When contemplating a career change, fear can often paralyse you so that it feels like you’re going round in circles. But there are ways to move forward.

Working out whether a change of career is the right move for you or not can be daunting. How do you know for sure that it’s the right move? How can you guarantee it’ll be better than what you’re doing now? How do you even know what you should be doing?

'The reality is that there are no guarantees,' says Professional Life and Career Coach Michelle Bayley of Find Your Way Coaching who has been helping clients make these sort of decisions for years. 'No one really knows exactly what their new career will be like until they’ve actually experienced it, so there’s a need to accept that career change involves taking a calculated risk.'

If you’re feeling confused and frustrated about what you should be doing next, Michelle says to accept that it’s just part of the process of change. And if you’re worried about choosing the perfect career match for you, relax.

'For most people there will be several really close matches that could give them career happiness,' she says. 'If you’ve been telling yourself there’s one perfect answer or career misery staring you in the face this can be a relief!'

So, what can you do to help move yourself forward? Michelle has come up with these top tips to get you on the right track.

  1. Get to know yourself and what you want from your ideal work. List your skills and strengths, what you enjoy doing, your values (the things that make you tick), what feels purposeful for you and what motivates you to work. Then put some rough order on how important the different elements are to you.
  2. Pull together what’s out there that interests you. Look online and talk to friends of friends about what they do and what other people do in their organisations. Do some online research to find out what sort of things are out there that you may not have known existed.
  3. Get the options that interest you down on paper and group them. What are the common themes that underpin them? Look closely, the themes could be anything from creativity, taking care of people and problem solving to performing, educating and organising. Which ones are you most drawn to? You can narrow down your future career options to ones which allow you to ‘live’ the themes that most attract you.
  4. Ask someone to help you judge how good a match your possibilities are with who you are and what you want. Tell them to act nosey - asking you lots of questions about why each possibility would or wouldn’t match. Then on a scale of 1 to 5 rate how good a match each possibility is with your values, your strengths and skills, what motivates you and how strong your interest and excitement is about them.
  5. Choose the one or two possibilities which stand out above the others. To help you do this you’ll need to talk through the sort of compromises you’re prepared to make. Tell the person quizzing you not to let you off the hook. For example, if you have the chance to do something which looks like it will allow you to play to your strengths, is that more important than only being 30 minutes journey time from work? Or do your circumstances make the journey time more important?

Once you’ve gone through these stages you’ll be ready to take action on landing the sort of role you want. It might sound odd but that’s often the straightforward end of career change. Putting the time into knowing what you want in the first place really does ensure you’ve got your career ladder up against the right wall for you!

For more careers advice, visit jobsite.co.uk

Move Forward With Your Career Change - Courtesy of Jobsite.co.uk