7 things I wish I knew before starting my career

Office desk

The first year of my thirties is soon coming to an end. But with that comes the beginning of my journey into launching my own business! So naturally I’m thinking about all the things I wish I knew before starting my career.

There are many instances in our careers where we face certain difficult choices. And we all have those moments of realisation of just how much our choices can impact us in the long run. “If only I had…” or “but I could have…” Then again what would life be if it was full of ‘ifs and buts’?

So rather than dwell on the negatives I thought I would share my personal tips to help anyone starting out in their career.

#1. It’s ok not to know what career you want to go into

For those of you who don’t know, I actually studied music before going into marketing. I soon realised that whilst I loved music, that didn’t mean I would love working in it. I became resentful to the music industry and my passion for music became tainted with how I found the industry.

I was lucky my first role was in marketing – which I loved! The business and marketing part of my degree was my favourite, so I always knew I would go into this field regardless of the industry. This leads me nicely into my next tip…

#2. It’s ok to change career paths

Early on in my career I realised that finding job satisfaction would come at a cost. More accurately, in the form of a lower salary! It’s no secret that the music industry doesn’t pay well. So I made the money-driven choice of focusing on marketing roles within hire paying industries.

This move paid off (pun intended ha!) as I was able to develop skills and get relevant experience without compromising on the money I was earning. Everyone asks me if I think I made the right choice. And I can honestly say, yes!

I realised early on that I never wanted to just work for somebody else. I eventually want to be my own boss, take holidays whenever I want and earn a ton load of money! Yeah, there I said it! Money is important to me and financial stability is a personal goal that I’m sure most people have.

#3. Prioritise your wants and needs when starting your career

There’s nothing wrong with me prioritising the things that are important to you. Everyone thinks you should compromise what you want and just stay put in order to move up the career ladder. But that’s not always the case. Don’t be afraid to look at other options or just ask for what you want. Believe me you always have other choices!

#4. Don’t be afraid of change

Change is good. Change is positive. How do we expect to develop or grow without changing? When it comes to your career, change can be daunting. But out of change comes new opportunities – and what’s not exciting about that? This is definitely something I wish I knew before I started my career.

#5. Things that seem too good to be true, usually aren’t… And vice versa

Again, another tip I definitely wish I knew much earlier. There have been instances where I admit I rushed into decisions because it seemed too good to be true. Whilst I encourage embracing change, I also believe that every decision you make should be well-considered.

#6. Don’t stop learning

It was actually from an interview early on in my career, that I realised how important this was. An interviewer asked me how I kept up to date with trends in the industry. And I was stumped. I wasn’t keeping up to date with the industry. Even simply reading industry news or blogs would have been enough. Such an easy habit but with huge potential for positive impact!

This is one tip I keep repeating to anyone and everyone on my team. To put it into perspective, imagine for every year you are working and “gaining” experience, the industry around you continues to change and evolve. And if you don’t keep up, every year, there will be an army of fresh-faced grads willing to work for a lot less but with the latest knowledge and skills you don’t have.

#7. It’s never too late to start something new

This last and final point I’m only learning now as I am about to start something new myself. As I mentioned earlier, I’m starting my own business! I currently work in digital PR so work with bloggers, influencers and press. Some people might question why I want to take this on when I have a good job and enjoy what I do. But like I said, it’s never too late to start…

Whilst it’s both scary and exciting, I’m finally getting closer to living out my dreams. So watch this space and be sure to look out for more info on my upcoming business launch.

Do you have any tips you wish you knew before you started your career?

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39 Comments

  1. Fatima
    22nd August 2017 / 9:55 pm

    I feel the major thing that people are reluctant of is change. They don’t really welcome change even if it’s for the better. Moreover, a strong motivation from our loved ones is always really essential. You’ve covered it all, so well!

  2. 22nd August 2017 / 11:40 pm

    I want a change, the problem is you get so comfortable with what you know that it is hard to take the leap and change your career path. I’m in the hotel trade and hate the long hours, 15 years on and it is definitely to much for me now. Maybe oneday i will take that leap, I think this article has definitely helped. Thanks.

    • arcasela
      23rd August 2017 / 10:14 am

      Never too late! Don’t get stuck in something you don’t love because it’s comfortable. Good luck!

  3. 23rd August 2017 / 7:17 am

    Wise advises! Even though I never really had any career I see how my husbands career path change since we meet. When we meet he was studying in merketing and he had 1 year left to finish. But he changed his mind and drop off and went into ingeneering. To make the story short, he changed a lot and know at 37 he is finally finding what he is passionate about. So it is ok to change your mind because at the end it is not healthy to work with something that doesnt make you happy. Not everybody have a choice but if you do, grab it!

    http://www.familyearthtrek.com

    • arcasela
      23rd August 2017 / 10:12 am

      what a wonderful example of how change and finding your passion is never too late! x

  4. 23rd August 2017 / 7:55 am

    You are so right, these are the things we learn along the way in life, but how wonderful it would be to know them from the beginning.

  5. 23rd August 2017 / 9:01 am

    I didnt know what career I wanted when I was younger. I just sort of stumbled on what Im doing now but am thinking it may be time for a change.

    • arcasela
      23rd August 2017 / 10:11 am

      always good to change it up once in a while! Good luck with it x

  6. Joanna
    23rd August 2017 / 10:19 am

    This is such a great post! It is indeed OK not to know what career you want to pursue and it is very OK to start a new one in a totally different field if you are not happy with what you are doing. I started a career in the pharma industry and I thought all my life I will be doing data research but I ended up being a Google expert, going through the hotel management field for a year as well. If I wouldn’t have taken the trip that changed my life, 2 months by train to Asia, I would have probably still been doing data research and be unhappy.

    • arcasela
      23rd August 2017 / 10:37 am

      wow that’s such a journey! Amazing that you’re doing what makes you happy though. Thanks for sharing your story x

  7. 23rd August 2017 / 11:08 am

    This was a good read, thanks for sharing these points. After over a decade in my career I’m making big changes and wish I had considered some of this earlier.

    https://amyevans.co.uk – Amy

  8. 23rd August 2017 / 11:43 am

    Wow! Really Interesting article! I am so happy that you have shared in my group. One thing that I want to add is
    I wish I knew that mistake, failing at something and not having the knowledge is a part of it all. Right now I am ready to fail and make mistakes and learn from it. What we don’t understand is doing nothing because we want always win is what we need to be afraid of. Keep up the Good work love your group!

    • arcasela
      23rd August 2017 / 12:02 pm

      Thanks Malalai. Agree we shouldn’t be afraid of mistakes at all. Thank you for sharing your insight and feedback.

  9. 23rd August 2017 / 12:33 pm

    Thanks for inspiring me to continue into what is my 5th career. I am constantly seeking joy in life, so what I decide to do with my day has changed over the years. I am happy to be embarking on my newest career quest.

  10. 23rd August 2017 / 3:37 pm

    Great advice here. I’ve recently given up my career and am having a bit of a pause whilst I work out what I want to do with my life.

  11. 23rd August 2017 / 4:47 pm

    Truly. People are scared of change and getting out of their comfort zone. This sometimes keeps them from achieving greater things!

  12. 23rd August 2017 / 8:57 pm

    These are all great tips – I have run my own businesses most of my adult life. Ii can be scary but I absolutely love it. Kaz

  13. 23rd August 2017 / 9:25 pm

    I definitely don’t want to return to my pre-children career, change is good!

  14. 23rd August 2017 / 9:30 pm

    I totally agree with some of these. Changing career paths has been a big thing for me over the years, and then I quit altogether to be a stay at home mum!

  15. 23rd August 2017 / 9:53 pm

    Great tips & so true! Change is good for you! Ever since I was a child I had wanted to be a primary school teacher, then over the past few years – I just changed my mind and now I’m working towards something completely different!

  16. Joline
    23rd August 2017 / 10:14 pm

    These are great insights. When I started out all those years ago (!!!) I compared myself to others way too much. I allowed their successes to define mine. Now I know better!

  17. 23rd August 2017 / 10:50 pm

    These are great points you mentioned there! I think we need to try a lot of different things to discover what we’re genuinely passionate about and step out of our comfort zone to pursue the career of our dreams X

  18. 24th August 2017 / 12:01 am

    Firstly, your pictures are beautiful. Also, thank you for all this I really needed it today. It is always a challenge to make a change in your career and all those tips actually helped!

  19. 24th August 2017 / 1:30 am

    Lovely, Its never to late to start something and changing is all okay is what happened with me and wish I knew that its all good before starting my career .

  20. 24th August 2017 / 1:47 am

    I totally agree with you it is definitely ok to change your career path after all I changed my career to working in marketing, promotions and journalism (alongside blogging I worked three jobs ) to working full time as a blogger. Its also ok to make a change as sometimes you need to for the sake of your mental and physical health x

  21. 24th August 2017 / 2:32 am

    Great advice, Wish I’d had advice like this back when I was in school so wasn’t so afraid of change nowadays.

  22. 24th August 2017 / 4:57 am

    YAAS LOVE THIS! # 5 is definitely something I need to learn. I admit I rushed into a couple of decisions and I’m feeling the consequences now. I admire how you focused on the positive and changed the negative into lessons!

    Thanks for sharing!

  23. 24th August 2017 / 6:43 am

    Love your tips! Being open to change makes it possible to approach new opportunities. I have changed jobs and moved several times, which has finally led me to prepare for grad school next year in a specific program of study that will boost my career.

  24. 24th August 2017 / 8:10 am

    I agree with you about the change we should know. It is ok in the beginning, we don’t know where our career will take us. Even, I’m going to change my career from an engineer to MBA guy and now working towards a blogger.

  25. 25th August 2017 / 5:25 am

    This is a really helpful post for anyone who is in the initial stages of their career as it gives them insight into so many things. Of course, it’s helpful for others also, by telling that they shouldn’t be afraid of change, change of career paths is not bad, you should be able to do something that you enjoy.

  26. Via Bella
    26th August 2017 / 12:52 am

    This is such a good and heart warming reminder. Sometimes we feel as if we must know.

  27. 26th August 2017 / 7:59 am

    I feel like I’m always changing my mind about my career path because the word career actually scares me a bit..
    You’re right, it’s never too late to start something new 🙂

  28. 26th August 2017 / 10:43 am

    Change can be scary but good. I am glad i changed my own career! Best move I made.

  29. 27th August 2017 / 7:38 am

    I’m currently in a place in my life where I’m not quite sure what it is I want to be doing…all I know is that I want to keep doing my blog. This post has helped me feel a bit better about being so unsure.

  30. 8th September 2017 / 10:05 pm

    This is a really inspiring post as many of us wish we could change careers but are too scared to take the plunge.

  31. 21st September 2017 / 4:52 pm

    very wise and great article!

  32. 22nd September 2017 / 2:30 pm

    Great career advice. I’ve been at the same company for 21 years, but I’ve done several different jobs during that time. Each new role in my career required the courage to step out into something new, the willingness to take a chance. And the best moves were based understanding how I’d like to contribute, rather than change for the sake of change. Really great advice. Thanks for sharing!

  33. 9th October 2017 / 4:30 pm

    I’m 26 now and I still haven’t decided on what I want to do with my work life. I’ve been on maternity the last 7 months and don’t have a job to go back to so I’m in a new position of trying to decide what to do. I think it’s ok not to know sometimes as a job you may not have thought could work might be the ideal one!

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