Every so often, our career satisfaction gets called into question. We may have an extraordinary bad week or month leaving us questioning why we chose a career path to unhappiness.
When this happens, it is a good idea to find your career satisfaction again by asking these four questions below.
It’s a good idea to write out the answers for yourself. It serves as a reminder to keep going on those tougher days in your career.
1. Why is my career a great fit me?
We all have specific motivations for why we choose our career. A career progresses along side our personal lives. As we get older, start families, and have more responsibilities, motivations change. The chosen career is either shaped around your new motivation and personal life, or the career satisfaction fades.
Career satisfaction is often the result of a strong work-life balance. If that balance is thrown off, so is the career path. The career starts to become a burden. You can get career satisfaction back by looking for the original motivation behind why you chose your career in the first place.
Connecting the dots of your past reminds you how you discovered your work-life balance. If you are no longer motivated or inspired by your career, and you know for sure, it may be time to consider finding a new career.
2. What sparks my curiosity?
No person “gets passion” or “finds passion”. Passion in a career starts with a seed of curiosity planted in your brain by something.
You were curious about an activity, so you checked it out. And you discovered by following your curiosity that you had a passion for something. Then, you chased that passion. Some of the greatest inventions of all time started with the question, “What happens if I do this?”.
Find out what sparks your curiosity and try it. You will find your passion and career satisfaction. If you do not, you will discover why you do not like something. It’s ok to try something new. It does not mean you have committed to a career.
3. What makes me feel passionate?
So, you were curious about many things and tried them all. Nothing seemed to get your passion fired up. It is time to try a new approach.
- Sit down and write out everything you are passionate about in your career.
- Analyze what takes place at work when you feel the most career satisfaction.
- Look for specific patterns in tasks and behaviors that leave you satisfied.
- Then, write about the things that feel like career “buzz kills” at work.
When you are done doing this, you will find out why you felt passionate about your career. And you will find what may be killing it. Chances are your job satisfaction is affected by the next question.
4. What career skills am I missing?
The most liberating feeling in the world is learning how to take care of yourself and others. Quite often, we do not achieve the most job satisfaction because we are lacking specific career skills. Not being able to perform a job, that you once were very good at, can be disheartening. However, the solution to your problem could simply be that you need to learn a new career skill.
Unfortunately, people who avoid learning new job skills will start to get paid less and less as they get older. This can seriously damage your career satisfaction. If you know you have to learn something new, and you do not do it, you are not adapting to changes in your career.
Don’t blame an industry for your dissatisfaction. Start picking up new skills through online courses and classes. The more you are able to stay sharp, productive and smart, the greater your career satisfaction.