A Year Working From Home: How To Not Feel Stagnant In Your Career
Do you feel like you’ve not progressed much in your career ever since you’ve started working from home? You’re not alone. It is hard to feel like we’re moving forward in something when we are physically unable to do so.
It’s been exactly a year since I started working from home and I can confidently say that this is one of the best years ever for my career development despite the fair share of stress, pain, and loss I have endured due to the pandemic.
I genuinely believe that everyone reading this has it in them to progress in their career despite working from home. What we need to do is have an actionable plan to make this career progression happen.
There are a few things that I did to help myself grow in my career that you can most definitely do too! Here are 5 tips on how to not feel stagnant in your career after a year of working from home.
1. Upskill Yourself
This is one of the best ways for you to not feel stagnant in your career while working from home. Since we are unable to first-hand learn things related to our career from co-workers, seniors or managers due to the pandemic, you might want to consider investing in courses.
As a freelancer, I worked mostly alone and had no one to bug for information so I had no choice but to invest in courses to upskill myself. You can either spend time searching for information or spend money to get information handed to you. Does it really depend on which one do you value more? Your time or money? That is the opportunity cost you will have to weigh.
Digital marketing is something no one can possibly avoid due to the pandemic. It will only grow to be bigger from here onwards. That is why I took an SEO writing course and freelance writing course from an expert in their career field to upskill myself which landed me not just many freelance writing gigs but a full-time copywriter job at a multinational company.
Why am I telling you this? Because if you have the financial capacity, you should invest in your brain as knowledge is something no one can take away from you. I understand not everyone has the means to spend hundreds on courses, look for affordable options like Crunch School or free options out there.
2. Find Peers In Your Career Field
As humans, working from home is not the best option as we naturally crave human connection and the desire to feel belong. However, due to circumstances, we must make the best out of it.
How do we do that? Find peers in your career field. This does not mean they have to work in the same organization as you do, they could even be from a different country. Having a positive community is really important for career progression.
When I felt alone and lost while freelancing, I found friends from high school that were in the same line of work. We were never close friends before, but now we catch up once a month on video or voice calls and when our schedules are really packed, we still check in on each other on Instagram and share relatable industry news with each other.
This is a free way to progress and not feel stagnant in your career. Build meaningful relationships that will not only motivate you but keep you sane during this work from the home period.
3. Start A Side Hustle
If you really want to not feel stagnant in your career but you aren’t able to do much about your full-time job, consider starting a side hustle.
Side hustles teach us a lot of valuable skills that can be used in career development. These skills are such as, entrepreneurial skills, marketing, pitching, critical thinking, creativity and so much more!
If you want to start a low-cost side hustle, offer a service that you are good at instead of a physical product such as bookkeeping, social media management, photography, or consultation.
If you have some initial capital to invest, you can sell an array of things. From handmade jewelry, baked goods, to candles, the list goes on and on. You can even turn a hobby into a side hustle. For me, it was my blogging because I love writing.
4. Read More
Reading multiple books such as self-help and career-related books can really help you grow in your career by being more productive and efficient. If you physically cannot progress you will at least be able to mentally progress into a better career mindset.
5. Get Emotional Support
Feeling stagnant in your career can result in many unwanted feelings such as stress, anxiety, and even depression. It is important to vent out these feelings to someone you trust so that you feel safe sharing these vulnerable emotions.
Most of the time we aren’t able to share these thoughts and feelings with family and friends although they are close to us because they may impose their opinions on us.
If possible, consider therapy as an outlet to gain emotional support. Most therapists are trained to give their clients unconditional positive regard no matter what. If you can’t afford it, check out some free and affordable options here.
These are the five things I did to not feel stagnant in my career while working from home. I genuinely want to share these with you as I was struggling too. It was not just in terms of career development but also financial development and these five things really helped me!
Interested to read more about how to achieve your goals and improve your progress? Check out this article on Why You Should Focus on Both Your Progress and The Results When Achieving Your Goals.