My complaints were the same as most: underpaid, underemployed, and at one point I even had a manager who refused to speak to me. She would silently walk by my desk, go into her office and email me. When she failed to give me a performance review I knew I had to leave. No performance review meant no argument for a promotion. Nothing I was doing was being documented!
There was such an overwhelming sense of dread going in to work. I wrote the word "temporary" on a post-it note and stuck it on my computer screen. I used up most of my vacation days. But instead of going on vacation, I spread them out and used them one at a time for what I called "mental days". I remember telling my family member "This ain't living". My coworker and I would go to the park every day at lunch and they would have to give me a pep talk so that I would actually go back and finish out the day. I couldn't imagine being there for years.
I knew what I wanted, I wanted a new job with a new organization. I wanted progress. I wanted to climb the ladder of success that everybody talks about.
So I put a picture of a woman in a business suit climbing a ladder on my vision board... It worked!
A short time later I got an interview with the federal government. And then they made me an offer!! YES! But that's not all. See, I knew nothing about the government setup, I had never worked in that area and didn't know anyone else who had. I had no idea that they refer to their positions as "Career Ladder Positions" and each year you get a "step increase". I was floored.
The position I accepted was just what I needed at the time. I was there for a couple of years, and every every year I was there... I got a promotion.