Updated: Jan 13
When we're feeling unsatisfied with our career it can feel as though something is not quite right at work. The balance of work/life is out and we feel like we can’t shake the day off. It’s tiring and we no longer feel motivated at work. Sundays are a day of mixed emotions. Great to have a day off but dreading going back to work on Monday.
There are many reasons we can feel unsatisfied at work and here are just a few:
I'm feeling drained and tired after work
I don’t like my boss
I don’t feel like I belong in this environment
I don’t want to work my way up but I feel bored and underwhelmed in my current position
I manage people and find it hard and emotionally draining
I find it hard to say no and I work overtime with no extra pay
I like the pay, but I am not fulfilled
I like the pay, but it is stressful work
Here are 3 Ways To Feel More Fulfilled and Satisfied in your Career
1. Know your values
If you clash with people at work or you don't like the tasks you do at work, there is a good chance that you have a clash in your values. If you know your values, you can make decisions that are aligned with your values or change your values to suit your career and what you want. Values are your beliefs around how you live your life and what you believe is important in life. An example of being out of alignment with your values is when you're doing tasks that feels boring, and you feel unmotivated and drained at the end of a work day. You may value growth and variety and the tasks at work are repetitive and you feel like a zombie when you're completing them.
Ask yourself what is important to me in my workplace? Do the answers that you come up with match your current work environment?
Here are some examples of what I like in a workplace:
Value: Connection with my work colleagues through conversation, brainstorming ideas and having fun. Also spending time with them outside of work.
Value: Purpose in the work I do. Knowing it's making a difference in the world and in peoples lives
Value: Variety in the work I do. I like doing something different every day
Value: Growth. I like stepping outside my comfort zone
Value: Nature. Having the opportunity to be out in nature and not in an office all day
2. Be proactive rather than reactive
Circle of influence (proactive) and circle of concern (reactive).
Book reference- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, by Stephen Covey.
Take the power back and acknowledge how you can influence a situation to get a better outcome
When we focus on what we can influence in our life they are things we have direct control over. Our own behaviour and the way we react to people and situations are what we have direct control over.
When we focus on concern they are things we have indirect control over and they are problems relating to other people’s behaviour. We indirectly control other people and how they react to us and situations. This means that the way we treat people and speak to them may influence the way they react to us.
What we have no control over are problems we can do nothing about such as our past situations and situational realities
In order to improve our ability to respond to stressful situations at work we need to process what upsets us the most at work. This takes time and support from someone who knows how to help us to process the things that trigger a highly emotional reaction from us in specific situations.
3. Make a list of what you like about your career and what you don't like about it.
Once you have identified your values and have both your list of what you like and don't like about your career, be completely honest with yourself about whether you can make improvements to your career whilst staying in the same job.
Now you have your lists look at your values, do they help you see why you're unsatisfied at work?
What changes can you make to improve your career situation (refer to the circle of influence)?
Writing down your likes and dislikes on paper helps gain clarity and reduces overwhelm. This can help you with new insights.
For example, if you have on your list that you don't like the amount of work that is expected from you, do you know what you would prefer? How much work is too much or not enough? Is it your bosses approach you don't like? How would you prefer to be treated?
When we have clarity on this we can set boundaries and if they are not respected it could be time to find another job.
Do you find it hard to set boundaries and say no when you feel like you have more than enough on your plate?
Is it fear holding you back from making the changes you really want to see in your career?
Overall career satisfaction occurs when we align our values with the tasks we do everyday. When you feel unhappy and unsatisfied at work there is a very good chance that you're missing important information that could help you improve your situation. If you process and work through any fear you have around your career you will increase your career satisfaction and fulfilment. All it takes is the focus and willingness to do the work.
If you do not know what your values are and how you can use them to benefit your life and career, book in a session with me and we will identify your values and create actionable steps you can take to gain more career satisfaction. Another area we spoke about in this blog is what upsets and triggers us. I can also help you with processing any upsets and triggers that occur for you so that you can feel happier and more energised at work.