“We hear a great deal of talk about the midlife crisis of the executive. It is mostly boredom.” ~ Peter Drucker, management expert
At some point in your career, you may sense a creeping malaise. You’re no longer enthusiastic about the day ahead. Perhaps you’re experiencing a midlife crisis—the sudden realization that you’re no longer a rising star.
I hear this from my clients a lot. In fact, 75 percent of them struggle with mid-career issues. One person told me, “I can’t seem to find my passion.”
After 20 years of all-too-familiar work, you’re good at your job, but you’re not learning or growing as much. You seldom feel challenged or particularly satisfied and may be reminded of the song “Working on the Chain Gang.” While you show up to pay the bills, bosses remain unpleasant, projects fail, and work stagnates.
Even when I suggest a focus on true values and the reasons you chose your line of work, the daily grind somehow seems to take over. Often, work life seems to be reduced to reports, data, meetings and managing difficult coworkers.
When you lose your passion, your job is no longer enjoyable or meaningful, your energy sags, motivation lags, tasks go undone, and you make mistakes. At this point, you may think about switching jobs, but this presents additional risks. A “grass is greener” mentality often leads to disappointments, similar to changing seats on the Titanic.
A new career may mean a loss of seniority, lower pay, a geographic move and a new set of problems that closely resemble those you’ve left behind. But staying in a job that seems to be going nowhere, filled with mind-numbing work, means resigning yourself to a lack of growth and meaning.
It doesn’t have to be that way. Not if you’re working with a coach. That’s one of the primary reasons to use a coach: loss of passion and to explore work/life issues of purpose and meaning.
More on this in future posts… it’s important. I’d love to hear from you. Have you experienced mid-career loss of motivation and drive? Let me know.