How to Change Your Career in Five Easy Steps

It’s not that simple, though you’ll find plenty of articles with similar titles to this one.

Two weeks ago I resigned from a great job as a Product Manager so that I could guide my career back towards creating content and strategies for others to do the same. While I was managing the development of content production systems, writing user stories, and seeing features come to life, it wasn’t filling something in for me.

So I made a snap decision to quit my job after reading an article about how to do it…. Said No One, Ever.

I’ve been developing relationships with other freelance creatives and clients for over a year now, saving money, experimenting with different projects, and continuing to put 100% effort into my day job.  I’ve been weighing the pros and cons of going in either direction every day. Is it really worth it to pay for my own healthcare? Can I ever expect to make the salary I’m making now?  Is this really what I want to do? The road goes on forever. In the end, I decided that there were more positive possibilities than negative and that if I didn’t do it now I’d always regret it. I’m just barely getting started, but I did learn some things in making the decision that may be helpful.

1. Make sure you can pay the bills. Following your heart may require some slimming down and budgeting, but there has to be a demand for the career you choose to pursue and you’ll need some savings to get started.

2. Surround yourself with people who’s skills complement your own and who have similar goals. You’re going to need support.

3. Create clear goals and expectations. You need to have x amount of work, and x amount of money saved up by x date.

4. Roll with the punches. Not everything will work out exactly as planned. In fact, almost nothing ever does.

5. Learn from every person and experience. Especially the ones that frustrate, agitate, and annoy. You can’t afford not to.

Oh, and one more. Take care of yourself. Exercise, eat well, get massages, go out with friends. You’ll have to work your ass off almost all the time, but it won’t be worth it if you’re not taking a break to enjoy life.  Also, your eyes will burn out of your skull and you won’t be able to produce good work if you never relax.

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