Personal Engagement: Identifying & Mitigating Stress (pt. 2)

By Mark Vickers, Ph.D.
Many years ago I took a position where, even though I had the credentials, I was not wired to do the job. The requirements were well outside my behavioral style. Looking back, I should have known it was a bad fit. Yet, for whatever reason, I kept plugging away, all the time wondering (at least unconsciously) when I was leaving.

And that was stressful. As I mentioned in the last blog, stress creeps up on you. And it sure did creep up on me, or should I say ran over me! But I learned two important lessons at that job. First, know yourself (specifically behavioral style), your skills, and your passion. Don’t set yourself up for failure by taking a position you’re not suited to. I was destined to fail at that job and every one was blind to it.

Second, recognize that job descriptions don’t acurately depict the daily responsibilities. There are always hidden or unexpected tasks and requirements. That’s just the nature of work. But good teams help one another out when that happens. They have your back. Someone who is more geared for that sudden task can take it and you can do the same for them. I needed that help but, unfortunately, the team was blind to it.

The stress that results from a poor job fit is ubiquitous. We probably all have friends that say they hate their job and are overwhelmed by stress in the workplace. Do them a favor and help them determine the cause. Is it a poor fit? If so, perhaps they can adjust their role before the stress overwhelms them.


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