2020 and 2021 have forced a lot of people to take a good long good at their lives. As a result, a huge number of people are thinking of changing careers in the near future. 2021 might be the year to do it. 

Are you thinking of a career change? If you’re thinking of changing careers in 2021, here are some things to keep in mind.

Ask if it’s a career change you’re really after

Balancing work, home, and social lives can be difficult in normal times. Add to that the restrictions and stresses of a global pandemic, and you’re heading towards a soup of stress and unhappiness. It can be really tempting to chuck it all in and make drastic, ground-up changes to our lives to recapture what we lost. 

It’s pretty common, when something isn’t in balance in our lives, to zero in on one particular thing and project all our bad feelings and ill fortune on it. 

For this reason, many career coaches encourage people thinking of a career change to take a break from their current job for an extended period of time. Once you’ve had some time away, you can assess whether it’s time to change careers or if there’s something else in your life that needs attention.  

You might be burned out. You might just need a vacation. You might need to rediscover an old passion you’ve lost. Or you might need to rejig your current role so that it doesn’t stress you out as much. 

Prepare your resume

If you’re really set on changing your career, then the first thing you need to do is get your resume together. Your resume is the first thing potential employers will see about you, so you need to get it as polished as possible. 

However, you may need to take a different approach with your resume this time around.The classic chronological resume may not cut it. This type of resume emphasizes experience: something, as a career-changer, you don’t have much of in your target field. 

Take some time to craft a great career-change resume to increase your chances of a successful job search. This will mean emphasizing things like soft and transferable skills, education, relevant work experience where applicable.

Take advantage of your network

Changing careers can be a daunting task. No one should have to go through the process alone. If it takes a village to raise a child, it should take at least a couple of people to get you into another role. 

Reach out to your contacts in your target fields and ask for guidance about where to begin. You may be surprised by the things they tell you. Start with Linkedin. Scour your existing contacts, and then branch outwards. Some people even reach out to experts in their field through Facebook, Twitter, or email to get advice on where to start in their journey. 

Research job statistics

If you’re changing a new career, you might want to make sure you’re going into a field that has a future. 

There are loads of studies and statistics out there that can help you choose a field that fulfills your passion and your need for income. Check out The Bureau of Labor Statistics for projections for growth or decline of various fields. 

Start something on the side

You may not be able to start your new career for a variety of reasons. Family obligations may require you to hold down a job. You may be restricted by geography. Or your new career may require you to retrain, reskill, or get a degree. 

While you wait for your time, you might want to start something on the side that will help you build towards your future goals. Take a further education course. Begin a project directly related to your target field. Read books by experts in the areas you want to get into. Small, regular efforts, over time, will pay dividends in increased knowledge and experience.