When Career Dissatisfaction Becomes a Reality
Unchecked Career Dissatisfaction Can Lead to Further Complications
For many people, striving for a good career is something which is instilled into them from a very early age, because it is perceived that having a good career will eventually lead to a greater gain in the future. However this may not be the case for many people who have either reached a milestone in their lives or experienced major life-changing events, thus leading to the individual questioning his/her career choices.
In an idea world, many people would be leading their professional lives in the way they always wanted, but the reality may be altogether very different. For many people, career choices may have been influenced at an early age by parents, teachers or peers and may not necessarily have been the primary choice of the individual or because they simply did not know what they wanted to do when they first started out.
Instances where career choices were heavily influenced by others can become a bone of contention during an individual’s career journey, especially if the individual experiences periods of career dissatisfaction, which can lead to frustration, angst, uncertainty and boredom. This is as a consequence of honouring someone else’s belief and values system.
People grow and develop and the career decisions made early on in an individual’s life may no longer be appropriate, especially if the individual has experienced life changing events. Interestingly, even people who played an active role in their own careers can also experience career dissatisfaction at some stage too. In this instance, the key is to recognise when this has occurred, so as to avoid career stagnation.
Life Changing Events
Life changing events can trigger a series of questions being raised relating to careers.
Bereavement, moving homes, relationship break ups or even milestone birthdays can trigger a plethora of questions relating to previous career choices. These events can create sudden and unexpected changes within an individual’s life, and this can be very disconcerting, especially if the individual is caught off guard.
Even if the individual is unable to pinpoint the exact moment career dissatisfaction creeps in, s/he then needs to identify the cause for concern because, there is a greater chance of proactively creating positive changes. Adopting a proactive approach sets the individual on a self exploration journey to seek answers; if s/he follows his/her instinct, this may well lead up to other positive paths.
Identifying the Tell Tale Signs of Career Dissatisfaction
People spend a majority of their waking day at work and for many, this can become challenging if they no longer enjoy the role/career/job they may presently be in. Even if an individual tries to cover up the tell tale signs, it will be challenging to maintain the facade for longer periods of time. Eventually, what happens is the dissatisfied inner voice has a way of making it self be heard very loud and clearly.
Below are examples of what an individual is likely to experience when career dissatisfaction makes an appearance
- Lack of motivation
- Lack of urgency
- Lack of engagement
- Going through “the motions”
- “Clock watching”
- Living for the weekend
- Wishing the day away
- Friction in workplace relationships
- Lack of trust
- Not completing tasks and duties to the best of an individual’s ability
- Increase in sickness levels
- Increase in stress
- Impact on general well being
- Friction appearing in personal relationships
- Mood swings
- Feeling unhappy
- Feeling undervalued
- Not contributing fully to meetings
- Temptation to engage in office politics
Career Satisfaction Can Lead to an Increase in Personal and Financial Rewards
One of the first things an individual experiencing career dissatisfaction can do is to engage in self exploratory sessions by asking open ended questions. By doing so, the process becomes empowering, thus easing the feelings of powerlessness. Questions such as:
- What is the motivating factor to come to work?
- What aspects of the role are appealing or not appealing?
- What are the alternatives to the present predicament?
- How feasible is it to implement any of the alternatives into the present?
- What is the next step?
Once the individual feels s/he has engaged in enough personal research and exploration, s/he is then is in a position to actively seek solutions or advice. Just by taking the first step can trigger a series of events leading to change, and potentially the opportunities to make informed career decisions.
People who are content with their careers and roles are the ones who also tend to contribute successfully at work too. They lead happier lives and have better working and personal relationships with other people. People who also take an active approach to career management will ensure career dissatisfaction plays a minimal role in their careers thus increasing the chances of a fulfilling career.