Once you have an idea about what you want to do next, then you can start doing some preparation to help you get that role. It might mean some re-training or learning entrepreneurial skills to help you run your own business. Or it might mean taking steps to try to differentiate yourself from other candidates with a similar background – doing some voluntary work can often help with this as it shows dedication and commitment.
You should also start preparing your CV and look at it as an ongoing work. As you build up your job search checklist of the roles you want to apply for, you will start to gain insight into the kind of skills and qualities that these roles require. You can look at yourself and see what areas you have covered or if there are areas you need to work on before your CV is complete. Be strict with your CV, too – don’t be tempted to turn it into a novel and keep it as a relevant summary of your life and achievements.
Get the right mindset
Talk about mindset used to seem a bit New Age but most psychologists now recognise the power of our minds. Positive thinking might seem a bit airy to some of us but there is a clear benefit to it – you feel more confident and this confidence comes across in all of your dealings.
At the same time, you need to school yourself to deal with the rejections because it is unlikely that you won’t experience them at some point. Few people changing careers ever get their first job and never experience rejection. You need to learn to view it as a learning experience: why didn’t you get the job? What could you change next time? Ask for feedback from employers who turn you down to learn from.
The old idea of ‘it’s not what you know but who you know’ isn’t as relevant with the growth of the internet and the globalisation of things but it can still be beneficial to network. For example, if you want a career in caring or volunteering for a certain charity, then it doesn’t hurt to get to know people involved in that charity. Building up connections on LinkedIn, for example, can be a non-creepy way to network and may have unexpected results.
You can also learn a lot from talking to people about the job you think you want to go into. You may even find that you discover it isn’t the right career path but that something related may be more your style. The more information you have, the more informed you are and the better decisions you make about your future.