3 Adjustments Going from Retail to a 9-5


For the longest time I absolutely resisted the idea of a "9-5". I assumed that any kind of corporate atmosphere that involved business attire or cubicles was the complete opposite of my personality, so I avoided putting applications in and worked as a retail manager for 2 years. I worked for a company that I absolutely adored and I had a great time. But I decided it was time for me to switch gears and after an internship and a little bit of time I've found myself in a cubicle, in an office building, dressed in business casual attire. And plot twist? I really love my job, I'm at a place where I can see myself growing and most importantly, I feel like I'm learning something new almost every single day. Of course, transitioning to an environment that you have never experienced before doesn't come without it's challenges. This has been a huge adjustment this past year for me and I still have so much to learn and get used to but here are 3 major adjustments to expect right away if you decide to move from retail to a more traditional 9-5.
 Career1. You're going to be spending a lot more time on the computer and there's more to Microsoft Office than you think.  
If you're transitioning into a 9-5, chances are you will be using at least one or two Microsoft Office applications depending on what your job entails. Word and Excel tend to be the two most used applications in office environments. And trust me. I can pretty much promise each and every one of you that Excel is a black hole and you will never know everything about it. There's a lot more than just typing things in the little boxes of a spreadsheet - who knew!? (Not me, that's for sure.) And I'm still learning. Every. Single. Day. I'm also still learning how to avoid headaches half way through the day after staring at the screen for so long. So far, the thing that has been helping me the most is going outdoors at lunchtime and avoiding  as much screen time outside of work hours. Which, granted, is difficult when you're also running a blog. But, as they say, it's all about balance.   

Career2. Going from wearing cute, creative outfits with very few limitations makes transitioning to business casual extremely difficult. 
Fashion is my favorite form of art and personal style is my choice of self expression so having so many limitations (and not being able to wear 75% of my wardrobe 5 days a week) is hard and a huge adjustment. Before my first day I had to buy work pants because the only kind of pants I owned were jeans, leggings and these crazy wide-leg polka dot pants (which I don't think would be very office appropriate). I'm slowly starting to build a work wardrobe that I like and feels more like me. (Side note: Derek literally laughed at me the morning of my first day and said I looked like a little kid trying to play "dress up". Thanks Derek. I love you too.) Also, check out how to Dress Like a Professional While Remaining Creative. 

Career3. Your schedule is going to be a lot different.
Weekends used to be tricky. While working in retail, I could always get the time off for anything that was incredibly important but I was still bummed out seeing my friends going to things such as festivals and what-not when I knew I couldn't (or shouldn't) take off another weekend when I had, let's say 2 weddings to attend that month. But the flip side? My weekends were usually in the middle of the week which were also kind of awesome because it's not nearly as crowded anywhere. It was nice to stop in the grocery store at 10am on a Tuesday and shop while it was quiet. I also never had to use PTO for doctor or dentist appointments. There are pros and cons of any work schedule but I'm really enjoying the 9-5 schedule where I can be off when most of my friends and family are. I no longer have to worry about missing the "not as important" events that are usually a lot of fun. I have so much more time for socializing with my friends and fellow Philly bloggers (above)

Have you ever decided to switch up your career path? What were the biggest adjustments and what kind of challenges did you face?