Do you have an episodic or a structural career challenge?

“This project is destroying my life.” Michelle said regarding a complicated IT project that she was overseeing for her company based in Milford, CT. “I’m working 12 hour days and half-day weekends. I think I need a new job.”
Michelle had called Career Counseling Connecticut during the midst of her frustration.  The project was in its six month. She was mentally and physically exhausted.  I asked her a few additional questions and then told her that she didn’t need to see me or that if she still felt this way after the project ended and onto her next project, she should come in then.
What made me turn down this client? I asked Michelle about her career path.  She had steadily worked herself up from software programmer to project manager in a career field that she liked.  That fact alone might make me suggest that she simply look for a new job in her field.  But her company was generally reasonable to its employees.  Michelle’s current situation was not typical from her 7 years at the company.  In addition, her boss had warned her that this project would be “brutal.”  The challenge was made far worse when one of Michelle’s key people went on maternity leave and another quit to move across country.  The project that was going to be tough regardless.  Now it was incredibly challenging.  
But it would end – sometime in the next three to four months.  Not fun. This, however, is what I call an episodic career challenge.  Michelle liked her career field, she liked the general career path within the field, and she even liked her company within the field.  She had to “keep a stiff upper lip” as my Irish-American mother-in-law says but that’s all she needed to do.
Most people who call Career Counseling Connecticut have structural career challenges. The field is not quite right.  Many are in daily circumstances far better than Michelle’s current situation.  They, however, are the ones most in need of career counseling. Structural career challenges go on… and on… and on.  Nothing changes until the person takes the first step. That’s where we can help.