After spending a considerable amount of time serving in the military, veterans may find the return to civilian life more challenging than expected. Many veterans feel overwhelmed with re-adjusting to society, organizing personal finances, and finding a new job. Exploring new career options provides a unique challenge. If you have recently returned from active duty and are not sure where to start your job search, consider the tips presented below.
Adjust to Your New Lifestyle
Before you begin your job search, it is wise to give yourself time to adjust to life after the military. This includes changing your sleeping schedule, managing your diet and exercise, making time to socialize, and preparing for the standard nine-to-five civilian workday. This will be difficult to do on your own, so consider reaching out to friends and family for help. Creating a support group will help you transition more effectively into your new lifestyle.
Identify Your Skill Set
When looking for a new job, look for something that can utilize the skills you developed during your time in the military. You may be surprised to learn that many of the things you did during active duty are easily transferred into the workplace. Cooperation, organization, and trade skills such as repairing machinery are all valuable to employers. Create a list of anything you think could be valuable and be sure to include it in your resume.
Consider Earning an Advanced Degree
Some employers may require you to acquire an advanced degree or certification before you can apply for a job. If you want to start a career in a specialized field, you may consider taking online classes to further your education. Many public colleges and universities offer programs that can be completed online. Veterans could choose to pursue online business degrees or to complete certification programs required for jobs in engineering and medicine.
Know Your Limits
Time in the military is different for everyone, and this can have a significant effect on the kind of job you can manage when you return to civilian life. For instance, if you are injured during active duty, that may prevent you from applying for jobs that require a large amount of physical labor during the day. Before you get too serious about any particular career, consider talking to your doctor about what would be best for you.
Keep an Open Mind
It is important to know that not every career option will be available to you right away, depending on the requirements for hiring. More than likely, you will be required to take on an entry-level job. Do some research about starting positions in the field you hope to pursue, knowing that you can always climb the ladder and work for a promotion later if you would like. For instance, those interested in the medical field could start with a job in big data, or someone interested in teaching could start as a substitute teacher.
Finding a new career after your time in the military is possible, even if it seems overwhelming at first. With patience and dedication, you can find new and secure employment to help you establish yourself as a civilian.