Hey SHEROES, It’s Perfectly Fine To Take A Career Break!

Last updated 14 Dec 2017 . 6 min read

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A random mail in my inbox on a Sunday morning got me thinking. Why is it that we need a circle of support? Us women why do we feel the need to connect and share? The thing about having access to a circle of support is, you can reach out without the lingering feeling of being judged for being yourself.

The mail in question here read something like this,

Been following SHEROES for quite some time now and must say it's a wonderful platform for women who are trying to make their way back into the career they once left for various reasons. I am a Civil Engineer by profession. Post marriage I quit my job with the idea of going back to work in a couple of years but for reasons I myself  am not sure about I just couldn't. I now just blame it on my lack of interest. But I must add here, I have had the best times of my life travelling and doing things I loved doing. And in the process I have become a amateur photographer too!”

Needless to say, I got back in touch with her as soon as I could and while talking with her I realized there are layers to the struggle of getting back to work. These struggles are unique to each one of us. We were on a call when I suggested Sajitha to pen down her struggles and journey of getting back to work and share it with us. It didn't take anything to convince her, just the sheer joy of letting other women know why is it perfectly fine to have taken a break in your career.

“A Keralite born and brought up in Gujarat, that’s me! Sajitha Nair. Did my schooling in Kendriya Vidyala and went on to do my B.E in Civil in Vidyanagar, Gujarat. Post my graduation started working with an architectural firm as the Project Engineer which gave me the exposure and the insight into the professional life. Life was going exactly the way I wanted it to be.

It was time Dad’s princess becomes someone’s queen and I got married. I quit my job and relocated to Chennai.  It was a very conscious decision as I wanted to take a break and be home. I, with my husband, started our new life in Chennai.  It was different, the place, the culture, the people, the language. Slowly, I started liking the place, made new friends, learned the local language, traveled a lot, learned cooking and also became an amateur photographer. Life was good and I did not miss work.

Few years had gone by and I started applying for jobs. But nothing exciting came my way and the ones that did weren’t appealing enough.

The decision of having taken a break started feeling like a wrong one. It was disheartening.

And then there are people who always have advice for you whether you want it or not! Over the time it can make you feel sick and even ironically as if we are living our life wrong. But thankfully I always had my family and my close friends who kept my spirits high by never letting me doubt my capabilities. Their support and encouragement had been the rock-solid foundation which I always rely on! God has been extremely kind to me in blessing me with family and friends I have. Still, nothing good had come my way and I would often wonder if I will ever be able to get back to work.

After many rejections and not finding something that I wanted to do, I finally gave up the idea of working and continued my life as a homemaker.

Life was still good but there was a vacuum and I would often think about the career I would have had, had I not quit. And I was convinced that taking a break was the biggest mistake of my life.

The Race For Getting Back To Work

Last year my husband switched jobs and we relocated to Bangalore. After first few months of settling down, I found myself thinking about the job again. Now 9 years later it was just a thought, but it was there nevertheless!

There was thing strong urge to do something. I suddenly craved the respect a career brings you! I started browsing and reading and that’s how I came across SHEROES too. With much apprehension, I floated my resume on job portals. After about a month of waiting, I got the call, I attended the interview and ended up getting the job! But to be honest, I was very nervous before attending the interview.

Nine years is, after all, a pretty long time!  I have a very dear friend who told me ‘You have nothing to lose, might as well just go and attend the interview without thinking beyond that.” And I did just the same. To me, that was my first step towards success ~ to get back to work.

Now almost a year into work and I feel like there has never been a break and I am as happy as I can be with my job.

What I Learnt In This Process

It’s perfectly fine to have taken a break.  It’s okay to have given your time to your family. It’s okay to have not worked if you didn’t want to at some point in time. It’s our decision what we want to do, what we choose and if we chose one or all of them.

It’s all about enjoying your time be it as a homemaker or a stay at home mommy or a fiercely ambitious professional.

Nobody should make you feel guilty for your choices in life. Everything is just fine if it has made you happy. And going back to work is not so much about others as it is about conquering our own fears! And most importantly believe in yourself, especially when no one else does. For if you don’t believe in yourself and your dreams, no one will ever.

Also, success has the different meaning for different people. Don’t follow someone’s definition of success. You should make your way and define it for yourself. For at the end of the day success should make you happy and a content person and if you are happy, you are the most successful person!

It’s for us to become successful and we shall!



Lola Jutta
An unapologetic writer, budding travel enthusiast and a default optimist! Life is what you make out of it.

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