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Trapped in a Dead End Job? Try This Emotionally Intelligent Strategy

Source | LinkedIn : By Justin Bariso

How’s your work life?

A few weeks ago, I published an article with the title: “Thinking of Leaving Your Job? Here’s the Emotionally Intelligent Way to Do It.” It told the story of Ty, a young, smart, and dynamic young man who’s thinking of leaving his position as a manager for one of the major tech companies in San Francisco to concentrate full-time on his startup. (If you’re curious what advice I gave him, click the link above.)

If you read my column, you know I write a lot about using emotional intelligence(EI), the ability to recognize and understand emotions, to help guide decision making. EI (also referred to as EQ, Emotional Intelligence Quotient) can help prevent emotions from getting in the way of rational thinking–especially helpful regarding a decision like this, which will greatly affect the course of your life.

After a couple of weeks (and reposting on LinkedIn), the piece caught fire. It’s currently been read over 100,000 times, and a huge number of readers reached out–albeit with different situations.

“Ty’s in a great spot,” wrote one reader. “But what if I hate my job?” 

Looking for Advice

One reader asked for advice for a different set of circumstances. Here’s a portion of his message:

I could relate myself to the article, because I’m currently in an agitated state due to issues in my current job…. I’d like your help on how to apply [your advice] in my situation, since I don’t see any hope for improvement, and hence have started looking out for a change (although it’s been only 10 months for me in this position–and it’s my first job, too).

Would love to know your point of view on how to move forward.


And here’s how I responded:

Hi John,

Thanks for reaching out. Sorry to hear about your situation…. It’s a common one in the world of work. I’ve experienced similar circumstances at certain points in my career.

Keeping in mind I have limited knowledge of your situation, I’d recommend considering the following:

1. Work with your direct manager.

Try to think about five things you like about your job. Then, list a few things you hate about your job.


a. Narrow that second list down to the two things you most wish you could change.

b. Brainstorm a potential solution that won’t take moving mountains to implement. 

Now it’s time to request a one-on-one meeting with your manager. (This is better than an impromptu meeting, because it lets him or her know you’ve got something important on your mind.) Begin by talking about those things you really like–and thank your manager for any part he or she plays in them. 

The goal of this part of the conversation–and what makes it emotionally intelligent–is to show your manager that you appreciate his or her efforts. Often times, managers and team leads aren’t aware of the pressures their employees are under. Or if they are, they too are under so much pressure that they aren’t motivated to help.

Read On…

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