and as I let go of it, I was choosing to put my energy into what I really wanted – my coaching business. 

As you pursue a new career, you will probably let some things leave your life so you can fully embrace the new.

A career change can have a profound and positive effect across your whole life, opening up possibilities for greater fulfilment, confidence and courage.

Here’s to a career and life you didn’t know you could have.

Photo by Igor Oliyarnik on Unsplash.