The relationship we have with our job can sometimes come under strain and like any relationship it needs to be nurtured. This year, it’s time to fall back in love with your career. There might be several reasons why you may not be enjoying the job you once loved. It could be that you feel undervalued, struggling with stress or perhaps you’re bored and want a new challenge.
Stacey Allen, Director of Corporate Partnerships at Arden University recognises that feeling undervalued at work can be a challenging headspace. However, making a change doesn’t have to mean a new job entirely so she has shared some of her top tips on how to rekindle your passion for work
Have an honest conversation
If you are feeling undervalued, have a conversation with your manager as they might not be aware how you’re feeling, it could be something easily ironed out between you and could even strengthen your working relationship. Ask about progression opportunities, the potential for funding support for further study or an apprenticeship – make your job work for you and get qualified while you are there. Having clear objectives and activities to complete may also provide a renewed sense of purpose and direction and could be a quick win, if new opportunities aren’t immediately available.
Identify the source of the stress
Stress is a challenging thing to manage. Try to find the source and address it straight away. Many employers may consider flexible working or some time working from home. If you have one, engage with your employee assistance programme, or even visit your GP. Some counselling could help if your stress feels overwhelming and you might learn strategies to help change your thinking and increase your ability to cope.
Take some time to be mindful
Try to notice the small positives and focus on your breathing. Take time each day to go outside, get some air and some sunlight. Look at the rest of your life too, use your support network and keep an eye on your diet and your sleep. Plan things to look forward to and work towards them.
Think carefully about what your new challenge could be
Is there a different role or project you could work on in your company? If you’re ready for the next step up but don’t have the right qualifications, explore the opportunities to learn while you earn. A distance learning degree or part-time Masters in the evening would mean you don’t have to quit your job but still be actively working towards the next step up the career ladder.
Build your own personal brand
Read for personal development, seek out podcasts and say yes to any training courses that you are offered. Network, face to face and online – recruiters will take note of this, if you do decide to move jobs. Look for volunteering opportunities or the chance to shadow someone and build experience in the role you want to be in. Set goals for your own development and work towards them; ticking off a module completed on a course, or a day observing a job you really want can feel positive and encourage you to take the next steps to change your life.
Be the change you want to see
Why not think about how you can begin to change the culture of your team or organisation? Try sending a thank you note or email, whether someone has helped you personally or just because you want to make them feel valued. Try and smile more and be interested in others – the little things can sometimes have the biggest effect. Becoming known as the person who appreciates others can go a long way to make you feel more valued yourself.
For more information on Arden University, visit: https://arden.ac.uk or follow us on Twitter @Arden_Uni or on Facebook.
- Stacey Allen: Fall back in love with your career this Valentine’s Day - Thursday, February 14, 2019