“Don’t be discouraged. It’s often the last key in the bunch that opens the lock.”
Everyone experiences work ruts from time to time. They may feel like they’re not doing meaningful work or that they’re doing the same thing every day. Work ruts may arise when people don’t feel challenged, or they simply don’t look forward to their jobs.
Fortunately, you can work your way out of a work rut. Barbara Nixon, the creator of the Smash Your Own Ceiling podcast, says there are four ways you can get your momentum back. We highlight her suggestions in this issue of Promotional Consultant Today.
Avoid mapping out all the details
Nixon says that when we seek clarity, it’s easy to want to see the full picture and imagine a detailed map so we know where we are going. However, life just doesn’t work like that. Unexpected things happen and plans change. Instead of trying to view the full picture, she recommends determining the next step you’re going to take. Don’t think through all the possible scenarios of this step — just take the step.
Stop comparing yourself to others
If you feel stuck at work, it helps to stop putting so much value on what others are doing. When you’re so busy following what other sales reps are doing or how other business owners are running their companies, you can lose your own way. It’s like putting yourself in a crowded room where everyone is shouting and trying to think straight, Nixon says. Instead of observing others, create something yourself. Maybe it’s a blog post or a client email. By taking time to create, your ideas will start to shine through, and you’ll be able to see what’s right for you, Nixon says.
Accept what you want
Maybe you’re stuck in a work rut because you want greater responsibilities. But then you start thinking why you’re not qualified or why you shouldn’t pursue a leadership role. Instead of pushing your goal away, Nixon says it’s important to give yourself permission to want what you want. It’s your career after all, and you have to try new things and step out of your comfort zone if you want to grow.
Follow your joy
Sometimes breaking free of a work rut requires contemplating what you really want to do and then making that happen. Think about what you’re doing when you get into the flow at work. Time may feel like it stands still. Find ways to do more of this in your work, and you will find yourself reenergized and excited to do your job again.
If you feel like you’re stuck in a work rut, work through the four steps above. This can help you determine why you’re stuck — and help you reignite your enthusiasm for your work.
Compiled by Audrey Sellers