Expert advice: Five signs that you're in the right place

We're used to hearing that we constantly have to develop ourselves and try new things. But you can also make a conscious choice that you are already where you want to – and then enjoy it.

By Career Counsellor Jeanette Svendsen

You can’t open a newspaper, a magazine, a blog, social media or a website without being told that you have to develop on the labour market. But it’s also important to take time out, enjoy the moment and enjoy being in the right place in your career.

Below are five signs that you're in the right place in your working life.

Congratulations, you have found the right job!

The first sign that you're in the right place is that you go to work happy every Monday. You have plenty of job satisfaction and you're filled with energy because you have a lot of interesting tasks you're passionate about.

Being in your current job, your current position and keeping up your current competences can be meaningful. So, you shouldn't feel that you have to look for a new job just because you have been in the same company for ten years.

You're developing

Another sign that you're in the right job is that you feel that you're developing personally as well as professionally. If you're learning something, you're having fun, you're being recognised and you have influence on your job – why should you look for a new one?

The problem remains the same. Think about what you're looking for, because perhaps it’ll be the same in a new place. If you're unhappy, look for trends and patterns in what makes you unhappy, and see if you can change this in your day-to-day life.

You should congratulate yourself if you're still happy in your job, many will envy you. You have found the right job.

Good relationships with your manager and colleagues

The third and fourth signs that you're in the right place are that you have good relationships with your manager and your colleagues.

If you have a good working relationship with your manager, who sees what you can do and recognises your efforts, you should be happy. Relationships built on trust and respect give job satisfaction.

The same applies to your colleagues. If you're in an environment with professional feedback and good social interaction, you can also count yourself lucky to be in the right place.

When the job is meaningful

The fifth and final sign that you're in the right place is if you feel that you are making a difference.

If you know that your work is meaningful to you, the company, the customers, your colleagues and perhaps society, then you're in the right place. This is a feeling that many pursue in their career, but to no avail.

It's also about timing

Being in the right place in your career is also very much about timing.

Timing in life means that something right now may be more important than developing. This may be young children, illness at home or a spouse's career. It's about making a conscious choice, for example that an MBA is not consistent with your life right now, but instead could be relevant at a later stage.

However, it's not the same as putting your life on hold. It's about prioritising what is important right now – and knowing that you have a long career ahead of you.

Accept who you are

It takes some courage to say that right now your focus is on being a mother, father, brother, sister or partner – and therefore work will have to take second place.

The truth is also that not everyone should pursue a job as a top leader or a position as a unique specialist. The important thing is that we use our strengths, abilities and talents in our working life and that we feel good about it. So, of course we need to think about how we can bring these into play.

It's also important that you accept who you are. This makes it easier to ignore other people's expectations about how you should develop or advance in working life.

You should under no circumstances spend your whole working life changing who you are. Of course you should be aware of your challenges and weaknesses, but it's more important to focus on what you're good at. Accept who you are and use this in the best possible way.

Enjoy the moment

Even though you've found the right job, you should renew yourself at some point, so you don't get tired of your job. But right now, just enjoy it!

Enjoy that you're in the right job – and don't think thoughts like: What if I had another job? What if I had another boss? What if I had chosen a different career path, would that have made me happy?

Instead of living in the future, live in the moment – and get the best out of it.