Dealing with Professional Gridlock

Authored by Devon L. Golem, PhD, RD

You entered the field because you wanted to help others through one of your passions.  Yet, here you are…a credentialed professional working at a typical job in the field and… you are not happy.

You start to think: “Maybe this profession is not for me.”

Take it a step further and you may even find yourself frustrated with the field politics, the employment norms, and the status quo. 

Your attitude may even have taken a dive.

What should you do?

Don’t get discouraged.  You are on the right track for acknowledging this inner turmoil.  If you are feeling this way, it is time to ask questions and make changes.

I have helped many people in the same position.  With a little bit of analysis, you can make informed decisions that will lead you to a more fulfilling career…whether it is in this field or not.

Let me introduce you to the P.P.P’s.  These are three important areas to explore when evaluating your career.


Why did you originally get involved in this field?  What was your purpose?

Do you still want to do that?

Do you feel you are doing that?


What do you like and dislike about your work? Making a ‘likes’ and ‘dislikes’ list will help you evaluate and summarize your feelings.

Of all the dislikes, which ones are “deal breakers”? Knowing the dislikes is only part of the assessment…you need to know why you still encounter these dislikes. What are the barriers to your professional fulfillment?

Explore the circumstances.  Are these barriers related to the job, the sector of the field, the entire profession, and/or to you?


What are your options?

Starting all over in a new field is certainly an option…but is it the best one for you?  Explore all your options before deciding.  You can make changes in yourself, in your position, and within the field.


Explore these three areas to get yourself back on track to a fulfilling career.


Visit to learn more about the online, self-paced career planning course (5 CPEUs) as well as the professional guidance and coaching services.

For more insights, sign up for the Professional Insights newsletter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.