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3 Ways to Tell if You’re Selling Yourself Short in Your Career

Hating your job is one thing, but staying put and wasting your life and career away is another. We all had wild dreams about what we wanted to be when we grew up, but things don't always play out as we once hoped they would. Chances are, you chose your career based on a combination of what you thought was semi-interesting in college, what your parents thought was right for you, and what had a decent earning potential – but, unfortunately, it's just not cutting it anymore. If this sounds familiar, then you may be selling yourself short, my friend. Here are three ways to tell if you're guilty of cheating yourself out of success in your life and career.

Hating your job is one thing, but staying put and wasting your life and career away is another. We all had wild dreams about what we wanted to be when we grew up, but things don’t always play out as we once hoped they would. Chances are, you chose your career based on a combination of what you thought was semi-interesting in college, what your parents thought was right for you, and what had a decent earning potential – but, unfortunately, it’s just not cutting it anymore. If this sounds familiar, then you may be selling yourself short, my friend. Here are three ways to tell if you’re guilty of cheating yourself out of success in your life and career.

How to tell if you're selling yourself short in your career

(Photo Credit: Nick Harris/Flickr)

1. You’re Miserable

Do You Know What You're Worth?

The number one indicator that you’re wasting valuable time and energy in your career is that you’re miserable more often than not. If you find yourself constantly in a foul mood and feeling resentful towards others, then you’re definitely robbing yourself of a promising career and future. Being miserable isn’t going to do anything but crush your dreams and turn you into a real Debbie Downer, so do yourself a favor and consider making a career switch so that you can save yourself before it’s too late. Read this post if you want to know what really makes us love our jobs. You may be pleasantly surprised.

2. You Don’t Find Meaning in Your Work

If you don’t feel as though the work you do is meaningful or rewarding, then you’re probably wasting your time and your talent, especially if you’re a millennial. Despite what the vast majority of professionals believe, no amount of free snacks or employee perks is going to make you love a job that you get little to no satisfaction from to begin with, and don’t think faking the funk at work will help either. Start doing some soul-searching to figure out what makes you happy – or at least happier – and begin implementing that into your life. For instance, if your ultimate goal is to start your own business as a graphic designer, then set up a profile on a freelance site and start picking up some side gigs that will get you one step closer to becoming your own boss.

3. You’re Being Paid Less Than What You’re Worth

There’s nothing worse than being overworked and underpaid, especially when you hate your job. If this is your sad reality, then the first steps would be to negotiate a fair wage. It’s important to be well prepared before heading into one of those “hey, I deserve more money” meetings, so here are a few resources to get you negotiation-ready. First things first, you need to know how much you’re worth, so punch in your details in PayScale’s Salary Calculator below to get started.

Accurate, real-time salaries for thousands of careers.

The next step is to use PayScale’s step-by-step Salary Negotiation Guide to help you get the paycheck you deserve. Of course, getting a raise isn’t a long-term fix if you’re miserable at your job, but it’s definitely a means to an end for a bit. Once you’re earning a fair wage, your outlook should improve and allow you to seek out a career that is fulfilling and lucrative.

If you’re truly unhappy in your current job or career, then now’s the time to make a change. You’ll never know how good life can be, if you remain stuck in your dead-end career. Tomorrow is a great day to start going after your dreams. Ready. Set. Go!

Tell Us What You Think

Do you feel like you’re selling yourself short in your career? If so, what needs to change in order for you to feel like you’re reaching your full potential? Share your action plan with our community on Twitter or in the comments section below.

Leah Arnold-Smeets
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