Sometimes, we can't help but rethink our career choices. It could begin in our mid-20s (quarter-life crisis), and then sink when we reach our 30s. Yes, it could be quite frustrating, but the good news is, you're not alone! Our GIRLTalkers shed light on what it's like to shft careers, and hopefully, if you're dazed and confused about your job standing, their experiences may help you make the right choices.
Sometimes, the desire to shift careers stems from career burnout. Learn to do what you love on the side to keep things balanced.
Ako, nasa airline industry ang line of work ko. Super layo sa tinapos ko. Never ko na realize na mapupunta ako dun sa industry na 'yun kasi napaka-couch potato and 'di talaga ako mahilig sa travel, but super na e-enjoy ko sya kasi pagkatapos ng work ko may iba pa akong pinagkkaabalahan 'yung first love ko, which is cooking and baking. Suma-sideline ako ng catering and baking, plus I am also into scrapbooking. I guess, yun yung secret ko kaya pag pasok ko sa work kahit gaano ka-pressure, pag labas ko ng office namin na re-relax ako kasi may iba pa akong ginagawa.
Now, if you do decide to shift, take note of the following:
1. Age does matter
"I'm turning the BIG 3-0 and wanted to shift career sana since I'm not that happy with what's happening in my career. Pero kasi parang awkward na to be in entry level at this age. Masyado risky na.
May isang friend ako nagsabi sakin, kasi nagrequest ako irefer nya ako, na ang reply daw sa kanya ng HR nila overqualified daw ako at too old for the position I'm applying. Kasi tingin nila it's hard to train daw yun mga nasa ganitong age na. Sad."
"Usually naman, 'yung mga traditional companies, they want people na a little older, kasi 'yung mga bata masyadong fickle pa."
"I also know someone who just removed all the position titles on her resume (so puro responsibilities lang ang nakalista) and she got the job she wanted based on that. Hirap siya kasi when she left her past position, "AVP" level na kasi siya kahit na bata pa, and the companies she applied before thought na naturally gusto niya higher title after. Eh di naman siya ganon, haha."
"I don't believe na mahihirapan ka mag-apply pag 30 ka na, mas madami nga company ang naghahanap ng experienced na employee. Diba, yun mga baguhan kasi most likely magre-resign din ng wala pang one year, kaya mas gusto ng HR 'yun 'seasoned.'"
2. It's never too late.
"I have a sort of relative who went through a lot. Her life made an unexpected turn at around 40, married with two kids, she decided to study again and be a nurse. Her dad who passed suddenly, triggered the change. "
"Now she has a stable career. She's around 55 na. It's not too late and it's never too late, even if it seems like it. Her maturity to be able to handle and balance her goals and passion came timely I think coz of the focus and drive she had for it. So if you feel the need to go change something in your life, just go do it. I have friends too who launched themselves at a new career mid-30s. Sometimes, it takes that much time to really find what you want to do in life and who you want to be in the end."
3. Great things happen when you step outside your comfort zone.
"I devoted almost 10 years of my youth to public service. I can't say na I did not benefit from it. I did. I was able to go around the country (for free), sent abroad to study, and met a lot of high-profile personalities. But when I hit 30, I started to question where I'm actually heading. Sabi ko sa sarili ko, "hanggang dito na lang ba ko?" Then again, masarap ang trabaho ko noon, maraming travel and recognitions (though, mababa ang salary) so I let another 4 years pass. When I was nearly 35, I decided to take a chance and change career. I left public service and moved to the private sector. What made me decide to go? Natakot ako sa marketrability ko. I know for a fact na pag 35 ka na mahirap ng lumipat and dapat management position na ang hawak mo. So pikit mata I left my comfort zone and jumped into a new career. Happily, I found a better paying job, less stress with younger teammates. Nami-miss ko pa rin ang travel at ang matawag na 'your honor' or 'honorable,' but then again, hindi mo naman mapangbabayad sa grocery ang recognitions eh."
4. Just take the leap.
"Ako, turning 32 also this year and been part of the BPO industry for 5 years. Though I'm in a supervisory role, the job was very taxing sa health at super stressful. I decided to resign last December; then, I tried to apply in a normal day job. Thankfully, I got accepted in a very stable company. I got the same basic rate I had previously though no allowances like in the BPO setting. I'm enjoying normal work hours and my God, this is less stressful talaga. I'm glad I was able to move out of the BPO industry and my age was not at all a hindrance. We can still shift careers regardless of the age, go sissies!"
5. Have faith and make baby steps toward your goal.
"I'm 30 and I just changed my career 360 degrees! I was an international flight attendant for seven years, and two years ago, I kept thinking of what to do to shift careers. I was interested in being a preschool teacher, so I tried studying online but didn't work out for me. Nahirapan ako pagsabayin work and study, so I stopped. But finally, after months of contemplating, I've submitted my CV in all schools, and exactly on my 30th birthday, I got an interview and was offered to be either assistant teacher or school coordinator. Now, I'm planning to continue my study to get a license to teach. Since I'm working in school, I guess it will be easier for me now to continue studying. God is good! I know its really hard to start a new career, but the sooner you start working on it, the better. Otherwise, if you keep hesitating, baka too late na."
To summarize, those who are about to hit 30 must have plans A-C before they shift careers. Anything uncertain is scary, so having well laid-out plans will help you reach your goal. Also, enrich your skills that will help you land your dream job. For example, if you see yourself as a cupcake magnate, take up several classes in entrepreneurship and baking. Lastly, have faith and just jump! Staying in a passionless job is like slow death—you'll regret it soon. Join the forum if you have any stories to share.
(Screencap from the movie He's Just Not That Into You, courtesy of New Line Cinema)