You’re feeling like you’re at a slow point in your engineering career. Like you’ve been idling for a while.
Not really stuck but not moving forward either.
And you notice that you have doubts about your next steps. Your confidence is fading.
How to Regain Momentum in Your Engineering Career
When you lose this much momentum in your career you start to compare yourself to others.
You conflate your goals with theirs.
Which causes you to lose sight of your career vision. And it gets harder and harder to get things moving again.
But all is not lost. What you need to do every once in a while is reaffirm your confidence.
Remember who you are. Why you’re here. And what a difference you’re making.
Remember all the ways you’re an awesome engineer and leader.
4 Steps to Trigger Confidence as a Woman Engineer
Here’s how you do it. Here are 4 steps – with alliteration to help you remember them – Realize, Reinforce, Reenergize, and Reengage.
Step 1 is to do a reality check so you can realize your actual progress.
Start by highlighting your latest accomplishments. In fact, speak your greatest accomplishments out loud.
Gauge how far you’ve come in the last year by looking at where you are now compared to where you started.
Notice the increase in your abilities and the improvement in your skills.
And especially notice how these have increased your courage and confidence.
Step 2 is to remember your capabilities and goals. And reinforce how they’re moving you toward your career vision.
I want you to finish this sentence 3 ways: I’m a great engineer because ___.
For example, I might finish that sentence like this:
- I’m a great engineer because I have patience and tenacity in problem solving.
- I’m a great engineer because of my experience in cross-functional teams.
- I’m a great engineer because I have a unique ability to draw in different perspectives.
Also do some journaling. Make a list of your skills and strengths. Write what’s going well right now with respect to your career vision and goals.
Not what’s going wrong – what’s going right.
Step 3 is all about giving yourself a boost – and triggering that feeling of confidence – by reenergizing mentally and physically.
This can be as simple as focusing on your posture as you walk and sit. Instill some joy and pride to get your chemical juices flowing and wake up your sense of self.
Take 3 or 4 slower breaths through your nose. It’ll calm your mind and lift your mood. And brighten your outlook.
Turn off your thinking brain for a few moments. This is hard for engineers!
- Stop analyzing.
- Stop planning.
- Stop being in control.
Think less and chill more so your creative energy emerges.
Be overly happy. Even if you’re not feeling it right now.
Because pretend happy can morph into the real thing. And if you’re happier, you’re more confident.
And Step 4 is to take action so you and your career can reengage.
Remove any resistance to your next steps.
Maybe you’re refusing to face reality. Or maybe you’re worrying about something that’s not likely to happen.
Release all that resistance.
You’ll feel relieved. And you’ll notice things start to look up.
Set a goal and take steps toward it. Be the person you want to be. Take on the habits you need. And pursue that goal.
Take the first next step.
You’ll bolster your confidence simply by making a plan to do this.
Reconnecting with Your True, Confident, Awesome Engineering Self
Any time you’re in a lull in your engineering career I encourage you to Realize, Reinforce, Reenergize and Reengage.
And because you’ll run into these slow times more that once in your career, I’m here to help you through them.
Sign up for a strategy session with me.
We can apply the 4 steps to your particular situation. It’ll give you a renewed energy and help you remember what you love about being an engineer.
Reconnect to your true self – your confident self – and be poised and powerful in pursuing your vision and making your mark in the engineering community.
Next time on Her Engineering Career Podcast, our topic is authenticity. Why it’s so important – and so hard – to be authentic in your engineering career.
Please join me for Episode 118.