If your job has got you feeling restless and unhappy, it might not be you. In a 2017 survey, 71 percent of the 17,000 workers polled reported feeling so displeased with their jobs that they were hunting for a new one. If you’re burnt out or otherwise unhappy in your current position, a change makes a lot of sense, but you have to be sure you’re making the change in the right direction. If you aren’t careful, you’ll end up in another job that doesn’t make sense for you. Here’s how to get solid career advice as you figure out how and when to make a leap.
Look at other parts of your life
For most people, hating their job isn’t something that exists in a vacuum. If you have a good personal life, for instance, it may be easier to grin and bear it at a job you dislike, at least for a little while. But if you’re having personal troubles, then a bad job is going to wear on you even more. That’s why you have to give people as much of the picture as possible when seeking career advice.
Sure, you could take an online quiz about what kind of jobs you’d be suited for, but those quizzes aren’t exactly known for their realism. Maybe you truly would be a great zookeeper, but there’s not exactly a big demand for that profession in your city, and you’re really not looking to move right now.
That’s why it can be a good idea to hit pause and seek the kind of advice that blends personal therapy with career counseling. Career counselors at a place like NYC Therapy can examine both your work history and your future goals to come up with a plan of action that fits into your life.
Be wary of status climbers
There are some people who think being a doctor or lawyer is the answer to every single career-related quandary. If you grew up in a certain type of household, you may know these people as “Mom and Dad.” And sure, they mean well, but be careful about choosing a path for its prestige above everything else.
Everyone wants a job that makes them feel good about their place in life, but if you get too invested in being liked, respected, and even adored, it’s going to be all but impossible for you to seriously examine what you actually want out of your career. Once you fall into the praise addiction trap, it can be hard to climb your way out.
There’s no doubt that being a doctor is prestigious, yet the job itself is incredibly stressful. More than 4 out of 5 doctors feel like they’re expected to do too much. They have so many on-the-job demands that there’s no time left over for family members and loved ones. You have to really love being a doctor to deal with all of that. If you love the title more than the actual work, you’re setting yourself up for disaster.
Don’t wait so long that acting becomes impossible
There’s a fine line between getting advice and getting so much advice that it becomes impossible to make a decision. Remember that you’re gathering information and talking to people as a way of figuring out what you want. This is not a survey on Family Feud. You do not have to make your decision based on the popular vote.
Talk to a few people you trust, including family members, friends, and even career counselors. But remember that you have to make a decision for yourself, not for anyone else. At some point, not making a decision becomes its own decision. You don’t want to be in the exact same spot a year later. Passively refusing to act may seem like a good idea in the short term, but it only leads to stagnation in the long run.
A career plays a vital role in quality of life, but the career you choose can have more of an influence than you think. If you are unsatisfied with where you are in life, consider these tips to help you take steps in a new—and better—direction.