Career Reinventions

If you have been laid off for your job, you may be wondering “What now?”  Well, this might be the perfect time to reinvent yourself and your career.  Reinvention means to recreate, make new or different.  This definition can take on many meanings for your career and for your future.  Daily, I hear and read stories of ordinary people making the “reinvention leap” and living extraordinary lives.  Or at least happy and fulfilling ones, mainly because they are doing it on their own terms.

Reinventing one’s career usually starts out of necessity; namely, you may have lost your job either through being fired or laid off.  It is tough out in the job market and people are wondering what to do with their future.  They are not sure if they will get hired in their industry so they may be looking at other industries.  For example, the healthcare field is an area where a lot of job seekers are thinking of transitioning, mainly because it is an area that is needed.  But, you must love to work with people and be around illness and death; it can be very competitive, require specialization and offer low wages.  This is not to deter one from getting into the field but these are questions one needs to ask and research before they jump in.

A reinvention can offer you the ability to create the career of your dreams. Have you an idea that you have been thinking of for a long time? Do you see a need or service that you feel you could offer and, perhaps, better?  Do you want to help others and give back? Do you want something different or more simplistic in your life? Are you feeling stuck? Do you want to take you life back and work on your own terms?   The answers to these questions have led 500,000 people (who have started new businesses)  in the last year to reinvent their careers and thrive.  If you’ve heard of  Ray Croc, Grandma Moses and Armand Hammer, then you would know that they reinvented themselves later in life to create thriving businesses and gain world-wide fame.  (In case you may not recognize their names, Ray Croc started MacDonald’s when he was 58, Grandma Moses became a famous painter at 76, and Armand Hammer retired from business at 58 only to return and start Occidental Petroleum Corp).

Creating a new career is not easy – it takes a willingness to take a ‘leap’ into the unknown as well as the fortitude to stay the course.  Here are some steps to help in the process:

1. Write down your personality traits and how you view change, creativity, business acumen, resilience, and the willingness to be open to ‘newness’

2. Brainstorm your ideas for how you view your ideal life; ask yourself, “If I was able to name my ideal career, and it was granted to me, what would I want it to be?”  Throw out all the ideas you have or want – don’t limit yourself as this is where you need to tap into your creative brain

3. See which idea(s) resonate with you; the one that you feel excited in your gut.  Then, go research what type of career path or business it could be, what it would take to do it (more education, business, plan, funding, etc.), and see who else has done it before.  How could you make it yours?

4. Set goals for each of these steps, as well as target dates to complete as well as when you will officially reinvent

5. Don’t try to do it alone – talk to a career coach who will help you create a reinvention plan and keep you focused on your goals

Taking these steps may be hard but not doing them will be harder, as you will have to live with those “woulda, coulda, shoulda’s” that are difficult to swallow.  Look at your future as your ‘gold ring’ – grab it before it’s too late!


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