5 ways to reinvent your career if you’re feeling bored, stuck or understimulated at work

Shake up your career prospects and avoid stagnation with these expert tips.  

When you wake up in the morning and begin getting ready for work, how do you feel? Motivated and excited or lethargic and drained? If you fall into the latter category and are less than enthused about traipsing into the office every day, it might be a sign that you’re ready for a career reinvention. In such a volatile economic climate, participating in The Great Resignation simply isn’t an option for everyone, but that doesn’t mean you have to languish in a role that gives you nothing in return.

“Careers don’t have to be static. Three key things to remember are: starting over isn’t a failure, it’s OK not to finish what you have started, and you don’t need to be in the same place career-wise as your peers,” explains Jill Cotton, a career trends expert at GlassdoorGlassdoor. “A reinvention of your career is possible at any time in your life, but to be successful the impetus for change needs to come from you alone, and the reinvention requires research, clarity and commitment.”

So, whether you’re looking to start a side hustle or negotiate a career change without a pay cut, we asked fourexperts how to do it right. This is what they said. 

How to give yourself the space to experiment

“Reinventing careers is inherently uncertain,” Iris Smyth, a career change coach, tells Stylist. “Our brains do not like uncertainty, so we try to do what we can to take away those uncertainties.”

According to Smyth, one of the common ways we do this is by eliminating options. But while it might feel tempting (and sensible) to figure out exactly what you want to do first, research has shown that those who’ve made successful career changes did so by giving themselves the space to experiment with different options and ideas first, and to use this real-life information to decide what they were going to do next.

“Don’t try to pin down exactly what it is that you want to do before you’ve tried a few things out first,” she advises instead. “You can do this through side projects, side hustles, signing up for courses and volunteering, as well as offering your services to projects or organisations that you’re aligned with.”

How to prepare yourself financially

“It’s completely understandable to be worried about money if you’re reinventing your career,” says Chris Nawrocki, COO at business growth agency Heur. “Start by knowing the ins and outs of your current expenditure and creating a financial plan based on this, taking into consideration your potential new income and setting a strict budget for at least the next six months whilst you establish your new career. That might mean cutting back on life’s luxuries such as holidays or buying lunch on the go, and you need to take this into account.”

Nawrocki also advises that If you have the opportunity to take up freelance work during this transitional period to earn extra income, this can be another avenue to help ease any financial losses.

How to expand your skillset

“Once you are clear on what your dream job might feel like, set realistic goals to help get you to where you want to go – and stick to them,” says Cotton. “Transforming a career is unlikely to happen overnight, but committing to the reinvention will help you get there.” Indeed, some jobs may require specific qualifications or accreditation, so be prepared to invest in the skills you need for your new career if you don’t have them already.

However, don’t shy away from applying for roles where you don’t have all the skills listed in the job description. “Be clear on your transferable skills and why you are passionate about the industry you want to move into. This will help you stand apart in interviews,” she adds.

How to build – and engage with – your network

If you’re looking to change things up and enter a new environment, don’t underestimate the power of networking, saysBernard Marr, one of the world’s top influencers on LinkedIn and bestselling author of Future Skills: The 20 Skills And Competencies Everyone Needs To Succeed In A Digital World.

“Start connecting with people who can help you achieve your career goals, such as recruiters, industry experts and influencers,” he says. “Share articles related to the industry you’re trying to move into and comment on posts with your insights as a way to demonstrate your knowledge of that sector. You can also join LinkedIn Groups related to your field to network with like-minded professionals.”

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How to make a career change without taking a pay cut.

“Before making any decision, know your worth,” says Cotton. “Use a salary calculator to work out your market value,and that of the career you want to move to.”

However, be confident about your USP. “Having a non-traditional career path doesn’t mean you are less valuable and need to take a lower salary because you don’t have direct work experience,” she says.In fact, continued labour shortages across the UK mean increasing numbers of employers are looking outside their normal talent pools and considering candidates with varied backgrounds.

Images: Getty

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