Changing careers is something most of us do or have done in our lives, but why is it that once we are mothers it all seems much scarier?
We suddenly feel the weight of responsibility way more acutely and the risks are somehow magnified.
As a coach, I work on the mindset and confidence stories that underpin all our decisions and I have found that there are often common themes that come up for mums when they consider new careers.
With that in mind here are my top 5 obstacles (real and, often, imagined) that you need to overcome to really make career change an exciting prospect for you and not the most terrifying ordeal imaginable.
1. I’m too old to change jobs now
I want to ask you, why do you feel that you have a shelf life? What is it about age that defines your ability negatively? When is the correct age to stop aspiring and achieving new things in your life? Some of the most successful entrepreneurs started business in their 50s and 60s You can change jobs at any point in your life, age is only an issue if you make it one.
2. People will not take me seriously
Other people are not judging you as much as you are judging yourself. Worries about being judged are common and come from a place of fear and the unknown. Ask yourself why do you want to change roles, what will changing give you that don’t currently have, why do you want to set up your own business? When you are comfortable about what it is you want to do, you will find that you care less about what others think.
3. I’ll be judged for being a mum. I need to play this down
Becoming a mum is a positive thing to put on the CV and there is a real and tangible shift towards flexibility and equality in the workplace for mums. Deciding before you even venture towards job change that it will not happen for you because you are a mum is a sure-fire way to prove yourself right. Focus on how being a mum has changed you for the better and what you can offer a role or opportunity because you are a parent.
4. I’ve been out of the game for too long, I don’t know what I’m doing anymore
Listen out for how to talk to yourself – do you say things like I could never…… or I’m rubbish at…… or I wish I could do……. How is talking to yourself like this helping you? Telling yourself you don’t know what you’re doing anymore may feel true but it’s more that you are out of practice. Action is the antidote to feeling this way, getting stuck in to what you want to achieve, making plans, talking about it, deciding what it is you need to do – it’s all part of the process.
5. It’s bad to want a career now that I am a mother
The mum guilt is insidious! We have been conditioned to believe that once we have children they are everything – but many women feel that being a mother is fantastic but so is being a working mum. Mums who are more satisfied in their jobs are often happier people because of it and we all know happier mums make happier children.
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