Today I spoke to two separate women on the issue of self confidence. Their stories are very different but there were parallels; their self confidence was damaged and they have made personal decisions to start to re-build it. More examples of career and personal resilience!
The first woman I spoke has been out of the workplace for 16 years. She called to talk to me about how to re-skill herself to get back to work again. Asking for help and seeking a game plan is such an important step to make. We spoke about the issue of self confidence and she acknowledged that this was her biggest barrier in getting back to work. I offered the following guidance:
- Work out what you want to do. Only you can. This means assessing your core skills, what you love, what you are good at etc. Talk about it with a trusted friend or spouse and write it down.
- Do some charity or volunteer work. Get used to working with adults again while using a computer, email, and phone.
- Talk to friends and family about possible job options. The greatest leads come from close to home.
- No negative talk. Practice being nice about yourself in front of a mirror.
- Google 'Productivity Places Program' and find a suitable course to complete. The Federal Government is currently offering job seekers the opportunity to skill-up. The discounts available on courses offered by Registered Training Organisations is worthewhile investigating.
The other woman I spoke to had a completely different story to tell. She had a successful career in senior management positions until recently when she requested to come back to work flexibly after having a baby. This request was met with a redundancy payment. Her self confidence was shot but her ability to be career resilient (a common characteristic shared by parents) has enabled her to hold her head high and attract some wonderful consulting work that will not only challenge her but also give her flexibility.