With the pandemic in full flow, the working world has been turned upside down, and those who are going through the stages of choosing their lifelong career have a very different world to those of us who decided even as little as two years ago what our choice would be.

There has also been the added financial strain as many of the part-time jobs students would have naturally gone for to fund their training while at university have disappeared or are not filling vacancies due to COVID lockdown, such as bar work or waiting on tables in restaurants.

Uncertain future and time pressures

These circumstances, combined with some universities putting courses on hold but still having students pay for the part courses they have done with no form of refunds on offer, students are feeling out of pocket and have the pressure of uncertain future reaching out ahead of them.

In today’s working world, you need to have a flexible attitude, regardless of if you are looking to go to college, university, or thinking of a career change. Being able to simply go to a place of work that is relatively close to you is a thing of the past. The future bends more towards remote working or only visiting the office so many days out of five and working from home for the rest of the week.

Pressures caused by working remotely

While many people might not find this much of a problem, indeed a few might even welcome it; you need to be aware of the mental issues which can arise when alone working. The lack of social interaction has already been a dominant factor of the pandemic, with the focus on the elderly or those without family. However, this is an everyday factor when alone working from home, and many people do struggle with it.

This is not a failure by any means, but if you are looking to go into a type of career where there is potentially a lot of working by yourself, you will need to make allowances and plan ahead to alleviate the mental problems it can cause.

Downtime is crucial

Having some downtime at the end of the working day to draw a line under it before you start on your relaxing evening, defining a break in pattern and mindset is an excellent idea. Otherwise, you could find that your working day just continues – even if you are not still physically sat at your desk – and your brain does not switch off, and stress builds as a result.

Ensure that you plan the end of your working day to connect with others – even just a quick phone call, not necessarily about work, but a social call can be uplifting and give your brain something else to think about.

Spend time exercising, whether it is a full-on workout, or going jogging, or just a stroll around the block. Exercise releases good endorphins into the brain and relieves stress. It can also help the mind go over the days’ events and bring a close to the working day.

Temporary roles either on-site or working remotely

There are employment agencies that offer both working in an office and working remotely for their staff. For example, if you are looking for a job in law, try a paralegal temp agency to see what they could do for you.

Another idea is to work part-time from home and get a second job part-time in a more social environment to lessen the emotional strain and give the social interaction which is required, even if it is only a few hours, one or two days a week.

Final thoughts

So when thinking about your future career choices, be aware of how that particular career works. Does it involve you going to a place of work like a nurse or a doctor would go to a hospital, or is it a career where perhaps you may be expected to work remotely for the main amount of time with maybe just the odd day here and there traveling to the office or at a client’s business premises?

Have a think about how this kind of work will affect you and your state of mind.

Start as you mean to go on, make sure there is a definite break between your working day and your relaxing evening. If possible, insert an end of the workday event in, for example, finish your working day, then go for a jog or a walk, come home, have a shower then start your evening.

Doing this should stop any working day stresses building up and affecting your relaxation periods and even your sleeping patterns.

Guest writers and carefully selected for Career Enlightenment. Thanks for reading!

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