Have you ever had the nagging feeling that your career isn’t right for you? Your career path may have seemed right at one time, but now you have your doubts. Since you spend most of your waking hours at your job, you must be sure you’re spending your time wisely and pursuing something that will make you feel happy and successful. In career coaching, often the most profound insights come from answering the simplest questions. Ask yourself these three questions to see if you are still in the right career.
What’s the first thing I do when I get to my office Monday morning?
This may sound like a trivial question, but your answer says a lot about how you feel about your career. If you sit down and immediately start making notes about the good ideas you had over the weekend, you’re clearly engaged in your career. If you wander over to the water cooler to talk about the movie you watched on Saturday night, you’re probably procrastinating the start of your workday and feeling hesitant about starting the new week. We all have moments of procrastination but if this is a normal trend to the start of your day, you’re likely bored and uninspired.
What’s the next step in my career?
If this thought hasn’t crossed your mind, you’re either very content or not interested in working towards goals in your career. A career that keeps you actively engaged and challenged will not be static; it must be dynamic. It’s only natural that if you go to the same job and perform the same tasks year after year, you’ll likely lose enthusiasm and drive. This doesn’t mean you have to change careers or even jobs, but you should map out a few steps and goals that will make you feel challenged and motivated. A few things to think about are higher education or advanced certification, collaborative projects or partnerships, a new position or raise, or even opportunities at other companies. Think about how you will propel yourself up the next step in your career ladder.
Where do I see myself in ten years?
If the thought of answering this question fills you with worry, perhaps you’re not in the right career. If, however, you feel excited about the opportunities available to you in your current career, you’re probably in the right place. Don’t hold back when answering this question. Think about your ideal situation and your life. Then think about what it will take to get you to your ideal position and lifestyle. It could take drastic changes or a few minor tweaks in your current path. But if you never consider the question, you might just be in exactly the same seat you’re filling right now.
So, what do you think – are you in the right career? If you’re not sure, a career coach might be able to help you think about big questions and guide you in the right direction.