Can I return to design after 9 years?

I'm 39 and I used to be a freelance Graphic Designer/Artworker/Mac Operator about 10 years ago and was finding it hard to find work. I chose to take a normal non creative job to allow me to pay the bills. I stayed in that job 9 years and always regretted it. I wish to get back into some kind of design role again and am wondering should I go back to study? Maybe a HND or even a Degree? I'm educated to HNC level in Visual Communication and HND in Illustration, but always felt like I had missed out on some key elements of Graphic Design by not continuing with an HND.

I'm actually also really interested in UX Design as I had some exposure to it in my previous job but nothing too in depth. I have no knowledge of web design at the moment either, but am keen to remedy that via online couses provided by etc. I'd really like to pursue UX Design as a new career path as it resonates with me in terms of the design and psychology aspects of the subject.

I guess what I'm after is confidence in my abilities, be that in Graphic Design or UX Design. So should I study Graphic Design to further the knowledge I already have or just pursue something new which incorporates that knowledge? 

Either way it would be great to know of the most rated online/distance learning course for either. 

— Nick

Expert answers

Alice Davies's reply:

You hit the nail on the head when you said "I guess what I'm after is confidence in my abilities' Get skilled up in what you need for sure but I would more importantly recommend that you get yourself some sessions with a coach who can ignite your confidence and get you in the best place possible within yourself to take on a new career adventure. You have to go through the crap to get to the gold.

I would highly recommend a CTI trained coach, you can find them registered on the International Coaching Federation website.

I can't recommend any related design courses I'm afriad but as you rightly point out there are lots. 

Best of luck

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