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Situation might only feel hopeless
Tribune Media Services
Q: I'm stuck in a job and can't see any way I'll ever do anything interesting. I hate interviewing for work, and I'm not sure there's anything better out there anyway. Is there any hope things will change?
A: There's little hope "things" will change, but much hope you might. Right now, it sounds like you're in despair.
Psychologists have done research studies on the effects of moods on memory and future planning. It's been shown repeatedly that when we're depressed we view the past through a negative lens and paint the future with hopelessness.
Mostly, when we feel bad, we don't realize we're changing the way we see the past, present and future. We think we're accurately seeing our reality and decide to hide under our beds with the dust bunnies.
Once you realize that your feelings are distorting the way you view your options, you'll have more power. You don't need to feel optimistic, confident or blissed out to interview. You do need to update your résumé, seek openings and apply.
I'm surprised how many of my clients believe that other people are psychic. They get nervous about making calls, interviewing for jobs or attending meetings because they're certain other people will know how they feel.
As long as you make eye contact when you speak, and avoid tears or temper tantrums, most people won't look deep into your psyche. They will look for someone who can do various tasks for them.
Many people do feel as badly as you do. Despair in life is unavoidable, but giving up is optional.
Sometimes, the greatest act of courage is simply putting one foot in front of the other and taking small steps despite our feeling that "things will never change."
The last word(s)
A: Yes, but it can't be prescribed by a co-worker.
Daneen Skube, Ph.D., is an executive coach, trainer, therapist, speaker and author of "Interpersonal Edge: Breakthrough Tools for Talking to Anyone, Anywhere, about Anything" (Hay House, 2006). She can be reached at 1420 N.W. Gilman Blvd., No. 2845, Issaquah, WA 98027-7001; by e-mail at email@example.com; or at www.interpersonaledge.com. Sorry, no personal replies. To read other Daneen Skube columns, go to www.seattletimes.com/daneenskube.
Copyright 2006, Tribune Media Services