The thought of changing your career after 50 can be daunting.  There are so many reasons that can lead someone to seek out a career change like losing passion in your current career, being bored and stressed out with your current situation, or maybe you are finally ready to follow your passion.  Regardless of why you will need to explore resources and information that will help you create your action career plan to focus your efforts.

Teresa Gabriele CCP, Lead Career Coach at sourc3dCAREERS, a career transition coaching company says, “You will need to be prepared to invest the time to re-discover yourself and outline what is motivating you to make the change so you are able to align your experience and value against your chosen career direction.” There is an incredible amount of information available online to help you with your career move, more than ever before and regardless of why you are looking for a switch. You can learn any skill, network with new people in a variety of groups that will support your change.

Successfully changing your career after 50 will require some adjustment and using the following steps will help you achieve it.

Know yourself thoroughly

Take a step back and re-discover yourself, your personality and your true desire to make the change. There are many personality assessments online, some even free, that you can take to reacquaint yourself… with yourself.  This is a critical step in any change as it will reestablish self-knowledge to make your move forward more successful because you will know what you need and what you want to be truly happy in your career.


Chances are, you have not had a lot of time to reflect and take time for yourself.  This practice will help you avoid the regretful feeling of “I wish I could have” that we may feel as we get older.  Think about all the things you wished you could do earlier in life and how you can use your current resources to make it happen.

Work your Network

Connect with your personal and professional network.  Let them know your desire to make a change and leverage their networks as well.  Join networking groups, associations and groups of like-minded individuals with the sole purpose of being motivated to start, continue and finish.  Start with Linkedin and Facebook groups.  Engage in posts and ask questions.  Learn from others as much as you can!

Self Actualization

Achieving to the highest extent of our talents and potential is the goal here.  As we approach our senior years, we can begin to think about our level of achievements and if we have talents and potential still inside of us that have not been used.  The need to use everything we have learned, all the skills and knowledge acquired in a meaningful and authentic way.  What do you want to use in your “toolkit” to propel you forward and give you the satisfying feeling of fulfilment?

Build your brand on Social Media

There is personal social media and then there is professional social media. Both tell a story to the reader about who you are and what you bring. As you prepare for your career change, it will be important for you to create a strong professional presence using business pages in platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to start to highlight your career objective, skills and experience. This can be daunting from some who are less technical so seek out a relative or friend that might be savvier to support you with this.

Update your Resume

Keep your resume up to date. As you are considering a career change, customize your resume to align with the requirements of your new chosen career.  Seek out postings that will help you verbalize what you have and want. What do you want to tell the reader about your skills, experience, value and impact that will provide proof of your expertise in the new chosen career?

Actively Remove Fear

It is normal to feel doubt, anxiety and worry as you move through the process of a career change.  The, “What the hell am I doing” moment will come.  But it is how you manage these feelings that will be the difference between defeat and staying where you are or actively removing fear to replace it with positive self-talk and meaningful self-care.  Acknowledge your fear, commit to the direction you are going in and you will achieve it.

Reality Check

Create realistic and achievable goals.  This is the way to feeling accomplished and successful in your new chosen career transition process.  Do your research about the direction you want to go, the investment and time and funds it will take you to achieve it and partner with people in that space to help you better understand all the competencies and deliverables.

Manage your Stress

From meditation, a workout at the gym or just relaxing with friends, managing your stress during a change will be important to help you stay focussed and remind you to breathe! Overwhelming stress has been proven to lead to health issues, so you never want to inflict high levels of stress on yourself especially if the change is supposed to get you out of the highly stressful job you have right now.  This is in part why setting achievable and manageable goals will be very important.

Be Patient

Changing your career takes time.  You are sharing your desire with the right people and in the right places so you will eventually see results.  Being committed to the change while practicing commitment will take you a long way.  When you are feeling frustrated, review your plan and make any adjustments necessary to continue the forward movement.  Remind yourself that you are making this change to improve your quality of life.

Always start with “why” you want to make the change.  Why is it important for your career journey? Keep your motivation top of mind and bring it forward when you begin to doubt yourself. These 10 steps will help you begin to focus your desire for your career move and motivate you towards a successful outcome.  Seeking professional help from a Career Coach will certainly increase the chances of your success and help you manage and navigate through all the steps of a career change with ease and support.  Make a plan and start taking the steps towards your career change.  It’s your time, next level is waiting.

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