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Transitioning to a new career can be exciting and rewarding when it works out, but it can just as easily end in disaster if you don’t handle it properly. You might be unhappy in your current position and feel that a different industry would better suit your skills. If you’re thinking of making this kind of change in your life, here are some tips that you should consider to make the transition as smooth as possible.

Ask yourself why

If you’re serious about changing careers, ask yourself why you want to make the switch. You can’t just change careers because you don’t like your current job; you need to ask yourself why you want to change careers and why you think it will make your life better. You also need to weigh the pros and cons of switching careers. It’s a major life change and you should treat it as such.

Know what you need to do

Once you’re sure why you’re transitioning to a new career, your next step is to detail exactly what you need to do to make it work. Thoroughly research your new career of choice to know how to start out, and make sure that you have the resources to be successful. You will also need to know what kind of licenses and certifications you need. No matter what kind of career you desire, know that there is far more to it than simply following your dreams and hoping everything works out.

Create a plan

Successfully beginning a new career requires a detailed action plan. Start with your end goal in mind and work backwards to come up with a timeline. Make this plan as detailed as possible to know what you need. It sounds like a lot of work, but breaking everything down makes your process that much easier and sets you up for success. Make sure you track your progress as well.

Contact the right people

Part of being successful in any career is knowing the right people, and that is especially important if you’re starting a new career. Contact people you know who can help you make the transition as well as those you don’t know who are major players in your new chosen field and can give you valuable advice.

The most important thing to remember when transitioning to a new career is to never take your choice lightly. It can be very rewarding when it works out, but you need to put in the work to make sure that you’re making the right choices.