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downsizing careerThe American default professional setting is to move one’s career forward, not backward.

We live in a culture where people are encouraged (and rewarded for) seeking to climb the corporate ladder. In complete transparency, a majority of my career has been driven by helping others identify strategies to further their career along, be it through a new and better job, earning more responsibility, negotiating a bigger salary, etc.

And that’s ok!

Most of us are driven to achieve more, and that motivation can often be what stimulates us and gives us satisfaction in our jobs.

But what if you’re one of the people who feels the opposite? What if you actually prefer to go back in your career to a job with less responsibility? In other words, what if you want to DOWNSIZE your career?

Allow me to say that this is not only okay, but for many people it’s a healthy decision. For many personalities, more responsibility leads to unwanted stress. Instead of being excited about more to do, they know for a fact they would be more satisfied with less to do.

Case in point, the reader who submitted this question to the New York Times Workolgist column:

I’ve had a successful career in banking and financial services. Now, however, I want to downsize my role and responsibilities. How do I sell my skills and talents while seeking a more junior role than my career history suggests? I am not looking for part-time work. But, for example, I’d like to be part of a team, rather the leader.

This is a well-worded and thought out question, and I hope you’ll read the Workolgist’s response.

But my point is this – if you are feeling like  you want to downsize your career, don’t worry. It’s ok. It’s normal. And it’s something you should consider acting on.