3 Ways To Overcome Career Anxiety

May 21, 2017

 “Sometimes we make the answer a lot more confusing than it needs to be.”

There are many reasons why people are more anxious about their careers now than ever before.

  • One of the main causes of career anxiety is the fact that employees are no longer sure of job security at large companies. The cycle of financial crises and immediate reactionary layoffs at big corporations and financial institutions has broken the belief of past that jobs at large companies meant career for life. Consequently, most do not believe the promises of big corporations and instead opt for work in government or in family business.
  • Job seekers of today have a wide array of career choices available before them; it is more than was ever present in the history of career choices. Also more than 50 percent of millennials are educated and hold a college degree. The stress of making the correct and most optimal career choice is one of the primary causes of career anxiety. Increased insecurity and pressure of optimizing the choices only heightens the fear of failure.
  • Increased exposure to financial health and wealth of others via different social networks is another cause of career anxiety. Posts about exciting new jobs of others on Facebook, etc., makes people think that their jobs and remunerations are just not worth it. Such frequent comparisons with the career of others is another cause of career anxiety.

Despite the above issues associated with career anxiety, there are many ways in which people can overcome their anxiousness. Presented below are 3 ways to overcome career anxiety:

  • Avoid emphasis on remuneration and prestige: Monetary compensation is a vital aspect of any job, but that should not come at the cost of a career that involves doing what you love. Working at a place just because it has luxurious offices may only provide short term benefits, but will eventually result in unhappiness and stress in the long term. Choosing a job that you love instead of one that offers more money or prestige will help reduce career anxiety.
  • Define your passions: It can often take a lifetime for us to decide what we want to achieve out of life. Pursuit of one’s passions and even defining your passions is a hard process. Hence, take some time out to understand your different passions and how you can achieve those passions, goals, and targets in life. Unless you are absolutely sure of one singular passion, it is best to opt for a host of different passions and then step forward. This will help prevent and overcome career anxiety.
  • Experimentation is key: It is important to be committed to your job, but it is just as equally vital to remain flexible and keep engaging in smart experimentation. You can try new ideas or harder aspects of your job, like seeking a chance to lead some new business of your company, taking a transfer to an international branch, speaking publicly at industry seminars or conferences, etc. This help prevent feelings of being locked-in to a specific routine, offer work challenges, and reduce career anxiety.

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2 comments on “3 Ways To Overcome Career Anxiety

  1. Hi Dennis, great observations … I am way past looking for a career, as I discovered self-employment later in life (CBT Therapist / Coach) . But I remember the angst of ‘getting it right’. Humans hate making mistakes, and choosing the right career feels like a make or break decision. Depression and anxiety lay in wait for us all, so your suggetions and ideas really help us to understand the mechanics of anxiety …we need it! It’s not always the bad guy.