For those of you that regularly read my blog you’ll know that for the most part on Monday’s I usually have a series called Girl Boss Monday where I feature a round-up of the best articles from the past week related to millennial women in regards to their career, finances, life, etc. in the hope that the articles and information provided will inspire, inform and motivate you to become your own “Girl Boss.” 🙂
Starting today and in the future, Girl Boss Monday will be expanded to feature articles such as the one for today.
In other updates and again for those of you who regularly check or read my blog you’ll have noticed that I haven’t been posting as frequently as I normally do but starting this week I am hoping to resume a consistent schedule of new content published every Monday // Wednesday // Friday.
I’ve started my career in banking and as I’m sure some of you can attest, there really isn’t enough time in the day to get everything done! (More on life and career updates in a future post, I’d like to share more personal details in the coming months! Stay tuned :))
Here are seven reasons why you should consider taking a gap year after completing high school or finishing your undergraduate studies.
One – A gap year allows you to gain maturity you wouldn’t otherwise find in a traditional job or academic program. For example, there are a number of programs that are for one year or two years that can be considered “time-off” or a gap year but provide enriching, educational and useful experiences that can help you grow as a person.
(Examples of paid programs one can apply for during a gap year: Teach for America, Peace Corps, WorldTeach, AISEC, City Year, etc. There are so many more, I recommend reaching out to your school’s Career Services Center to explore options as well as using your personal network, LinkedIn, etc.)
Two – A gap year can provide you with valuable experience for graduate or professional school as well as absolutely crucial time to prepare your applications for your next educational endeavor. For example: if you hope to apply to medical school one day, taking a year off can allow you to work as a CNA, EMT, or in laboratory, which gives you valuable clinical experience that then enhances your application to graduate school.
Three – Space to breathe. We live in an increasingly interconnected world and while I am excited and hopeful for the opportunities technology continues to bring us, I think now, more than ever, it is important to take time to disconnect and enjoy the simple things in life. A gap year might allow you to focus on a simpler and more meaningful lifestyle and also give you more time with your friends and family, especially if you’ve been away at university for four years.
Four – An opportunity for international travel – It is a lot easier to travel when you are young and healthy and do not have the added expense and responsibility of children and there are numerous programs that allow you to travel cheaply or even free in exchange for teaching English, nannying, or interning in a foreign country, very cool!
Five – A chance to broaden your skill set other than through traditional means – Have you ever wanted to learn a new language? Learn how to code your own WordPress Theme? Take a photography workshop? A gap year program that provides for your living expenses might also leave you ample free time to pursue your true passions. There are SO MANY amazing things in this world and I hope I have time to see and experience them all. I have always loved school but as I get older I realize more and more that there are experiences and wisdom I can only gain from being willing to try new things and leave my comfort zone. (Launching my blog in October 2015 being a prime example.)
Six – The discovery of what you are truly passionate about. Did you go to college and major in business but have no idea what that actually means for your future life and career?
A gap year spent interning for an accounting firm might convince you that a career in accounting is EXACTLY the right path for you, OR, you might realize that you’re much more interested in Marketing and Public Relations and you can use your internship from your Gap Year to propel you into a PR and Marketing Career. It is much, much, easier to take time off and then enter Corporate America than it is to enter the workforce unfocused and confused as to what you are interested in or want to spend many years of your life devoted to.
Seven – Health. We’ve all death with stress, anxiety and burnout, taking time-off, even if it’s not a traditional gap year might allow you to resume your education, career or next great adventure, happier, healthier and with a renewed focus on your goals, dreams and ambitions. 🙂
I hope you all enjoyed this post! I welcome your feedback and thoughts in the comments section. I read all of them and try to respond to all of them as well.
I’d love if you tweeted me (@hmsjewels) with the hashtag #girlbossmonday with your thoughts, ideas, or feedback about this post and if you, yourself have ever taken a gap year or have ever considered taking one?