Starting a new career from scratch is scary -- you never know how it will turn out.  One writer shares her personal journey to making a career change for the better.

Starting a new career from scratch is one of the most frightening things we can imagine. Many of us are still paying off loans from college; colleges we went to and graduated from with our dream careers in mind.

Whatever your situation is, millions of people end up in a career they thought they would love but now do not. Maybe we started out loving our jobs, but things might have changed too much over time. You may feel unappreciated, or you may just not be happy anymore.

When we figure this out, a primary thought is “Should I change careers? Should I maybe take a small pay cut, in order to be happy in another job that I will love or at least enjoy?

I grew up hearing things from my family like: “many people hate their careers but they go to work because there are bills to pay” and “we have to survive in this concrete world.” We are told to not make decisions for ourselves but to make decisions with others in mind such as our kids and spouses.

But what if the decision to change careers ends up being a wonderful thing?

Of course security is a good thing, but we can’t live our lives thinking of the worst case scenario or always playing it safe. We have to take chances sometimes. Especially if you feel the rewards will outweigh the risks.

It’s important to do this responsibly and with having some kind of back up plan. I’m not telling you to go into a career change with your eyes closed. Do the research, weigh out the pros and cons, and then really ask yourself the real reason why you want a career change. If everything adds up then go for it.

So many people are scared to make this change, mainly because it really is life changing.

As I venture into a new chapter of my life, I am also ready to close another chapter. I’m starting a life long journey with the love of my life. We took our relationship to the next level and decided to become parents. It happened to work out quite well actually. We’ve been living together for a while, we are remodeling our home, and our life is about to change later this month when our baby girl comes into this world. We couldn’t be more excited!

So a while back we sat down and had a long conversation about both of our careers. My boyfriend knows how unhappy I am with my career. So much to the point where I dread coming into work everyday and I come home unhappy and stressed. I’m miserable physically, emotionally and mentally. We agreed that we both don’t want me to be like this in my career.

We agreed that’s there no more room for me to grow with the company, and if I did it would mean never being home because of having to work long hours. I’m thankful that money isn’t a problem for us and that I can make this change to be with our daughter more.

I want a job where I can feel fulfilled and like I’m making a difference somehow.

I want to feel happy with my career choice. I want to come home at a reasonable time and see my boyfriend and our daughter. All of this is only going to happen if I change careers and do something I love.

The only negatives are taking a small pay cut and having to work on Saturdays. Which is not bad at all compared to my hours right now. In my current job I work a closing shift and they pretty much force us to do overtime, meaning I’m not home until almost midnight. I work weekends, those are required, and yes they are closing shifts as well.

This a great job for the single Gen-Y person maybe going to school and living at home. But since that’s not the case for me anymore, it’s time to move on and forward with a new career as I embark on this new chapter in my life.

Although I wish it was in my writing career, as of right now it’s not enough to make a living. But I will always have writing as a part-time job until the opportunity arises for me to write full-time.

Until then I will embark on a career that is fulfilling and one in which I will at least be happy and can make a difference.

So as you can see, starting a new career from scratch can be quite rewarding in many ways. Don’t be afraid to embark on a new career and make the most of it. Remember to always have a backup plan just in case it doesn’t work out, but mostly, enjoy the new career.

Make sure it’s one that is fulfilling, makes you happy, makes decent or great money and one that allows you to do something you love and enjoy.


Discussion: What’s your experience with changing careers?