Occupational Nomad

Every so often, well approximately every two years, I go through a lull in which I need to change something significant in my life.  It is usually my job.  I’m not sure what triggers this feeling, but I recognise that it is a gradual process that starts with a change in my attitude and behaviour.  I begin to disengage, I am physically present, but at times psychologically detached from the work and the people around me.

I go through the motions and do what is expected, as well as fulfil my duties to a high standard, but the spark and excitement I have when I first take on a role seems to disappear after approximately two years. This is because at the start of any new role you enter a new terrain, you are learning something new that is outside your skill zone, which is difficult enough to help you grow and improve.  Funnily enough, this challenge excites me.

I have a natural inclination to seek new challenges in and out of work. I enjoy learning new skills, developing new initiatives and working with new and different kind of people in different settings.

I can openly admit that I am an Occupational Nomad because I regularly move from one job position to another. My friends think I’m crazy and some of my colleagues tease me about not having any roots.  I beg to differ, since I continue to work for the same organisation and I remain committed to the organisation’s agenda and core values.  Therefore, moving from one role to the next can be described as seeking new pastures, rather than roaming endlessly.

Changing jobs can be productive for some people, while other people prefer the stability and familiarity that comes from working in the same role for many years.  However, a job for life is no longer a guarantee.  So it is important that you build your own marketability and be prepared to take it with you.  I am an advocate for seeking new opportunities and not being miserable in a role that is unfulfilling.  I have learnt to redefine myself on my own terms, learn new skills and increase my confidence every time I change my job.  So take control of your career and enjoy the work you do.



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