What are the risks with taking a career break, and what can I do about them?

Some people may be concerned that while they are not at work, they are losing ground on their colleagues (and competitors). That could be true, but it’s important to see your sabbatical as a once-in-a-career opportunity to develop in ways that wouldn’t be possible at work. If you are worried about missing out on training while you are away, this is something you could discuss with your manager before you go. You might arrange to check in periodically while you are off, to identify ways you can keep up with opportunities and training at work.

If you’re going for a new job, you may be worried about explaining the long gap in your employment history. You just need to express the same passion and purpose you used to sell your sabbatical to your current manager. Point to the positive results and personal qualities elsewhere on your CV that are only there because you took a break, not in spite of it.