Work-life balance is something that many professionals struggle with.Now more than ever, with many working from home, it may become increasingly difficult to separate your personal life from your work life because both are happening in the same space. With many responsibilities, you may feel burdened, burnt out, and lost. This is where a sabbatical comes in.
What is a sabbatical?
A sabbatical leave is considered a period of paid or unpaid leave granted to an employee so that they can pursue other endeavors, such as travel or study. It is traditionally a year long, but can be shorter or longer, depending on your needs. Though it is traditionally seen as a mere vacation from the burdens of work, it can be so much more than that. It is a period that can be used for personal and professional growth. You can use it to rekindle a passion, do something you’ve been dreaming of, volunteer for another organization, or learn something new. Think of a sabbatical as a way to renew your purpose and refresh yourself.
What can I do on my sabbatical?
Volunteer for a nonprofit
There is so much noble work occurring in our communities and abroad, and they all need a helping hand. Especially in this time of need, many nonprofit organizations are working tirelessly to support their communities. Serving others can be an incredibly gratifying and renewing experience; in fact, studies have shown that individuals that volunteer frequently have a decreased risk of heart disease. Volunteering has physical and mental benefits, and could be a great way to renew your sense of purpose through service.
Start a side business
Did you ever have aspirations of starting a small business? Do you have an incredible investment opportunity or start-up that you never got the chance to start? Now’s the time where you can do that! Not only is this a way to pursue lifelong dreams, you can also build your resume and professional skills by engaging in this new endeavor. Return to your job with new insights and skills that can make you a more well-rounded professional.
Learning never stops, even after we leave the classroom. You can take this time to get a higher level of education, such as a Master’s, or even pursue a degree in another field. Perhaps you work in business, but you have realized the importance of computer science and software engineering. Or perhaps you are a physician that wants to open your own practice, and wants to learn about business. You can even receive an education in a non-academic setting: perhaps you want to become a personal trainer, an entertainer, or an amateur chef. Take this time to expand your skills, personal or professional, for a fruitful sabbatical leave.
Exploring a new culture can be a great way to gain a new perspective on your personal and professional life. Immersing yourself in new experiences and meeting new people may expand your worldview and help you gain a new and renewed sense of purpose. There are many programs, such as Gap Year Nepal, that provide immersive and flexible opportunities to work and travel. Learn about your field in a different cultural setting while making memories that will last you a lifetime.
Author: Chloe Yang