How do you know if a career/vocation/profession is the right one for you?
“I hate my job!” is a common complaint I hear from many candidates and friends. The less painful version is “I’m bored with my job” which can be equally frustrating.
However, in the course of our normal work, we will always encounter ‘ups and downs’ on the job – sometimes, these roadbumps help keep the job more exciting. Nonetheless, too many of these can also rob you of your peace of mind. What are the legitimate signs that you’re in the wrong job?
Warning Sign #1:
You enjoy your weekends, but feel depressed on Sunday nights.
Just winding down from a day of family or personal activities, you suddenly recall that you need to go back to the office the next morning, and it overwhelms you with a sense of dread. The next morning when you wake up, you drag yourself out of bed thinking, “Oh no, it’s Monday!”.
This is an all-too-familiar feeling for many of us at some point in our career, but if the sensation recurs on a weekly basis and you really can’t shake that sense of foreboding, then it is a sign that you need a change in environment.
Warning Sign #2:
When you keep thinking to yourself, “I can’t see myself doing this same thing for the next 20 years, let alone 12 months!” You no longer find meaning or satisfaction in the work that you do.
Sometimes, when you come into a new job, you get all excited and energised. However, after a while, you find little or no joy in the work you do. It could be that the environment has changed (e.g. a new boss) or maybe you have (e.g. you no longer identify with the company’s goals).
You then need to identify (a) the things you can change (e.g. if you can increase or decrease the job scope), and (b) the things you can’t (e.g. the mean boss, the nasty clients, etc). If changing the environment gives you more satisfaction, then good for you. However, if there are circumstances you can’t alter and you do not see it improving in the near term, then you really need to consider your options.
Warning Sign #3:
You hear that inner voice of yours saying “I should be doing something else.”
You sense that something isn’t quite right, and deep down inside, you know that if it wasn’t for the money, you’d rather be doing something else. What exactly, you may not have any idea, but there must be more to life than this.
We are sometimes more pragmatic that idealistic, but that nagging feeling that something isn’t quite right is not going away anytime soon.
If these 3 warning signs seem familiar to you, you need to take a step back and evaluate where you currently are. People flourish when a job fits their skills, aspirations and goals and they enjoy career satisfaction. Are you enjoying your current role? Is there something else you’d rather be doing if you didn’t have to work for the money? Talk to your Career Mentor or Career Advisor today.