Ask At 56 I loathe my boring job. Can I move into a new career?

At 56 I loathe my boring job. Can I move into a new career? Find out on

Don't forget to take our Salary Survey!

Question: Would it be stupid to quit my job of 15 years for which I’m not so passionate to start a new life? This is difficult for me since I’m 5 - 7 years from retirement but i don’t know if i can hold on.

Answer Paywizard:

Although I am a wizard, my powers are unable to determine your age, current occupation and future, target occupation. All of which are important factors in determining whether you should retire or not.

Regarding age, if you are an older worker age discrimination is very pervasive in the US labor market even though it is technically illegal.

Also, please keep in mind that it has become increasingly difficult for workers over 40 to gain a foothold in certain jobs, especially in newer, fast-paced fields like information and communications technology. This is primarily because employers may believe that younger workers are willing to work longer hours for less pay and cutting labor costs is usually a top, if not the top, priority for most companies.

On the other hand, however, many other kinds of employers greatly appreciate the experience that older workers can bring. In this case you would have an advantage, but I cannot tell you either way unless I know the field that you’re currently employed in and the field that you would like to move to.

Many of us devote a huge portion of our time and energy to our work. A job is more than something that merely has to get done. It is something that we must wake up for and devote our minds and bodies to every day. Getting up each morning and going to a place that you dislike will have a huge tax on your psyche.  But when considering leaving your current job, or any job, ask yourself these important questions:

(1) If you quit, do you have enough money to live on if you become unemployed for one month, two months, or longer?

(2) Do you have a lot of debts to pay: car loan, credit cards, mortgage, etc.?

(3) Do you have another job lined up?

(4) Do you think that it likely that you will have similar problems in other jobs for which you are qualified?

If you answer “Yes” to questions  (2), (4) then you may want to consider either holding on to your current job and try to save up enough to retire or save enough to have the ability to say “No” to these questions, and then start your new life. If you answer “Yes” to questions (1) or (3) and “No” to question (4) then you may want to consider looking for your dream job. I hope this advice helps. Good luck.