European club competition returns with Rounds 3 and 4 in six weeks' time and O'Connor plans to announce his chosen destination as soon as this week or early next.
"I have decided that I will be moving overseas next month as part of a short-term playing contract," said O'Connor, who can play fly-half, wing, full back and centre.
"I am in final discussions with several clubs and will announce the new partnership in the coming days."
O'Connor has an impressive 44 caps for his country to his name and has scored 223 points in Test rugby.
He started all three summer Tests against the British & Irish Lions and has long been regarded as one of Australia's most-talented players.
But off-field issues have slowed his progress in recent times, with his latest alleged indiscretion resulting in him being ruled out of international action for the rest of the year and having his Australian Rugby Union contract terminated.
O'Connor had been in talks with former side the Western Force with a view to remaining in Australia but he has instead opted to head north, although he hasn't ruled out a return home prior to the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
"I believe the move, for a few months, will be beneficial for me to develop in a different environment and help me to be the best rugby player and person that I can be," added O'Connor.
"It will also ensure that I continue playing professional rugby immediately and not wait until early in the New Year to resume competition.
"I contacted Western Force today to inform them of my short-term move overseas, but my management and I are continuing discussions with the Force about a longer-term partnership.
"The past few weeks have given me an opportunity to look at all aspects of my life both professionally and personally. I want to give myself every opportunity to get back into the Wallabies side and to represent Australia in the 2015 World Cup."
While O'Connor hasn't yet indicated which country he plans to ply his trade in from November, ARU chief executive Bill Pulver has stated that he expects to see the former Melbourne Rebels man in England this winter.
"He's told me he is going to head off to England to play rugby and we wish him well," said Pulver.
"I respect James' right to make a decision on his playing future. I spoke to him and I expressed on behalf of Australian rugby a slight disappointment that he is not going to remain in Australia.
"My understanding is that he will be back in Australia about May. But, just to be clear, returning to Australia in May means he would not be eligible to play for the Wallabies next year. To be crystal clear on (ARU) policy: you have to play a full domestic season of Super or club rugby in Australia to be eligible to play for the Wallabies."