There are many reasons that you may find yourself over 50 and facing a career change. You may find that you have reached an age where you are no longer satisfied with your job and want to be able to contribute to something more meaningful, you may have recently retired and found yourself at loose ends with too much time on your hands, or you may have been one of the unlucky ones to lose their job during the recession. Whatever your reason for wanting to start a second chapter in your life, know that it can be done at your age with ease.
In the past, a career change at 50 or older would have been unthinkable. People were expected to stay in one job for the longevity of their career. To hop from job to job was seen as a failure and judgments were made about a person’s instability or mid-life crises. In today’s business world, being 50 or older is no longer a restriction but an asset and advantage, because you have measurable experience that you can draw on to perform well. Reinventing yourself can be easy using one or more of the following suggestions.
1. Be a Model. Sounds a little silly, but giving yourself a fresh new look can give yourself a new perspective on your career. When you feel better about yourself you will react differently to situations, including conveying confidence during job interviews. Self-confidence will also provide you with the extra bit of courage you need to start fresh in a new career. So strike a pose and then strut your stuff into the interview, presentation, or even into a meeting applying for a small business loan.
2. Be a Student. Why not freshen up your skills or learn new ones by enrolling in some classes? Many over-50s may feel outdated with your skills as compared to younger fellow workers. Feeling secure about your skills will enable you to offer your abilities to others. The Internet is a great place for taking online classes at your convenience or you can attend on-campus classes in your area. Another place to look for classes that can improve your office skills is the library. The public library provides many free classes about computers, accounting, and interviewing skills.
3. Be Helpful. Another unusual way to reinvent yourself is through volunteering. When you volunteer you give something back to the community. In return, you learn new skills, see issues that you may be able to solve and make business connections that may be useful to your personal career in the future. Community service is a great way to network with other people while providing help to your area.
4. Be a Mentor. One of the most impressive things you can post on a resume is the fact that you can teach or mentor others. Employers see that your set of skills is superior to others because you are able to teach and not just work. This is also an indication of your people skills and how you can act as a team leader in a group situation. Many people find that when they teach a class or offer tutoring, they move through the ranks of their company much faster.
5. Be the Grasshopper. One of the best things that you can do is hire a professional life coach to work with you on the entire process. Having someone be able to evaluate the situation without being emotionally attached to that situation is an invaluable tool. A client of a life coach in Buffalo found on Noomii.com swears that the coach, “Has created one of the most original and invigorating frameworks for enjoying creative freedom in even the simplest and most mundane parts of everyday life,” which has helped him in his career as filmmaker.
As you can see, reinventing yourself at age 50 is not as complicated as you may think. It just takes a little bit of creativity, a little bit of research, and a whole lot of positive thinking.
Featured image used under Creative Commons License