Psychologist Jonathan Alpert answers a question about career change.
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A 30-something man writes that he’s working long hours in a job he doesn’t like. However, he makes really good money so he’s reluctant to quit. He wants to be in a job where he can make a difference. He’s considering a career as a teacher.
Alpert says he should go for it. He makes an excellent point: “The longer you stay in [this job], the greater the dissatisfaction and likelihood of poor behavior driving you out.” I tell my own clients, “If your miserable, you’d better think about doing something; otherwise you will self-sabotage and you will be forced to make a change.”
He’s also right when he emphasizes the need to explore – to find out what new teachers earn and what their days are like.
But I’m not sure I’d agree that he’d be “well received” due to his experience. Teachers at the elementary and high school level are hired based on credentials and education credits, as far as I can tell. These days it’s not easy to get and hold a teaching job. I’m told you often need a contact who can be an intermediary.
I’d also question what’s going on. It’s not always clear what’s wrong when people feel restless or frustrated. Sometimes you think the problem is related to the job and it’s really about your family, home, location or other aspect of your personal life. You may be in the wrong job with the wrong people.
Teaching has a lot of downsides too. Check them out.