When getting back to work after our children start school, we often feel we are lacking in some or many areas. Instead of starting the process of getting back into the workforce, we ebb back into the comfort zone of what we know.
What parents once knew is now merely a false existence – there are no longer any babies, toddlers or other wee people that require our constant attention. Our children have made a huge quantum leap to go from kinder or preschool to school or even going from primary to high school. As parents we need to be prepared to take similar quantum leaps as we contemplate a return to the job market, no matter how uncomfortable it feels.
So how can we get our career mojo back?
One of the biggest steps is taking a step away from our child. We have co-existed for so long it’s hard to picture that we have a life, separate to our child’s. We need to rediscover who we are as individuals.
Step 1. Reflect on your life journey so far. Put pen to paper and write down the highs the lows. You may find there are themes to what you have loved and also some telling themes to the troughs. In essence careers can be crafted from the “what I love elements” such as working with children and some of the lows may lead to contemplating careers in social work or community service.
Step 2. Get a blank sheet of paper and write out all of your skills. Start with those that come to mind the quickest, remembering there is no right or wrong. Write as many skills as you can. Then leave it for a few days and then come back and write some more. By doing this, you can start to regain an understanding of who you are.
Step 3. We encourage parents who are at the cross roads of their career to start a journal – write some notes, just get it out. How you feel, where you might like to head.
By feeling that we have value and worth in our own right we can start to gain the confidence to take the next step in our career search.
This is the first article in a 3-part series on Returning to the Workforce after kids. Next week we talk about regaining our identity.
Career coaching can help parents get back to work, contact the team at Harvest Careers on 1300 363 128 and make an appointment to get you started.