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A Three-step Plan to Help You Advance Your Professional Career

The only thing constant in this world is change; people, animals, places, thoughts, mindsets, and ideas — all these can change through time. That’s why it’s only natural for you to change along with it, which is better than the alternative: resistance. Besides, it’s much harder to go against the flow of the current.

Instead of exerting your effort into staying the same over time, devote your energy to changing what you can and improving what you can’t. This kind of smart thinking is helpful, especially if you’re focused on advancing your professional career. So, here’s a three-step plan that can help you make progress in the right direction:

1. Upskill

Just because you know a thing or two about your industry doesn’t mean it’s enough. If you truly want to succeed in the career path you’ve chosen, you have to put in the work to stay updated with the current trends and practices dominating the conversations. And don’t let yourself get left behind.

The techniques and strategies that you know today may no longer be effective tomorrow because new ones have replaced them. Or it could be that your current skills prove to be rusty against the future demands of your position. If you can’t cope with the ever-changing needs of your market, you might not last in the field.

To avoid this from happening in the first place, do your best to make yourself indispensable. That means learning the skills needed to perform the more technical aspects of your career or improving the skills that you already have. The most important thing is that you continuously upskill so that you can be an invaluable professional wherever you go.

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2. Become Involved

Once you’ve learned the theory, it’s time to put it into practice. Learning shouldn’t be confined to the four walls of the classroom, or in this case, the learning platforms you used to upskill yourself. That’s why you should find opportunities where you can have immersive experiences in the line of work you want to pursue.

This can include applying for internships or on-the-job training under industry experts, so you’ll have the chance to work directly under the people you want to learn from. But you can also gain valuable experiences by immersing yourself in the various organizations that support the causes you believe in.

Volunteerism can teach you soft and transferable skills that you won’t be able to gain through theory. It will expose you to people from all walks of life—the underprivileged, the marginalized, and the indisposed. You might think that it’s useless to learn these skills because it won’t help advance your career, but in reality, these are the kinds of skills that most companies are looking for.

3. Recuperate

It would be impossible for you to function on peak productivity at all times, especially if you don’t take enough time to rest. That’s why after you upskill and immerse yourself in society, you need to allow yourself to recuperate so you’ll have the energy you need to repeat the entire process all over again.

If you continuously push yourself to your limits and ignore your body’s cries, you’ll burn out faster than the time it took to learn a new skill. So, don’t be afraid to slow down to a stop when you feel like you’ve had enough. And if you’re still buzzing with energy, redirect it to doing activities that will consume your focus while allowing you to rest.

This is especially important since the world is still in the middle of a global pandemic. Most lockdown restrictions may have already been lifted, but the world is far from returning to normal. That’s why until then, you should busy yourself with a variety of lockdown pastimes such as playing board games and crafting.

Don’t be tempted to overwork your body or overwhelm your mind with information for the sake of advancing your career. Of course, hard work is a given when you’re determined to achieve a goal. But if you feel like your productivity isn’t at its best, consider it a sign to take a break and let your mind breathe.

This pandemic has been hard on everyone emotionally, physically, and mentally. Understandably, you’ll want to make up for all the opportunities and experiences that you lost to it, but don’t do it at the cost of your health. After all, what good is having an amazing professional career if you can’t enjoy the life you’re leading just to get it? Life goes on no matter what; don’t too much pressure on yourself.

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