How to change careers at 30

How to change careers at 30

Choosing a new career can be challenging, especially after a certain age. Here are a few tips to make a successful transition.

From the moment we learn how to walk and talk we are asked about “what we want to be when we grow up “. This social pressure to find our vocation for the job market continues until we choose a career, most time before we turn 18.

The anxiety of choosing a profession and even please one’s family forces many people to choose inadequate careers that have no synergy with one’s skills. As a result, the number of American professionals unhappy with their job has been growing; according to a survey conducted by the Conference Board, approximately 53.

But the above percentage isn’t the only thing that catches our attention!

According to another survey conducted by University of Phoenix, 59% of those interviewed have thought about “abandoning everything” to start a new career, but that they have a hard time giving up on their professional achievements, especially financial stability.

It was thinking of these people that we listed a few tips for those professionals who wish to make a transition in their careers; after all, what should be taken into consideration before taking such an important step?

In today’s post we will talk about choosing a new career after the age of 30. Stay tuned to our tips and feel free to share this text with your friends who might be going through the same problem!

Professional life at 30

Although it seems to be a little too soon to have a career crisis, it is quite common for people to seek alternatives for their careers at this age, especially when we’re referring to the generation known as “millennials”, which grew up with access to the internet and is more in tune with the new job markets.

This generation already has some job market experience but still hasn’t managerial reached positions in their areas of activity, which can be discouraging. They are also supporters of ideas such as working at home, being freelancers or having their own business, because they value their professional freedom.

Another factor that motivates choosing a new career at this age is that many professionals who are 30 or older have already formed a family or are thinking about getting married and having children. Therefore, they have other aspects in their life dividing attention with their careers, in addition to feeling a greater need of making money and having a medium and long-term career plan.

If before, this professional used to accept making less in exchange for an opportunity to learn and to work in promising companies; now, financial recognition has an important role in his/her employment negotiations and he/she is more concerned with the balance between his/her personal and professional life.

Jobs with long working hours or that require that the professional travel constantly are no longer the first option for this group from the moment they realize that they want to spend more time with their families.

Obviously, there is an exception to every rule, in other words, there are thirtysomething professionals who do not identify with the profile described above. But if you have, we suggest that you read more on the subject in order to make a well-informed decision.

How to find out if you need to change careers

“I’m 30 years old. Does this mean that I need to change careers?” Not necessarily. Change only makes sense if you are unhappy with what you do.

You might be physically tired. In this case, taking a vacation is enough for you to come back with renewed energy.

But if you’ve come back to work after a few days of rest, and you still can’t get back into your routine, perhaps it’s time to pay attention to some everyday signs.

  • Do you feel appreciated at your company?
  • Do you have a hard time getting up to go to work?
  • Is your work bringing you more sorrow than joy?
  • Are you in this profession due to social pressure?

The answers to these questions will help you define if you need a break, a change of job position or something more radical, such choosing a new career.

How to get ready for choosing a new career

Feeling bored, frustrated or dissatisfied with your profession are legitimate reasons to question if this is what you want to do for the rest of your life. But we guarantee that talking to your boss and quitting now is not the best solution.

Instead, you can start getting ready right now so that your professional transition is successful and so you don’t need to go through another change over the next ten years. A few tips will help you a lot at this moment:

1. During moments of change, more important than knowing what you want to do, is knowing what you don’t want to do

Think about those activities that you like to perform on a daily basis or that you prefer to delegate to others.

2. Make a list of tasks you perform easily

With what type of activity do people ask for your help? What are the subjects that you master and like to share? By doing this exercise you will find a new occupation that can generate income and at the same time, provide personal satisfaction.

3. Seek professional help

When we are thinking about making changes to our life, we naturally think about asking the advice from family and friends, right?

But did you know that their opinion can get in the way instead of helping? This happens because people who are very close to us are ruled by emotional stimuli and they are afraid that the new challenge might not work, so they might discourage you.

The ideal thing to do is seek the help of professionals such as coaches, psychologist or human resources analysts, who are better prepared to identify your strengths and show you how you can use them to achieve your goals.

4. Don’t compare yourself to others

Each professional has a trajectory, regardless of his/her skills. Perhaps the person who joined a company with you has moved up faster because of characteristics that the company required at that moment, but this doesn’t mean that you are less qualified.

Believe me, if you are the right professional for a job and you work focused on the end client’s satisfaction, you will eventually be rewarded.

What we mean with this hypothetical example is that you shouldn’t compare yourself to other professionals. In addition to being a practice that is frowned upon, being concerned with other people hinders your productivity.

5. Be prepared financially

Training in a new area and even professional relocation require time and investment, which means putting a certain lifestyle on hold, especially if you have a family.

Therefore, in order to make sure that there are no major surprises when making a career transition, you need to be prepared financially. There are cases of people who save the money necessary to go for 6 months to a year out of the conventional job market.

If you decide to start your own business, remember to add your business expenses to your personal expenses.

6. Evaluate the level of adaptation that the career change will require from you

If you wish to give up on a career as an executive for a large company to work with arts and crafts, that will be one type of transition. Giving up on a career as an engineer to become a college professor will be another type of change.

You need to consider the following: Will the change in career require some form of specialization? Is there something that I already know that I can use in my new professional trajectory? Which brings us to the next topic.

7. Find areas in which you can use the skills you already have

Of course there is nothing preventing you from seeking a profession that is completely different from everything you have done so far, but even with the most radical changes it is possible to use some knowledge previously acquired during your professional trajectory.

When you identify the skills you have acquired and that can help you in your new profession, you will feel less intimidated.

8. Build a network of contacts

Sending out resumes isn’t very effective if people only know you because of your professional past and don’t know that you are searching for new career challenges. In short, this is the moment to activate those connections you built in the past.

Therefore, never underestimate the power of networking. Identify professionals that have values that match yours, even if they are in different markets. Eventually, these contacts can open doors for you in the company where they work.

Keeping in touch with your network is also useful to learn about the challenges that they face in their everyday life.

One market opportunity: online courses

Google is currently searched 40 thousand times a second, which totals 3.5 billion searches a day. That’s a considerable volume, right?

Due to this exponential growth, more and more people are discovering that search engines are a great showcase to advertise their work.

And a good way of doing this is by creating online courses. Online courses are educational materials in digital format that are sold or distributed online. You might be an excellent cook and decide to capitalize on this talent by teaching other people about cooking and food preparation basics.

You don’t have to go far to find people who consume this type of content. Proof of this is that distance learning is one of the fastest-growing educational segments nowadays, either for graduate courses or free subjects.

One of the greatest advantages of this format is that you don’t need to be a teacher to create your own online course. All you need is the knowledge of what you wish to share with people. And the good news is that it is possible to create an online course spending little or almost no money.  

Here in the blog, we post various subjects on how to create and sell online courses, write video lessons scripts, improve your resourcefulness in front of the camera, how to make more attractive video classes, to understand if this is the best option for choosing a new career:


Choosing a new career require leaving your comfort zone; therefore, there is no ready-made formula for this. What you can do is prepare yourself emotionally and financially so that this change can occur as best as possible and especially, that the results are what you expected.

Don’t give up on choosing a new career because of the “fear of something new” or because you feel you are too old. Remember famous examples such as Leonard Cohen, Samuel L. Jackson and many other renowned professionals who only started their careers after they were 40.

And finally, always keep in mind that any step you take isn’t final. If you take the necessary care during your transition and preserve your former professional relationships, doors will always be open if your regret your decision.

Do you have any tips that might help in a career change? Share them with us in the comment box below!

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