The Career Coach is In

Post-retirement career launch

Question:

I'm expecting to retire in five years or so. I plan on continuing to work, but not in my current field. How do I begin to figure out what to do in my next incarnation?

Answer:

You have enough time to make a transition to almost anything you would like to do; even if it's a field that requires further education, you have time to get a degree.

But all that choice can be overwhelming. Here are a few ways I suggest to narrow the field:

--Try eliminating all the places you don't need to look. For many people, it's easier to say what they DON"T want to do. So list all the careers that don't appeal at all.

--Next, list careers you would like to consider. Don't worry if they aren't realistic. You won't become a ballerina in retirement, but perhaps the clues will lead to a career in the arts.

--Once you have a list of things you want to consider, pick the most interesting and do some research. Move promising options up the list and eliminate any that look less exciting when you get into the details.

--Finally, once you have even one or two ideas, find a few people in the field to speak with. Follow whatever seems interesting, and continue to eliminate less attractive options.

I'm a big fan of iterative processes, especially when you have as much time as you do. Each avenue you explore will give you more data about what you do and don't want in a next career. Over time, your options will reduce themselves to a handful that you can pursue with more purpose.

By

Karen Chopra

 |  January 15, 2010; 10:30 AM ET  |  Category:  Career Change , Job Search , Networking Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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