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Can you do Better?

Finding a good job is hard. Finding the perfect job is even harder. As part of our Better Self series, I am asking myself if there might be something better out there to not only grow in my career but as a person.

Although I recently changed positions 8 months ago, it was a lateral move. Work is now closer to home, which is great, but there is so much more out there… Sometimes I just wonder how it would be to change careers altogether. Change my field completely. I currently work in finances, in a client-facing role. I work in sales and this skillset can be used in any company, pretty much anywhere in the world. Having such a skillset is great and opens a lot of doors but I have yet to open them. I have only worked in finance, that’s what I know, but sometimes it is good to look outside our comfort zone.

I currently work in finances, in sales, and this skillset can be used in any company, pretty much anywhere in the world. Having such a skillset is great and opens a lot of doors but I have yet to open them. I have only worked in finance, that’s what I know, but sometimes it is good to look outside our comfort zone.

Browsing jobs site, you can come across anything from sales representative to account executive, to strategic territory expansion manager, but in the end; you are still just helping clients buy stuff.

Someone has to sell toilet paper to the grocery stores before they can sell it to you and the chain goes up and up many levels. The good thing about this is that no matter the product or service, there are a few sales-related positions where I qualify for.

Ideally, I would prefer to enjoy the product itself. I am passionate about investments and those discussions come naturally to me but I have no idea how to sell toilet paper to a national supermarket chain. However, it seems like I am dragging it. Change does not come easily, and that is perfectly normal. I am sure there is a situation right now, in your life, where you are experiencing the same fears and discomfort as me.

 

Getting out of your comfort zone

Exploring outside known territory and common grounds will make you grow and ultimately, a better person. This place where you find a routine and pattern that minimizes your stress and risk, get out of it!

Routine might provide you with a regular, decent amount of happiness, low anxiety, and reduced stress but you will never be your best. To maximize performance, you need to be in a state of relative anxiety.

Stress is productive; stress will push you to innovate.

  • Start doing everyday things differently, change it up a bit!
  • Start asking yourself; why not? What is the worst that can happen anyway?
  • Take small steps, one thing at the time. Getting out of your comfort zone takes time.

When we get too comfy, we tend to do the minimum required to get by. Without deadlines or new challenges, you might feel busy but that is only a way to stay in your routine. Making yourself busy rather than daring and innovating is just keeping you in your comfort zone.

 

We need a place of productive discomfort,- Daniel H. Pink

 

By allowing yourself to take risks and exploring new challenges, you can learn to live outside your boundaries and prepare yourself for when life throws unexpected things at you.

In my situation, maybe changing jobs is the best thing that could ever happen to me. Or not. The only way I can find out is to get out my comfort zone.

 

Missing out?

What if there is something out there that will make you richer, happier, better off? What if the comfort zone is actually restricting you and you don’t even know it? What if your friends are having more fun, are happier, are living better lives than you?

That feeling that you are missing out on more or something better was even added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2013 as FoMO the Fear of Missing Out. This goes much further than just finding the right job. According to this study, nearly three-quarters of young adults reported they experienced the phenomenon. This includes the countless nights where you stare at your phone, endlessly browsing social media, just to make sure you are not missing out on anything.

If you are not feeling great and turning to social media to make you feel better, it actually makes you feel worse. Comparing your life to others, whether on social media, on blogs, or even in real life, is never a good way to cheer yourself up. That is a big reason why we do not share our net worth or income reports.

 

Social comparison seems sufficiently destructive to our sense of well-being that it is worthwhile to remind ourselves to do it less. – Barry Schwartz 

 

If you are constantly wondering if you measure up to idealist lifestyles people are sharing, you are comparing yourself to the illusions people are deliberately sharing. Out of all your friends sharing their amazing vacations on Facebook, none ever shares the credit card bill they received the next month.

Maybe there is a better job out there but am I just seeing what I want to see. I am comparing all those job postings with salary-comparison sites and dreaming about the nice paychecks. Only using the recruiter’s description as a point of reference. However, just like on Facebook, job descriptions only show what they want you to see.

No recruiter will ever describe the redundancies or annoying micro-management that comes with the position. Nor will they ever talk about the fact that the co-worker you will be sitting next to yells over the phone all day and smells of fish-fillet after lunch but that is a risk to take if I want a new position.

 

Be grateful

Instead of comparing yourself with others, start looking at what you have. Be grateful for everything you take for granted. Your home, family, and friends are often overlooked. Just take a second to think of a life without those.

Gratitude improves one’s physical and mental health, improves self-esteem, enhances empathy and reduces aggression. The simple act of consciously appreciating people and things around you has been proven to make you happier. According to this study, grateful people are more agreeable, more open, and less neurotic and generally exhibit higher life satisfaction.

It sounds so simple. Say yes to life, it is not just worth living, but rich with texture and detail.

I am grateful for the position I have, grateful for the company I work for, and grateful for my great colleges.

Is it worth it to jump ship? What do you think? Xyz.

 

 

14 Comments



  1. I made the jump – a drastic shift in career – and it worked out well on so many different front. The change alone earned millions of additional income, and a huge business opportunity, over the years.

    I wrote about it here – if you don’t mind me sharing: https://maximizeyourmoney.com/career/career-move-made-me-millions/

    Please edit out the link if not allowed. Just thought you and maybe other readers would find it interesting since it directly applies.

  2. I have worked for years in advertising and brand marketing. Now I`m an entrepreneur utilizing all those skills and experiences, what I had collected. I`m happy now, because I can concentrate on my strongest areas and leave others to freelancers.
    I think everybody should do the same, because we all have the strongest skill, which we should use to be happy with the work.

  3. Hey Xyz,

    Great post overall. There are so many opportunities out there, our motto is to always go for better and bigger until you’re a 100% happy with your situation. That’s we have been able to increase our income to 400k+/yr and hope to double it again in the next 5 years.

    But please don’t sell toilet paper if you are not passionate about it.

    Maybe you can develop your own financial product and use your skills to market it.

    Or you can use your skills to market your blog. Just make sure that once you make it, you don’t forget about us, the small bloggers

    • Xyz

      October 14, 2017 at 9:49 am

      You guys have an amazing story! The worst thing is; I bet the toilet paper salesman makes more than me. 😛

  4. You need to decide where you want to be in ten years and in twenty years. What you are doing now must lead directly to those goals. If not then you are wasting your time. I started my first job with the goal of running the place by the time I was 40. At 41 I was in charge of a billion dollar facility with hundreds of employees reporting to me. That only happened because I was intentional. Sales skills like yours are a golden ticket to success. Just decide what you want and go to a job that leads to that result. If your current job can get you there then stay and be the best employee there!

    • Xyz

      October 14, 2017 at 9:57 pm

      That’s the thing, in ten years, I do not plan on working a 9 to 5 anymore. All my calculations were made with my current salary so there is little incentive to earn more. Although, it is always nice to make a little more 🙂

  5. Great post. I have made a few career moves in my life. The biggest was switching from marketing to HR. The best move was switching from for-profit health care to the not-for-profit sector. Have you ever considered making the jump to becoming a sales manager?

    • Xyz

      October 24, 2017 at 9:53 pm

      Yes, I recently started looking into sales management roles, it seems very promising. Keeping you guys posted!

  6. I’ve done this in my life. I’m actually in the process of applying to schools so I can find more ways to apply the skill sets I already have. I’m kind of excited about it, actually. It’s good to be grateful, but it’s not good to be complacent to the point that we don’t take the risks we’ll be grateful for taking in the future. Well…thought-out, pseudo-responsible risks, anyways.

    • Xyz

      October 19, 2017 at 12:24 pm

      Yes, there’s always room for self-improvement. Whatever your current prestige or possition, there’s something new you could learn and add to your belt.

  7. To jump ship might sound a bit drastic 🙂
    At the end of the day, we are responsible for ourselves and our family. I think we should do whatever makes the most sense for that group.
    A job is just a job; they come and go. Family is for life 🙂

    • Xyz

      October 24, 2017 at 9:47 pm

      This is very true. We all have goals, obligations, ambitions, but a job (like you say it) is just a job. It is quite important actually to keep a certain distance from it, to not identify to your job. If your only sense of identity is your job, then you are trapped.

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