Are You Experiencing Career Frustration?

Career frustration: you begin second-guessing your job or career choice. One of the most unexpected things about a career or job choice is that sooner or later you realize that you are experiencing some level of career frustration.

What do you think the likelihood is of feeling satisfied with your current career/job all of the time? If you said “not good” you would be right! Let me share some of the best advice with you about people, given to me by one of America’s most decorated military heroes, David Christian. He told me this in 1993: “It is the nature of man to be discontent.” It is true in everything, especially in a career.

There will always be parts of the job that you prefer less. There are usually challenging people with whom you must work alongside. There will be things you don’t think are fair. This is 100% normal 100% of the time. The problem is that there are no guarantees you’ll find things any better at a different employer. What it really comes down to is your attitude. It is your attitude that most often is what needs to change. And your attitude is within your control.

Remember the mariners’ creed: we cannot change the wind, but we can adjust our sails. In a career situation our attitudes are the sails we must adjust to the winds around us.

Whenever you are experiencing career frustration, some good self-assessment questions to ask yourself (and perhaps record the answers):

a. Does this job or career fit my overall strategic career plan?

b. What specific things make me most / least happy with my current career situation?

c. Of these things, which can I control (sails) and which can’t I control (wind)?

d. What are my goals and what specific things have I done in the last two weeks to make progress towards them (the things I control)?

e. Which of my original goals I had when I took this position have I achieved? Is there still work left to be done?

f. What percent of my effort and dedication am I giving my employer? What percent of the compensation we agreed on is my employer giving me? Is there a difference?

g. What are my three worst work habits (sails) that I could fix?

h. What advice have my mentors (people I trust) given me? Have I asked them?

If I’ve made up my mind to leave, what specific plan have I developed to transition from my current job to the next one?

Boyer Management Group works with universities, employers and job seekers alike to help them become more successful. For job seekers and universities, we offer the world’s first assessment to measure an individual’s knowledge and awareness of current and emerging career search best practices, along with the educational programs to support higher ed curriculum, career coaches and individual job seekers. For employers, we offer world-class talent acquisition and onboarding tools and programs. To find out more, please visit us at, email us at, or
call us at 215-942-0982.


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