Sabbatical- Blessing or Curse for Women Professionals?

Sabbatical blessing or a curse for women professionals

You can find a number of Indian women who have taken a break after a successful career. She was well educated, loved her professional identity and financially independent. She was really enjoying her professional life but suddenly what changes her mind to take a break? An inevitable situation such as motherhood, marriage, ill-health of self or family member during her professional journey and so she had to take a sabbatical. I am sure most of you can relate this situation to yours. Sabbatical could be either by choice or due to circumstances from where she cannot escape. Many a times, she was not ready but had to take sabbatical because of unfavorable circumstances. It could be 2 years, 2 months or 2 weeks depending on the situation, but for some, it is for a lifetime. I have several friends who had taken sabbatical and still haven’t joined back, still struggling to get back to work. In fact, I am on the same page too. Took sabbatical in 2016 but I haven’t stopped myself there. Being from a Pharmaceutical background, it was tough for me to get back into industry. However, I searched for other opportunities and I started working as a Freelance academic and content writer and now I have started publishing my technical and non-technical articles in various websites. So, what are you waiting for if you are on your sabbatical? Start exploring new opportunities which can help you to be in race again. Though, it will take time […]

Emotional Awareness for Personal & Professional Success

Emotional Awareness

The Harley Therapy Counselling Blog defines Emotional Awareness as “the ability to recognise and make sense of not just your emotions but also those of others.” This means that being aware of what we feel is not enough to make us emotionally aware. We need to enhance the awareness further by identifying, acknowledging and accepting that feeling in others as well. Also successfully predicting our reaction towards this feeling is crucial in enhancing emotional awareness. It is only then that we will be able to handle our emotions in the desired manner.   As humans we all have emotions. Enhancing our emotional awareness is crucial in ensuring our social well-being. It is deeply linked with how we perceive and build our relationships with our personal as well professional associates. As professionals we go through a whole gamut of emotions, and being able to decipher those early on will help us improve the way we handle ourselves as well as our relations with our co-workers in the professional space.   Build Better Communication Radha was a marketing professional and often had to make presentations to her clients. However, before every presentation she would get sleepless nights. The next morning her eyes would be red and she would be really snappy with her team. Her other team mates would avoid her on such days and made fun of her weird behavior behind her back. Gradually this created a distance between her and her team resulting in an overall poor performance. The above scenario […]

8 Advantages of Online Tutoring as Work From Home Career

A career break could be for many reasons. It could be Maternity break, ill health, health, move to another city, state, country or a perpetual break. To return after a sabbatical and start again is quite frustrating for most women. Reasons are internal as well as external. Externally, the market scenario has changed, technology has changed, pay scales, working modalities etc. Internally there are life events that have been added to the timeline and with it family dynamics as well as responsibilities have changed too. So, practically and realistically, it is a  little harder this time to start from where one has left and restart from the same field of work. The route could be a little different now, but worth taking it.  Well, as long as the motivation and passion is there, one must keep going. But until then there are few alternative options one can look into in their field of work. practically and realistically, it is a  little harder this time to start from where one has left and restart from the same field of work. Online tutoring is one such option, where you can work from home, and its easy and fun. Here are some advantages: Flexible hours – A big advantage is that these type of jobs have time slots of 2 hours per session and one can choose to go up to as many number of sessions in a day. So with a minimum of 2 hours per day one can get engaged in […]

Challenges after a Career Break and their Solutions

Career break challenges & solutions

  To all the stay-at-home moms, to all the housewives and to those ladies who have taken a career break for reasons of their own: getting your career back on track or returning to a job after years is a tough task and you have a lot to catch up on. All this while you have been engaged in chores of the house and the thought of being financially independent like before seems like a long lost dream. There is no guarantee for success. However, you must pursue your passion and try to win the job you deserve. You will face a lot of challenges on your way to the goal. But don’t worry, you are a woman of grit and can overcome these challenges easily.   Low Confidence: Your confidence would take you to the zenith of your career, but unfortunately, this is the time when your confidence is most probably at its lowest. A good way to avoid this situation is to start early i.e. prepare yourself mentally beforehand. It means utilizing your free time for some classes like public speaking, learning a new language or any other course. The main aim here is to interact with new people while you learn something new which, if possible, should be connected to your field. This won’t take much of your time and will gradually boost your confidence. Start gaining confidence on a small scale and you are good to face the bigger challenges.   Missing out on new skills: […]

9 Effective Tips for Writing a Resume

Resume writing tips

There are thousands of people who are looking out for a new job and the resume is the first point of entry that he / she can make to the company. So, it is very much essential that the resume reflects the person’s capabilities and achievements and gets the attention of the recruiters. The following guidelines will help in drafting an employable resume: Keep it Brief and Concise Recruiters spend only a few minutes screening the resume. So, ensure that your resume does not run into pages. Highlight in brief your achievements. 2. Reverse chronological order There are different ways in which the resume can be organized but the traditional way of stating items in reverse chronological order is always preferred by many. Do not leave any obvious gaps. 3. Career break If you have taken a career break, do not try to hide it. Specify the activities that you have done during the break period, even if it may not be completely relevant. For example, you could have completed some certifications, or been part of some community drive or even participated in some event in your neighbourhood school. It is essential to stay updated during the break period. If you haven’t done it, start reaching out and explore what is interesting to you before you start looking for a job. Get enrolled in refresher course. State it in the resume to show what you have done to stay relevant in the field. 4. What You See Is What You […]

Career Restarting for Women on a Career Break

Career Break

Image credit: Rawpixel Women today have proved to the world that they are competent to take on any role and job they aim for. Be it Valentina Tereshkova, first woman in space in 1963 or Stacey Cunningham hitting the headlines for being the first woman to lead New York Stock Exchange in 2018. But in reality, they are the exception than the rule. Most women are still struggling to keep afloat in a corporate setting and it’s even more challenging for those who want to come back into the workforce. The world is not kind to a career break on your resume. It raises a lot of eyebrows and concerns. Let us throw some light on this subject to understand better.   What are some of the major reasons women take a career break? There are several reasons women opt for a career break. Some of them are: Childbirth Relocation of a partner Migration to a new country Redundancy or end of contract Higher Education Sabbatical – travel, volunteering   What challenges women face returning to the workforce after a career break? Skill gap: In skilled labour like IT or finance, one needs to be up-to-date with the changes. A long career break creates a bigger skill gap. Employer’s skepticism: It raises questions on one’s capability, seriousness and time commitments which makes the employer skeptical to hire women after a break especially mothers with young ones. Position/role offered: Usually the position and salary offered to women after her break is […]

The P-C-R Approach to Achieve Financial Stability

Financial Stability

In simple terms, Financial Stability is the ability to ensure that you have enough financial reserves for a rainy day. It is a matter of significant importance for both men and women, however, for women this becomes a doubly crucial factor for consideration as the ‘rainy day’ occurs quite frequently and in most cases, in an unplanned manner.   It has happened to me a couple of times and believe me I have not only been severely drenched by the sudden shower but have also caught the chill quite unexpectedly. Experience is the best teacher. Hence, I always adopt the Plan – Change – Re-plan (P-C-R) approach to help me keep myself well- perched on high ground, safe and dry from the deluge.   Plan The first thing I do is to Plan a budget. It took me a good many years to realise the importance of a monthly budget and how it can keep your finances well within check. Once the budget is defined, I chart out a path along which to direct my finances in order to make them stay aligned to my budget. However, we are all mere mortals and can seldom refrain from indulgences. Nevertheless, if such sins do creep in make sure that you do not go overboard. An occasional splurging for an expensive jewellery shopping, Dinner at a fancy restaurant or even a luxury vacation is fine. Ensure that you do not tend to make these a regular item in your budget or else […]

Can Women be Successful Entrepreneurs?

Women Entrepreneurs

India is a country where we have seen Indian women remain restricted to household activities in earlier era. However, things have changed these days and we can see a lot of women entrepreneurs in India. They are coming up with an assortment of development in every sector, be it private or public sector.   Those days are gone when women had no professional status. Women are now changing the private and public sectors through their strength of purpose and determination. They are symbolizing the new India where women are enthusiastic to take challenges and gain knowledge from their mistakes and utilize them to become successful in future.   What are the things a woman must have to become an entrepreneur? Well, woman only need to develop consciousness, work on existing initiatives, have self-confidence, and zeal to do something. That’s it. These are the ingredients which can support women to bring a successful change.   Women have a significant economic, political, financial and social role in India. You can observe several transformational and structural reforms which are taking place in India these days. The time has come when women entrepreneurs are riding their waves successfully. There are women who do not have any background in the relevant sector of entrepreneurship but still they are overcoming the barriers through their determination and doing a remarkable job. From influencing others through starting their own ventures to making a social impact, women entrepreneurs are the influential one in today’s era.   Their ceaseless quench […]

Why you need to prioritise yourself

Image credit: pexels Needless to say, women, especially in India, are expected to be loving and selfless beings who are willing to sacrifice their dreams, desires, and career for the sake of their family. Apparently, your nurturing nature is said to be your inherent characteristic. You are taught to put others’ needs before your own. And if you do not adhere to these unwritten norms you are looked upon as selfish, haughty and mean. And if you do, you probably end up neglecting yourself. Whether you want to be altruistic or a little egoistic is totally your call. However, most of you, I am sure, are more altruistic, which is actually great- for others. Of course, it gives a sense of immense moral pleasure when you do things for everyone else. But you also need to understand that you have duty towards your own self, too, as much as you have towards others. Why you ask? Here’s why-   Because your home revolves around you: You might be all involved in your household chores and the needs of your husband and children might be on the forefront. However, whenever any member of the family is in the tiniest kind of trouble, you are the only one person they turn to. Lost a sock? Can’t find the towel? Failed an exam? Couldn’t get a promotion? You to the rescue! In case you forgot, let me remind you: You are important. Only when you are happy, your family can be, too.   […]

The Power Of Assertive Communication

The power of assertive communication

Assertive communication is the ability to express our ideas and feelings in an open and uninhibited manner. It is the trait of standing up for oneself and refuse to be taken advantage of by others. It is the recognition of one’s rights while still respecting other’s rights. Typically, women are seen as passive by the society and men are expected to be dominant. However, the behaviour of a person depends on his/her culture, upbringing, emotional support structure, work environment, genes and a whole lot of things. If we can ignore the stereotyping by the society, both men and women can be assertive by choice. For some, assertiveness is a second nature and comes very easily whereas for others it is like every other behaviour, schooled and practised. Given any situation, we have couple of choices on how we can react. We have a choice to be either meek or be assertive. A lot of confusion prevails as to whether a person is assertive or aggressive. Aggressiveness is the ‘fight’ response and is detrimental to relationships. Assertiveness is the logical response and is not driven by emotions. Submissiveness, on the other hand, is the ‘flight’ response where we tend to give away our rights. We are habituated to respecting authority and are told to adjust to situations right from childhood, so that we can live in harmony. But we do not shy away from using aggression over weaker sections when the situation is not conducive to us. Is there a need […]