Finding Joy in the Job You Hate
Can I be honest? I don’t love my job. I have to admit that when I come across someone who says that he or she absolutely does, I get a little envious. Of course there are other things that I want to pursue but I feel like I am in this season for a reason. The shift in at least liking my job came when I shifted my mindset. I have been in the finance industry for about 8 years. In my current role I am tasked with seeking out talent, interviewing and hiring, developing my team, and ensuring that processes are followed effectively on a day to day basis. This is my role in a nutshell, but trust me there is a lot more that goes into it. I had previously conditioned myself to believe that I was a glorified, high paid babysitter. This type of thinking prohibited me from finding the good in my job. One of the biggest blessings is that I can sustain the life that I want. All of my monthly obligations are taken care of and I have enough left over to save and spend frivolously if I choose to. I don’t know about you, but for me that’s enough to be grateful for. In 2012 I was fired from my job and was out of work for two months. I was struggling and that was not a good feeling. Of course I am more prepared now if something like that were to happen, but if my season at a job is over I want it to be of my own volition. For those of you saying that you don’t make enough, remember that while you are figuring things out, one paycheck is better than no paycheck. I also implore you to take an inventory of the things you spend your money on. You might find out that you can cutback in some areas. Is cable necessary or would a streaming app like Hulu or Netflix be more cost effective. Who watches live TV anymore anyway? Have you called your insurance company to see what discounts you are eligible for? Are you preparing your lunches at home or are you spending tons of money weekly eating out?
Why are you there?
I have come across people within my company who possess some really great talent. When I notice that, I try my hardest to get them where they want to be career wise. If they don’t quite know where they want to be, I make it my job to help set them on the path that will align them with the perfect role. I am proud that I have helped over 10 team members achieve both long and short term goals within our company since my 4 years as a leader. Realizing that I am ultimately helping someone fulfill their dreams means the world to me. This is my “why” while on this particular assignment. Now you might not be in a leadership capacity but when is the last time you motivated someone at work to take the next step? When is the last time you helped a new team member who seemed to be struggling with fitting in? Have you been asked for advice lately? Did you provide relevant feedback or did the ask seem bothersome? There are a number of ways that you can help others and that can be very rewarding.And if your why is not helping others like mine is, I urge you to figure out why you think this particular task was assigned to you. Sometimes God (or the universe, or life, or whatever higher power you subscribe to) won’t advance you to the next space on the board until you make the right play. This means that in some instances, until you fulfill what you were called to do in a particular setting you won’t be elevated to a higher one.
Take Heed to the Lessons you Learn While you’re there
Has your job taught you anything since you’ve been there? I want you to really think about it. Not just professionally but personally. Have you learned to better interact in social settings? Maybe you haven’t experienced a lot of diversity in the past. Has your job helped you to acknowledge your unperceived biases and engage with people who might not be like you? What would happen if you walked into work every day excited about learning things that would make you a better friend, better employee, better co-worker or better partner? I have learned so much about my ability to lead. I have learned the subtle art of patience, and I have learned how to speak up even when I feel like my opinion is unpopular and might not be valued. I can guarantee you that you can think of at least one thing you have learned since being at your current job. And even if you claim that you haven’t one thing is for sure. You have learned what you DON’T want in a future role or company.
This is Where You are Supposed to be at this Moment
If you haven’t noticed by now I hold the belief that life is made up of various seasons. Within those seasons there are assignments that we are tasked to complete. The seasons could be in the form of a friend, job, partner, business venture or life event. The assignments are situations that we are put in within those seasons that help us to learn and grow. Some assignments don’t end, others might last for a shorter term. But I believe that they are assigned to us so that we get something out of them before we move on to the next assignment or season. This job is your current assignment. I am in no way telling you to stay in a situation that you are not happy with. But I am encouraging you to get the most out of the situation while you are there and network, research, and develop until you get where you want to be. Understand that every moment of your life is on a divine path to get you where you will ultimately end up. That job, the one that you hate going to in the morning, with the pay that’s not enough, and the people you can’t stand is exactly where you should be at this moment.