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10 Career Mistakes You Should Avoid in Your 20s

10 Career Mistakes You Should Avoid in Your 20s

Our 20s is a critical time for us to learn the ins and outs of our jobs. The workplace is a way different playing field from anything we’ve experienced in school, and there are times when we couldn’t help but feel lost at work. While we have all made mistakes and rookie blunders at one point in our careers, that doesn’t mean we have the license to repeatedly commit them.

Screencap from Gossip Girl courtesy of Warner Brothers
Screencap from Gossip Girl courtesy of Warner Brothers

That’s why we’ve compiled 10 career mistakes that we should all avoid, especially when we need to make the most out of our 20s. Take a look at them below:

1. Thinking that learning stops once you land the job

When you’ve been in the same company for a few years, it’s easy to get comfortable that you’ve stopped pushing yourself. Get out of that comfort zone! Enhance your skills and knowledge by attending workshops and seminars that can help improve your career. Read up on the latest practices and trends of your field. Remember that investing in yourself will never be a waste of time and resources.

GIF from The Simpsons via Giphy

2. Quitting a job without a backup plan and budget

Don’t make resignation as your first resort whenever you encounter problems at work. Whatever reason you have for leaving, make sure you’ve thought things through. What are your next career options? Do you have potential hiring companies in sight? Do you have enough savings in your bank account to keep you going until your next paycheck?

GIF from America’s Got Talent via Giphy

3. Not owning up to your mistakes at work

I mean, really, we’re not in preschool anymore. It’s time to accept that we make mistakes and be mature enough to admit them. Don’t play blame games, either. If you make blunders at work, tell your boss or team that you recognize your mistake. Share how you could have have done things differently. Do your best to remedy what went wrong, learn from what happened, and move on.

GIF from Giphy

4. Avoiding new responsibilities and challenges

Actively avoiding new responsibilities at work could put a dent in your career. Don’t shy away from challenges that come your way. Adjusting to your new workflow may make you feel nervous at first, but situations like these give you room for growth and learning. Experience will always be a valuable asset to your career.

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GIF from The Office via Giphy

5. Prioritizing work over your friends and family

Hard work is important in building any career, but working too much may push you to lose sight of other important things in your life. You may be climbing fast on the corporate ladder, but what good is it for if it keeps you from your loved ones? You may be earning more money now, but do have time to do the things you enjoy? Focusing solely on your job may eventually cost you your family, friends, and ultimately your own happiness.

5 workaholic
GIF from The Incredibles via Giphy

6. Having an unhealthy dose of self-doubt

How can you expect your colleagues to believe in you, if you don’t trust your own decisions? Don’t let the negative voices in your head mess with your mind–and your career. Every time you feel anxious, give yourself an encouragement boost by reminding yourself of your strengths and past achievements. Your attitude plays a role in the success of your career. Just remember not to overdo it!

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GIF from Veep via Giphy

7. Putting too much of yourself online

Social media is a double-edged sword– you can use it to build your personal brand or to break your reputation. That’s why it’s important to be careful about the things you share online. Everything you post has the potential to reach your superior, associates, and even possible clients. Photos of last night’s wild drinking party isn’t something you want to be remembered by.

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GIF from Giphy

8. Not having clear career goals–or any goals at all

Don’t think you’re too young to plan for your future. Goals are like guideposts that can help move your career in the right direction. Without them, you’re in danger of spending years in the office but never achieving anything new. Take time to reflect on what you truly want for your career. So you want to become a manager in five years? Write down clear goals to know what exactly you need to be working on to be able to achieve success.

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GIF from Daria via Giphy

9. Letting toxic people at work get to you

Not all of the people in your office will be easy to get along with. Unfortunately, that’s way beyond your control. You can, however, manage how much let them affect you. The more you let your reactions control you, the more peace of mind you’ll have in and out of the office.

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GIF from Giphy

10. Gossiping

A little office gossip may sound harmless, but what happens if this gets back to the person you’re talking about? A strained office atmosphere is never an ideal work environment. Think twice before you say something you might later regret. Have you been gossiping about your superior? Needless to say, this will not do wonders for your career growth.

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GIF from The Real Housewives of Orange County via Giphy


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