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How Social Distancing Helped Me Kick-Start My Career Transition

The life of my dreams is waiting for me to dare enough to want it.

Inspiration

I think we all can agree that COVID-19 and social distancing is driving most of us insane. The current climate creates certain anxiety that I never imagined, from the extra pounds and Netflix binges to the 24-hour news cycle. As the number of cases continues to grow and unemployment is high as it's ever been, small businesses are taking a hit. Some are having a hard time looking at the glass half full.

I've been working in the healthcare field for six years, and no amount of school training would prepare us to endure this kind of commitment.

I work in the medical billing/claims processing department of a hospital where I am responsible for revenue that flows in and out of the hospital. We all need to keep in mind that the healthcare industry is a business. The doctors care about two things: 1) the health and well-being of their patients and 2) that they get paid accordingly after monitoring the health and well-being of their patients. So, unfortunately, my job doesn't stop. In these times, I have been forever grateful. I do have a job that allows me to earn a consistent income. However, though grateful, over the last few months, this experience has opened my mind to the possibilty of other career paths and living environments.

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The "lockdown" has either brought out the good in people or the nastiness in people. During this time, I made it a point to observe how my co-workers are handling things. From COVID to the ongoing racial injustice, I wanted to analyze the culture of my company. Prejudice and bigotry aren't a political issue. It is indeed, a social issue. Comments like "The rioting is ridiculous," or "They don't have to act like animals," really put a magnifying glass on people's character.

As a woman of color, I had to swallow my pride and continue to work. I've wanted to scream, cuss, and sometimes punch my co-workers while overhearing their opinions.

The timing of my firing wouldn't have been in my favor.

George Floyd and Breonna Taylor's deaths happened over two months ago. As of July 2020, my company is just now deciding to create diversity discussions that allow our voices to our opinions. I now know definitively that it's time to plan my exit. In addition to the tone-deaf instances I've faced on the racial side of the pandemic, as a workforce, I have also noticed my company is behind in continually keeping us up to date with COVID information and employee safety.

Although I like what I do and could probably do it with my eyes closed, deep down in the pit of my stomach, I know and I see the bigger picture of my life. And it isn't here.

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According to The Balance Careers, the average person changes jobs at least twelve times, and their career changes three to seven times in their lifetime. Lately, I've been receiving different signs that are confirmation that my mind and spirit are ready to endure the next phase of my career and the rest of my life. I am the most analytical person I've ever known. My indecisiveness has gotten in the way of me making decisions. I am the type of person who would lose sleep weighing out the pros and the cons and replaying every scenario in my head.

I've quickly realized that with no action, you won't move ahead. So, this is the first time I'm following my heart instead of my head.

My current department's camaraderie is scarce. The negativity, gossiping, and competition makes the environment tense and stressful. If you were to look up 'toxic' in the dictionary, my department is right there, just grinning. You have to ask yourself, is this worth it? Can your mind, body, and soul handle that type of environment?

With the help of my therapist, I've created an outline for this change. Free-writing has allowed me to paint the picture I want for myself. Asking questions such as:

  • What is the ideal company you'd pictured?
  • Do I want to work for anyone else?
  • Do I see myself living in the same city?

Bottom line, I've been using this time to organize my thoughts and to educate myself on turning my passion into profit in hopes to transition into a career that I would enjoy. This time has allowed me to re-evaluate and make personal and professional changes in my life.

The life of my dreams is waiting for me to create it, and I am more positive and more disciplined like never before to put in the work to obtain it.

Featured image by Shutterstock

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