There’s no reason to stay in a job that brings you no joy. There are other options. I wasn’t excited by company tax returns after ten years.
Perhaps like me, you chose a career based on the salary rather than your lifestyle and personal goals. At 21 living paycheque to paycheque, the immediate goal for me, like many in their early 20s was to make more money and stop the struggle to survive financially.
A decade passed and I found myself grinding in a full-time job with no passion. I wanted to change without throwing away my education and investment in my career.
So I asked for time off.
When I was 30 I really wanted fewer responsibilities and a flexible income so I could have children. But when the money is good and there are debts to pay, changing career can be put off for another few years.
I decided to take a five-weeks annual leave in Mallorca and look for a new life working on superyachts. Completely crazy right! If I had known how difficult and confronting the deep-sea survival course was going to be I would have chickened out. Somehow I learned how to throw an oxygen tank on my back and crawl through a black mock maze to rescue potential passengers on a burning yacht and then deploy the life raft and jump off a plane and get the passengers in a huddle in the ocean during a thunderstorm. Since then my respect for air stewards has risen tenfold.
During this time we were staying in a hostel on the beach in Mallorca. I got talking to the owner over breakfast one morning about how I was planning on changing career to work on superyachts over the summer, as one of the girls we knew from rowing was working on a superyacht and we’d arranged to meet her. The owner of the hostel confessed he was an ex-banker from London and he’d decided to sell up and start the hostel to bring back the joy in his life.
He said the money just wasn’t the only thing that mattered anymore.
I ended up returning to Sydney and started taking night classes at TAFE and volunteering at veterinary surgeries in my spare time, to determine if I really wanted to move to a career working with animals.
After working weekends as a volunteer and for puppy preschool I realized, I loved having pets and volunteering at shelters but I didn’t love the confronting reality of a career as a Vet or Vet nurse.
Standing for long hours in surgeries and seeing animals being put down every week affected my illusion of why I wanted to work with animals.
During this time I made a small sideway step in my career from a financial accountant in chartered accounting with 80-100 clients to a management accountant with less than 10 companies at a time.
Moving sideways in my career was a huge accomplishment and brought massive amounts of renewed energy to my work life.
I left my full-time job and found several clients of my own just out of the newspaper. This gave me space to look into further career options. I completed an online diploma in interior design and designed some cool mockups for friends for free.
While this was fun, I realized I didn’t have the passion to do this 24/7 and so again my side hustle changed to another one of my hobbies making natural skincare potions. Again it was fun and I’d experiment and decided to get more into it until I had spent somewhere over $20,000 getting the packaging and the legal work for the trademark and not to mention the time involved in creating a website and standing in weekend markets. The biggest mistake was I didn’t do the numbers until after I’d spent a ton of time and money on the product itself. When I saw the profit margin and the volume I needed to sell to get close to my goal income I was completely demotivated.
Working in accounting and finance was already the most profitable careers a person could join, so why was I so determined to leave?
I was saying yes to accounting work I didn’t like instead of saying no and niching down. Since then I still work in accounting related work, but only for the niche, I love! No more debt collecting, no more long commutes, no more repetitive errors, no more bags of cash receipts, no more mess, just paperless cloud systemized the way I like it, from my home office inside school hours.
ACTION STEP Write down what tasks you don’t enjoy in your current career or profession.
My aha moment was when I realized I could take a self-imposed demotion in my career from financial accountant to bookkeeper and still make money on a term that suited me and made me more fulfilled.
Working full time is not the only way to survive financially.
What if I continued to work in simpler easier work, but focused on investing in shares and repaying our mortgage at the same time?
I started Bluecloud Bookkeeping and have had my first $900 day working less than 4 hours.
Having a university degree does not mean you’ll make more money than someone who owns their own business working from home.
When to make a career change
When there is a heavy feeling inside. When you question your place and value in the world. Maybe it’ll strike you after losing something important in your life or you’ll just realize you’re not living the life you dreamed for yourself.
I get it. So many of us are in careers we didn’t choose for ourselves and we feel trapped in a cycle of work commuting and rising debt.
The first steps I focused on to get my finances sorted to change from accounting career to cloud-based consultant, educator and affiliate marketer.
Step 1: Spending wisely on building a business with systems. Most of us have enough income to get what we want but we spend more than we earn on crap that doesn’t bring long term joy. I’ve never bought a new car and have paid cash for all my cars, even my current car. While my car now is a beautiful luxury, I bought it when it was 5 years old. This reduced the purchase price by $50,000!
Step 2: Focused on prepaying months in advance on my mortgage repayments. Being ahead on my mortgage repayments has always been a focus for me and it’s paid off.
Step 3: I have a regular direct debit from my income to a share trading bank account. Growing my share portfolio is essential for my comfortable retirement and an eventual gift to my children later in life.
Step 4: Living a life I love now, not in the unknown future. Give yourself time to meditate or zone out and ask yourself, what do you really want? Do you want a family, what do you want to do before breakfast each day, where do you want to holiday, what legacy do you want to contribute to the world and then do something about it. There is no overnight success. Even though for many years my focus was on being debt-free, I still enjoyed my daily life with being a member of a rowing club, buying myself occasional chocolate from Godiva in the Queen Victoria Building Sydney. Ensure you’re enjoying something every week you love doing. Showing up for your dreams one or two days a year will not leave you satisfied. Make a plan for it to happen consistently over the long term and take the first step. If I hadn’t left my steady job in a good chartered accounting firm to pursue a new career in bookkeeping then I can’t imagine how dissatisfied I’d feel now sitting in my cubical waiting for someone to tap me on the shoulder to invite me to a better life.
No one is coming to knock on your door and offer you the life you’ve always dreamed of. You must make a plan to create yourself and your legacy, or risk growing increasingly dissatisfied in your career.
For me, reaching an age where I was wanting to have children was the main reason I looked for a way to move sideways. I was telling myself and the Universe I was ready for a new direction. Luckily, I met my husband and now we’re blessed to share two beautiful children.
The transformation was from my constant actions and testing the waters while I still had a job. Even when I was afraid it wouldn’t work out. Without taking a risk and doing something new, your satisfaction for life and career can slowly fade to nothing until it’s almost unbearable to get out of bed. I know I’ve been there, literally numb from working with no passion for your work.
Ask that person out. Say yes to a change that scares you. Say yes when you don’t know how to do something. Trust in yourself you have the ability and patience to learn and master something new over time. Be a best friend to your future self by making a change in your life today. Get one step closer and you’ll reach your goals sooner than you thought possible.
After reading this blog I’d love to know, what are your career change dreams and what is the first step you’ll make today? Comment below.
Together let’s discover what you can accomplish. I believe if you apply knowledge and energy to your passion, there’s no reason why you won’t succeed!
With oodles of PASSION for you ,