The Big Quit: If You’re Thinking of Leaving Your Job, Perhaps Consider a “Helping” Profession

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If a career change is sitting on your horizon, it’s highly likely that you’ve heard of “The Big Quit”. The Big Quit (also known as the Great Resignation) was sparked by four million Americans quitting their jobs in July 2021. That figure has stayed pretty steady throughout the year and according to Bloomberg, 24 million Americans left their jobs between April and September. In short, people are leaving their jobs in record numbers. 

Be honest; have you considered doing the same? Hitting the eject button on your job can feel exhilarating, particularly if it’s a change that’s been on your mind for quite some time. We’re here to tell you that it’s a completely normal feeling to have, particularly after the two years we’ve all just had. 

The thought of taking back some control in your life and deciding that, just once, you’d like to be in control of blowing your life up. Sound familiar?

Over the past two years, there has been so much change and collective mourning for a life that once was and no longer is. But we’re also about to tell you to pump the breaks — only for a minute, promise. 

Quitting your job is a great idea . . . if you know what you want to do next or have the financial means to support yourself while you figure it out. And on that front, we’re here to provide you with emotional validation — because if you know in your gut that a change is needed, then you have to honour yourself enough to make that change — and some ideas on where to head next. 

At home here in Australia, there’s actually talk that the Great Resignation is somewhat of a myth but, anecdotally speaking, more of my friends are considering career changes than ever before. Many people I know are starting their own businesses, upskilling in their current field, or are retraining all together.

For many, the last two years has left us feeling like we want to be making a positive impact in some way when we walk into the office every day (virtually or physically). One way to do this is by moving into a “helping” profession. As the name suggests, the term helping profession is an umbrella term that encapsulates anything that contributes positively to someone else’s life. Here are a few careers you might want to consider if you’re searching for a more fulfilling career.


If there’s one profession we know we need more people going into in 2022, it’s nursing. Anyone who’s ever worked in a health setting, or has received primary care from a nurse, knows that nurses are the backbone of any health system. 

There are more options than you may think for the type of nurse you can become, for example, a midwife, a critical care nurse, and a theatre nurse are just a few of the options you’ll have. Retraining as a nurse can be done through online study, with on-job training throughout the course, so you’ll finish feeling confident to dive straight into a nursing role.


If nurses are the backbone of the health system, then teachers are the glue that holds our entire society together, so it’s not surprising that teachers also top the in-demand jobs list. The beauty in training to be a teacher is that you’ll never be without a job, but just as with nursing, there are also plenty of options in the type of teacher you become. 

Doing a one-year Diploma of Educational Studies equips you with the skills to become a teaching assistant, teacher’s aide, and an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander language and culture teaching assistant. Meanwhile, a lengthier course like a four-year undergraduate course or Master of Teaching will qualify you as a teacher.

Social Work

A social worker’s role is to safely help people who are in crisis, are vulnerable, or are impacted by poverty and social disadvantage. This type of work can take place within grassroots organisations that help communities on the ground or can be providing support, counselling, and case management within larger organisations, charities, and government sectors. 

The goal for social workers is to advocate for social change to create a more socially just society and walk beside people who are vulnerable, to improve their lives. If that sounds like you, completing an accredited course that equips you with the skills to engage in this work is crucial.

Public Health

Public health issues have been thrust into the mainstream consciousness over the past two years and if that awareness has inspired you to drive action to overcome the many challenges our system has come up against, this might be the right career route for you. Public health includes critical sectors like health promotion, policymaking, research, and disease prevention — you can retrain in public health with both undergraduate and postgraduate courses. 


As with social work, completing an accredited course in psychology is crucial to give you the theoretical knowledge, biological understanding, and ethical practices that are crucial to becoming a psychologist. Along with the many challenges we’ve had over the past couple of years, the mental health crisis has been brought to the surface like no other time in recent memory, and that’s where psychologists come in. 

If this has inspired you to take the plunge and make a career change, head to the Charles Darwin University website to check out their range of accessible courses. 

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