9 Tips To Overcome Stagnation At Work


    Have you been distracted at work lately or disinterested in doing your job?

    Do you find the days have become boring, time has slowed down, and you don’t seem to have the motivation to learn new things and perform excellent work?

    These are tell-tale signs of career stagnation. It’s true that challenges may always come and hinder you from advancing in your career, but if you feel you are already stuck in a professional rut, here are 10 tips you can do to try and get out of it.

    1) Commit to learning a new skill or acquire new knowledge

    Constant learning allows you to grow. Your relevance in the workplace is dependent on how you constantly strive to learn new skills or enhance existing ones. Similarly, your market value increases in the job market if you have something new to offer.

    2) Take on additional tasks or responsibilities at work

    When you volunteer for more responsibilities at work, you gain valuable work experience. This also creates a positive impression on your superior that you are a dependable team member. A word of caution: you must see to it that your current work assignments are not compromised when assuming these new tasks.

    3) Ask for regular feedback from your manager or supervisor on how to improve the quality of your work

    You cannot track your progress without a true picture of your actual performance in the workplace. Critical is the input of your superior in determining which areas you’re excelling and which ones need improvement.

    4) Try the Ivy Lee method

    At the end of each day, list down 6 things that you would like to accomplish the following day. Rank those 6 items in order of importance. The following day, begin by focusing on the first task. Upon completion of the first task, move on to the next. At the end of each day, move any unfinished tasks to your to-do list for the following day. Repeat the same process daily.

    5) Apply the five-hour rule

    Set aside 5 hours a week for learning and mastering new skills, allotting 1 hour a day from Monday to Friday. At the beginning of each week, plan and strategise the learning. Then, practice and apply new knowledge in real life scenarios, reflect on the new information and carry out small experiments to test the new things you have learned.

    6) Practice context-based learning

    You can quickly internalise new concepts or skills you have learned if you apply them in real-life scenarios or actual situations (as opposed to rote learning). Once you apply a skill or knowledge, you gain new insights that will reinforce your understanding of that particular concept, knowledge or skill.

    7) Find a mentor who can support your career plans

    Seek out former superiors at work or colleagues who have faith and trust in your abilities and character. Ask them to help you by providing valuable advice or feedback. Or they may refer you to key individuals who can help you move a step closer to your goals.

    8) Take a vacation

    Take a breather. Allow yourself some time away from your work. This may help clear your mind and make it easier to take a look at your situation objectively. Are you nearer or farther away from your career goals? What do you want to achieve in the next 5 years or in the next 10 years? These are just some questions you can answer more honestly if you have some quiet time to reflect.

    9) Know when it’s time to leave your job

    This is the final option. When you have applied all the previous advice and there are no signs of opportunities in your current situation, it is time to pack your bags and seek greener pastures outside of your present employment.


    The common thread among the 10 tips we mentioned is the adoption of a growth mindset and an attitude of lifelong learning.

    The growth mindset is a belief that as you put in more effort to learn a new skill or acquire new knowledge, your mental capacity grows. This allows you to have the ability to achieve more.

    On the other hand, the pursuit of lifelong learning enables you to relish learning whether for personal satisfaction or career gain. Both schools of thought are pivotal in breaking through from a state of stagnation.

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