Career Breaks Shake Our Confidence
  • More than one-third of people who have taken a break from work experience a shake-up in their confidence levels when they return.
  • This feeling is more pronounced in women who are prone to long career breaks due to childcare responsibilities.
  • Due to the pandemic, which has displaced millions of global employees, there is even more insecurity and uncertainty for those who are looking to return to work.

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Why career breaks hit your confidence so hard

bbc.com

Being away from work(for many months or years) takes its toll on the confidence levels as we are out of practice and feel out of touch with our ‘work’ self. There may be new rules, laws and ways of doing things that are not known to us yet.

There can be insecurities related to younger employees who are now promoted, and as many of us have our entire identities connected with our job, these new developments can result in loss of self-esteem.

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We can forget the workplace in a long break, and start to doubt ourselves, feeling incompetent and insecure. It is crucial to get our groove back, even if by reminding ourselves of our past accomplishments, quality of work, and other positive thoughts.

Revisiting the past successes can help get back our confidence, as can reconnecting with people we knew in our previous ‘work’ life, who remember us as the professional we once were.

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The year of ‘no work’ may have been challenging and there may have been certain skills that we used to cope up with the new problems, like discipline, time management and daily planning.

We must identify these skills and understand that we may have become better at many things and have increased our resilience.

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  • The recruiting department can find out any discrimination against employees who have had an irregular career path, and they need to be sensitized about the same.
  • Job descriptions have 50 different, unrealistic requirements and many prospective candidates, especially women, do not even apply as they consider themselves unworthy. Reducing the number of requirements can help.
  • The pandemic has also made it normal to have a career gap, which can be a silver lining.

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