What Do I Do After Teaching?

A woman seeks advice about where to go in her career after losing a teaching job.

Your Career Coach

What Comes After Teaching?

Dear Michele,

I’m recently divorced after 23 years of marriage. One son is in college, the other is in his last year of high school. I’m in my second year of part-time grad school in teaching, (English). I’m working in an inner city school and my principal has given me notice that when the semester ends in January, so will my teaching experience. Teaching isn’t what I thought it would be, and there are an abundance of teachers in NY. I’ve never really had to hold a job, and don’t know what to do now. I’ve lived my whole life for my family. What do I do?

— Teach

Dear Teach,

I’m sorry for your divorce and hope you’re taking time to heal from that. Twenty three years is a long time, and whether you initiated the proceedings or not, you can benefit from fully understanding what happened. I highly recommend Debbie Ford’s book Spiritual Divorce. The first time I read the book I threw it across the room in frustration! But later, when I was calmer, I got so much from it! Now, as to your career…

Once you assimilate and heal from the divorce, start to ask yourself questions like: What do I do when I lose track of time? If money and time were no object, what would I do? What have you always dreamed about doing? What are your key strengths (and I’ll bet writing, editing and other English teacher kind of skills are high on your list)? Then, see if the answers to these questions point you in a direction. You may want to work through this process with a coach — check coachfederation.com for a directory of certified coaches. Good luck!

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