Updated: Nov 17
If this list of five warning signs applies to you, it may be time to rethink your career.
I was sitting at the dinner table last night, having a great conversation with my family and my daughter's boyfriend - who is very into cars. He was talking about how he’s going to be purchasing a car and rebuilding the engine with so much energy and passion - you could see the excitement in his face!
Now, he already has a car so I asked him, "Why are you considering purchasing a different one?"
He then told me the warning signs and things that tells him when it’s time to make a new car purchase. In other words, what’s fixable and what’s not.
And so of course that got me thinking as a career coach and a recruiter: What are the warning signs it’s time for a career tune-up?
What is a career tune-up?
A career tune-up takes a step back and evaluates your career - its joys and frustrations. It looks for what's fixable and what's not. For example, if you're frustrated with your job because you haven't gotten a raise in a while - there's a clear path forward to fixing that problem! You can go to management and start by asking for a raise. It may be difficult, but at least there's a clear fix.
However, if you are facing larger issues - like feeling purposeless at work, the solution for that is less clear. A career tune-up identifies that problem and points out that it might be time for a new career altogether.
Five Warning Signs That it's time for a career tune-up:
If any of these sound like you, it may be time for a career tune-up.
1) You dread work.
From the moment you walk in the door at work until the time you leave, you dread the work you're doing. You get a little too excited when the weekend hits, and you basically count down the minutes and hours until it does. On Sunday night - you're filled with fear and anxiety thinking about the week ahead.
2) You feel like a slave to your work.
You have been working to live not living to work. Your work pulls you down, sapping your time and energy and giving you little fulfillment back. You may be making a living - but don't have much interest in doing too much "living" outside of work.
3) You're agitated after work
You come home with the engine overheating. You’re miserable and stressed, quick to become angry with your your loved ones and everyone you’re around when you’re not at work. Normally this isn't like you, but it's hard to feel any other way with the day you just had...
4) You're apathetic to your work
You feel zero ties to the work you do. You have little motivation to do more than the bare minimum. You're growing in apathy towards your coworkers. You know what SHOULD be done, and you'd probably be really good at it, but you have no motivation to do it well.
5) You're constantly comparing yourself
You constantly and consistently are comparing yourself to others in your field and wondering why you haven't achieved what they have achieved. What you're doing doesn't satisfy you, it doesn't give you purpose.
These warning signs, while harsh, shouldn't be ignored. Remember, just because one or more of these may be true of you DOESN'T mean that you should give up. Acknowledge the warning signs, build a plan, and do something about it.
Is it time for a career tune-up?
Don't wait to take action - you may find yourself running out of gas completely.
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