Employment: Five Reasons You’re Stuck in a Job You Don’t Like

Statistics show that a huge number of people aren’t satisfied with their job. And yet in many respects, there are more opportunities than ever. Increasing numbers of market segments, new technology, and other factors create an ever-changing array of new job titles and expanding opportunities.

So why don’t all these dissatisfied workers just leave their jobs and find new ones? There are many reasons why people don’t get going on their job search. Here are some of the big ones. Ask yourself if you’re falling prey to these common job search traps.

Plenty of people don’t launch a job search simply because they’re afraid. They wonder if the next job will indeed be better. They wring their hands over the thought of going to an interview. They wonder if they’ll be able to handle a better job. Put those anxieties to rest. You’ll have plenty of time to sort those things out as you go. Plan to learn interviewing techniques. Do whatever it takes to learn the job skills you need. You’ve got a lot more power and capability than you realize. You just need to believe in it and apply it.

Lack of Knowledge of What Jobs Exist
Many people don’t even know what kinds of jobs there are in the world. They limit their possibilities to what appears in the usual job postings or what they’re aware of in their own industry. But there are millions of different job types. Open your mind, find out all the possibilities. Start by researching any field you have passion or deep interest in. The Internet is a great place to start that search. Find people in the field you’re interested in and ask them about it. Keep doing it. Persevere. You never know — they might even offer you a job.

Lack of Knowledge About Yourself
Even more limiting to a job search than lack of knowledge about jobs is lack of knowledge about yourself. Before you can make any move, you have to know what you’re really looking for and what will honestly make you happy. List your preferences, brainstorm, seek a career coach. Do whatever it takes to clarify your ideal career in your mind.

Lack of Credentials — Perceived or Real
Sometimes there are some very real things keeping you from pursuing a particular career path. Maybe you need a certain degree. Or maybe you need experience in a field. Or maybe you just think you’re lacking these things. Find out from people working in the field what exact requirements you need. (Hint: the requirements on a job posting aren’t etched in stone. They’re what the employer considers ideal, which often is not the person they actually hire.) Then go out and get those credentials. Yes, the time you have to invest can be discouraging. But watch — it will go quickly and then it’ll all be behind you. You’ll be ready to go with your job search.

Excuse Making
There’s always some good reason not to do the work of a job search. And that’s just it. Taking the leap to find a new job can be plain old hard work at times. It’s rarely easy. But do it anyway. Get it behind you. The rewards will always be worth it.

By examining these real and perceived limitations in your own mind, you can blast away the barriers that keep you stuck in a job you don’t like. Invest in yourself and you’ll be rewarded tenfold for the time you put into your job search.