No one knows how long the current pandemic will last. For some, the long break brought about by the mandatory confinement is a welcome relief from the hustle caused by the daily grind. But for others, it’s the worst thing that could possibly happen.
Many were pushed out of their comfort zones and forced to shift their priorities. Since it started, this unfortunate circumstance has caused a lot of people to rethink various aspects of their lives—including their careers.
Whether you’re one of the lucky ones who got to keep their jobs or not, the idea of reinventing your career may have crossed your mind a few times. After all, with all the time you have in your hands, it’s not surprising to get a growing urge to do something new. Besides, of course, from what you’ve been used to.
Wanting to reinvent your career isn’t a bad thing, and you shouldn’t feel bad about it. Change is normal and is essential to our survival as a species. Instead of avoiding it like a viral disease, we should welcome it. After all, as Charles Darwin said, “It’s not the strongest species that survives, not the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.”
To help you transition, here are some recommendations.
Rebuild your network.
Networking has always been an important aspect of career development. As you think about reinventing your career, don’t forget to rebuild your network. Though your current network can provide you with support, they may not be able to provide you with useful information regarding the new path you are planning to take. So, revisit relationships you may have forgotten or deliberately left behind. Rebuild bridges and create new ones with the help of social media. Strengthen old ties and foster weak ones.
You can also build an online platform to help you power up your network. Create profiles on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. After all, what better way to connect than through social media, right?
Map out a plan.
Aiming for change while dealing with a crisis is not easy. So, before you jump the gun, allow yourself to adjust to the situation first. Don’t just drop everything and go. Take some time to map out a clear plan so you won’t end up at the losing end once you take that big leap. Make a vision board–include everything that inspires you on your vision board. It could be pictures of your idols, places you want to visit, powerful quotes, or even focus words. You can place anything you like on your vision board, as long as they inspire you.
Develop possible selves.
The term ‘possible selves’ was coined by psychologists Hazel Markus and Paula Nurius. It is used to describe how a person thinks about his or her potential and future. A person’s possible selves are thought to be the cognitive link between past experiences and future hopes, desires, and fantasies.
To start developing possible selves, take some time to reflect upon who you are at the moment. Then, allow yourself to imagine a number of possible futures centered on different aspects of your present self. Open up to the idea of a multiverse starring yourself and explore every possibility.
Invest in yourself.
Thinking about ways to spend all that extra time? Why not spend it investing in yourself? Self-development does not only help alleviate the boredom. It can also help you build new connections with similar-minded people.
Take online courses, learn new skills, or pick up a new hobby. Start a project or begin a new fitness routine. The opportunities for self-development are endless. If you’re still at a loss on what to do, take inspiration from one of your possible selves and start from there.
Deciding to reinvent your career at such a time might cause you to go through some emotional changes. To help process what you’ll be going through, find someone to talk to. Having someone to listen to your doubts and misgivings is therapeutic in itself. Plus, it’s always nice to hear another person’s opinion.
If you’re more of a lone-wolf, and talking to people isn’t something you’re keen on doing, you can always try helping yourself. There are thousands of self-help books and motivational videos out there that offer insights into how you should deal with life. Try following Tony Robbins, Jack Canfield, or Les Brown for some inspiring talks, books, and lectures.
Remember, you can always reinvent your career anytime you want. No matter where you are in life. All it takes is the courage to take those first steps on the new path that you’re looking to take.