When you first started at the company, you were the shining star. In just one year, you were promoted and received a hefty bonus. And for a while, the accolades kept coming. You successfully completed projects on time and under budget with an hour or two to spare to assist your staff. You were always the go-to person; and for that you won several awards, including “Employee of the Year”. Then, somehow, you lost your mojo. Now you feel invisible. And you are left wondering if your best days are behind you. Do you think that you have reached your “peak” in terms of career performance?
According to Forbes, we often think of peak career performance in terms of momentous events, like publishing research or closing a huge sale. These are commendable high points, says Forbes, yet by keeping our focus solely on a few accomplishments, we can miss out on developing the key skills that will get us to them reliably.
The Self-doubt Trap
Now, you may be feeling a little insecure because of your inability to reach any new career highs despite your earlier successes. But when it comes so easily and quickly, it can actually hinder your ability to focus on the future of your career. It’s very easy to get loaded down by the fear of rejection, stress and negativity when you are not performing at your best.
As a result, you start nitpicking at every single project because nothing you do seems good enough. And when opportunity comes knocking, according to Inc.com, you are too busy, claim that it’s bad timing, or dismiss it as not a big deal. Inc.com added that you may have great ideas and many opportunities to connect to the right people, but you put it off until tomorrow. Of course, tomorrow rarely comes, say Inc.com.
But in order to remain successful at anything that you do, you must learn to take risks. And you must stop letting fear hold you back. Becoming the best at what you do again will require making an assessment of your career interests, preferences, skills, and values. Sometimes this means examining your leadership and communication styles. A professional assessment, says Inc.com, will help you gain some insight into your authentic career identity. Once you have a clear understanding of your talents, and how or why you became the shining star in the first place, only then can you begin working toward lasting peak performance within your career.
Reaching the Mountaintop
Without learning and practicing new skills, you’re limited to a finite number of peaks, and even these may feel a bit too “hard won” to celebrate, says Forbes. The antidote, says Forbes, is to cultivate stress hardiness to achieve peak career performance that lasts over time. According to Forbes, stress hardiness, also known as emotional resilience, is defined as one’s ability to adapt to stressful situations or crises. It’s also important to develop and maintain that inner confidence that you had when you first started at the company.
In order maintain your inner confidence, try the following tips:
1. Think happy thoughts! Check negative thoughts at the door when you come to work every morning. Learn to take more risks by imaging the best possible outcome.
2. What are your goals and values? Try developing a five-year plan with achievable goals and establish a measurement process to check progress along the way. In the end, it will pay off with big rewards.
3. Invest some time into researching new projects or responsibilities at the company. Schedule a meeting with your immediate supervisor. Come to the meeting armed with your competitive advantages by identifying what sets you apart from your coworkers and how you plan to succeed.
Stop judging yourself based on others’ performances, standards and expectations. Also remember that you are only as good as your last project. So stop focusing on past successes and spend your time determining how to do your best on the next one. By following these simple tips, you will not only be able to realize peak career performance; but you also will hit the highest point in your career and stay there.
Instilling Pride: The Primary Motivator of Peak Performance
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