factor inhibiting women from returning to work after a career break. Often, we express this loss of confidence in different ways such as ‘I’m too old’ or ‘My work can’t be done flexibly’ or ‘There aren’t any jobs in my field ‘: this blog will be addressing these specific potential barriers in other posts.
- Finding activities that express us as an individual, rather than as a carer or partner
- Enhancing our knowledge and skills. It is possible to find out about interesting and useful courses through the internet, a local library and adult education colleges. Talking to previous work colleagues can be reassuring: they can suggest relevant literature to read
- Becoming more familiar with new technology. Computer shops, community centres and colleges all run courses or a young, tech-savvy neighbour might offer tutorials for a small fee
- Asking for feedback, on our strengths and things we are good at, from the people who care about us. It is easy for them to assume that we don’t need feedback because we appear to be managing everything very well
- Acting confident. Sometimes, our thoughts and feelings can follow from our actions, so by acting confident we start to feel it
- Spending time with people who support us and help us to feel good about ourselves
- Ignoring that critical voice. This can be easier to say than to do, but it is important to recognise how unkind this voice can be. Would we allow a friend talk to us this way? If they did, would they remain a friend? Learn to be kinder.
However we go about rebuilding our confidence it is essential to remember that it can be a slow process, but every small step that we take will accumulate over time until we are ready – and eager – to return to work.
Posted by Katerina – co-founder of Women Returners.