5 Quick Tips for Professional Self-Care

professional self-care self-care tips
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As parent caregivers, circumstances often require that we set aside our profession to assume a new role as full-time caregiver. In this instance, it is common to feel as if we have lost a part of ourselves. We may even worry that we are wasting our education and our potential. We might feel restless without a sense purpose and accomplishment or miss the respect we once held in the professional world. These are all real and persistent feelings, no matter how secure and content we are in the reasons for our decision.

It is easy to get lost in the current state of our circumstances, to feel like where we are now is where we will always be. We forget that much of what our future holds can’t be predicted. This can be scary but it can also be exciting. It means that just because we can’t see opportunities in front of us now, doesn’t mean they won’t be there when we’re ready.

While you might feel stuck or restless right now, it is important to remember that there will always be opportunities to start again. While we may not be in a position to actively participate in the professional world the way we once did, we can continue to nurture and develop our interests and skills, even in the midst of challenging circumstances.


READ MORE: The 10 Paracords of Self-Care




Under The Parachute Project, there are 5 strands in the Professional Paracord. They are:






Below are 5 quick tips for PROFFESSIONAL self-care, that will nurture your personal interests and professional pursuits in spite of challenging circumstances.


Quick Professional Self-Care Tip #1 - Know the benefits of your employment:

Your salary isn’t the only thing you earn through your work. Your compensation includes benefits like insurance, family leave, and personal days etc. What that looks like for you, is going to depend on the terms of the contract you entered into with your employer.

Often, these benefits are an afterthought. We know they’re there but we aren’t necessarily aware of the details or how to take advantage of them. However, when we have a comprehensive understanding of the resources available through our employer, we are better able to plan ahead. Having a plan in place allows us to feel more secure in our circumstances and less anxious over an unpredictable future.


Quick Professional Self-Care Tip #2 - Volunteer:

Anytime we disrupt our every day routine, we risk falling out of practice and our performance may suffer. A great way to keep your professional skills sharp is to look for volunteer opportunities in your community.

Organizations are always looking for donations of professional services to further their mission and impact in the community. In return, they are often flexible in the hours and means by which those services are rendered. Often, you can choose your schedule and do the work from home when it works for you. In this way, a volunteer position can be a win for everyone.   


Quick Professional Self-Care Tip #3 - Take up a hobby:

Our interests have a way of changing and developing over time. Hobbies, unlike jobs, allow us to explore new interests without much commitment or consequence. As a result, we get to try new things, see what sticks and move on from what doesn’t.

Exploring a new hobby can be a great way to dip your toe into an area you may be curious about without having to drastically change your circumstances. What you learn may change your goals and take you on a path you didn’t expect. Or it may reinforce the interests you already have and help solidify the picture you have for your professional future.


Quick Professional Self-Care Tip #4 - Learn something new:

The need for education and training never really ends. Whether it is to further your professional education, expand on your skill set or simply to explore a new interest, there is almost limitless opportunities to expand your expertise on almost any topic imaginable.

Access to learning has never been more accessible or convenient. We literally have access to information, courses, and trainings in the palm of our hand. Consider taking an online course, signing up for a language app or subscribing to a U-tube channel to expand your expertise, in any area under the sun. These options allow you to learn on the go and at your own pace.


Quick Professional Self-Care Tip #5 - Network:

Your child’s circumstances may have forced you to step back from work, for now, but it does not mean that you have to cut ties with your professional community. Whether you plan to return to your position eventually or not, maintaining a professional network can open doors and introduce you to new opportunities when you are ready.

There are several ways to maintain your professional network while your primary focus is on caregiving. Consider joining a professional group or club, locally or online, where you can talk shop and maintain relationships with others in your field. Attend conferences related to your chosen profession, to stay up to date with industry changes and make new connections. Maintain friendships with your former co-workers who know you in your professional role and relate to you in that manner.


For more resources to support you in your caregiving role, follow my “Professional Self-Care” board on Pinterest! 


Professional self-care isn’t all about making money. It is about discovering and pursuing interests and passions old and new. It’s about learning and maintaining hard earned skills and expertise through continuing education, non-traditional employment and volunteer opportunities. Professional self-care is also about working, both as a means to obtain the resources your family needs to be secure, and harnessing those resources to support your quality of life.

When we give just a little bit of attention to one of these areas of professional self-care, we maintain and strengthen the skills and expertise we value and ensure our ability to continue to care for our family and contribute to our community.



Self-Care Action Discussed in this Post:

Choose just one of the 5 quick tips for professional self-care discussed above, or another action of your choice, to begin nurturing the interests, passions and/or expertise that bring value to you, your family and the community around you.




Read Next: 5 Quick Tips for Reputational Self-Care


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100 Self-Care Activities for Caregivers

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