Finding yourself in a mismatched career can be a distressing situation, but even more worrisome is not even being aware your career is wrong for you. Perhaps you’ve been suspecting it for some time or maybe not at all. Regardless, there are a few signs to watch out for that are indicative of the fact that your career is wrong for you.
Above all else, when determining whether or not a career is right for you, it is important to understand that a period of introspection will be required. The downsides of ending up in the wrong career can lead to an unhealthier lifestyle, so it is important to be honest with yourself if you suspect you aren’t in the correct career.
Do You Get Bored Easily at Work?
There’s nothing wrong with being bored at work. In fact, Udemy published a study that found up to 43 percent of American office workers are bored at their job. It’s unrealistic to assume that every second of your job will capture your undivided attention. With that said, if every second of the day seems boring to you, then there may be an undiscussed problem.
When it comes to some of the top reasons for leaving a job, a lack of a challenge is high up on the list. As counterintuitive as it may seem, people enjoy work that makes them think. The brain is a muscle and it needs to be trained like the rest of the muscles in your body. Having a mindless job can quickly lead to burnout and contribute to greater stress in your life.
Boredom at work is only natural, but there should be plenty of aspects of your job that keeps you interested and excited to come to the office each and every day. Don’t settle for a job where your mind can simply go on autopilot—find a path that challenges you.
Are Your Skills Underutilized?
Something that can quickly lead to feelings of a mismatched career is a mismatched skillset. If you studied a certain field and graduated expecting to go into it, it can be disheartening to discover you’ve landed a job that uses almost none of those developed skills.
A good sign that you are in a career that is a good fit for your skills is that you feel challenged to a healthy degree while at work. Otherwise, it’s possible that your job may actually not be stimulating to you. In a study, the Washington Post found that only 27 percent of new graduates land a job related to their major. Now, surely, a fair number of the other 73 percent could potentially have chosen a different path, but it is more likely that they accepted a career which presented itself to them.
Landing a job that does not use your skillset is a quick way to grow tired of the job. Try not to stay in a career that simply doesn’t fascinate you. If your skills are underutilized, it’s worth brushing up on how to write a resignation letter and searching for a new path immediately.
Have You Found Yourself Complaining About Your Job?
One of the easiest ways to discover that your career path isn’t for you is by reflecting on whether or not you are that friend who is always complaining about work to other friends. However, there is an important distinction to be made here. If you complain about your work, try to discover if it is the specific job you have or the actual career path.
If it is the latter that bothers you, then you have your answers for whether or not the career you’re in is right for you. Everybody complains about work but doing so every day without any improvements is a huge sign that your career is not right for you. Should you find yourself in this position, consider making a career switch to a path that may better suit your interests and skills.
When it comes to changing careers, discovering the optimal path can seem daunting. However, make use of resources such as coding bootcamps that offer intensive courses in new fields and can potentially prepare you for a new career.
Regardless of whether or not you currently think your career is a mismatch, it’s important to be completely honest with yourself. Your work will make up a large part of your life and should not be something that you simply settle on. Being passionate and enjoying your work is the greatest path to career success. However, you’ll never be passionate about your work if you are in the wrong career. For that reason, don’t stop searching for work until you find a path that lights a fire in your heart.