“If we were meant to stay in one place, we’d have roots instead of feet.” –Rachel Wolchin
Change . . . for some, it’s the scariest six-letter word in the dictionary. The fear of change is one of the most common reasons for resistance because it stops us from taking any action at all. Making smart professional decisions now can benefit you in the future—so don’t let the fear of change paralyze your career.
As most of you know, I’ve taken several professional paths throughout my career. Over the years, I’ve built a strong portfolio of professional experience – from attorney, news correspondent and talk show host to producer, fashion designer, businesswoman and now President of Professional Diversity Network and NAPW. I can honestly say, each transition was necessary to get where I am today.
I know that NAPW is where I belong at this stage in my life. I wanted to give back and help professional women network with like-minded women, develop personally and professionally, promote themselves and their businesses and advance their careers. From a wide array of innovative career services and educational resources, to 100,000+ job opportunities posted in our Career Center, NAPW members gain a professional advantage that allows them to smoothly transition between jobs with confidence and the support of their NAPW sisterhood.
It’s okay to be afraid. Fear is what makes us human. I’ve always been the type of person who believes that when opportunity meets preparation there is no job without reach. So don’t let your fears stop you from following a new path that just might make your life a whole lot better in many ways, personally and professionally. Mark Twain once said, “Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear – not absence of fear.” Make a decision to come face-to-face with your fears, climb that hill and embrace the challenge. Eventually, the courage within you will become a habit, and you’ll master that fear.
So how do you know if a change in your career or job is what you need? Here are some signs that it may be your time to move on:
You Lack Passion and Purpose
Do you dread going to work? If you’re not doing what you love, you’ll never tap into your true potential. Don’t settle with a job that you can’t thrive in. Every job you have should be a stepping stone that brings you closer to where you want to be. Every experience should be a learning opportunity. If you feel you’ve flat-lined, a new job may revive you.
You’ve Outgrown your Job
Whether you’re in a junior, senior, management or executive role, you’ve learned valuable skills but you may feel stagnant in your job. Are you ready to move on to bigger and better things? Do you want to expand your skills further or take on more advanced projects? If there’s little opportunity for growth in your current role, it may be time to embark on a job search to find a position that will allow you to do more and achieve more.
You’re Unhappy at Work
When you’re anxious just thinking about work, that’s a sign that it’s time to move on. When work starts affecting your health—physical, mental or both—a change could be just what you need. If you are experiencing a hostile work environment—regardless of what corrective measures you or the company are taking—you don’t have to put up with that! Find a job where you feel comfortable and safe doing what you love and loving what you do.
Ladies, my best advice is to trust your inner voice. With all the time we spend at our jobs, we owe it to ourselves to regularly evaluate our career situations. Make it a habit to check in with yourself regularly to review your accomplishments and put yourself in a position to create the success that you deserve.
Have you recently transitioned into a new job? Share your experience in the comments below.