If I had to come up with two words to best describe why people experience a career crisis I would say being ‘complacent & passive’. You know the song and dance where you work towards getting to a certain position or level, only to rest on your laurels. News flash, that no longer works in this new economy. Just to let you know you have to conduct your career like a business, meaning by always thinking & being one step ahead of the game. So if you’ve been feeling stuck in your career it’s time to take action, or get some support to help elevate you to the next level.
Just think about it, what would your career be like now if you had taken action to change your circumstance when signs of discontent began to show? And the bigger question is why haven’t you? My best guess is that your waiting for the right time, or you’re going to somehow figure it out on your own; but if you already had the solution wouldn’t you have applied it by now.
In any case, if the thought of the next 20 years of doing more of the same kind of work fills you with dread, you may be heading towards a career crisis. That was the story of my life a few years ago, sitting in a cubicle shuffling papers while listening to music on Pandora. I was miserable but I didn’t have the will power, confidence, nor the clarity to do anything about it. I was waiting for some kind of miraculous breakthrough, however the more I waited, the worst things got and I felt like life was passing me by. I finally got to the point where I was fed up enough to take matters into my own hands, but was confused as to why I hadn’t gotten the ball rolling any sooner.
Unfortunately in most situations things have to become so unbearable before we take action on our own behalf! You see taking a passive approach to work will leave you feeling stuck in a career or company that no longer fits you anymore, or maybe it never did!
This reminds me of the analogy of the frog in the pot. They say that if you put a frog into a pot of boiling water, it will leap out right away to escape the danger. But, if you put a frog in a kettle that is filled with water that is cool and pleasant, and then you gradually heat the kettle until it starts boiling, the frog will not become aware of the threat until it’s too late.
In other words, this is a warning for us to not wait for things to boil over into a career crisis; or in the frogs’ case to boil to death. So, it’s up to you to take ownership of your situation, and strategically plan your next career moves.
I hate to be the bearer of bad news but if you find yourself miserable in your work, and are going with the flow, you are heading towards a career crisis.
Here’s how you know your heading towards this outcome:
- You’ve been passive in your work, and are not contributing or adding value to your organization.
- You feel like you’re wasting time, and have a sense of deep frustration and anxiety about your work.
- You’re working your butt off, and feel burnt out which impacts the quality of your work.
- You’re second guessing yourself and whether or not to take action, meanwhile your confidence takes a beating.
- You feel overwhelmed and confused, and have completely lost all sense of direction.
- Your company has begun to downsize, and you’re fearful and discouraged.
- You feel stuck and lack vision for where you want to take your career.
- Your career has plateaued, and there has been no growth or progress in for several years.
With that being said, in order to take action this will require you to assess your current work life situation and make small tweaks, or it may involve you looking for a new company that is a better fit with your values and life purpose. For some, it may mean a career transition or staring their own business.
At the end of the day, if you continue to go with the flow you’ll look around several years later and wonder where the time went realizing that this is not how you intended your life to be. By the way, in no means am I trying to scare you, but the intent is to light a fire under your ass to take action. Let’s be clear feeling unfulfilled in your work is a choice, and you can change your reality by taking action now. You will have to act or be acted upon, it’s up to you to decide what it will be; either way I’m here to support you.
With Love & Guidance,
Now, I’d love to here from you! What’s holding you back from taking action in your career? What is your take away or insight from today’s post?
Express your thoughts, and join the conversation in the comments below. Share this post if you found it thought provoking, or if you know a friend who can benefit from this message today!
PS: Start the year off right with #DreamHustle LIVE on Jan. 13th, 2015 9pm ET/ 6pm PT. During this special free online event we’ll be discussing how to “Get Your Mind Right for 2015 & Beyond!” Be sure to reserve your spot! Get details & RSVP HERE.