Dealing with Stress on the Job

Do you often feel like you’re going to lose your mind if you continue to work in such a stressful workplace? We all experience stress on the job. It is not unique to anyone, but what is unique to each of us is how we deal with it.

You can learn to deal with work-related stress in a positive manner so it doesn’t continue to hold you back. When you are unable to deal with stress effectively, you can’t be as efficient or effective on the job and, more importantly, your health will suffer.

Techniques to Deal with Stress at Work

When you feel stressed out at work, you need to learn how to harness your emotions so you can move forward. Luckily, there are many ways you can do this; you just need to find which technique works best for you.

Here are five workplace stress techniques:

1. The best thing you can do when you feel the stress coming to a boil is to stop what you’re doing and just breathe. You’ll be surprised at how much it helps just to take a breath and gather your thoughts. In fact, take ten slow, deep breaths, then return to your work. The great thing about this technique is that you can do it anywhere, even when you’re sitting in your boss’s office!

2. Take a moment to write. When you start to feel stressed, find some privacy, pull out a blank piece of paper, and write freely for five minutes. Free, uncensored writing for just a few minutes will allow you to get the emotions out of your mind for good. When you put all of the emotions down on paper, crumple it up and throw it away. Then try to return to work without the stress.

3. Use positive imagery. Keep a calming picture on your desk or on your computer background and when you feel like you cannot take anymore, stare at the image and imagine yourself there. Doing this for even 60 seconds can restore your sanity so you can move forward without the crippling effects of stress.

4. Listen to peaceful music. If you put on calming music when you’re stressed, you may find that it can instantly calm you like nothing else. If you keep the music quiet and peaceful, you’ll feel at ease during your work day. Music is a great way to find peace and lose the stress.

5. Use positive thinking. When stressful and negative thinking is getting the best of you, you can counter it with positive statements and thoughts. You can say things such as, “I can manage stress because I proactively choose peace.” When you repeat positive sayings in your life, you’ll be able to squeeze out negative thoughts from your mind, and move towards the positive.

These are five simple ways to cope with stress on the job. The great thing is that you can quickly and easily incorporate these strategies into your work day without allowing stress to overwhelm you.

Every day will bring new stressors into your workplace, and that is why you should have several different coping techniques in your stress management toolkit. Once you begin to incorporate these strategies into your life, you will find that everyday stress will become easier to deal with, and you will actually feel healthier and more productive.

Handle Criticism With Class

Unless you plan to hide in your house 24/7, you’re going to have to deal with criticism. But make no mistake: even if you stay in your house, you’re still going to be criticized; you just won’t know about it.

Criticism is a part of life. Unfortunately, the more significant your accomplishments, the more criticism you’ll have to face.

Learn to deal with criticism and your life will be a lot easier. It’s also easier to be successful. Since you’re going to be criticized no matter what, it would be a good idea to have a strategy for handling critics and what they say about you.

Try these strategies:

1. Take a deep breath. Have you ever noticed how much easier it is to see something objectively when you’re not emotionally involved? That’s why it’s frequently easier to see solutions to our friends’ challenges than our own. So take a moment and get as calm as you can before you respond to criticism.

• Learning to calm yourself is a skill that you can strengthen with practice. Get a book on meditation or other relaxation technique. You have to learn how to stay calm in your day-to-day life before you can expect to stay calm in more emotionally intense moments.

2. Ask yourself, “Is it possible this person is right?” Once you’ve calmed down to a good place mentally, ask yourself if they might have a legitimate criticism. No one is perfect, so it’s natural to be wrong about some things.

3. Thank them. This is the best way to disarm your critics. Simply thank them for the critique. After all, they could’ve done a lot of other things with their time but they chose to spend it on you. It really is a compliment if you think about it.

4. Move on. Regardless of whether the criticism was accurate or not, you should just move on. After you’ve gained whatever you can from the interaction, simply let it go. Focus on your next task; avoid wasting time looking backwards.

• If they were right: If the criticism was accurate, figure out a better way to do things the next time. It might take some time, but it’s worthwhile to ensure that you don’t make the same mistake twice. Once you have an improved course of action for next time, get on with the rest of your life.

• If they were wrong: If after contemplating the criticism you determine they are incorrect, then simply forget it and move on. There’s no reason to dwell on it any longer than it takes to determine if there’s any validity to it.

• Think about the most successful people you know and notice how they make it a habit to move on quickly. After all, they have more important things to do. And so do you!

5. Positive reinforcement. Each time you receive criticism and handle it appropriately, take the time to congratulate yourself. Any behavior that is rewarded is more likely to occur again in the future. Be proud that you had so much control over yourself and were even possibly able to gain something positive from the experience.

We all face criticism from a variety of sources on a regular basis. It’s challenging to receive criticism gracefully, but there’s an opportunity to gain something from it. Learn what you can from the interaction.

Use these techniques to handle criticism with class. After you’ve calmly considered the criticism, you are free to either adjust your strategy or simply dismiss it. Then, you can let it go and move right on to the next item in your life. Remember to reward yourself afterwards!

6 Easy Ways to Make a Good First Impression

6 Easy Ways to Make a Good First Impression

In almost all life situations, we want to leave a positive impression with people when we first meet them. Whether you’re establishing a new business contact or meeting your future in-laws for the first time, first impressions matter. Remember, you never have a second chance to make a first impression!

Follow these tips to make a great and memorable first impression:

1. Have a pleasing appearance. Even though attractiveness is in the eye of the beholder, it’s still important to look your best. Clean, wrinkle-free clothing, brushed and styled hair, and light or no fragrance helps most people be at their best. If you wear make-up, you know it doesn’t take much to enhance your appearance.

2. Make eye contact and smile. In some cultures, making eye contact doesn’t indicate good rapport. However, in American culture, people make positive connections with each other by looking each other in the eyes. If you don’t, the person you’re meeting for the first time may think you have something to hide!

• Also, a smile makes you look appealing and friendly. You look more open to others when you’re smiling in a natural and relaxed way.

3. Pay attention and listen. When you’re out in public or socializing at a party with new people, distractions are bound to happen. But when you’re meeting someone new, make an effort to pay attention and focus on what’s being said. When you listen well, you show genuine interest in the person.

4. Refer to the new acquaintance by name. In most situations, it’s beneficial to you to be seen as focused, a good listener, and polite. Using the new person’s name in your conversation helps accomplish all of these things. Plus, using their name will help you remember it later.

5. Initiate conversation with a positive comment. Making a positive impression means that people will have good thoughts when they remember you by something you did or said. Consider these examples of ways to start a verbal exchange with a new acquaintance:

• “Sharon, I saw the drawings you did for the local Boys’ Club campaign. They’re amazing. How did you come up with such an incredible visual?”

• “Kevin, I heard from Julie that you’re quite the fisherman. Where are the good fishing spots around here?”

• “Pam, Bill always speaks so highly of the work you do. How long have you been working at the James Corporation?”

6. Be sincere. Be yourself whenever first meeting someone. People tend to sense when others are putting up a front or behaving in ways that aren’t natural for them. Being genuine is a quality everyone wants to see. If you’re sincere, your new acquaintance will sense that.

Because you never know what might blossom between you and a new acquaintance, put in the effort to make a positive first impression. Try some of the tips above or think about techniques that may have worked for you in the past. You’ll make a great first impression and perhaps even pave the way for a successful business venture or a life-long friendship.

9 Ways to Enjoy the Holidays without Stress

9 Ways to Enjoy the Holidays without Stress

While the holidays have the power to bring some of the most joyful times in your life, they can also be the cause of a great deal of stress. The stress can stem from many different situations such as family disagreements, scheduling conflicts, and money issues.

No matter what situation your stress is coming from, it’s important to take a step back from the stress to hold onto your sanity.

Try following some or all of the following tips:

1. Get Your Shopping Done Early. When you get your shopping out of the way early, you can save yourself stress on a number of levels. You won’t be battling other shoppers during peak shopping times. You won’t have to worry about making split second decisions on gifts. You’ll also have the time to craft a budget to help make your money stretch to the best of your ability.

2. Take Time to Yourself. We often take the time to think of others during the holidays. While that’s very important to maintain, you can’t forget about yourself in the process. Remember to schedule “me” time and concentrate on winding down. In order to take good care of others, you first have to take care of your own health and well being.

3. Keep a Cool Head. While it may not be a problem with every family, sometimes the togetherness causes conflicts and clashing. Before you enter a family holiday event, tell yourself that you’ll take the high road. You don’t want an argument to ruin your chance at fun during the holidays.

4. Keep Up Your Exercise Routine. Sometimes the thrill of the holiday season can disrupt your daily routines. While a little break from exercise might not make a big difference in your physique, it might make a difference when it comes to your stress level. Try to keep up some form of exercise, as it will provide you with a release from stress.

5. Watch your Diet. It’s not fair to yourself to completely avoid indulging around the holidays, but at the same time you should always remain in control. Watch what you’re putting into your body, because large amounts of certain foods can definitely affect how you feel. The two big ones to watch are caffeine and sweets.

6. Buy Yourself a Present. While you’ve been budgeting money for everyone else, there’s no reason why you can’t buy yourself a little something. After all, you’re sure to be getting something that you want. You can even schedule yourself a massage, which is an excellent way to maintain a healthy stress level.

7. Get Enough Rest. The excitement definitely kicks in during the holidays. Sometimes you’ll lose sleep because of stress, and sometimes you’ll lose sleep because of excitement. Either way, you’ll be doing yourself a favor by concentrating on relaxation and getting to bed at a good hour. If you start a pattern of getting less than 8 hours of sleep per night, you could be setting yourself up for stress without even really knowing it.

8. Learn to Delegate. If you come to the realization that you’ve been put in charge of too many things, don’t pile on the stress – instead, delegate the tasks. Be wise enough to know when you need some help and ask for it. You can even get the kids involved with certain preparations.

9. Be Flexible. Of course you have an image in your head of how you’d like certain holiday events to play out. You also know that things don’t always go according to plan. Realize that certain things will not be perfect, and you won’t feel so much stress if things do go wrong. Go with the flow and have back up plans if necessary.

Ace Your Next Job Interview by Listening Better

Ace Your Next Job Interview by Listening Better

Active listening skills are a subtle but effective way to perform better on job interviews. Half of all communication is listening but few of us get any training on doing it well. Fortunately, listening well is relatively simple, and will become automatic once you practice the skills.

Here are some techniques that will help you acquire more knowledge and make a better impression on your prospective employer.

How to Use Active Listening for Your Job Interview

1. Recognize your limitations. Many studies confirm that we only take in half of what we hear and we forget half of that by the next day. Becoming more attentive often takes some deliberate effort.

2. Relax your mind. Most people feel anxious about applying for a new job. Take time to quiet your mind and reduce distracting thoughts. Meditate, get a massage, or listen to instrumental music.

3. Stay alert. Prevent fatigue from sabotaging your interview. Get a good night’s sleep and squeeze in some aerobic exercise beforehand. Sit up straight and dress in layers. Being chilly makes concentration more difficult.

4. Show your enthusiasm. Successful people often enjoy talking about their work, especially when they have an appreciative audience. Make eye contact and lean toward your interviewer. Let your positive feelings shine through when you describe your past accomplishments and how they relate to the position you’re seeking.

5. Position yourself as a good fit. Use the information your interviewer provides to home in on the type of candidate they’re after. Explain how your background and skills enable you to contribute and become a valued team member.

6. Take notes. People listen much faster than they speak. Take advantage of that gap to take notes and collect your thoughts. Jot down keywords and main themes rather than recording every word.

7. Keep an open mind. It pays to be flexible. Remain neutral to avoid rejecting a new viewpoint or job opportunity before you have a chance to consider it from all angles.

8. Put yourself in your interviewer’s shoes. Your interviewer may feel uncomfortable too. Empathize with their responsibility to find the right person for the job.

9. Restate key points. Summarize and paraphrase the most important messages. This will help reinforce their thoughts in your mind and show your interviewer that you are on the same page.

10. Seek clarification. Avoid misunderstandings by clarifying anything that’s unclear. A good employer will appreciate your efforts to fully comprehend their expectations.

11. Ask thoughtful questions. Use open-ended questions to elicit more information. Incisiveness also helps show that you’re a strong candidate.

Meeting the Staff

1. Get to know your supervisor. Your manager will likely play a big role in your job satisfaction. Talk about the daily routine and responsibilities. Learn about their work style and how they establish priorities.

2. Pick up valuable information from your co-workers. Try to meet some of your future associates. They can clue you in on the work environment and organizational culture. Plus, it’s usually a good sign if employees are involved in the hiring process.

3. Learn about the big picture from leadership. You may also get the opportunity to talk with some of the organization’s senior executives. Even if the time is brief, use those meetings to help get a better sense of the organization’s strategic plans and future direction.

Go to your next job interview better prepared to listen. The session will probably be more productive for both you and the people you interview with. And even if you don’t get this job, if you’ve kept your ears open, you may have positioned yourself for a different one. Active listening is one way to open up new career opportunities and build a better future.

Contemplating a Career Change

No matter what kind of work you do, don’t be surprised if there comes a time when you think of switching careers. After all, many of us have romanticized ideas about one career or another.

Maybe you always thought you’d be a teacher, a crime scene investigator, a sales clerk at that little boutique down the street, or a hospital nurse. But things didn’t go that way and you ended up doing something else instead.

However, now you’ve reached a point where you’re seriously considering a career change. Maybe you got laid off or worked for a company that closed during the economic downturn. Or you might just be looking to change what you do to earn money. Before you take the plunge, do your homework.

Consider these issues whenever you’re contemplating a career change:

1. What kind of work do you want to do? Do you have a couple of top choices or just one? If you’re considering a career change, you may already know the answer to this question.

2. Is the job you want to do within your reach? See if you can simply build on what you already know to pursue a new job.

If you’re 40 years old and have no college education and want to be a doctor, that might be an overly ambitious goal. However, if you’ve already got a bachelors’ degree in business and you want to be a nurse, you could probably complete 2 or 3 more years of education to obtain your nursing degree.

3. Does the career you want require training or education? Education requires energy and drive. Do you have that for your dream career?

4. Interview someone who has the job. Write down all the questions you have about the career path. If you know someone personally who has the job you long for, give him a call. People love to talk about what they know.

5. Research the career on the internet. You’ll find a wealth of information online on every kind of job.

6. Check into local resources. If you need coursework or technical training, find out where you can get it in your town or one nearby.

7. Look into your local prospects. Are there local jobs available in the field? Unless you’re willing to move for your job, ensure you’d be able to do the work where you’re now living.

8. Consider costs involved with re-education and training. If you have some savings, there’s nothing better to invest in than your future. Depending on the field that interests you, you might even be able to obtain grants to complete coursework or training requirements.

9. Assess your time commitment. How much time will you need to prepare to look for work in the field? Depending on the career you’re considering, you might be able to start right away. Or your dream job might require three or four years of education or training first.

10. Just do it! One of the most exciting experiences you’ll ever have is engaging in the work of your dreams. Although you might feel some initial fear and apprehension about making a career change, you’ll find yourself also full of joy and anticipating your future with great excitement.

You may already have the answers to all of your questions. You may know intuitively what’s right for you. If that’s the case, then go out there and snag your dream job! If not, spend some time looking over these suggestions and get started on your preparations. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll be enjoying your new career.

Finding Purpose at Your Job

Is your job a source of stress and frustration? Do you dread each time the alarm sounds? Does your work fail to ignite passion in your heart? Believe it or not, your employment can provide both the income you need and the fulfillment you crave.

Here are some ways to Find Purpose at Your Job…

Add To Your Skill Set

One of the reasons your job may be undesirable and unfulfilling is that it becomes mundane. You do the same tasks, in the same order. Every day is exactly the same as yesterday, and it’s a drain on your energy and creativity.

Remember that you can always add to your skill set. Even if something isn’t in your job description, you can take the initiative to learn more. If you haven’t found your purpose yet, you can find it if you refuse to put up with more of the same.

For instance, if you’re working a retail job and you’re only in charge of cashier transactions, pursue other opportunities. Maybe you can learn more about the other positions at the store and offer opinions on how to make things run more smoothly.

Study and gain experience that can lead to a managerial position. Eventually, you might find that leading people is your true purpose. If you stay in your routine, you may fail to discover the gifts within yourself that can lead to a more exciting daily experience at work.

Have The Right Attitude

Most things in life come down to having the right attitude. If you believe that you can find purpose at your job, you can. Many jobs are exciting at first. Over time, your duties can become routine and your enthusiasm can disappear quickly.

Everyone has a bad day from time to time, but most days should bring you joy. Thankfully, you can make changes that make a huge difference in the satisfaction and fulfillment you experience at work. Those changes start with an attitude that looks on the bright side and focuses on solutions instead of problems.

Identify Your Next Step

Start by identifying the changes that you want to make. First, ask yourself if you’re in the right line of work. Do you see yourself continuing with this type of job for a long time

If you do want to stay in this line of work, identify why you haven’t found your purpose yet. If you don’t like your line of work, it’s time to discover what it is that you want to do and go for it.

Can you identify simple changes you can make in your attitude or your approach to your duties? Write down the things you like about your job. Think about the contribution your position makes to others and to your organization. Think about the aspects of your job that fit in with your goals and values.

Reflect on what you’d like to get out of your job. Where do you see your career in five years? How about in 10 years? What results would you like to achieve? What would you attempt if you knew you couldn’t fail? What is the next level of success that you deserve in your current position.

Make concrete long-term goals that get you energized. Even if you don’t quite reach your goals in the time frame you set for them, just working towards those goals will ignite a passion within you that fuels your journey to the joy you deserve.

Communicate Effectively

Sometimes you can ease the daily stress you feel at your job by working on communicating more effectively. If you improve the way you relate to coworkers and communicate ideas, you’ll be able to succeed more easily and more often. And you’ll be able to clear up conflict quickly. You’ll meet your goals by helping others to understand you better.

Find passion in your work by ensuring you’re in the right place, setting goals that fire you up, and taking action each day until you achieve them. If you do, you’ll find the job fulfillment that you crave.

15 Questions to Ask Yourself to Discover Your True Passions

15 Questions to Ask Yourself to Discover Your True Passions

If you’re lucky, you’ve already discovered many of your passions and get to spend much of your time enjoying things that bring you excitement and joy. However, maybe you’ve not yet connected with activities, skills, and interests that ignite your passion.

It takes time, soul-searching, and some life experience to identify your true passions. These prompts are written to tap into your wants, needs, desires, and fantasies. Have fun with them and discover what you can add to your life that will fill it with delight

  1. What’s the one thing I’ve always wanted to do? Consider what would need to happen in order for you to carry through with this long-sought wish. Make a plan and get started.
  2. If I could spend today doing whatever I desire, what would it be? Let your mind go. It could be something related to your work, your home, or simply a lark.
  3. Where do I really want to live? What city and what type of residence? Perhaps you’re already fulfilling this passion and you do live in your true first choice. If not, ponder the possibilities of moving to a place you’ll love.
  4. Where would I like to visit? Perhaps you’re harboring a secret yearning to visit Washington, D. C. or Westminster Abbey in London. The streets of Hong Kong may be calling your name or even the Grand Canyon. Can you make it happen?
  5. What do I talk about doing but never do it? In a conversation, you might state something like, “For the last 10 years, I’ve really wanted to take a cruise to the Caribbean.”
  6. What are the reasons I don’t go after my dreams? Explore within yourself why you haven’t pursued the life you want. Can you do something differently to help bring your dreams to life?
  7. How will I finish the sentence, “More than anything, before I die, I want to ___________?” Say it out loud and fill in the blank. Then, figure out a way to accomplish your wish.
  8. What are the things in my life that I would like to get rid of? If you’re discovering you don’t love everything about your life, maybe it’s time to do some “housecleaning.” Make a list of the ways you’d like your life to change.
  9. Which people in my life inspire me and why? It’s important to know who inspires you so you can spend more time with them. What is it about them that lights you up so much? Decide to take every step to be inspired more often.
  10. If I were to make just one radical change in my life right now to make life better, what would it be? Your answer to this question will really open up your possibilities. Moving to a bigger city might really spice up your life. Getting more education might be a goal—plus you’ll likely make more money. You’ll be happier if you chase your dreams. Make 1 change.
  11. How do I feel when I put all my effort into accomplishing one of my goals? Notice these feelings. You’ll no doubt want to experience them more often.
  12. How do I feel whenever I achieve a life goal? Awesome, probably.
  13. What’s missing from my life? Answering this question requires considerable soul-searching.
  14. Who are my biggest supporters? It’s wise to know the people that will stand behind you and help you pursue your passions, no matter what.
  15. Who gets in the way of me achieving my goals? In order to find your true passions, you might be required to disengage from those who wish to counteract your efforts.

If you take the time to thoroughly ponder each of these questions, you’ll be pleased with what you discover. Your true passions are inside you, just waiting to be let loose to bring you excitement, joy, and fulfillment.

9 Tips to Achieve Anything You Desire

Success might seem like a combination of good fortune and genetics, but it’s not true. You can be just as successful as anyone else.

A few tips might be all that’s required to make the leap from mediocrity to superstar status. The differences between great success and average results are real, but smaller than you might think.

Here are 9 ways to achieve anything you want in life…

Have a crystal-clear goal.
Having a goal requires making a decision and a commitment. A clear goal increases your odds of success dramatically.

Get the help you require.
You don’t have to do it alone. It’s your responsibility, but that doesn’t mean you must take on the world alone. Get the help you need. You might need a mentor or a helping hand from time-to-time.

Eliminate limiting beliefs.
Your goals and excitement propel you forward. Your limiting beliefs are like the wind in your face. They’ll stop you dead in your tracks if you allow them to.
Avoid underestimating the power of negative beliefs to hold you back.

Visualize your success.
It’s common to focus on the drudgery that lies ahead. That makes it hard to keep your enthusiasm high. Visualize your success each day. You’ll maintain your enthusiasm and increase the odds of success.

Eliminate distractions.
Distractions can take many forms. It might be a noisy neighbor, a messy house, the television, or the internet. Find a place as free of distractions as possible.

Push through failure.
Achieving anything significant will involve at least a couple of setbacks. Your first plan might be misguided. Your second attempt might involve a little bad luck. Expect that you’ll face a struggle or two. You’ll enjoy your eventual success that much more.

Be consistent.
Spend time each day on your objective. Consistency is the key to progress.
Avoid putting forth too much effort for a short period and then taking too much time off. You don’t have to work extremely hard if you’re consistent.

Enjoy the process.
Big goals can take a lot of time and effort to achieve. If you’re not enjoying the process, you’re not making the most of your life. If you can’t enjoy the process of achieving your goal, perhaps you have the wrong goal.

Pay attention to the quality of your processes.
Imagine your goal is to lose 25 lbs. It’s easy to become too obsessed with the number on the scale. Instead, focus on following your diet and exercise plan.
Assuming your plan is a good one, your compliance is all that matters. Your compliance drives your results.

You can be as successful as you want to be. Anything you desire is at your fingertips, but you must be willing to change your approach. You don’t need to rely on luck or an idyllic past for success. You already have everything you need. Enhance your approach to achievement, and the rewards are sure to follow.

Don’t Make a Late-Life Career Change Until You Read This

Changing careers can feel a bit intimidating at any age. That’s especially true when you’re considering making a major transition late in life. Then again, recent trends suggest that your chances for success may be greater than you think.

A survey by the American Institute for Economic Research found that more than 80% of respondents said they were able to launch a new career after age 45. Even when they had to take an initial pay cut, most of them were able to increase their income over time.

What does that mean for you? Sticking it out until retirement doesn’t have to be your only option when you can do something you love, even if it means making less money temporarily. Plus, with retirement ages increasing, you might be able to benefit from your new career for many more years to come.

Whether you’re a mature adult who wants to pursue your passions, reduce stress, or just enjoy a change of pace, an encore career might be just what you need.

Consider these strategies for preparing for the next stage in your professional life:

Prepare Financially

  1. Cut expenses. Most career changes mean a smaller paycheck initially. You’ll feel less pressured if you trim your budget now by eating out less or selling a second car.
  2. Pay off debts. For more peace of mind, work towards becoming debt-free. Pay off your most expensive debts first and stop credit card spending as much as possible.
  3. Consider moving. Relocating to a less expensive area can have a big impact on your budget. Browse online for destinations that match your lifestyle.
  4. Share housing. Housing is the biggest expense for most adults. Maybe you can rent a room in your home or share an apartment with a friend.
  5. Delay retirement. If you can delay claiming Social Security, you’ll be entitled to bigger checks. Your monthly benefits increase for each year you continue working between ages 62 and 70.
  6. Be flexible. Full-time jobs aren’t the only way to work. Consider working part-time or consulting.

Prepare Professionally

  1. Research your opportunities. Teachers, registered nurses, and home health aides are among the fastest growing occupations for older workers, according to a recent report by MetLIfe Foundation. Visit your local library or browse online to find out more about opportunities that interest you.
  2. Increase your skills. See what qualifications you’ll need. You may want to take evening classes to complete an additional degree or certification.
  3. Strengthen your network. It’s important to keep networking even when you have a job. If you’re feeling rusty, start attending more networking events or invite a former colleague out for lunch.
  4. Use social media. LinkedIn and other platforms make it easier than ever to research the job market and connect with others. Update your profiles to reflect your new ambitions. Share information and participate in relevant discussions.
  5. Build support. Starting over in a new field will require time and effort. Ask your family and friends for the encouragement and assistance that you need. Team up with another mature professional who’s going through a similar transition or start a Meetup Group.
  6. Gain visibility. As you’re trying to rebrand yourself, publishing and public speaking will help you to gain attention. Start your own website or contact other sites to ask if you can become a contributor. Once you have some experience, design an online workshop or give a talk at a local community center.

If you’ve been dreaming about taking your career in a different direction, start preparing now. You may find that the later stages of your professional life will be the most rewarding.