Career Lessons

6 Career Lessons You Learn or Regret Forever

Most of us want to succeed in all aspects of our life. However, there are some lessons that we need to learn to give ourselves a chance of achieving career success and a healthy work-life balance. This blog post lists 6 career lessons that we learn or regret forever.

You’re on your own

When you are studying, your teachers and your parents will pay attention and help you achieve your goals. Most of us are brought up in an environment of constant encouragement and structure. Once you enter the workplace, you realise that nobody is going to be around on a regular basis to help you achieve what you want. You need to take responsibility and make a plan about what you want and how you are going to get it. As the famous speaker Jim Rohn said “If you don’t design your own life, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.”

Never stop learning

Given the current rate of technological change, it is essential that you continue to learn and hone your skills throughout your career. Failure to keep up with the changes in your market could see you fall behind within a couple of years (or less depending on the field you work in). The good news is that it is easier than ever before to learn new skills thanks the availability of information online and low-cost online learning platforms. The average Irish Facebook user spends nearly 6 hours a week browsing on Facebook, imagine what you could achieve if you spent half of that time learning a new skill.

Online Learning

Failure is not the end

Our culture is so obsessed with winning and achievement that it can be easy for people to feel distraught about failure. However, even the highest achievers have had some failures so it is important that you put any failure in perspective and think about what you can learn from it. In order to push yourself, you will have to be willing to take risks and when you take risks, there is always a possibility you will fail. It is best to view failure not as the end of the journey but as another step in your long term process.

Don’t forget about your family

You are an expendable asset to a business. When you leave a job, your desk will be filled by someone else. You might have a party with your colleagues but life will move on and business will move forward. But, that will never be the case with your family. When you leave them, there will nobody who can take your place and they will keep you in their hearts forever. So, make sure you’re committed to your role but never neglect the most relationship in your life.

Mother spending time with family
Don’t neglect your health

A recent US study found that nearly 59% of people were more concerned about their finances than they were about their physical fitness. The reason for this is simple, every week we have bills to pay but most of us don’t have health concerns on a weekly basis. People are naturally biased towards short-term rewards as a higher pay check today and this means long term rewards such as health in later life can be neglected. We also suffer from an optimism bias in which we assume that we are less likely to experience negative events than others. These biases mean that we put off exercising and eating healthily as we have other more immediate concerns.

Don’t be afraid to make a change

Happiness and fulfilment in your career comes from enjoying your work. You are unlikely to ever find a job that you will always enjoy but you should strive to work in a role that engages and excites you and where you feel competent and valued. A study by the London School of Business and Finance found that 25% of people in the UK feel that they made a mistake entering their current profession. But despite this disillusionment, many people are unwilling to change for a variety of reasons. 20% are afraid to switch because they are unsure what to do, 15% because of a fear of a failure and 29% because of financial reasons. These are all legitimate barriers and you do need a solid strategy and plan to make a successful transition. However, you will spend a huge portion of your life working and working in a role that you enjoy will make you feel happier and more fulfilled.

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