Job security feels like more and more of a vintage phrase: it’s something your parents may have enjoyed, but only the most retro of your contemporaries claim to have it today.
Well, perhaps things aren’t that bad – but the increasing scarcity of permanent, reliable work certainly increases the value of those jobs that are considered secure.
The flip side of this is that when you have an ongoing, regular job, you may find yourself valuing that security disproportionately more than other important factors, such as job satisfaction, salary and the potential for advancement. It’s all to easy to get stuck in a career rut, showing up every day just happy to have a job and a regular income.
Before you know it, five or 10 years pass and it becomes harder than ever to make the leap into more fulfilling work.
That’s not to say you should start drafting your resignation letter right now. There’s a lot to be learned from a regular, entry-level position and your loyalty and self-development now will pay off later. But it is worth being aware of some of the warning signs that it’s time to make a move, so when the moment comes, you don’t just shrug off your unhappiness and carry on, insisting everything’s fine.
Incessant boredom is one pretty good sign. Even the most exciting of jobs have their moments of repetition and routine, but if you find yourself bored more than half of the time – or, like Tim from The Office, you get bored even telling people what you do – then stop wasting your time. Close your eyes, think about what you’d rather be doing and make an action plan as to how you’re going to get there.
But you don’t need to be bored to be in a rut. Some people enjoy the familiarity of the same old routine – even as life is passing them by. So get acquainted with these eleven warning signs that your career’s going nowhere before you get too comfortable in that office chair!
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John is a digital nomad and freelance writer. Specialising in leadership, digital media and personal growth, his passions include world cinema and biscuits. A native Englishman, he is always on the move, but can most commonly be spotted in Norway, the UK and the Balkans. Connect with him on LinkedIn.