7 things you MUST do during a career break

7 things you MUST do during a career break

Taking a career break can be extremely liberating and beneficial to your professional life and give you the opportunity to check things off your bucket list

While we do love our jobs, there is always a point in our professional lives when we just want to take a break. Whether it be those 9-to-5 jobs, deadlines, office politics or the long-haul commute, we want to get it over with, at least for a while.

Unfortunately, as soon as you sit on that sabbatical, you start to question your decision. "Is this what I want?" "Will I get a job after this?" "What about my skills?" "How much salary will I get when I get back to the corporate jungle?" "Will they even consider me now that I have just become a new mum?"

And while these are important questions, remember that taking a break can be an excellent opportunity to add more to your skills and learn new vocations. Here are a few things you might want to consider if you are contemplating a sabbatical.

7 things you must do during a career break

#1 Follow your passion

Since you have just begun your sabbatical, it's perfectly fine to actually enjoy it. Utilise this time to follow your true passion. Perhaps you like snorkeling, swimming or sky diving or even painting or dancing. Indulge in what trully inspires you and that which you haven't been able to catch up on for a very long time. This way you get to add a new vocation to your existing skillset and also make new friends and perhaps future colleagues on the way.

#2 Take that long due trip

Yes, there is no need for you to wait for those extended weekends or approved leave applications anymore! You are your own boss now and can take a trip anytime. If you wanted to check off those places from your bucket list, now's the time. Going for a trip broadens your horizon and also gives you ample time to relax before joining the corporate grind and busy work days ahead.

#3 Upgrade your skill set

A sabbatical is the best time to add some more vocations and skills to your existing skillset. You can do a short-term course at a university or you can opt from the various online courses available in your respective field. You could also do something different from your own field and maybe learn a new language, a software, some social marketing or media skills. A variation from your usual skill set will also give you an opportunity to expand your professional horizon.

Continue reading to know the things you must do during a career break.

#4 Socialise, socialise, socialise

It is very important to network and make new friends, especially when you are not working. This helps you keep in touch with old colleagues and acquaintances in your field and it also strengthens your professional circle. You can meet all those friends and colleagues you haven't been able to meet so far. Also, make sure to be present on all professional social networking sites and keep updating them with details of any new acquired skills.

#5 Catch up on your reading

In the midst of our regular grind, we barely get the time to catch up on any reading. So this is the right time to indulge in this luxury. It's also an amazing way to keep yourself abreast with world events and increases your knowledge base. Apart from books and newspapers, we would highly recommend browsing through blogs, news websites, and even profession networking sites. All of these sources combined will give you enough meat to stay updated.

#6 Be healthy

Our sedentary lifestyles have in a way pushed health off the table. As a matter of fact, most of us with sedentary jobs suffer from various lifestyle problems like cervical spondylitis, bad posture, weak eyesight, migraines or even tennis elbow (like myself!) The best way to utilise this sabbatical will be get back into shape and adopt healthy habits. You can take exercise classes, go for walks or do yoga at home. There are a million ways to get fit and we'd suggest you try at least a quarter of them!

#7 Be an entrepreneur

Taking a break from your regular scheduled lives also gives you a chance to pursue a career where you could be the boss. Since you are already networking and keeping your knowledge base up to date, you know exactly what can work for your 'One big idea.' Plus, you now know who to approach to, in order to get your business started. If things work out your way, you can enjoy flexi timings and be your own boss for good!

All these tips are from my personal experience and something that I have tried my hands at. I would highly recommend that those about to go on a sabbatical do the same. Trust me, it is liberating and actually quite beneficial to your career!

So take a break once in a while!

Read: 6 tips and tricks for mums returning from maternity leave

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(Image courtesy: Thrillophilia)

Written by

Deepshikha Punj

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