Ten Tips For Changing Careers Midlife

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Midlife, those years between about 35-50, many of us look at what we’ve accomplished, look at what we’ve paid to get there and stay there, and decide that this isn’t what we want or able to continue doing. Athletes, dancers, victims of disease and accidents, mothers, military personnel, even construction and oil workers are some of the most likely candidates for midlife career change. Many  make the decision because their bodies aren’t able to keep up with the same level of physical prowess. In my case, I had a preference for work which didn’t pay well, so I sought a well-paying job and used it to finance my second career.. No matter who faces this challenge, chances are that the path they take to become successful in a new career is likely to be different, but also in some ways, very much the same.

This advice may improve your chances of success or change your decision:

Investigate the Requirements for Your New Career Midlife

If you enter a career that you know will require a midlife career change, start immediately to work on the requirements for participating in both careers.

Pick a Related Career when You Move to A New Career Midlife

Select a career in the same industry. In my case, I found that there is a distrust of the computer industry entirely. Although my college was accredited, some of my course work didn’t qualify me to either teach or to write because there was no provision for acceptance of the course work. Computing degrees are argued hotly because of the proliferation of technical schools and because of the newness of the degrees. Regardless of whatever career you select, life time education will often be required. Choosing an industry where your education, skills, and experience helps you move into a new career makes the transition easier,

Plan to Restart at the Bottom of Your New Career Midlife

When making the decision to move to a new career, expect to start over at the bottom of the heap and expect competitive behavior. Many people are threatened that they may lose their job and don’t want others to take their jobs away.

Universities and Technical Schools Can Help You Train For Your New Career Midlife

Take advantage of the universities, they can help you retrain or get additional education. Acceptance into a Masters program may take many years. Unless your certification program through Adult Continuing Education will directly place you into a new career, don’t choose this path. The lack of accreditation of the program courses can make you the poor candidate for the job.

When Facing Continual Layoffs Change Careers by Choice Midlife

You will have a healthier move to a new career if you make the decision based on your own needs and not because of lack of employment or downsizing.

Your Career Change Midlife is Your Decision and What You Need

When asked to defend your decision, make clear that you are working on your life plan that you developed.  Make positive progress along your plan and don’t look to others for positive support, others are likely to refer you back to your original career, make accusations or lay blame for your decisions at your door, even when you never asked for help or complain.

Midlife Career Changes Can Be Emotionally Charged

Make sure you handle the emotional consequences of the change such as fear, rejection, anger, loss, with help from friends, family or a counselor.

Keep Your Resume Current and a Record of Your Changing Skills Midlife

Keep your resume current and keep the changes on your resume as a positive record of your accomplishments.

Your Experience Midlife May Cause Additional Rejection

Expect more rejection than is the usual case; success in one career does not guarantee success in another, in fact, because of your age and maturity, you become a threat to everyone starting at the beginning. They don’t want to associate with their mom or compete with a parent. Younger managers may be abusive as a way to assert their authority over an elder.

Midlife is No Excuse to Not Have Computer and Internet Skills Required by Jobs

Make sure that you have as much internet and technical skills as possible; the younger generation is trained from babyhood to have these skills and employers expect them. Specifically, be able to use MS Applications, a computer, the internet, and understand how to learn new systems.


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