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To be disappointed that I don't feel professionally accomplished yet by age 28/30?

(21 Posts)
Namila Thu 30-Nov-17 22:26:46

Just that really!

I recently got a promotion (yay!) but I still feel like at this age I should be further up the career ladder. I feel like I should have achieved more.

Everywhere I look I see all these amazing and inspiring women with great careers and achievements. I am starting to think I will never be one of them, I will never have a truly great career.

I know comparing myself to others is not helping grin

Do you/did you feel the same?


EBearhug Thu 30-Nov-17 22:31:01

I'm in my 40s. I don't feel professionally accomplished. I do find it's usually good not to compare how you feel on the inside with how others appear on the outside - there are probably some people you know who think you are doing amazingly, and would be amazed to know you feel like this - and probably some of those women you see having amazing careers feel just as you do inside.

Pollaidh Thu 30-Nov-17 22:32:04

Depends on the career!

If you've done a BSc, MSc and a PhD then you've probably only been on the job market a couple of years! Look into doing an MBA once you've got a few years experience, and if it's appropriate in your sector. Good MBAs seem to have quite a positive effect on progression.

EBearhug Thu 30-Nov-17 22:33:18

But I do wonder why there aren't more of the very capable women in higher positions, given that men who are not very capable at all seem able to get there.

NoSquirrels Thu 30-Nov-17 22:38:39

Did you start work at 21, after university? If so, that’s only 9 years experience if you’re 30. Or 7, if you’re 28. Even if you started on your career path at 18, you’d only be 12 years in if you were 30.

You have a lifetime of experience to gain, and years ahead in which to scale the ladder. Stop fretting - learn more, work hard, seize opportunities, keep an open mind. Time is on your side!

Pollaidh Thu 30-Nov-17 22:51:44

Ebearhug in my case a high flying start at 24, and then a new high flying job at 27 then slowed because of DC at 30. Unfortunately high-flying comes with long hours, travel and stress. I want to work PT but this means I can't go above the level I'm at now, which is still senior management, but not the same trajectory I was on pre-DC.

BestZebbie Thu 30-Nov-17 22:52:12

It is really easy to fall into the trap of being say, 30 with 6 years in work, and look at a woman in her "mid thirties" who is super successful, and think you are the same age, when actually, she has been employed for twice as long as you have.
Unless your field relies on youth as the big specification for the role, you are only about 2/7 of the way through your working life.

Ttbb Thu 30-Nov-17 22:54:49

My husband loves reminding that these women will all stop dropping out if the work force once they hit 30/35 and will have trouble getting back into full swing until their children are in their teens. At age 30 you haven't even got to the halfway point in your career, you need a little bit of perspective.

Namila Thu 30-Nov-17 23:00:19

I think part of this perception comes from the fact that I was educated abroad in a country where people finish high school at 19 and uni at 25 (doing a master after a bachelor is considered a given).

That means I have only been working for 3 years, while here in the UK my peers are already at middle management level with a solid 6/7 years of work experience.

I feel like I am late!!

EBearhug Thu 30-Nov-17 23:08:29

To be fair, when I was at school, I did think I'd basically be at the top of my career and married with children by 30, because it seemed so incredibly old, and life would be basically over by then. I am a bit less naive these days...

Festivecheer26 Fri 01-Dec-17 00:05:08

What do you do?

Morphene Fri 01-Dec-17 00:06:09

You know what would be worse? Having already achieved everything you hoped to in life already.

I've recently realised that I have essentially 'made it' or at least as much as I ever will. Now I'm here I realise my empty ambitions for what they were....

Don't wish your life away OP. It isn't a race and the faster you rocket upward the sooner you peak.

livefornaps Fri 01-Dec-17 00:15:49

Work hard, don't look at other people's work.

Ask questions. Don't be afraid to look stupid.

Also: it ain't everything. Develop a bizarre hobby.

Namila Fri 01-Dec-17 13:13:33

"Develop a bizarre hobby"

Ahahha I love this gringringrin

Namila Fri 01-Dec-17 13:14:28

Festivalcheer I take care of the creative projects in the marketing department of a big company.

foxyloxy78 Sat 02-Dec-17 11:41:16

Don't compare yourself to others. Stay focused on what makes you happy in your profession and outside and you will live a content life.

bungaloid Sat 02-Dec-17 11:56:16

Unless you are an athlete, mathematician, programmer or supermodel I'm not sure most professional people have achieved that much by late 20's.

RedSkyAtNight Sat 02-Dec-17 12:00:46

Well from the flip side, my company recently very quickly promoted a graduate so she was a fairly senior manager by the age of 29.

She was outwardly very good at her job, but she really didn't have the depth of experience to back it up.

I think to be properly professionally accomplished (as opposed to just having a high up job title) you have to have worked in a variety of environments and probably a variety of organisations. This is pretty much impossible to have achieved by age 30!

Namila Sat 02-Dec-17 12:07:05

"Unless you are an athlete, mathematician, programmer or supermodel I'm not sure most professional people have achieved that much by late 20's."

You might have a point there grin

Namila Sat 02-Dec-17 12:10:47

RedSky I think you are right. It is easy to forget as I work at a company with a lot of young-ish people in senior positions, so I feel like the accomplished so much more than me.

However, sometimes being given a title (and a salary) that are too big for your experience can be a curse.

Some of my colleagues are desperate to leave the organization for xyz reasons, but they simply can't find another company that will match their current salary/ title as they don't have enough experience on paper to back it up. Hence, they are trapped until their actual experience catches up with money and title.

EnglishRose13 Sat 02-Dec-17 12:13:19

I’m 28 and I’m right at the start of my career, really. I always thought I’d be further up the ladder by now too but I’m taking steps to be in a management position by the time I’m 30.

You will get there. It just takes time. If the opportunities aren’t with your current company, look elsewhere.

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