W e all know what it feels like to feel under appreciated in a work or team environment.

You manage projects, balance schedules, stay late, get work done during non-work hours, be flexible, do favors for colleagues and yet-- you don’t seem to receive the recognition you deserve for the work that you do.

Is all your effort in vain?

Should you stay and continue to try and work your way up the ladder or is it time to leave your fruitless efforts behind in search of new, brighter opportunities?

While every situation is unique and has multiple conditioning factors, your question about whether to stay or leave a job can be answered by identifying your way of thinking about your current situation.

Over the past twenty years, I have noticed that people fall into three categories of thinking:

Events, Patterns, and Structures.

When your thoughts are at the event level of thinking, you are experiencing events without connecting them together.

Have you ever had one of those bad days where obstacles and tasks keep popping up unexpectedly, so by the end of the day you haven’t gotten even one thing from your to-do list done and you feel exhausted?

That’s when you’re at the Events level of thinking: you know a lot of tiresome or bad things happened to you, but you don’t see a way that they can be interrelated.

Have you found yourself saying to yourself “It always happens to me”?

Maybe you know people who are constantly the victim of their story.

People like this are only thinking at an Events level of thinking and often feel powerless, which can be heart breaking.

This is why we need to continue to find new ways of thinking in order to take control of our situations.

Next is the Pattern level of thinking.

We know that certain things seem to happen cyclically because they recur over and over again.

We don’t overreact because we have already expected these things to happen, and we know that they will clear themselves up.

Most people operate at the Events or Pattern level of thinking. However, there is a third level of thinking can help us change our behavior.

The Structure level of thinking involves anything tangible or intangible that drives or influences our behavior.

Let’s use my personal story as an example: several years ago, I made a conscious choice to lose 100 pounds, and I achieved this goal through Structure thinking.

What did I do?

I put structures in my life that helped me toward this goal, like only eating my dinner off of salad plates to help with portion control.

When you place parameters on your choices, you are driving your behavior toward the way you would like to act, instead of just thinking at the Events level and hoping things will get better.

When you feel powerless, think bigger about your current situation: is there a way that you can change the structures around you or implement new structures in your life to change your circumstances?

If you are in a job that you feel unappreciated or powerless in, think about your situation and see if there isn’t a way you can change your thinking and your structures to improve your circumstances.

Sometimes that might mean acknowledging that you are not always the victim, or that you need to put structures in place to avoid or change your own negative behavior in the workplace.

Other times, it might mean that you have to make a conscious choice to find new employment, if you have done everything you can without receiving the support or recognition that you deserve.

Remember that you cannot change others’ behavior; they have to do that for themselves.

But you can choose how you decide to behave. If you believe this information was helpful, make sure to follow me on my Social Media channels to get more great information to better your career and also share this post with friends and family members.

It could be just the information they need to see today, to improve their career and their lives.

Sending positive thoughts your way,

Discover your career trajectory today with my Personal Branding Assessment to find out!