Sometimes we find ourselves in a career rut and are at a loss for how to dig ourselves out. Spending most of your day in a job that may not challenge you or you don’t find meaningful, can be frustrating. It’s important to be productive, feel that your contributions are important and that they are recognized. It becomes draining when you find yourself in a career rut. The good news is you can take steps toward reaching those objectives and finding your work more meaningful.
Overcome Your Career Rut
First, identify what you are dissatisfied with at work. What can make your more fulfilled in your career? What will help you perform at your best? Let’s face it, we all want to make more money. Is that the issue? Have you ever asked for a raise? Consider asking for a raise if you feel your salary is an issue. If you want a promotion, then look at the job postings and apply for an interesting position when it comes up. Tell your boss you are looking to move up. Believe it or not, not everyone wants a promotion and that’s ok. It’s not possible for everyone to get a promotion. If you are not speaking up, it’s time you consider doing so in order to overcome your career rut. Think through your strategy and always be a true professional.
Seek Out Growth Opportunities
There are typically special projects and initiatives that come up within a company on a regular basis. If you feel that one of these opportunities will increase your job satisfaction, give you more visibility to help you achieve your ultimate career goals, then put your name out there. Let your manager know you are interested in taking on these opportunities. Your manager should be aware that you are interested in expanding your role. There’s always work to do and if you tell your manager you want to do more, they will typically embrace that, especially if you are making their lives easier.
Ask how you are doing. Be open to learning more about what you need to work on. If there’s something that’s preventing you from meeting your career goals and getting you out of that career rut, you want to know about it. Constructive feedback can sting, that’s understandable. And let’s face it, some individuals are better than others in providing feedback in doses that one can handle. If they are not tactful in giving feedback, that doesn’t mean it isn’t worthwhile. It just means you need to recognize that it may not be your manager’s strength, but they are likely still trying to help you perform at your best.
Seeking out what you want may be hard at first but it’s easier than constantly being in this career rut. It does feel more rewarding when you get something that you fought for. And if it’s not in the cards within your current company, then at least you know where you stand. You will have the information you need to determine your next steps in taking charge of your career.