Professional and Personal Crisis: 5 radical questions about the new beginning

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In Chinese, the word for crisis consists of two signs: the one for danger and the one for new beginning. Even in Greek origin, crisis was not a catastrophe, but actually a turning point. And you too should see it that way. Important: if you recognize warning signals in time, it will be easier.

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Here writes for you:


Isabel Nitzsche 17Isabel Nitzsche is a journalist for TV and magazines and an expert on career topics.


From the author:




Feeling vs. mind

"We have to separate" - at the latest when you use this sentence from yours Manager or hear your boss, the crisis is here. Then it is usually too late for conflict and crisis talks. What interests then are only the details of the separation.

Even if you are completely surprised at the intellectual level at this moment - with hindsight, you have felt emotionally for some time that something is wrong. Even if you often do not want to see a crisis announce yourself, most of the first signs are there.

Timely counter-control

The sooner one discovers that something is wrong, the greater the chance of being able to co-determine the situation as an active person and not to fall into the role of the victim that must end up.

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Being in crisis usually means being in conflict - or in several. Because the conflicts can also lie on several levels:

Recognize the signs early

For example, an employee who, after spending several years abroad, was no longer able to cope with German professional regulations, but who also suffered from the internal structure of the company and whose boss did not properly perform her management duties.

The sooner you realize that the job is tricky for you, the sooner you can counter. And the better is the chance that it is still a relatively delimited and probably easily solvable conflict, and that, as in Birgit Riethmüller's case, there has already been a whole network of conflicts that can only be unraveled with great difficulty ,

Look for the signs!

It is therefore necessary to recognize emerging crises as early as possible. This is difficult for two reasons. For one thing, it is difficult for us because the exact look at something that is not in order in the job is associated with strong unpleasant feelings and with many, certainly, also with Existenzangst.

On the other hand, there are no wholly clear signs of a crisis. What you can do, however, is to collect as much information about the situation and about yourself as possible and to get the most accurate picture possible.

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Address problems openly?

Because people from your professional environment are unlikely to tell you clearly and openly that you have a problem with you. Of course, it would be up to executives to address issues.

But executives do not always take on their role. Conflict and crisis discussions are also unpleasant for executives. Sometimes there is a lack of time, some of the courage, some of the training - and often a combination of different factors. It does not help: you have to take responsibility for yourself and become active. This means you must pay close attention to the signs of conflict and crises.

5 Radical questions

A crisis radically questions the professional - and often private - life that one led. At least one of the pillars on which the identity rests, namely professional, is “cracked”. A new orientation is necessary to erect them again. The following questions offer a kind of “compass”:

  • What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  • What are you going to do differently in the future?
  • What framework do you want to have?
  • How do you define your professional identity in the future?

You have experienced the “worst case” and now know that you can start again, even if it is tedious. What should scare you after this professional baptism of fire? This awareness is a power pack for the future.

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