While we all have good and bad days at work, it’s important to distinguish if it’s a passing feeling related to circumstances, or if it’s time to change career paths. Determining what bothers you about your current career will also help you in finding a new one. It’s no easy task to know for sure, but some telling signs may help in your reflection.
You Perform a Routine
If you have held the same job for years, and your tasks are not particularly diverse, you might reach a point where you feel unchallenged. Maybe you are capable of giving more, of accepting bigger challenges, and your job is not giving them to you.
Routine can take away the passion out of anything and put you in the mental space to imagine other options. You don’t want to let your thirst for challenge die down in a job with no future, so you may want to consider other options.
Here, it’s important for you to determine if your current work can offer you more challenges and whether you’re interested in them. Sometimes, the answer to your problems can be more simple than you expected.
You Feel Disconnected to Achievements
When you feel a passion for your job, you strive to do your best. Of course, that is not always going to be the case, but at least it shows that what you do holds importance to yourself. If that’s not the case, think of the reason for it.
Does your work feel futile? Are you not motivated to achieve the bigger goals that come from your tasks? Understanding the purpose of every little thing you do, and how that helps in the bigger picture, is a gigantic factor in our work life. If you have lost touch with that purpose, ask yourself why, and use that answer to understand what would actually give you satisfaction.
Your Abilities Are Misplaced
It’s possible that you don’t feel satisfied with your work because it does not relate to your abilities. Maybe you have an interest in coding, and instead are stuck in administrative work. Identifying your strengths and passions is the first step to finding the right career path for yourself, but then you must act on that information.
You owe it to yourself to explore your interests, and you don’t have to go all out at once. Take some courses, talk to people in the industry, and scan the job market. If you want to try something new, just do it!
You’re Not Fulfilled
You don’t see the value of the work you’re producing, and you don’t feel like you’re contributing to society. All jobs contribute to society in one way or another, depending on your perspective, but if you don’t seem to find the purpose in yours, it’s time for a change.
Being demoralized can kill you inside, as you perform tasks automatically and feel detached from the result. You don’t need to be saving lives for your work to be valuable. It’s all about finding the spark that ignites your passion and boosts your self-esteem.
Your Career vs. Your Values
Being behind the mission of your company is key to your motivation. If you can’t really support it or look at the people you’re working for eye-to-eye, it might be time for you to leave, says Sarah Stoddard of Glassdoor.
Working on a project that conflicts with your values is self-destructing, and will not lead you to find fulfillment in your job. Instead, think of the places where your work would contribute positively to your own ideals. Getting behind a project you believe in will give you the motivation you’re lacking right now.
We spend so much of our time working that it’s an unbearable burden to stay in a job that doesn’t satisfy us. It’s important to analyze why we’re not satisfied, and take the necessary measures to fix the problem. Changing careers can look like a daunting prospect at any age, but it’s a challenge that you will be willing to take if you are convinced. The next thing is to focus on what you want from your new career, and then simply try it out.
David Torrealba is a Venezuelan journalist, illustrator, and SEO writer. He has been creating content for blogs, social media, newspapers, and websites since 2016.
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