How I switched careers spurred by an endometriosis diagnosis at 40

If Cameron Diaz could embark on a new career journey at 48, why not you? In her late forties, she transitioned from the realms of acting and authorship to co-founding Avaline, a wine business—a bold move that paid off. But career pivots aren’t limited to celebrities; they’re an intrinsic part of modern life. For 44-year-old Kate Pascoe from Sydney, a diagnosis of endometriosis prompted her to reconsider her trajectory, leading to a transformative career shift that ignited her passion and purpose.

Kate’s journey is a testament to the power of resilience and self-discovery. After spending 15 years in a demanding PR role, she opted to step away to prioritise her health and family. The diagnosis of endometriosis, a condition affecting one in ten women worldwide, served as a wake-up call. Like many women, Kate initially brushed aside her symptoms, pushing through the pain until her body demanded attention.

Taking the leap

“It took nearly a decade for me to realise the toll it was taking,” Kate shares. “I had to acknowledge the importance of flexibility, not just in the workplace but in life. For years, I believed success meant relentless pushing forward. But my health forced me to reassess.”

Closing her homeware business, Kate returned to PR as a freelancer but felt a lingering sense of unfulfilment. Then, amidst the uncertainty of the pandemic, an unexpected opportunity emerged—Pilates instructor training. Initially hesitant because of age-related concerns, Kate found solace in teaching friends in her garage and at the beach, eventually transitioning into a fulfilling career in Pilates.

“For me, finding purpose in my work meant prioritising my health and well-being,” Kate reflects. “Listening to my body, understanding its limits, and learning when to push and when to pause—it’s transformed my relationship with myself.”

Navigating through her forties, Kate confronted societal pressures and redefined her perspective on ageing. A major health episode at 40 shattered conventional expectations, prompting Kate to embrace change with open arms.


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A post shared by Kate Pascoe (@katepascologist)

“Ageing can be confronting, but it’s also liberating,” Kate asserts. “I realised that every moment is an opportunity for growth. Instead of dwelling on what I couldn’t control, I focused on what I could—finding joy and purpose in every phase of life.”

How to make the leap

For those contemplating a career shift, Kate offers sage advice: Start small, explore your passions, and create space for change. Balancing financial considerations and personal aspirations is essential, as is cultivating adaptability and resilience.

“Flexibility is key,” Kate emphasises. “Sometimes, the greatest opportunities arise from unexpected challenges. It’s about finding your rhythm, knowing when to lean in and when to step back.”

In her pursuit of balance, Kate prioritises self-care and introspection. As a mother of a child with functional needs, she acknowledges the importance of setting boundaries and embracing life’s ebb and flow.

“Self-care isn’t selfish; it’s necessary,” Kate affirms. “We must honour our needs and honour the journey, trusting that each season brings its lessons and blessings.”

Ultimately, Kate’s journey exemplifies the transformative power of resilience, self-discovery, and embracing change. Kate’s journey of reinventing her career and managing her health inspires us to live life with bravery, curiosity, and kindness, appreciating each phase with elegance and thankfulness.

This article was syndicated from Marie Claire Australia
Translated and adapted by Praise Vandeh, Marie Claire Nigeria Content Writer


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