When you’re stuck in a career rut, there’s no worse sound than the shrill persistent ring of your Monday morning alarm interrupting your beauty sleep.
But whilst your reluctance to get up and head into work is a common and understandable side effect of the dreaded slump, it’ll only exacerbate your lacklustre state of mind.
As boredom takes hold and your standards start to slip, promotion after promotion will pass you by. In no time at all you’ll be left feeling overworked, underappreciated and totally miserable.
Don’t give up quite just yet, though, because breaking out of your slump isn’t as impossible as you fear.
With some dedication and – sorry to say it – even more hard work, you’ll soon be bounding happily into the office each morning. Here are four top tips for getting started.
#1: identify the problem
Although those wine-fuelled rants you subject your friends to on a Friday night are satisfying, they probably aren’t helping you get to the root of what’s bothering you most at work.
Sit down by yourself – with a clear head – and come up with a list of all the drawbacks. Include the biggies, like overly long hours or lack of progression, alongside the smaller negatives.
Writing everything down will help clear your mind so you can identify the biggest problems.
#2: be honest
Once you’ve figured out what’s getting you down your next step is coming up with a solution – and it doesn’t have to fall solely on your shoulders. Be honest with your boss and work together on improving your situation.
Arrange a meeting and go to it armed with suggestions on how to make some positive changes.
Be open to hearing their thoughts too. You’ll probably find your boss is much more flexible than you imagine and has a variety of options, like further training opportunities, to explore with you.
#3: challenge yourself
Working on your CV is a must when you’re in a slump – after all, adding an extra achievement could be just the thing to give you an advantage the next time a promotion comes around.
Undertaking a further qualification via distance learning will increase your earning potential, and, more importantly, it’s something constructive to aim towards.
Balancing the additional deadlines around your existing schedule will provide some much-needed motivation, as well as confidence-boosting satisfaction when you meet them on time.
#4: change it up
Since applications and interviews are a bit of a hassle when you’re already employed fulltime, looking for a new job will probably be your last resort.
But sometimes a change of scene is exactly what the doctor ordered.
Be realistic about your wage and lifestyle expectations as you start the search for your dream career, and remember to be discreet so you don’t ruffle too many feathers at your current workplace.
Get cracking with these four steps and, although we can’t promise that Monday mornings will ever be entirely pain-free, you’ll soon find yourself enjoying a much healthier work/life balance.