Are You a Settler or a Reacher in Your Career?
In the dating and relationship world, it is often said that one partner is the ‘settler’ while the other is the ‘reacher’. The settler settles down with someone, for one reason or another, even if they think they can do better. On the other hand, the reacher finds a partner who is ‘out of their league’ and who makes them the most happy, even if they feel like they might not deserve it.
Of course, we’re not relationship experts. We’re focused on jobs and careers for our employees! Fortunately for us, these ‘reacher and settler’ roles work quite nicely when referring to people and their career choices. Perhaps now you’re wondering which one you are in your career: a settler or a reacher? There are many subtle pros and cons to being either one, so we are hoping this blog post will help you figure it out.
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Are you happy/unhappy at your current job?
Happiness is one of the best and most basic indicators of career satisfaction. It should be one of the first things someone might ask you about your job. “Are you happy? Do you like it there?” Depending on your answer, it may put you either in the reacher or settler camp.
A settler might not like their job but chose to take it and live with it for the long-term. They decided it was easier to work at a job they didn’t like but were good at, and earn a living, rather than spending too much time finding the ‘perfect’ job.
A reacher, more often than not, feels more happiness about their career than a settler. This is because they made the most effort, or took the most risk, to get the job they wanted. They got a job they didn’t think they could get but one they new they wanted. In some cases, a reacher might find that they’ve bitten off more than they can chew with a new job ‘out of their league.’
Are you comparing your job to ‘what you could have’?
In relationships, a settler commonly, whether or not they realize it, wonders what it would be like to be with somebody else. This happens with careers, too.
A settler looks at other people in their jobs and wonders what it would be like working in that job. On one hand, this is a good thing; it keeps them focused on what they want. On the other hand, it draws focus away from they current job. It might cause them to become lazy or jaded with their current work. As a result, it may even cause them to get fired. If their priority is to make a living and keep a roof over their head, this is important.
A reacher doesn’t necessarily feel the need to compare their career to others. They are happy and content with what they have, and they don’t think they can do better than their current situation. While this is all fine and good, an important aspect of career growth is being open to change. Being open to change means being open to new opportunities, which can lead to greater benefits and pay.
Do you feel trapped in your job?
Many people feel trapped in their current job. Whether it is due to the money, the benefits, or the strain, feeling trapped is never a good thing.
A settler may feel trapped in their job for one reason or another. They may feel like they can’t leave the job for various fears. They:
- Don’t want to disappoint their co-workers, boss, or family.
- Don’t have anything else lined up and they need the money.
- Fear being jobless.
- Don’t find anything else that is better for them.
- Feel pressured to stay by other outside forces.
A reacher knows that they can freely find a different job if they so choose. They have the skills and charisma necessary to beat the feeling of being trapped. It is, after all, how they managed to get their current job.
Are you okay with (possibly) starting from scratch?
Starting over from scratch leaves many people out of their comfort zone. A person who has spent many years at the same company might not want to throw all of that away.
A settler who has worked at the same company for many years, despite feeling negatively about the job, won’t be willing to leave. They’ve built too much loyalty and reputation with their employer to make a change. The fear of the unknown, having to start over, is too great to outweigh their unhappiness or other concerns.
A reacher is willing to put it all on the line and get the job they want. While they may still feel a sense of loyalty, they know what’s best for them. A reacher is more likely to act on their desires and isn’t afraid to start over at the beginning.
Which one are you: a settler or a reacher? Whichever it may be, contact us today to let us help you with your career!
Great blog! I found your tips very helpful. Thanks for sharing.