Have you ever felt a case of the Monday blues except it seems to last forever? Are you struggling to concentrate at work and find yourself daydreaming of doing something else? Chances are you might be going through a career rut.
Although it’s comforting to have the same routine and job for years and the financial security that comes with it, work can get mundane after a certain point. If you are an entrepreneur or a creative, you’re constantly using your imagination to come up with new ideas and strategies while other fields tend to have a more rigid structure. Perhaps you’re getting too comfortable at work. When you stop challenging yourself for long periods of time, you stop growing and then boredom sets in.
Here are 6 ways to get over the funk you’re in with your career and feel inspired again:
Revisit your career goals
Relationships go through the seven year itch. But so do careers. You start getting restless typically around the 5th year mark. If your job is highly stressful you might reach there sooner en route to burnoutville.
Take time to figure out if your career goals within the same job have changed. You probably achieved what you set out to do when you first started and now you need to map out what your next steps are. Do you want to grow in the same field or switch to a related line of work? Write down realistic short term goals of what you would like your career to look like going forward.
Learn something new related to your work or something completely different
Pick up a new skill to elevate your work and make it interesting or learn something completely unrelated. Be creative, learn a new instrument, choose a hobby to dabble in. Often times, working on something different generates ideas that can translate to your work.
Ask for help
Maybe you want that promotion. Unfortunately so does everyone else. What can you do to stand out from the crowd and prove that you deserve it? Talk to your manager and take up new responsibilities that leverage your skills and potential. Find a mentor in your field. Brainstorming with another person can spark new ideas that can turn the same ol’ job into something more interesting. And yes, ask for that raise! Women especially tend to be diffident about asking for what they deserve so if that sounds like you, put your game face on and go get it!
Switch up your routine
Sometimes all it takes to change things at work is to switch up your day to day routine.
- Get organized the night before so the next day you’re not rushing to work.
- Don’t skip breakfast! You don’t want to go to work hangry or only loaded up on copious amounts of coffee.
- Get to work early. You avoid commuter traffic and typically you can get more done when the workplace is calm and quiet.
- Try batch-working instead of multitasking or vice versa.
Exercising releases endorphins whether it is cardio or weight training. Working out or staying active daily prompts smarter food choices for the rest of the day, clears your mind, keeps you energized and alert and that trickles down to the rest of the day increasing productivity at work.
Be honest with yourself
Finally, ask yourself some tough questions. Do you envision doing what you’re doing for the next 5, 10 years or will you skate through your days unmotivated? What do you think would be your passion project? Do you know what you want to do that will make you excited to tackle each day? If you’re unsure about any of these answers maybe it’s time to start exploring and testing the waters to see what you do like, what you may be good at or where you can grow and challenge yourself. It may even be time to leave your current job and move on to something else. But you don’t have to do it without a support system in place. Grow your side hustle and test drive it if you have the opportunity. Plan your finances. Remember even if you decide to switch jobs or career paths completely, not every day is going to be fun and games. You are going to have mundane moments. You’re going to have to work really hard. Its not going to be glamorous.
We’ve all been there and making small changes go a long way in bettering your days at work.
I want to hear from you. Have you gone through a slump ? What are your tips to recover from a career rut ?