Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Keith Hayes from Health Service Executive to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Keith Hayes

Ambulance / Paramedic

Health Service Executive

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  Keith Hayes
At a minimum get your Leaving Cert, that’s required anyway. But don’t sell yourself short aim for a third level college qualification, something like a science degree. It may not have obvious benefits now but the career is changing direction so fast it could stand to you big time.

Take your time in applying I joined the service when I was 25 yrs old and looking back I think around that age is the right time. When you consider some of the calls we attend and things we may need to deal with, joining at 17 or 18 after the Leaving Cert with little or no life experiences may turn you off because it is very demanding physically, mentally and emotionally.
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Naturalist?
Naturalist 
Not surprisingly, some aspect of the natural sciences will run through the Naturalists interests - from ecological awareness to nutrition and health. People with an interest in horticulture, land usage and farming (including fish) are Naturalists.

Some Naturalists focus on animals rather than plants, and may enjoy working with, training, caring for, or simply herding them. Other Naturalists will prefer working with the end result of nature's produce - the food produced from plants and animals. Naturalists like solving problems with solutions that show some sensitivity to the environmental impact of what they do. They like to see practical results, and prefer action to talking and discussing.
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Career Advice Work Life Balance

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Work Life Balance

Work-life balance day is March 1st. Employers and organisations are encouraged to engage in activities in that are aimed at highlighting work-life balance practices and the benefits that alternative working arrangements can provide to busineses and employees.

It can be challenging for some people to create a healthy balance between work and enjoying life, however, it is possible. To do this we need to have the right attitude and take responsibility for looking after not just our physical health but our mental health and wellbeing. 

For most people striking a healthy work life balance means ensuring their home life gets as much time, attention and energy as their work lives. People can find themselves "juggling" all their commitments including work, study, family and friends and leisure. Statistics indicate that one in four people will have experience of a mental health difficulty and high levels of stress can be a contributory factor.

So work life balance is about being clear about what is important to you in each area of your life and prioritising daily decisions to achieve what you want. For example: you may need to put more time into study just before an exam or family if you have a sick child or relative. 

Some Tips for achieving the balance:

  • Learn to say No - by understanding what your needs and priorities are you are more likely to be clear about the things you don't need to take on in your life.
  • Create more Space for yourself - you can always create more time by dropping the things you don't need. For example: how much time do you spend on social media sites or watching soaps? This time could be better spent on doing an activity that helps to de-stress and energise you like reading, taking up an activity with family, friends and relaxation.

  • Evaluate your relationship with work - with the economic downturn more and more people are working harder and longer hours it can be tempting to clock up the hourse with increased workloads or by trying to earn a promotion. However, are you married to your work? The knockon effect of working too much can lead to fatigue, stress, losing time with family and friends and increased expectations about your role in work. However, there are ways of ensuring work does not take ove your life including:

Leave work at work: with the ever increasing technology it can be tempting to be available. Create a boundry around your work/home time.

Find out about the many work options: you may have more flexibility around your working week than you you realise. Discuss these with your employer. To view these options: click here

Have a good support system: tune into your supports at work this could be a co-worker, supervisor or mentor. Having good relationships at work ease stressful situations and are important for job satisfaction.       

For more information on work-life balance:

www.equality.ie

www.mentalhealthireland.ie