Taking a sabbatical can have several long-term benefits if one has the determination to take one. This doesn’t mean you have to spend your life savings or ditch your entire career. Taking time off from your career may help you develop new skills, decompress from your busy life, and give you insight on your career and life goals.
Here are some benefits of taking a sabbatical:
You’ll Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
Be curious and explore! You don’t have to climb mountains or put your life in danger, but just venturing out opens doors you never knew existed. You’ll have an outsider’s perspective when you travel to a new city. The possibilities seem endless, because they truly are…even back at home!
Traveling is a time for you to learn about yourself and watch your identity transform. Taking small steps outside your comfort zone will help you with your risk taking later on in life.
A 6-month long sabbatical sounds like a long time, but when you’re traveling, it goes by quickly. There will be times when you’re homesick and your exploration might be hindered. Your experience may feel like a challenge if you’re counting down the days until you hop on the plane to go home.
Keep a positive perspective, always. Make new friends and go sight-seeing together or have dinner. The most difficult parts of your sabbatical are when you’ll learn the most.
Relate Your Experiences to Your Career
Traveling is a good time for you to reflect on your skills and even your career path. Identify experience that utilize your skills and challenge yourself by mastering new ones. For example, if you’re an aspiring artist, visit museum talks and seminars. Introduce yourself to speakers and curators. You never know whom you’re going to might meet in the art world. Networking abroad will help you build your portfolio and will inspire your work, too.
Your sabbatical experiences may even help you become a better professional later on. You may want a whole new career path when you return home, or maybe you’ll even find work abroad. Keep an open mind and document your journey. Opportunity is everywhere.
After your journey, reintegrating yourself into the working world may have different effects. Maybe you’ll have a career change, or maybe you’re going to apply to a different position. Maybe you’re content with your current position.
When you return home, stay open and keep the same sense of self-discovery that you had during your sabbatical. You’ll recognize that opportunities are everywhere, no matter where you travel.