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4 Signs That It's Time to Change Careers

By Casey C. Sullivan, Esq. | Last updated on

Thousands of lawyers leave the law every year. Corporate attorneys become yoga gurus. Prosecutors become public school teachers. Family lawyers become family counselors. And some attorneys change careers without giving up legal practice, moving from BigLaw to nonprofit work or from a government agency to their own solo practice.

But how do you know when the time is right for a career change? Here are four tell-tale signs.

1. Business Is Bad

Necessity is the mother of reinvention. If you're finding clients to be in short supply and are struggling to keep your practice afloat, it might be time to recalibrate. The same goes for non-solos as well; if your employer is struggling to stay afloat or if you've seen signs that you might be let go, start thinking of a career change. This could mean finding someone else to work for, changing tack to a new practice area, or putting your legal skills to use in a non-legal job.

2. Business Is Good Enough That You Can Quit

Alternatively, if you've wanted to change careers but are waiting for the right time, make sure you have your finances in order. That means making sure you can still cover student loan payments, your mortgage, and normal living expenses with your new salary, especially if you're going from a high-paying gig to a more modest income. If you're going to be working on your own, or expect to be unemployed for a time, you'll want to have a significant nest egg saved up before making the change.

3. You've Found Your Dream Job (or Can't Stop Looking for It)

If you spend your days searching Indeed's job listings for field biologists, reading up on life as a professional gopher counter, and subscribing to the Wildlife Trends Journal, well it might be time for a career change. (If you're obsessed with a non-field biologist job, as well, the same applies.)

4. You're Burnt Out

If you haven't found the perfect new career, it still might be time for a change, if you're too burnt out to continue lawyering. If you're always exhausted, overwhelmed by feelings of anger, cynicism, or frustration, and letting your work suffer as a result, get out while you still have time.

Start the search for your perfect career by posting your resume on Indeed today.

FindLaw has an affiliate relationship with Indeed, earning a small amount of money each time someone uses Indeed's services via FindLaw. FindLaw receives no compensation in exchange for editorial coverage.

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