Is your career soul sucking? Top 5 ways to know...


Sometimes we get comfortably uncomfortable. We can forget what it feels like to be fulfilled and satisfied with our work and settle for ok.

Sometimes we get a feeling that something isn't right, but we can't pinpoint what it is.

It could be your soul talking to you... I know it sounds all "woo woo," but we've all got a soul - it's that beautiful thing that makes you unique. It's your sense of humor, the kid in you, your life stories and experiences, your faith, optimism, curiosity and vitality. Don't let your career zap it!

Here are my top 5 ways to know whether your career is sucking up the best of your soul and what to do to change it!

  1. You have two very different work and life personas.
    • You feel exhausted from being "on" all the time. It's ok to show two different sides of you at work and at home, but if you're constantly tired, use the weekends to "recover," and never seem to be able to catch up on work and life, this can be a sign that your personas are too different. Is there a way to bring more of your "at home" persona with you into the office? Is there a way to reduce your work "filter?" Can you make your work clothes a little more representative of your style vs. your company's (while still respecting dress codes)? Sometimes bringing another side of yourself into the office can drive innovation... try it:). 
  2. You feel like you're going through the motions, each and every day
    • You are no longer challenged and feel stagnant in your career. What once was exciting has lost it's luster. Hey, it can happen to anyone, we're human, but if this sounds like you, it's time for something to change. Monotony isn't good for anyone. Who can you talk to about making a change? Do you feel stuck? Sometimes an outside perspective can make all the difference (someone not part of your immediate friend and family circle)? 
  3. You're surrounded by negativity or competitive victimization
    • I talked about this in my "Settling Sucks" post, it's the idea that in order to be socially accepted in the work environment, you talk about how awful your last project was (and know that this next one will be even worse) vs. actually looking forward to a new project. Negativity is contagious and can seep into all areas of your life. This one can be tough to change, but start small. Look for subtle ways to boost morale through activities and challenges: exercise/walking steps, nutrition, art projects/photo collages, team restaurant reviews, volunteering. Insert more good and excitement, and there will be less room for the negative.
  4. You are micro-managed
    • You are reliable, accurate, punctual and creative, yet you have a boss who can't see you for those positive qualities (or doesn't take the time to). So you're micro-managed and feel suffocated, which over time deflates you and can drive you to hate your job. Is there a way to talk to your boss about how you work most efficiently in the workplace? If not, and you like the work you do, is there someone higher up you can talk to about a new role/manager? Making a switch within the company is not always possible, but you will never know if you don't ask.   
  5. You don't feel a meaningful connection to your work
    • As humans, we like to feel like we're making an impact on people in some way, no matter what we do for a living. It doesn't matter what you do each day: working as a call-center rep, a school janitor, a CEO of a fortune 500 company, or a creative director at an ad agency, you want to feel like your work matters and drives greater good. If you're lacking this connection, is there a way to cultivate it? Can you meet some of the consumers of your company's product, even if you don't directly sell it? Can you read articles about how your company's technology innovation is driving simplicity in people's lives?
    • Simply put, most businesses ultimately exist to benefit consumers' - is that benefit in alignment with your values? If not, it may be time for a change.

Ready for a change? Get in touch with me and we'll work together to figure out the next move for you!

Liz TrainesComment