5 Reasons Why 2021 Is the Ideal Time for Professional Growth

2021 is a year of great promise. Everybody expects it to be the year when our lives go back to normal, but until that happens, it’s up to you to make it the year of opportunity. 2020 was all about taking up new hobbies, but here we are, one year into the COVID-19 pandemic and working from home. It is time to start using the time we have left until our lives go back to the “old” normal to upgrade our professional skills. Here are five reasons why this year is the perfect time to do this!

5 Reasons Why 2021 Is the Ideal Time for Professional Growth

 

1. Employment Demands Are on the Rise

With the post-pandemic economic crisis on our doorstep, we must expect the employment market to become increasingly demanding in 2021 and beyond. Becoming a professional powerhouse in your line of work is the only foolproof way to make sure you stand a fighting chance to keep your job in the years to come or to get a new one in your field. To do this, you can perfect your skills or even earn new ones. Explore your options for online courses in your field, adjacent fields, or new fields altogether. You can use your time at home to build a stronger professional portfolio for yourself, which will be useful to you for the rest of your career.

 

2. The New Normal Already Feels Normal Enough

This time last year, dealing with the global context of the pandemic and coping with the restrictions of the new normal have put immense strain on everybody. Unsurprisingly, most of us did not feel particularly productive in spite of the massive increase in the free time that came with the lockdown. But now things are different. We’ve been at this for a while and we’ve become somewhat accustomed to what living in the pandemic entails. This puts us in a better state of mind to learn, which is one of the main things to consider before taking up courses. Another important aspect to consider is that staying inside, skipping vacations, and going out has left us with a more generous economic fund. Investing this money in our professional training means investing in our future.

 

3. We Are Already Used to Remote Work

At the beginning of the pandemic, the line between work and free time became somewhat blurry. Even with all the time we got back by not having to travel to and from work every day, our time for ourselves became more and more scarce. Hopefully, by now, this has changed and we’ve gotten better at separating our spare time from work time. While taking up a course might seem like more work, it has the opposite effect on your mind. Instead of putting in more hours on the clock and spending our time on the same work tasks, learning new skills breathes new life into your mind. Instead of working for our employers, we can work on ourselves. We can learn skills that will keep us up to date with the digital shift in all markets, such as building an online store, social media marketing, or even coding.

 

4. Having More Goals Will Make Us Feel More Confident

Staying confident in the times of COVID-19 has been a challenge for most of us, one that we still have to deal with. When we start a professional course online, we essentially set a goal to complete it, which means that we’ve earned a new skillset. This will help us feel empowered and even more confident in our ability to adapt, learn, and apply ourselves. Once the course is complete and the goal is reached, we will also feel more confident professionally, which, in turn, will make us better in our current jobs.

 

5. We Can Save Time and Money by Studying Online

Taking a course used to mean going to a class on a regular basis and spending a significant amount of money in the process. In 2021, all courses are held online, so we have access to a wider range of opportunities at far better prices than pre-pandemic rates. For most of us, keeping a full-time job and enrolling in a course was impossible before 2020 because of scheduling difficulties. But now, managing a job and a course is far more manageable because we can schedule the online courses whenever we like.

2021 can be the year of opportunity if we make it so. We can apply ourselves and earn some new skills by taking up online courses. We’ve saved up by limiting certain monthly costs and it is an excellent time to invest these funds in our professional future. By improving our skills now we can ensure that we stand a fighting chance in the employment market of the years to come.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell (@jmillermerrell) is a workplace change agent, author and consultant focused on human resources and talent acquisition living in Austin, TX. Recognized by Forbes as a top 50 social media influencer and is a global speaker. She’s the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource and host of the Workology Podcast.

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