Do you think you’d be able to recognise what hating your job looks like?
Because I think that so many people have hated their job for so long that they can’t even tell the difference anymore. It’s amazing how miserable people can be at work and still tell themselves, “Yeah, I like my job” or “I have a good job.”
Here’s a sure sign. If it makes you feel like crap then it’s safe to say you don’t like it!
I remember being back at uni and a friend of mine telling me that her father who, according to her, had a very good government job, eventually had to ask to have Monday’s off permanently. So, I asked “Why?” Any thoughts? Because on the Sundays the mere thought of going to work the next day was causing him to experience severe migraines. Gee… what a great job. If only we were all that lucky.
So, why do you think people can’t recognise if they’re unhappy with their job? Why is it that such unhappiness is accepted?
Well, here are my three reasons when you take out the financial side to things:
1. A lack of experience or even a lack of the right experience – Most people don’t have anything to compare their current job to. It may be only their first or second job. Whereas for some, it’s a case of not having any better experiences to compare it to. Their past experiences have either been the same or even worse.
2. “It’s a job, no one really likes their job… right?” – There’s that belief it’s work and you’re not really supposed to like it. Just, when people ask you, make sure you say that you do (lol). So, any thoughts or feelings that relate to you not liking your job becomes normal. This coupled with the belief that if you have a well-paid office job you should consider yourself lucky, makes it easy to convince yourself you’ve got it good when it could be so much better.
3. You get comfortable – And try and find any excuse to stop yourself from ever leaving. Again, falling back on that “I should be lucky to have this job.” Too bad the thought of going into work makes you feel ill.
These reasons are common and let’s face it, we’ve all been there. But do you know what I think are the five big ass signs that you hate your job?
The ones I’ve witnessed that you can’t miss.
You hate your job if…
1. You require alcohol to calm yourself down after a day’s worth of work – Even if it’s not a lot, something isn’t right if you’re needing it every day!
No matter what career advancements you think you’ll get with it. Nothing good comes out of anything that pushes you towards alcohol!
If you think it’s harmless, simply something that calms you down, then ask yourself, why is it that you need calming down?
From my experience this is usually the case when you don’t feel safe in your team. What I mean is when you feel as though your team and/or manager aren’t on your side. You feel insecure and scared and that at any point you could lose your job or get in trouble.
2. You’re physical sick way too often (a lot more than you use to) – Have I told you about job #7?
It was my second stint with government and the work culture was toxic, toxic, toxic. Did I mention it was toxic? And I was there for only four months.
A colleague claimed to have become oblivious to how bad things had become and openly declared that it simply didn’t bother her anymore. Of course not. She had her full-time permanent job, why would anything else matter? And the fact that she was away sick more than actually being there was simply a separate issue on its own (Not!).
Did you know that people who dislike their jobs suffer the same amount of anxiety and depression and sometimes even more when compared to people who don’t have jobs? Well they do, as proven by a 2011 study conducted at the University of Canberra, Australia*.
People who dislike their jobs experience the same level of anxiety and depression and sometimes even more than the unemployed.
This colleague from job #6 later mentioned that her health had developed a bit of a routine where every year she would go through periods where she would be sick for about six weeks at a time. And I mean breaking ribs from non-stop coughing sick. At the time I didn’t think much of it, but once I began to learn more about work culture and the importance it played, it strung on me. I’d bet my house that it was her job making her sick. How could it not? When only after four months the mere thought of working there made me feel ill.
That colleague had been there six years – OMG!! No thank you!
3. You do your work in a bad state way too often – What do I mean? You’re in a shitty mood all the time, if not, most of the time. Sound familiar?
Basically, you’re constantly in a bad mood and the only time it improves is when you don’t have much work on or it’s Friday afternoon. But as soon as that workload increases and it’s the start of the week again, you’re back to being in that shitty mood.
Other daily traits include:
• You often swear at your computer or the work you’re doing.
• Every single noise in the place gets on your nerves and I mean every single noise. E.g. a colleague humming, the caps lock key being used, etc.
• The simplest actions frustrates the hell out of you. E.g. someone leaving The Advertiser (local newspaper) in the wrong place, a person asking a question, a minor detail being left out of an email, a small request that is just outside your job description. Basically, you don’t want to know about anything more than what you absolutely have to do and that’s it.
• You say “I don’t know” or “I don’t care” to questions that people ask you.
• You often tell people not to speak to you. The reason being to get your work done. Too bad about the message that sends, “Don’t fuck’n bother me with your shit, I just want to get mine done. I don’t give a shit about yours.” What a team player.
4. Whenever you talk to a friend at work 99% of your conversation with them is about how bad things are. Yep, if you’re constantly complaining about processes and people at work – you hate your job!
5. When you think of going to work the next day, the thought alone makes you feel ill – need I say more.
The worst thing about all this is the domino effect that happens when one person feels like this, it affects that person next to them and so on. If you feel this describes someone you know then please share it as it may open their eyes to something they can’t see.
Is there anything else you’d add to the list? If so, I’d love to hear about it. Oh and please don’t hold back on the detail as it’s the detail that I love.
In my next blog I’ll talk about what loving your job looks like.
See you then.
*A 2011 Study: P Butterworth, L. S. Leach, L. Strazdins, S. C. Olesen, B. Rogers and D. H. Broom. “The Psychosocial Quality of Work Determines Whether Employment Has Benefits for Mental Health: Results from a Longitudinal National Household Panel Survey,” Occupational & Environmental Medicine 11 (2011): 806-12.