Fall in Love With Your Career Again!

Have you caught yourself yawning as you once again answer the question, “So what do you do for a living?”  Have you found your eyes wandering over to other careers and companies that look to be a little more exciting than the position you currently hold? If you’ve answered “yes” to these questions, it may be time to spice up your career and fall back in love with what you do.

When you think about it, our careers and relationships with our employment companies are very similar to other relationships in our lives.

There’s the phase when we’re attracted to the type of work, the phase when we’re introduced to a particular company, the phase where we’re swept away and make a commitment, the phase where new projects and responsibilities are exhilarating and fun, the phase where we feel satisfied and comfortable, and ultimately we get to the phase where comfort can turn into boredom, irritation and a need for change. Often times, that’s where it ends. We see the apparent need for change and we move on to start the cycle all over again.

Well, hold on just a minute. Before you throw away a possible diamond in the rough, let’s take a step back and see if there’s a way to salvage what you have and recapture your love for your career.

Tip 1: Reflect back on why you wanted to work in this field in the first place.

There must have been a reason that compelled you to do what you do. In a perfect world, you’ll have a clear understanding of your organization’s mission and goals, and you’ll believe that they’re in alignment with your personal purpose. Often times, this is where it gets foggy. If you don’t know the purpose of the organization, it might be a good time to talk to your management team to ask for a little clarity. Research has shown that when people work together for a purpose, in which they feel connected, the results can be incredible. If you believe in the work you do, it’s a good sign that it’s not too late to rekindle the fire for your career.

Tip 2: Don’t be afraid to show what you know.

Over the years, I’ve noticed that some people will “hold back” on their performance or on voicing their satisfaction with their job because they don’t want to stand out from the crowd. They’d rather lay low and avoid making any waves because it seems easier than getting unwanted attention from their coworkers, who believe they should “know their place.”

I can’t think of anything that would kill my passion for my career quicker than trying to make sure I never made a difference or avoided the opportunity to “show what I know.”

Tip 3: Realize that you will be promoted in part for your accomplishments, but primarily for your potential.

Often times, we look at a promotion as a reward for a job well-done, and in part that may be the case. However, the main reason an employer will promote you is because they are betting (based on your past performance) you will deliver even greater future results. I encourage you to look at each day as another chance to show you are a professional who continues to grow, learn and change with the organization. Better yet, show them you’re a professional who can and will exceed their expectations. Soak up every possible opportunity for training, coaching and personal and professional growth. Not only will it make you look more promotable, it will keep things more interesting and exciting for you. There’s a saying, “All living things are either in a cycle of growth or death.”  Which cycle do you prefer?

Tip 4:  Try something new.

When you try new things, you’ll keep yourself engaged in your career and you’ll increase your value to the company. Nobody wants to do the exact same thing every single day for the rest of their lives. Key is to keep learning and expanding on your skills and trying new things.

Tip 5: If all else fails, try to talk it out.

Believe it or not, when you’re feeling stagnant, sometimes you just need to let your employer know how you feel. Give them a chance to get creative, and don’t be afraid to offer a few ideas of your own.

Who knows, you just might fall in love with your career all over again!