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Take Control of Your Career

| Comments career, job interview, self-improvement

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Why should you change your job?

Your motivation is close to 0. You’re a part of IT division that is thought to be just a cost, not an income. Everyone’s quitting. There is a feeling that you’re not learning or growing anymore. It’s not fun anymore. Bad decisions are being made.

Just ask your partner, friend or your parent if you should change your job. They may know what is best for you because they spend so much time with you. Some impressions are not visible for you yourself.

For me the most important things that I’m looking for in the new place are: company culture, great people and possibility for my personal growth. Not the money, location or fancy technologies. Does the company know how to motivate its own developers? It’s also important. Being motivated is rather essential for being productive and just happy.

Don’t you want to be happy?

If you decide to change your job, there will be millions of fears ready to stop you and your dreams. The fear of changes. The fear of not being confident. The fear of speaking with new people (probably in foreign language). The fear of being exposed as a one with lack of any basic knowledge. The unmasked and took as a imposter. We need to prepare for incidents like these.

Motivation

One of the most important factors that you should search for in new job is motivation. Motivation gives us happiness and increases our productivity at work. We don’t think then that working means going to random office and sitting 8 hours in that place that we don’t care about. They are 3 elements of being motivated: purpose, autonomy and mastery. The purpose means knowing: why you wake up every morning and go to work. It’s also about being ready to solve difficult problems, caring about something else than yourself. Autonomy is keeping you creative. We don’t get ready solutions that just need to be codded. We make decisions. Because of that we perform better and have satisfaction from our work. I mean: we should have. The last element is mastery which is wanting to be better in things that we do. It’s about learning new things and improving our skills. Every company that wants to have professionals as employees should always think about people’s motivation.

Imposter syndrome

Do you think about yourself as a fake developer? Were most of the things that you accomplished at work only because of luck? Are you good enough for any job? Does everyone know Java/C# or some other language/technology better than you? Are you at the end of some/every queue? What’s now? Maybe you should think about people that know less than you right now. I can assure you that those people exist. I’m not joking. Probably you are in the middle of your imaginary skills queue. There are people who know more than you, but you can’t forget about all these people who stand behind you. The problem exists and it’s called Imposter Syndrome. Many software developers suffer because of this phenomenon. In my opinion, the most important thing is to understand the cause and that nobody’s perfect. Remember, that if you are trying to do something with low chance for success, it’s not making you an imposter.

Fake it ‘til you become it

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During the job interview you will be exposed to stressful evaluation made by other people. It can be a problem, especially if you have low confidence. What if I tell you that you can be more confident just by faking your confidence? You can cheat your brain using body language. If you pretend to be powerful, you will actually feel more powerful. So how does this work you ask? Powerful people have high level of testosterone and low level of cortisol. Our body pose can cheat our brain by changing our hormones level: testosterone - dominance hormone and cortisol - principal stress hormone. The main idea is to take high-power pose to raise your level of testosterone and lower cortisol level.

Next time when someone wants to evaluate you, just fake your confidence by changing your posture for 2 minutes before some stressful and important talk/meeting. Show them who you are. Don’t sit down looking at your mobile phone, don’t make yourself small and lost. After some time and practice, you will become more confident and faking will not be necessary anymore.

English language

Last topic will be speaking English. Do you feel nervous thinking about speaking in English? You are not alone. Many people have problems caused by lack of practice just like you. I have been working for over 6 years for the company where English was used only for reading documentation and writing code. My speaking skills were low. Now most of the companies are international ones, so the common language used to communicate is English. If you don’t have contact with English language for a long time, your communication skills may become weaker. You need to practice. Writing your blog. Watching movies/talks on youtube. Reading out loud. Speaking with your partner or someone on the internet. Taking some English lessons. There are so many ways to practice it. Remember that everyone makes mistakes - even native speakers. The important thing is to practice and don’t care what other people think. They just need to understand you and be able to communicate with you. Platitudes are not crucial this time.

Summary

If you feel a need of Self-improvement and continuous learning, you must get out your comfort zone to experience new things. In real world nobody cares about your failures at the job interview. You will be interviewed by people who don’t know you. They will be asking themselves if they are conducting the job interview good enough. Some of them may be even a bit stressed. If you don’t know the answer for every question, don’t give up. It’s not even a failure. It’s a process. It’s better to risk than do nothing at all. Trust me with it.

Remember that 0% of people regret changing their jobs. They rather regret not doing it sooner. So: just take control over your career and jump into deep water, even if you’re not entirely confident about your skills. Don’t think only about the salary. It can imprison both: you and your career in a place that you don’t feel good in. Nobody wants it. Find people with passion and a company with a great culture. Find the purpose to wake up every day and go to work. Find the way of growth. You deserve it ;)

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