“This above all, to thine own self be true
.”  – William Shakespeare

Before you start considering what job to apply for, or start thinking about writing a résumé, Do you know what you have to offer? What do you bring to the table? You need to know very clearly what you have to offer as an individual.  The following activities in the “Your Guide on the Side” workbook are all important, and each contributes to a slightly different, richer, view of you as a whole person. This workbook, supporting "New jobs For Older Workers" (available on Amazon) helps you identify all your transferable skills. 

Your Transferable Skills, Knowledge and Attributes

The skills you have acquired throughout your life, at work, and in the rest of your life through family commitments or interests, are not isolated to that particular context.  They are transferable to your new working environment.  Take the time to recognize themes as it is often the skills or knowledge that you take for granted which give you a unique point of difference from other job applicants.

·         Your Personality and Values

Your personality traits are an integral part of you and will impact on how you deal with many different aspects of the new work, such as stress or change, and particularly on how you will interact with work colleagues.

Your core values are at the heart of who you are as a person, your integrity and your ethics.  They determine the decisions you make and the sort of work environment where you will be comfortable.

Your Passions and Interests

Your passions and interests are clues about what you would love to have incorporated into your work. What do you bring to the table?  your skills are unique, don’t take them for granted but think of them like cryptic clues!  Don’t make the mistake of thinking that those clues, those interests and passions, must be directly translated into an occupation. 

Go deeper…What it is that you really like about this?  For example you may love gardening.  It is the joy of being outdoors, or is it the plant biology?  Is it the peace and tranquility you get when gardening, or the challenge of having the best garden in your suburb?  Is it the appeal of being environmentally friendly in your garden and creating a sustainable ecosystem?  Could it be the money-saving or health-giving benefits of having fresh organic vegetables and herbs growing in your garden?  Is it simply your time away from everyone? 

Often what seems like an interest in your life, something unrelated to your worklife, is actually the reflection of a deeply held core value!

 

“Don’t wait until everything is just right.  It will never be perfect.  There will always be challenges, obstacles and less than perfect conditions.  So what?  Get started now. How can you build your confidence?  With each step you take you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident and more and more successful” – Mark Victor Hansen

Armed with the awareness of your transferable skills, knowledge, attributes, your personality and values, and the clues that your interests and passions have given you, I hope you are feeling very confident about your personal value.  Becoming a confident person involves developing a high level of self-awareness.

Confidence enables you to show who you really are and what you are capable of.  With confidence, you can attack your situation, keep going if hurdles or problems arise and use your inner strength to make the best possible impression on employers.  However when you are experiencing problems at work it is common to experience crises of confidence.

In the context of a critical career change in your life, you need to be able to build your confidence in order to move from your comfort zone into new territory. 

How can you build your confidence? Confidence can mean the difference between you making that career change easily or with a struggle. With confidence you can attack your situation, keep going if hurdles or problems arise and use your inner strength to make the best possible impression on employers.  Confidence enables you to show who you really are and what you are capable of. 

How do you build your confidence? Here are five critical steps you need to take:

·         Fake it ‘til you make it:  Recognize the behaviors which indicate that your self-confidence is not strong.  Change these behaviors and you will change the way people perceive you.

·         Face the demons:  Identify the areas of your life in which your self-confidence is lacking.

·         Face the challenges with courage and wisdom:  Career change is not a blind leap of fate, but rather a conscious decision with a calculated risk.

·         Learn and grow: Develop an attitude of learning from everything and growing into a mature person, an individual oozing with confidence and who can take on any challenges with gusto.

·         Feel empowered: Allow yourself to consider all styles of work, even those that you have not done before.  Whatever your decision, you will know that you made your choice having considered all options.

 Feeling confident and empowered is vital to your success find out more information by visiting http://ClarityCareerManagement.com.au.  

Fake it ‘til you make it!

With the help of those closest to you try to identify the things you do which indicate your lack of confidence.  It’s funny how you can consciously change your behavior and act in a way that suggests you are much more confident that you feel, and people will take that new behavior on face value. 

Pretend you feel confident!  Facing your biggest fear can be as easy as ….Walk like a confident person, speak like a confident person, smile with confidence.  Not only can this change the way other people perceive you, but it can also have a big impact on making you actually feel more confident.

Face the Demons!

Confidence is critical, but when you are experiencing problems at work it is common to temporarily misplace your belief in yourself.  Sometimes, just when you most need it, your confidence is at an all-time low. The key here is to find out the sources of these issues and rise above them.

This is not meant to be a depressing section of the book.  On the contrary, it’s a realistic look at what happens to people and what you can do to overcome the problem if it affects you.

Facing your Biggest Fear of failure

Many people thinking about changing careers naturally feel a sense of fear. No, you are not alone. If you’ve had the same job for many years making a change can be very stressful. Making a big career change which may involve undertaking study can mean an even greater level and degree of fear. Again this is not uncommon.  Fear of the unknown is natural.

 

One of the biggest fears we usually face is the fear of failure. When you start taking steps towards changing your career, some of your friends and family members may discourage you. With the best, but misguided, intentions they may reinforce the fear you are already feeling. Probably they are trying to protect you in case you don’t get the job you want. Alternatively, they think you may get a job and find that you do not have the competence and the confidence to perform well. Don’t let their concerns get you down. Make up your own mind, and be aware that change will only happen if you are prepared to step forward and take a few chances.

 

There are two things to remember here. Being afraid is a natural reaction, particularly when you are treading in unfamiliar territory, and even the most confident person has moments of doubts and fears when faced with a new challenge.

 

Problems create problems

If things are going badly at home or work it is difficult to get yourself into the positive frame of mind which supports a confident career change. 

 

If your family life is stressful, or you are engulfed in financial woes, your stress levels may worsen and you are more likely to be depressed than enthusiastic. Work stresses are often out of your control.  If your job description changes or your boss makes demands you feel unable to meet, you may feel under undue pressure.  Poor management can often contribute to employees’ dissatisfaction and stress. Stress can magnify if you have a serious disagreement with a work colleague, if your job skills are no longer enough to handle the work you are required to perform or if the culture at your workplace takes a turn for the worse.

 

Tension at work is an unhealthy situation. Your productivity will suffer.  Your health is likely to suffer. Your employer is not getting the best from you, and the cycle goes on.  Sadly, a bad work atmosphere usually only gets worse; people talk about you, or you feel that they are doing so, and everything becomes toxic.

 

People who are struggling for one reason or another will find making a career change far more difficult than those in a happy state of mind. Be kind to yourself and recognize that you may need extra help making your career change if you are not feeling on top of life!

In  my many years as a career practitioner, during which I’ve coached people with different attitudes, different career goals and different views on career success, I have noticed a common pattern among the behaviours of those who were able to attain a successful career. Let me share them with you:

You need to have clarity about your goals and understand your priorities. Before you take any step and make any big career moves, you must understand what you want to achieve and what matters to you the most. Are you willing to give up your comfort zone for a chance to succeed in a job you have always wanted to do? Are you willing to take the risks? Do you want to do something meaningful to you and your family? Failures are often caused by unclear goals and priorities. Career success occurs when people are aware of their purpose, what matters to them the most and how to get what they want.

You need to recognise your strengths and ensure that what you are doing enables your strengths to shine.  We all have weaknesses too, but successful people are not easily discouraged by their weaknesses. They don’t dwell on their insecurities but find ways to use their strengths in all that they do. Improve the things that you are good at, realising that it is through these strengths that you will shine.  

You must understand what commitment is and should be committed to succeed no matter what. You must believe that you can make a change and that it will be successful. Success demands risks. Be prepared for the possibilities and most of all be positive about the future.

Learn  how to communicate effectively. Do you know that powerful communicators make the best salesmen and politicians? Yes, successful people are usually those that are good storytellers. They know how to say the right things to the right person at the right time. They are good at influencing people and are confident.

You must learn how to value relationships. You can be successful at any age when you know how to value relationships and are aware that you need people to succeed. Successful people are those who create solid relationships and know how to nurture partnerships. They know how to build sincere, honest, and trustworthy relationships.

If you incorporate all of these tips into your career development plans, you are sure to have a great chance of succeeding. Do you want to make a successful career move? The 7 Steps to a Personal Career Breakthrough  Program can provide you with practical solutions so that you can achieve career success at any age. Contact us to learn more!

 

 

Looking for a good career advice on how you can deal with ageism in your career change? Download the new e-book, "New Jobs for Older Workers: A Practical Guide to a Rewarding Career Change" on Amazon now, and learn practical career advice from the career expert herself, Jenni Proctor!