How to Overcome the 5 Common Personal Obstacles Affecting Your Career

“Take heed lest you fall.”

                                                                                                      – 1 Corinthians 10:2

At some point, everyone has experienced personal obstacles in their career.  Great news; you can overcome them! Below are 5 common hindrances young professionals typically face during their profession. Whether you’re experiencing one now or you’re taking caution to prevent undergoing one, you are not alone! Take heed of the signs and don’t be overcome!


1.) Comparison

Comparison kills. It kills your self-esteem, your attitude, your focus. It’s especially easy to compare ourselves to others in the workplace.

To overcome: Instead of asking yourself, “why does he/she make more money than I do,” or “why don’t I have his/her job title yet?” Ask yourself, “what can I learn from what they are doing right?”

Don’t let comparison blind you to your own strengths. Whatever your strongest virtue is (i.e., confidence, friendliness, imaginative), place it at the forefront of your mind and use it as a building block to lead you in your career. Doing so sets you apart from others and also releases you of resentment.


2.) Rejection

You didn’t get the job or promotion you applied for, or you weren’t selected to work on a plum project.

To overcome: So what! This moment of rejection is not going to define who you are.

Pick yourself up and tell the Negative Nancy in you to be quiet! Instead of being hard on yourself, use the rejection as a developmental opportunity.


3.) Complacency

Complacency is your career pitfall. It negatively affects your performance, which then leads to your chances of advancement going down the drain.

To overcome: Be sure to seize new opportunities and find ways to improve your skills. Opportunities include:


4.) Procrastination

Procrastination may have worked for you in college when you were cramming the night before finals, but I promise you it won’t work for you in your career. It creates anxiety which then affects your performance, which then impacts your attitude.

To overcome: Quit making excuses. Stop scrolling thru Instagram and Snapchat. Quit taking longer lunch breaks and/or socializing in the break room and just get it done!

Your boss and coworkers will see you as a responsible, hardworking employee they can trust to get the work done. Don’t you want that? Yes. Yes, you do.


5.) Social Illiteracy

We’ve all heard it before; “millennials lack social skills.” This derives from the amount of time we spend “socializing” online versus being in a social setting. How do you know you lack social skills? A few examples are struggling when introducing yourself to others, becoming too anxious to speak up in meetings or you stumble over your words.

To overcome: To gain social literacy, you’ve got to put yourself out there. Be involved in a community, meet up with someone for coffee, schedule lunches with coworkers you haven’t spent time with. It’s great to have an online presence but make sure your presence isn’t just online.

2 thoughts on “How to Overcome the 5 Common Personal Obstacles Affecting Your Career

  1. I’ve realized that I can get bored at work from time to time. That’s when I know it’s time for a new project or to learn something new.

    • That’s very true! I’ve learned to always keep a short and simple to-do list handy if I have any downtime at work (pay a bill, schedule lunch & learn, read LinkedIn article, etc.) This way I can still be productive while I’m not busy at work and avoid complacency.

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