December 5th, 2023 | Updated on January 25th, 2024
Far too often, people stay in dead-end jobs where they feel like their soul is dying a little every day.
Maybe you found the job right out of college and never left. You have bills to pay, and your paycheck does the job.
Maybe you’ve convinced yourself that “this” is all there is to life. But now you’re often waking up and wondering if you were wrong.
Well, you were — “this” is not it. There are thousands of jobs available and hundreds of industries to explore.
You’re not stuck in your dead-end job if you don’t want to be. You’ve got plenty of opportunities to explore outside of your current position. Here’s how to go about it.
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One of the first steps to getting out of your current job is to take stock of where you are and where you’ve been.
What skills and experience do you have? Do you hold degrees and certificates, and if so, in what areas? Pull up your most recent resume and review it. From there, you can create a new one to help you move forward.
Often, the struggle for people updating their resumes isn’t what to put on it but how to do that best.
Anyone can list their degrees, jobs, and achievements, but you want to do so in a way that appeals to your dream employer.
An AI resume builder can help you craft customized resumes to highlight your qualifications and experiences that are most relevant for each position.
With this kind of help, employers will find your CV eye-catching, engaging, and persuasive. Your next job could be right around the corner.
Explore Your Passions
But what if you don’t even know what kind of job you want next? After all, you’re probably pretty sure you don’t want another job just like the one you’re in.
You’ll only end up unhappy in another few years, if not months. In that case, start brainstorming what brings you joy — in other words, your passions.
To find your passions, think back to your childhood and explore the times you were happiest.
What were your favorite subjects to study, your favorite hobbies, and your moments of bliss? Did you spend hours drawing, or did you drive your parents crazy by disassembling the appliances to see how they worked?
Now, think about your happiest moments as an adult, starting with college.
Do you have warm memories of your studio art class, or was it the robotics club? What made you come alive? Make a list of the things that make you happy alongside a list of things that make you feel capable.
The intersection of those lists might well be your passion.
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Identify Your Purpose
Of course, passion is often not enough; you also need purpose. Purpose is the element of life that gives it meaning.
It’s what helps you keep going in those less passionate moments — everyone has them. In career terms, your purpose is where your passions find expression.
To figure out your next career move, you want to combine your passion with purpose and find your work there.
Aligning your passion and purpose will help you identify jobs and professions to which you are best suited.
You can take your passion for art and parlay it into a career in graphic design, book illustrating, or fashion.
Or your mechanical prowess could lead you to become a product designer, materials scientist, or electrical engineer.
If you are already in your ideal profession, you may just need to change companies.
If you are in the wrong profession, it’s time to acknowledge that and move on.
Be Willing To Downsize
Now here’s the hard part. Though you are miserable in your job, it’s paying your bills, and maybe you’ve got a lot of them.
It’s not easy to upend your whole life just to get out of a dead-end job, but it might be necessary.
Downsizing your life could be the critical change you need to make to be happier at work. After all, your passion may take you into an entirely new field.
Even if the shift is simply to a new company, you might have to take a pay cut and climb the ladder.
In more extreme cases, you may need to go back to college or take courses to earn a certification. You’ll need to be willing to sacrifice now to reward yourself later.
These sacrifices could entail giving up luxuries or even seeking cheaper living arrangements. Cut back in areas now to gain happiness in your work and the potential for even better earnings in the future.
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Network For What’s Next
Now it’s time to make your moves. You don’t necessarily have to leave your job immediately, but maybe you will.
You might quit now and take a lower-paying job with fewer hours to focus on your education.
Or you may tough it out at work for a few more months while you make preparations to shift out.
make sure you’re building a glowing resume that will attract an employer you are excited to grow with.
While you’re preparing for your next job or career trajectory, network! LinkedIn is a place to connect with professionals who are doing what you’d like to do.
Update your profile and spend some time daily reaching out to and responding to new contacts.
Learn from people in your chosen field and contribute where you can. Who knows? You may even find your next job there!
Daring To Think Bigger
Often, people are unhappy because they’ve got tunnel vision.
They fail to see the larger picture and their own limitless potential. When you can remove those blinders and see your possibilities, you will be willing to take the necessary steps.
Those steps may lead you to a better position at your own company or an entirely different career.
Whichever path you choose, you’ll have the joy of knowing it’s not leading to a dead end.
Feature Image Source: Tetiana SHYSHKINA