Feeling stuck in your career can make each day feel like an endless slog. As someone who has been stuck more than once, I can say with certainty that stagnation has a way of creeping up on you and then gaining a momentum of its own. One minute your career is humming along and the next you are wondering if you will ever feel excited about the work week again. As much as you'd like someone to swoop in and rescue you from a bad situation, 99.9% of the time you won't win the lottery and a headhunter will not call out of the blue with a great new job offer. You will need to take action to get yourself unstuck.
Below are my top three tips for getting unstuck and reinventing your career.
#1 Go back to school
Learning something new is never a bad move, whether you are adding a new skill, getting a degree to take your current career to the next level, or are going back to school so you can make the transition into an entirely new field. To that last point, I personally feel that taking a class in a completely new field is a great way to test the waters without doing something drastic. Even if you learn that field is not for you, you have made progress towards narrowing things down to finding out what you do want in a career. Going back to school has other benefits I'd be remiss not to mention: Stretching yourself by learning something new can help you regain the self-confidence a dead end job might have destroyed. Going back to school can demonstrate your commitment to career growth to your current employer and may help your boss think of you in a different light. Of course, adding a degree to your resume can lead to income gains as well.
When looking at going back to school, we like programs like those offered through Ashworth College. Ashworth provides distance education that is career-focused, effective, and flexible. We also like that they are accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission and offer 125+ program offerings in fields like healthcare, business, criminal justice, creative services, education. Additionally, with tuition rates approximately five times less than other online institutions, Ashworth strives to provide students with access to an education they can afford.
Volunteering can help you do a host of great things for your career while you do a host of great things for your community. Volunteering can help you develop new skills while also thinking about how to apply your current skills in a new way. As a volunteer, you might also be able to see holes that need filling in your current skillset. Like going back to school, volunteering can also allow you to try out new fields, roles and interests before you quit your job and make other radical changes. Perhaps by volunteering at an animal shelter, you can see that you don't actually want to be a veterinarian. But, you do see, that with some additional coursework how you might be able to manage the business operations at an animal shelter or become a vet tech. Maybe volunteering with kids really does demonstrate to you how much more fulfilled you would be if you got a teaching degree and became an educator. Lastly, as a volunteer, you'll have the opportunity to network with people already working in your target field. These folks can be great sources of information about job openings and career opportunities.
#3 Get Out and Interview
Dust off your resume and update it with all the great things you have been doing. Although you may feel like the thrill is gone from your current role and you haven't done much in a while, don't overlook what you have accomplished when you get your resume up to date. This will also give you a much-needed confidence boost before you look internally and externally for a new position. Getting out and selling yourself to someone new may even help you hone your sales skills so you are better able to sell yourself to your boss and get on some new challenging projects.
Adopt an Action Orientated Mindset
Taking some form of action whether it is one of the three items above or something else is better than letting your career stall persist. Treat your career like a project that needs managing. The larger goal is to reignite or reinvent your career but achieving that goal will be taking a series of small but meaningful steps. A list of manageable action items can get everything moving in the right direction and put you in an action-oriented mindset. Research some classes, update your resume, those are manageable and can start you on the road to a full-blown career reinvention!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Ashworth College . The opinions and text are all mine.