Best of 2021: Top 5 summer reads to support your career this year

Jan 6, 2022

And just like that… it’s 2022. Happy New Year!

I have a confession. I don’t know about you, but I’m not yet ‘feeling 22’.

As I write this, it’s my second day back at work. Sure, the exhaustion I felt in the last week of December has melted away. Thanks to the many 10am sleep-ins, Christmas by the pool and consecutive 40+ days spent under the air-con binge reading crime thrillers!

But annual goal-setting or choosing a ‘word of the year’? Personally, I’m still processing 2021.

Though I’m physically energised and excited about the year ahead, I’m still feeling the hangover of mental fatigue from the past two years.

Early January may be the time for resolutions, new habits and forward planning. And of course I’ll be planning what I want for this year (and will share some resources then to help you too). Yet at this moment, I’m not quite ready.

And I know others are feeling the same.

It’s been a BIG couple of years. Navigating the fear, anxiety and uncertainty has been mentally and emotionally exhausting. And it doesn’t disappear overnight.

So, instead of sharing a typical ‘new year’ article, I wanted to keep it relaxed this week and bring you the best of 2021. The articles from last year which were the most viewed, downloaded and shared by you.

Whether you’re still on holidays — or aren’t quite ready to start your 2022 goal-setting — read on to discover my top five summer reads to support your career this year!

#1: 5 powerful questions to help you thrive in the ‘new normal

This was consistently the top read article on my site throughout 2022. Despite the term ‘new normal’ being blacklisted by a US university, along with some other favourite Australian phrases!

It was initially published at the end of May 2020, as we began to emerge from the first lockdown here in Australia. Global restrictions had started to ease and people were looking forward to getting ‘back to normal’. Given the continued uncertainty of 2021, I’m not surprised this post remained popular throughout the year.

In this blog, I share five powerful questions to help you intentionally choose what you want your work and life to look like — and what needs to change as a result. As we start afresh in a new year, now is a great time to reflect on this. Although the truth is, these questions are relevant any time!

So have a read and reflect on these questions over the break. Journal on them and use your insights to guide your goal-setting, projects or how you spend your time in 2022.

#2: 5 sure-fire ways to make the right decision

Coming in at second place in my most viewed posts from last year, is another one from the 2020 archives! And it comes as no surprise.

The clients I work with feel stuck in their careers or confused about what to do next. Sometimes, they’re so held back by fear or overwhelm, they struggle to make decisions about their professional lives.

In this article, I outline five simple strategies to help you make the right decisions — every time. If you’re considering a career change in 2022 or are contemplating a big decision over the break, you’ll find some great practical tips. Check it out here.

The final tip sums up the topic perfectly: Remember, there is never a ‘wrong’ choice. Every decision is an opportunity for learning. Know you can always reset and choose again later!

#3: Falling out of love with your work?💔 5 things you need to do next

In this Valentine’s Day inspired piece, I get real and share the story of my own career rock bottom. Again, it’s one of my most read blogs of 2021.

It was this experience (and supporting others in similar situations) which led me to pose the question. What steps can you take early on when you’re first starting to ‘fall out of love’ with your work?

I outline how to address those initial feelings of dissatisfaction, so you don’t end up in a ‘crisis situation’. Or waiting until you have no choice but to make an extreme change in your career too.

This one is light-hearted but full of easy, actionable advice. If you’re starting the new year feeling dissatisfied in your career, check it out. Find out how to start ‘falling in love’ with your work again!

#4: 9 surprising mistakes keeping you stuck in the ‘wrong’ career

Coming in next is one of the top articles published in 2021. From the new job ‘fix’, outsourcing career decisions or getting ‘stuck in the scroll’. Are YOU making one of these common career fails?

Discover the surprising mistakes which may be holding you back in your career — and how to avoid them. A must-read to kick-off 2022!

#5: How to make a successful career change in your 30’s & 40’s

In fifth place, this blog post is for my target audience — high-achieving leaders at a crossroads in their careers.

In this article, I talk about the ‘mid-career crisis’. A fun play on words I use to describe mid-career professionals who’ve worked hard to get where they are — but are ready for a change. They’re unsure what they want next or are anxious about throwing away the time, money and energy invested into their current careers.

I outline a step-by-step framework based on my own experience of navigating two career changes. It’s the same process I work through with my clients to help them create a clear plan and reduce risk with their mid-career transitions.

If a career change is on the cards for you in 2022, check out this post. It’ll help you make your move successfully and strategically in your 30’s, 40’s — and beyond!

So, there you have it. My most popular articles from the last 12 months to support your career in 2022. I hope you find them helpful too!

Want further support to reach your full career potential in 2022?

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Stacey Back is a Career Strategist, Leadership Coach + Founder of Profile Careers. She helps high-achieving corporate leaders and business owners at a mid-career crossroads find the work that lights them up, increase their income, impact and create a career + life on their terms.

Stacey also supports professionals to transition from their corporate job into their own consulting business. She works virtually with individuals based across the globe.