Feeling Trapped At Work: 2 Key Things You Can Do To Make it Better For Yourself

During these economic times, feeling trapped at work can make you feel even worse than it already is. We all go through it at some point of our career. We start to lose interest. Colleagues who are like-minded have left for other opportunities. Any of these factors can change our experience at work.

We may begin to feel trapped at work because of a change in boss or even our role at work. The notion that you feel trapped seems to suggest that you cannot do anything about it. Whether the economic situation does not allow for you to look for a better job or you are too afraid to move or you do not have a choice.

Choices will always be there, it is whether you dare to make the move or otherwise. Whether you stay or you leave, it is still a choice.

If you choose to stay, what are some of the things you can do to avoid feeling trapped at work?

1. Work Is A MESS
A majority of people feel trapped at work because they have an unusually euphoric expectation of work. That expectation when not met creates all sorts of dissonance. Be realistic. Work is called work for a reason. It sometimes can be fun when the conditions and causes are right. It can even be fun for long periods of time. However, to expect that work is fun is just being unrealistic.

Accept that work is a mess. Things change - maybe a colleague does not live up to your expectation, does not deliver, or even someone is behind in delivering some data that holds up your end of work. Even something as simple as a promised phone call can irritate us. It makes you feel trapped in an unhappy situation.

But once you accept that work is a mess, then you turn up for work knowing what to expect. You are sensitive and conscious to the change of events and situations. You adapt and you live up to the challenge. When you stay above it, things reveal itself with clarity and you don't have the "feeling trapped at work" emotion anymore.

2. Changing YOURSELF
One best way to stop feeling trapped at work is to begin changing yourself. Of course, when that is suggested many people will say, “Oh, but you are asking me not to be me.” No one is suggesting that. What is being suggested is that you change yourself for the better. Surely, a majority of you will not have a problem with that.

If you are feeling trapped at work, chances are you will go through a range of emotions, ranging from anger to frustrations to disappointment. All these emotions are from within you. You are in control of it. Sure, it can be tough to control but if you maintain clarity of mind and say to yourself – everything that happens is a phenomenon and will pass, then you will not be so attached to the idea of what an ideal situation should be at work.

Learn to regulate your emotions be it anger, frustrations or disappointment. Ask yourself why it happens. Do not react to a situation.

Reflect upon it. Every situation at work is an opportunity for us to discover ourselves more and make ourselves better everyday.

When you start to change yourself and not seek to change anything external, you will see that your work world will change together with you too.

Feeling trapped at work is a common emotion we all feel. Regardless of your choice, whether to stay or to leave, it is still a choice. Hence, the idea of feeling trapped at work should not even arise. You only feel trapped when you do not have a choice. Since the choice is yours, then do something about it. If you choose to stay and feel trapped, then try accepting that work is a mess and start by changing yourself.

Can I recommend this? Invest in a copy of 101 Great Ways to Enhance Your Career. I am a contributing author together with the world's 100 other career experts. It will help you answer a lot of career questions you have and make a great gift for yourself or your colleague. Check it out here.

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We all go through it at some point of our career. We start to lose interest. Colleagues who are like-minded have left for other opportunities. Any of these factors can change our experience at work. What can we do about the situation?

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