5 Ways to Reignite Your Career

Being passionate about your work gives you a reason to get out of bed in the morning and makes you feel like what you’re doing is worthwhile. Conversely, a lack of career enthusiasm can make every workday feel like it drags on forever – and in the long term, you’ll end up feeling burnt out and unhappy. Liking your job helps you succeed. If you’ve noticed yourself feeling apathetic or even negative towards work lately, it’s time to take stock of your emotions and try to relight the spark that made you excited to take the job in the first place. Sensing a loss of motivation at work? Try these 5 tips to reignite your career.

1. Set Paced Goals

Success starts from within.  Setting your own personal work goals can help to optimize time, increase productivity and make the most out of your days.  The value of goals lies in the direction and purpose they provide. When we set a goal, we are giving ourselves a target to strive for.  By having goals in place, we drastically improve our chances of success.

When thinking about goal setting, people tend to think long term – get 10 new accounts in the next year, obtain manager status in the next 3 years, gain global experience etc.  But by having smaller, achievable goals, you stay motivated and are reminded more regularly of the progress you’ve made.

Realign your motivation by setting attainable, paced goals. Make your goals:

Specific: Write down your goal with as much detail as possible.

Measurable: Identify quantitative targets for tracking your progress and results.

Attainable: Make sure it’s possible to achieve the desired result.

Realistic: Acknowledge the practical requirements necessary to accomplish the goal.

2. Help Others Advance

There are many benefits to prosocial motivation in the workplace, driving some of the key experiences that employees are now demanding at work: greater well-being, better relationships, and feeling good about the work you are doing. Does a motivation toward kindness and helpfulness amongst coworkers translate into better job performance? Researchers have found that employees with higher prosocial motivation also tend to have higher opinions of their own job performance.

Motivation comes from within and we as humans innately feel happy when we help someone. Even a small act of kindness can make a big difference in someone’s life. It creates a sense of belonging. It gives you a sense of purpose. Helping others may just be the secret to fulfilling your work purpose that is not only happier but also healthier, wealthier, more productive, and meaningful.

3. Take on New Responsibilities

Pushing yourself out of your comfort zone to take on more responsibility is a great way to grow personally and professionally. It can be uncomfortable and hard at times, but that’s what will help you make real progress within an organization.  But how do you approach taking on more at work?   Go to your supervisor and see if there are any additional projects you can work on.  Make it a discussion rather than a direct question: you can share your own career goals and talk about how you see yourself fitting into the company’s future.  Sometimes you can’t wait for someone else to give you the green light. Try taking initiative and do what needs to be done before someone asks you (or someone else) to do it. Start by identifying tasks that are falling through the cracks and completing them. Chances are, your foresight will be appreciated!

4. Act Like the Person You Want to Become

We’ve all heard the saying “dress for the job you want, not for the job you have.”  We tend to put ourselves in a box based on other people’s opinions of who we are.  Just like self-improvement, becoming the best version of yourself is a never-ending goal.  You can always strive to be more persuasive, kinder, more accomplished, etc.  Without change, there is no growth.  You need change to evolve and become the best version of yourself in the workplace.  To accomplish this, imagine the best version of yourself.  Whatever that vision looks like, strive to be that person one small step at a time.

5. Focus On Your Strengths

Strength-based approaches can be a powerful tool for increasing motivation and performance in the workplace.  A study by Gallup showed that employees that focus on strengths more than weaknesses feel more confident, productive and self-aware. The result is higher employee engagement, increased performance and lower attrition rates. Many people focus on their weaknesses instead of their strengths and often this leads to counterproductive outcomes.  For better job satisfaction and improved performance, you have to be deliberate about finding roles that you naturally excel in while continuing to harness those specific skills. Doing so will help maximize potential, enhance competence, give you fulfillment and yield better results.  Allow yourself to flourish by discovering how you work best, who you are, and what you want out of your life.

If none of the above works to help you reignite your career, it may be time to admit to yourself that you need to embrace your current situation or make a genuine change. If you can’t rekindle that spark for your job or profession, you might need to think about a transition.  When your career becomes stagnant and you are not growing in your role, you also start losing value to your employer. Every company that wants to evolve needs employees who are evolving with it. You deserve a prosperous, fulfilling career where you can be a lifelong learner, flourishing as you move forward. Having passion is personal to every individual employee, which means the way you rekindle that passion is an incredibly personal process. Do what feels right to you and focus on what matters most.