While we are creatures of habits, our habits can quickly become stale, leaving us feeling stuck or unsatisfied in certain areas of our lives. This is especially true for individuals who have been working in one position for many years.
The truth is that it is natural to feel stuck during points in your life and these moments exist to remind you that you are always growing and evolving, and crave change after a while of doing the same thing day in and day out.
Regardless of whether you feel stuck because you are unsatisfied and are looking for more out of your career path, or because things have simply become repetitive and you need to find more joy and purpose in your current position, here is why you feel the way you do and what you can do about it!
Why You May Feel Stuck in Your Career
You may be surprised to learn that there are actually quite a few reasons why you may feel stuck in your job after being on your chosen career path for years or even decades.
Let us go through some of the most common ones and see if you can find one that you can relate to!
1. You're Undervaluing Your Worth and Your Abilities
No matter which career path you have chosen, you are going to experience competition.
While teamwork is an important part of employment and you have to be able to cooperate with your coworkers, you are also expected to be great at your job and can only secure a position if you prove that you are one of the best people who has applied for the position.
That being said, once you secure a position, it can be easy to take a look around and determine that it would be hard to move up due to the misconception that others are "better than you".
The problem with this type of thinking is that it can prevent you from moving forward while others continue to excel. No one is better than you! You have your own set of skills and strengths that give you a competitive advantage in comparison to others.
You can leverage those strengths to get to where you want to be in your career. Undervaluing your worth and abilities and not moving on because of this is one reason why you may feel stuck in your job.
2. You've Become Too Comfortable (and Have Lost Sight of What Matters)
If you're not someone who is experiencing self-doubt that has prevented you from moving forward, you may simply feel stuck because you have become too comfortable where you are.
Learning new skills and being re-trained for a position can be a daunting task, and it can be easier to say, "I'd rather stay in a position where I know what I'm doing." It doesn't help if this position provides you with enough money to lead a comfortable lifestyle.
You may be comfortable but comfort doesn't equal contentedness. Your comfort may be the main contributing factor to your feeling of being trapped in your job.
If you've settled for your job because it provides enough for you, evaluate the reasons behind this choice to settle and seek comfort rather than progress or purpose.((The Muse: 7 Reasons You Might Be Feeling Stuck at Your Job
3. Your Work Doesn't Challenge or Fulfill You
Your career path is generally one that you have some passion for, or one that you enjoy. It is also one that should inspire growth and should keep you engaged and challenged throughout the course of your career.
During the course of your career, you may find yourself at a plateau where your work is no longer challenging or you are no longer finding the value in what it is that you are doing. If this is the case for you, ask yourself, when did this happen? Why don't you feel the same way you do about your work as you did before? Where did you lose that sense of purpose?
Only by figuring out where things have dropped off will you be able to pick up the pieces and begin to enjoy the qualities that attracted you to your position in the first place.
What You Can Do About It
Being stuck can leave you feeling helpless, but your life is in your hands. If you're feeling stuck in your career, take control of the wheel with some of the helpful tips listed below!
1. Determine Your Personal Needs
Feeling stuck is like feeling hungry or tired; it means that there are needs that need to be met that are not being met at the moment.
Sometimes, this results in a complete change of direction in terms of your career path; and other times, it means that you just need to tweak some of the current aspects of your job so that you can continue to love it.
The most important thing you can do right at this moment is to figure out what you need and lack in your career. Is your career providing for you? If so, what parts don't you like about it and what things do you need to change to fall in love with your job again? If not, what career do you want and what skills will you need to learn to get there?
Once you figure out some of these harder questions, you will be better able to change your course to reach your destination.
2. Make a Plan That Will Help You Get There
Whether you've chosen to stick with your current position or go for a completely new one, you can't just wing it. You need to make a solid plan that will help you to get to where you need to be.
After you've made a list of your needs, break down that list into solid actions that need to be carried out, so that you can move forward with your career goals.
Do you need to learn new skills? If so, where can you learn them and when can you make time to learn them? Do you need to apply for new jobs? If so, what type of job are you looking for and how will you be able to acquire that position? Does your resume need to be padded? Are you prepared financially for the change?((Talent Egg: What to Do When You're Feeling Stuck in Your Career Path
It can be a bit overwhelming to cultivate change in your life but it will be worth it in the end. A solid plan will help you along your journey.
The better you plan, the better the results will be and the fewer roadblocks will be in your way as you move forward in your career.
3. Stick with It!
Change only comes with consistency. Becoming unstuck in a situation where you feel trapped is not something that will happen overnight.
You need to constantly work at it and work with the end goal in mind. This will either be changing your career or putting your current job through a makeover. Use that as your motivation while you are following your plan. And then you are guaranteed to succeed!
The Bottom Line
Our life is full of cycles, which means that you are going to have to refresh every so often.
If it is your career that is starting to feel dull and can use a rebirth, the tips above will help you to break free of your work entrapment and begin anew.
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