How to Love the Job You’re With
We spend 60% of our time at work, driving to work, and thinking about work. Life is too short to spend that much of it in pain.
1.) Do what you love or find some aspect of your current job that you love. Or quit complaining and find another job. You can do none of this, stay where you are, hate every minute of it, and lead a miserable life. But I want more for you. Those of us who do what we love are lucky. But some of you have not found what you love or are afraid to take the risk to do what you love. That’s okay – you are where you are. But you need to find something to love (or at least like!) about your job.
Maybe you really enjoy people. You may have to deal with some real duds in the course of a day, but you deal with a lot of good people too. Focus on them. Let the others go. Maybe people get on your nerves, but you love something about the work itself. Focus on that.
I recently visited Old Kentucky Chocolates where I got to meet many of the employees – who actually seemed happy! Now, they all might have been drunk (they specialize in Chocolate Bourbon Balls) but I don’t think so. Some really enjoy interacting with the customers and having fun (it IS a candy company after all). I bet you could have more fun with your customers than you do. Some really enjoy making the candy – they like the process. Others enjoy the people they work with and the sense of family. Find something you love, find another job, or be miserable. You get to choose.
2.) The grass ain’t necessarily greener somewhere else. After we’ve been working a job for a while, we tend to take things for granted. We think every place else must be better than where we are. Not always! I have a friend who worked for a family owned newspaper and never appreciated how well she was treated until she went to work for a large corporate operation. Before she was treated like a true asset, now she’s just a cog in a machine. Replaceable.
This applies to your personal life too. Things and people can look great from a distance. But when you really examine them, you may realize your current situation is pretty darn fabulous. And remember that saying – no matter where you go, there you are. That unhappy you in New York will still be that unhappy you in Florida. Although you’ll be warmer. And there will be more oranges.
3.) Be proud of what you do! Sometimes seeing your work through someone else’s eyes makes a big difference. My tour guide at Old Kentucky Chocolates said seeing me so excited renewed her enthusiasm for her work. I don’t care what you do – there is someone out there who would like to have your job or thinks it is interesting. There is someone who really appreciates what you do – you may think all you do is process the bills at the electric company, but I sure am glad my power is on. If you didn’t do your job, it might not be!
4.) You have a greater impact than you know.
Everyone you interact with every day is either enriched by your interaction, unaffected by it, or lessened. Simply by being kind and courteous you can make someone’s day. And I believe you get back what you give out. Give your kindness, your help, your ideas – all in the spirit of enriching others and it will come back to you tenfold. I know this is really hard when you are busy, especially in challenging jobs like customer service. But I guarantee if you give out fun, kindness, and enthusiasm it will make your job easier and it will be contagious – for your customers and co-workers.
Try this—keep a pocket full of candy and give some to all the service people who help you. Or to all your customers. How many people will smile just because they see you? How much joy will you spread? And you know who will wind up being the most joyful of all? Yep – you. Your work is as joyful as you choose to make it.