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For many, work means more than just a paycheck; it provides purpose, belonging, and can be strongly tied to your sense of identity. What those things mean can, and do, change throughout your life, particularly after major life experiences such as a cancer diagnosis. If you are faced with the desire or need to change careers, it can feel challenging, to say the least.
You may ask yourself: Where do I even start? This question looms large on many job seekers, especially when considering a shift in their careers. However daunting it may seem, there are some initial steps you can take to help ease you into it.
Career Shifters, an online professional career and coaching site, recently came out with a great article, 5 Unusual Places To Spark Ideas for Your Career Change, that highlights some creative and unconventional ways to brainstorm new work opportunities, whether you are in the early stages of a career change or looking to refresh your approach. Below are our top takeaways.
Look internally – Your daily life holds many clues to what new work opportunities could be. Paying special attention to your hobbies, routines, and social interactions can help shed some light on what interests and fulfills you. Are there any skills you use in your daily life, whether they be practical, creative or technical, that could be put to use in a new role?
Consider an inbox refresh – Inspiration can come from anywhere, but information fatigue is real and can feel overwhelming, drowning out other possible sources of inspiration. Have you considered an inbox refresh? Unsubscribe from as many e-mails that clog your inbox as you can. Seek out new sources of information that may inspire or inform you. Career focused blogs, podcasts, webinars, free online classes, YouTube tutorials and other websites could help you stay up to date on industries you may be interested in, identify roles to consider and learn new skills. Especially in the early stages of a career change, it can be beneficial to be open to new ideas and approaches. Check-in with yourself and make space, mentally and emotionally, to receive new ideas. Cancel out what noise you can to focus on what’s right for you.
This process is by no means easy and is different for everyone. CAC has a number of tools and resources that can help you on your career change journey:
- Our Resume Review Service offers free, personalized feedback on your resume from one of our professional career coaches!
- Check out our publications available for order and/or download, in particular our Job Search Toolkit, with a section on LinkedIn.
- You can submit a question to our panel of professional career coaches via our Ask a Career Coach message board. Many people also find it helpful to search through our log of past questions to see if their specific concern has been addressed before or to spark an idea.
- Currently working? Cancer and Careers offers patient-focused webinars through our Balancing Work & Cancer Webinar Series, that addresses many of the challenges of balancing work and cancer.