Jumping Hurdles: The Common Mistakes that Could be Holding You Back

Employee Advice | PreviewMe | 22 January 2019

As the new year gets into full swing, now is a perfect time to evaluate your career so far. Ask yourself, where are you? Where have you come from? And, where do you want to be? Are you happy with the trajectory you’re on?

If you’re unsatisfied with your current position, what has stopped your progression, could it be you? If the answer is yes, now is the perfect time to change that and kickstart your career progression again.

Here are four common hurdles that you can jump over this year to help you get to where you want to be.  


You’re too comfortable

If you are constantly seeking to evolve and progress in your career, comfort is your biggest enemy. Often times we find comfort in the things that we like and are familiar with. In the workplace, this often happens when we’ve been in a position for a while and aren’t challenged anymore.

If you find yourself resisting a new challenge or the opportunity to take on greater responsibilities, this is a clear sign you’re too comfortable. This year, challenge yourself to step out of your comfort zone. Have a chat with your manager about upskilling or taking on more responsibility, pivot in career direction or try a new hobby.  


The fear of being knocked back

No one enjoys being rejected, that’s a simple fact. However, you can’t let a few rejection emails or not getting called back hold you back from advancing in your career. In order for you to land your dream job or climb the ladder, you will need to put yourself out.

It’s important to remember, getting rejected is often not personal, the position simply wasn’t right for you. Use these interactions as an opportunity to grow, seek feedback about your performance and then work on the points that held you back. This will hopefully put you in a better position to succeed next time.


Career development isn’t a priority

Be honest with yourself, how do you actually feel about career progression, is it a priority for you? This is a highly personal question and one that can be affected by a number of factors outside of the workplace.

Throughout everyone's career, there will be times when career progression simply isn’t a priority. Maybe your personal circumstances have changed, maybe you’ve just taken on a new challenge or maybe it simply isn’t the right time.

However, be mindful that this is probably just a temporary mindset and one that you shouldn’t get bogged down in. If this is the case, simply make the best of the situation you are in and when the time is right, move forward with everything you have.


You are scared of the unknown

Is the fear of the unknown holding you back from taking the next step in your career? It’s a common thing, most people fear of leaving the comfort of their current employer, where they’ve made relationships and understand the work, in order to move to something totally foreign.

In reality, these fears shouldn’t hold you back. The worst that will happen is you are thrown in the deep end and have to build new relationships. These learning curves will mean you’ll grow and take on new skills.

If this fear has held you back in the past, one of the best ways to counteract it is by doing your research before an interview and before starting. Familiarise yourself with the company from top to bottom. Get a picture of where the company is heading, what their values are and who the key people are. This will help you hit the ground running and make the most of your fresh start.


If you have found that these four hurdles have held you back from reaching your potential then now is the best time to overcome them. If you are ready to move your career forward and embrace new challenges and change, then now is the time.