JUST BRENDA: Help! I am stuck in my career and losing hope


My career seems to have stalled and I no longer have the excitement anymore to do my work.

Photo credit: Fotosearch

Dear Brenda,

I feel like I’m drowning and losing hope. My career seems to have stalled and I no longer have the excitement anymore to do my work. And other jobs don’t seem to be coming along. I also earn much less than my peers, and it feels so overwhelming just looking at what they have achieved. Is there hope for me?


Dear A,

Your feelings are quite valid. And it is okay to sometimes go through phases of questioning oneself and choices.

However, do not wallow in self-pity for too long. And, yes, there is hope!

Make an effort to think deeply about the issues that concern you and try to find solutions to the problems. Reaching out is a good first step.

You should also know and understand that people are not equal; you could work in the same industry or job category but still have a pay disparity, even among people in the same company. But if you feel you deserve more, ask for a raise according to your work policies, but ensure you have evidence of why you deserve that raise – you could look at how your work has enabled the company to meet certain goals or attract certain clients…basically do an honest appraisal of your work output and skills, and how it has helped the company, then use that as your bargaining chip.

For your career, you could look into what goals you want to achieve, and what you need to achieve them. Do you need to upskill? Do you need another academic qualification? Or more experience? Or a mentor? Do you need to work on your personal branding? Look for what you need to do to have a more fulfilling career journey.

If you want another job, keep applying, keep revamping your CV, and keep upskilling and gaining experience to ensure you are a cut above the rest. Jobs are not easy to come by and many other people are applying for the same job. So, what would make you a better candidate than all the others who have applied for the job?

Also, do not ignore the power of networking – it could give you an upper hand in learning of opportunities or having industry insights that can work to your advantage.

You could also consider consulting a career coach (a professionally trained person who can help you gain perspective) to help you create a path to work towards your career and life goals.


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