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5 Reasons Why It Is Alright If Your Dream Changes

5 Reasons Why It Is Alright If Your Dream Changes

I find myself in a different country, a different city and a different culture. This was always the dream: To come to the United States, pursue my life-long dream and change the world for the better – I literally flew across the ocean, that’s how big that dream was. Maybe you also made some huge decisions and sacrifices for your dream, and if you still find your heart being blown out of your rib cage with excitement and passion, then I am really happy for you. My advice to you is to go for it, don’t hold back and be happy and grateful for all the steps in your journey – don’t make up excuses not to do it, the article 5 Terrible Excuses For Why People Let Their Dreams Go might help you with those excuses created by fear.

However, if you have found yourself being pulled into another direction or even a few directions – this article is for you. In it I will show you why it is alright if your dream changes and why you shouldn’t fret all the time spent and the sacrifices made on your previous dream – it was, and is a part of you that you shouldn’t disregard as nothing.

Different stages of losing an old dream and finding a new one:

Let’s be honest, it’s not an easy venture to accept the loss of the thing you prized most in this life – it can be something that shakes you to the core. A dream is something you nurture, love and believe in with your whole heart, and to find it slowly or perhaps suddenly evaporating can be quite scary. As with any loss you find yourself going through the different stages of it: Anger, bargaining, denial, depression and yes, eventually acceptance. It might take you a while to move through these stages or it might be something that happens in a blink of an eye – but whether you like it or not, this is what you will have to go through in order for you to move on to your next dream.

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And then? Then you allow it in. Let it take over control – don’t try and keep it at bay because of fear. Fear brings you nowhere and only puts you in a state of paralysis where you can be of no use to yourself or to others, and there is too much potential and promise in you to allow that to happen. There is something great in all of us that is begging to be set free from its cage of inhibitions and it’s our responsibility to make sure we break that cage and allow it to fly free.

3 Ways to set your greatness free from its imprisonment:

1. Move Past the Fear of Change:

Change is inevitable and the only constant thing in life. We have to accept it, otherwise we will never be able to move on to new horizons.

2. Move Past The Fear of Rejection:

Who are you living for? In the end, despite everyone’s opinion – this is your life, you have to live it your way. It’s important to remember that everyone else are so caught up living their own lives too – that they really pay no mind to you and what you might think. This sounds harsh, but unfortunately we live in a generation that is a little too self-involved to really care. With regards to your family and friends: If they truly love you, they will accept it no matter what.

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3. Move Past The Fear of the Unknown:

Yes, that big, scary and very foggy place known as the “unknown.” Do we really have to fear it that much? If you think about it, all of life is really unknown territory until we step out and try it – how bad has those little steps of faith really turned out? Granted, it might not always turn out as you have expected it to turn out. However, more often than not, it turns out to be the best adventure you went on – where you learn more about yourself and what you want than you would have learned by being stuck in the same position and dreaming the same dream that no longer serves you.

Now that you see that there really is no reason to fear the greatness of a new dream inside you, let us move on to why it is alright if your dream changes and what you eventually get out of that decision of acceptance.

5 Reasons why it is alright if your dream changes:

1. Freedom:

You are no longer bound by a dream that doesn’t serve you and only steals your peace of mind.

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2. Wisdom:

You have now gained more knowledge about yourself and what is really important to you. Accept the fact that your old dream taught you a lot of lessons on sacrifice, patience, hope, faith and many more life lessons – carry it with you in your new dream and grow a little more.

3. Strength:

You are strong enough to let go of the past and embrace the future, as well as the unknown. This is something that will help you in all aspects facing change in your life, for you will know that you are not only wise enough to deal with it, but also strong enough to go on.

4. Self-knowledge:

We as human beings are constantly changing – yes, we remain the same at our core, but our ever-changing views and perception of life influences us. Consciously and subconsciously we are evolving into beings that bring us closer to our core beliefs and what we really want to do in this life. If we are constantly changing, is it not a given that our dreams will also change with us? This is sure to happen until we eventually reach a point where we know exactly who we are and what we stand for.

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5. New Horizons:

Be ready to go on the adventure of a lifetime, seeing things in a way you never imagined you could, meeting people you never thought you would and exploring life in a way that you always knew you should. Make room for excitement, passion, roads less traveled and hidden treasures. For this is what being bold does – it opens up a whole new world for you.

Conclusion:

In conclusion I leave you with the words of the very wise author, who with these words inspired me to dig deeper within myself and allow me to let go of the dream that had become nothing more than my safety net, allowing me to open my arms wide for the unknown – despite my constant battle with the fear that it brings along:

Never too old to Dream a new dream

    Featured photo credit: Théo Gosselin via flickr.com

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    Bianca Gouws

    Freelance Writer, Director and Actress

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    Last Updated on January 13, 2020

    Is It Time for a Career Change? (And How to Make the Change)

    Is It Time for a Career Change? (And How to Make the Change)

    Are you challenged at work? Do you regret career decisions? Are you happy? If the answer to the questions leads to a negative feeling, it is time to determine next steps.

    Many people settle for a career that no longer brings satisfaction. Most will respond by stating, “I am surviving” if a colleague asks them “How’s work?”

    Settling for a job to pay bills and maintain a lifestyle is stagnation. You can re-direct the journey of a career with confidence by taking control of future decisions. After all, you deserve to be live a happy life that will offer a work-life balance.

    Let’s look at the reasons why you need a career change and how to choose a career for a more fulfilling life.

    How to Know if You Need a Career Change?

    The challenges of dissatisfaction in a career can have a negative impact on our mental health. As a result, our mental health can lead to the obvious appearance of stress, aging, weight gain and internal health issues.

    You deserve a career that will fulfill the inner desire of true happiness. Here are common factors that it is time for you to change your career.

    Physical Signs

    Are you aging since you started your job? Do you have anxiety? What about work-related injuries?

    It feels amazing to receive a pay cheque, but you deserve to work in an environment that brings out the best of you. If the work environment is hazardous, speak to your boss about alternative options.

    In the case that colleagues or your boss take advantage of your kindness, feeling the anxiety of fear of losing your job because of a high-stress environment may not be right for you.

    Mental Signs

    One out of five Americans has mental health issues, according to Mental Health America.[1] In most cases, it is related to stress.

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    I remember working at a job in a work environment where harassment was acceptable. I had to walk on eggshells to avoid crossing the line with colleagues. My friends started to notice the difference in that I seemed out of character. It was then that I knew that changing a career to freelancing was the right decision.

    Here is a list of mental signs of workplace unhappiness:

    • The tension in your neck
    • Difficulties with sleeping
    • Unable to concentrate
    • High anxiety
    • Depression

    If you start to feel your self-esteem is diminishing, it is time to consider if working in a high-stress industry is for you. The truth is, this negative energy will be transferred to people in your life like friends and family.

    Are You Sure You’re Not Changing for the Wrong Reason?

    Most people that feel they need a career are frustrated with their situation at work. Do you really understand your current situation at work?

    The reason it is important to think about the work situation is some people decide to change career for factors that are insignificant. Factors that can potentially change if the person works in a different department or new organization.

    Here is a list of unimportant factors to think about before you decide to make the transition:

    Desire for an Increase of Salary

    The desire for a higher income can persuade some to believe they are in the wrong career. The issue with this is more money requires more time in the office or taking on several positions at a time.

    At times, pursuing a high-income role can be the complete opposite of what one is expected. It is what happens when a colleague leaves a company to a new one and returns several years later.

    Overnight Decision

    Let’s face it. We make overnight decisions when stressed out or disappointed with situations at work. The problem with a quick decision is the negative and positive points is overlooked.

    Rejected for a Promotion

    I have heard stories of managers that applied ten times for a position throughout a 5-year period. Yes, it sounds to be a lengthy process, but at times, a promotion requires time. Avoid changing a career if you do not see the results of a promotion currently.

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    Bored at Work

    Think deeply about this point. If you work a job that is repetitive, it is normal to feel bored. You can spice it up by changing the appearance of your desk, socializing with new employees in a different department, joining a leadership committee at work or coming to work with enthusiasm. Sometimes, all it takes is you to change jobs into a fun situation.

    A career change can take time, networking, education and the job search process can be a journey. Here is a list of things to consider before making a final decision:

    • How long have you worked in your career?
    • What is the problem at work? Do you work well with the team?
    • Do you receive recognition?
    • Can you consider working in a new department?

    If after reviewing your work situation and none of the above recommendations can help, then it’s time to make a career change.

    How a Career Change Will Change Your Life

    I have a friend that works in the medical industry. She was once a nurse working directly with patients in one of the top hospitals in her area. After five years, she started to internalize the issues with her patients to the point where she felt depressed after work hours. It impacted her relationship with her family and she almost lost herself.

    One day, she decided to wake up and take control of her destiny. She started applying for new medical jobs in the office. It meant working on medical documentation of patients which is not an ideal career based on what society expects a medical professional to perform. But she started to feel happier.

    It is a classic example of a person that was negatively impacted by issues at work, stayed in the same industry but changed careers.

    A career change can fulfill a lifelong dream, increase one’s self-esteem or revive the excitement for one’s work.

    You know a career change can be the right decision to make if you experience one or all of these:

    • Working in a negative workplace: Don’t be discouraged. A negative workplace can be changed by working at a new organization.
    • Working with a difficult boss: The challenges of working with a difficult boss can be stressful. All it takes is communication. You can address the issue directly with a manager professionally and respectfully.
    • Feeling lost about what you do: Most people stay at their jobs and settle for mediocrity because of the fear of failure or the unknown. The rise to success often comes with working a tedious role or stepping outside of one’s comfort zone. If you fear the idea of being involved in activities that are new, remember that life is short. Mediocrity will only continue to make you feel as if life is passing you by.

    How to Make a Career Change Successfully

    The ultimate key to success is to go through a career transition step by step to avoid making the wrong decision.

    1. Write a Career Plan

    A career plan has a dead line for action steps that includes taking new courses, learning a new language, networking or improving issues at work.[2] A career plan should be kept in your wallet because it will motivate you to keep pursuing the role.

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    You can learn how to set your career plan here.

    2. Weigh Your Options

    If you have a degree in Accounting, write down five positions in this industry of interest. The good news is diplomas and degrees can be used to a variety of roles to choose.

    You don’t have to stick to what society holds a top job. In the end, choosing the right role that will make you happy is priceless.

    3. Be Real About the Pros and Cons

    It is time to be honest about strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats in the job market that are impacting the current situation.

    A SWOT Analysis of a career can include:[3]

    • Economic factors
    • Direct competition: Is this role in high demand?
    • Location: Do you need to move? If the goal is to work in tech and living in Cincinnati is not realistic, consider moving to San Francisco.
    • Achievements: To stand out from the competition achievements like awards, committee involvement, freelance work or volunteering is a recipe for success.
    • Education: Do you need to go back to school? Education can be expensive. However, online courses, webinars or self-study is an option.

      A career blueprint is the first step to creating realistic goals. A person without goals will be disappointed without a clear direction of what to do next.

      4. Find a Mentor or Career Coach

      A mentor or a career coach that works in the desired position can share the pros and cons of working in the role. Here is a list of questions to ask a mentor:

      • What is required to be successful in the role?
      • What certification or educational development is needed?
      • What are the challenges of the role?
      • Is there potential for career advancement?

      A chat at a coffee shop with a mentor can change your mind about the desire for a career change.

      Find out how to pick a good mentor for yourself in this article: How to Find a Mentor That Will Help You Succeed

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      5. Research Salary

      Some people decide to change careers for a role that pays less or perks like benefits to make up for the difference in previous to potential salary.

      It can reveal the cities throughout the country that offer a higher salary for those that have an interest in relocating for work.

      6. Be Realistic

      If your goal is to move up into an executive position, it is time to be honest about where you are in your career.

      For example, if boardroom meetings, high-level discussions about financials or attending weekly networking events are boring, an executive role may not be right for you. If you are an introvert and working with people every day is nerve wrecking, you need to reconsider a job in sales.

      Ask yourself if you can work in this role for the next five years of your life. If other benefits that come with the role are enticing, other roles are fit that will make you happy.

      7. Volunteer First

      A person that wants to become a manager should take on volunteer opportunities to experience the reality of the position.

      Becoming a committee member to pursue a presidential opportunity can provide a perspective on leadership, maintaining a budget and public speaking.

      Volunteer in a role until you are certain that it is the right opportunity.

      8. Prepare Your Career Tools

      I recommend asking a boss, colleague or mentor for career tools. If you prefer professional assistance, you can seek out resume writing assistance. Here is a list of things to consider when preparing career tools:

      • Online search: Search your name online to see what shows up. I recommend searching images that are on Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat or other sites on a personal account. The last thing you want to realize is the job search is unsuccessful because there is unprofessional content you posted online.
      • Be LinkedIn ready: Recruiters conduct a LinkedIn search to see if the work experience is the same on a resume. Remember to change the wording on LinkedIn from the resume, or it will appear there was no effort put into creating the profile.
      • Portfolio: A portfolio of work is recommended for people that work in the arts, writing, graphic design and other fields. I recommend a portfolio online and one that is available in hand when attending job interviews or networking meetups.
      • Cover letter: A good cover writer will always impress your potential employers. Here’s how to write a killer cover letter that stands out from others.

      Bottom Line

      It takes time to move towards a new career. Pay attention to the physical and mental signs to maintain your health. You deserve to work in happiness and come home stress-free. If you avoid the common mistakes people make, you will find a job and discover the role in a career field that is the best fit with your skillsets.

      Master these action steps and changing career paths will be on your terms to make the best decision for your future.

      More About Career Change

      Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

      Reference

      [1] Mental Health America: The State of Mental Health in America
      [2] MIT Global Education & Career Development: Make a Career Plan
      [3] Creately: Personal SWOT Analysis to Assess and Improve Yourself

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