“What? Did you say a career change at this point? I just quit my nice paying job despite my financial crisis! Now you’re telling me I’ll switch to something unfamiliar? I am already in my 40s, confused on what to do, and fearful I might not be able to handle it. You’ve got to be kidding. Well, I’ll give it some thought, perhaps.”

You might be experiencing midlife crisis.

These days, psychologists would rather not use the term midlife crisis. They would rather call it midlife transition. They say that while this stage can put mid-lifers to serious depression, this can also be a phase of significant growth for them. The thing is you need to be aware of it and do something to alleviate your situation.

For career individuals experiencing the midlife transition, it’s not the end of your career yet. To keep you mentally sharp, socially engaged and ultimately achieve financial security for retirement, consider a career change.

Easier said than done, you say. But think about it– a totally new career can be one of the answers to your search for a more fulfilling and meaningful career life.

You need to have the willingness to get you started. The fear of change is just normal. The trick is not to entertain fear and just move forward.

Career consultant Helen Harkness of Career Design Associates Inc. provides these 5 essential steps to get you started.

Recognize your feeling

It’s either that your current career is no longer available or needed in the workplace or not personally gratifying anymore. Boldly face the situation realizing the necessity of a career change.

Look inward

This is the basic step to ultimately determine what you have and must have to be successful. Carefully assess yourself (better yet with a career counsellor) and write down possible careers.

Look outward

Research and explore for resources for that career match. Make use of personal and professional contacts, the Internet, books and classes.

Look forward

Making a decision is very important. Make up your mind what career is the best match for you taking into consideration your skills and interests with reference to the present job opportunities and beyond.

Take action steps

Use all job search resources online and offline. Harness says: Get comfortable travelling with an incomplete map and unexpected detours to achieve success in our age of uncertainty.

To all the mid-lifers out there who want a second chance at a more satisfying career life, stop brooding. This is the best time for a new career! Get started now and have a (mid) life!