Are You Unhappy at Work?

There is every chance that the title resonated with the pain in your heart; isn’t it? Many people are unhappy at work. Why is it so? There are no easy answers. But let us try to know what can be the reasons and perhaps how to try to get the better of them.

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One, probably your immediate boss is your primary problem.

Always finding fault, always pressurizing you to meet deadlines, perhaps shouting at you occasionally might best describe this person. These are negatives, no doubt about that. At the same time, try to see all this as helping to push you beyond your limits to be the best you can be. This change of perspective can take the focus away from the negative boss to the positive process of growth that is happening for good.

Secondly, your passion might be somewhere else and your heart is there.

There are compromises we all make to meet current realities related to meeting our personal and family needs. No need to become frustrated about that. You need to wait patiently till the pressure of current needs are met and then you can think of switching to a new career or try to talk with your management to help you be in a role that bests suits your talent and passion.

Thirdly, it can be a toxic work environment, a bad work culture, or even your nosey colleagues that can be the problem.

There are no easy answers here. But for the sake of argument, let me say that you will always meet people who create trouble everywhere you go. Learn to avoid being with people who are potential volcanoes waiting to erupt. When they try to pry into your personal lives; don’t fly off the handle but instead with a gentle smile try to steer the topic away to something that is currently in the news. Not easy, but definitely doable.

Fourthly, it can be that you are too focused on the pay packet.

It can be less compared to others like you in other Companies or someone junior to you has been hired with a greater salary than yours. Both are hard to digest. One way to see your job is to see the big picture. If you can find meaning in your work because of the impact and influence it has on people it can make your burden light. Monetary rewards will come when you excel. Focus on excelling in your work even if your salary is not unto expectations at this time.

Fifthly, it can easily be a problem with work-life balance.

Personal and family needs and dull daily routines can take away your happiness at work. But life is real and not a fantasy. Problems are real and can lay their weight heavily on your mind. Try to see if some chores can be delegated. Try better prioritization of tasks and time management. Try talking with your friends. Take some deliberate time for yourself each day and spend it on your hobby. See, most people never ever get started on what they wish to get done in life. Get started now. Even if it is 5 minutes a day.

Sixthly, probably you are carrying someone else’s monkey on your back.

This concept was originally proposed by William Oncken Jr. in a Harvard Business Review article way back in 1974. It is a powerful image pointing to a daily reality at work. You might be saying yes to requests for help coming from others. There is nothing wrong with helping others. But consider whether they are just putting their monkey on your back and taking life easy. You should learn to help without carrying the burden. A gentle, firm, honest No to not-so-genuine requests can make life happier for you at work.

Finally, let me conclude by pointing out something we are all guilty of. Lack of gratitude.

So many of us take things for granted in life. Our loved ones, a home, a job, means of travel, good health etc., are some of the things that we don’t think much about. See, there is much in life we can be thankful to God for. An attitude of thanks and praise to God is a sure way to bring back joy and happiness in your work and keep the hope of a better tomorrow alive.

You can read Are You Unhappy @ Work on LinkedIn
Featured image courtesy: Photo by Andrea Piacquadio:

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