If you’re looking for advice on how to leave your miserable job in a spectacularly dramatic fashion – like in one of those Hollywood films where the hero gives his horrible boss a piece of his mind before storming out of his tiny cubicle and eventually landing a fantastic second career – then, no this article is not about that.
Instead, we’re telling you how you can make your existing job more palatable, no matter how terrible the working conditions may be – because unlike those fictional Hollywood characters, we actually have bills to pay and families to feed.
Make a List of Pros and Cons
In a perfectly realistic world where dream jobs are not growing in your backyards, leaving a stable career which is providing income to pay off mortgages and bills isn’t the ideal scenario. Maybe you have already spent endless hours searching for new work and sending out resumes but haven’t found any luck so far. So, how do you deal with a job that you dislike or even hate, knowing that you’re pretty much stuck with it due to your current circumstances?
One of the New York Times columnists, Dawn Rosenberg McKay, says that you can be more proactive about your current work predicament by drawing out the pros and cons of your job. First, make a (long) list about the things that you don’t like about your work.
Maybe your boss is a despicable human being or your coworkers are insensitive towards you or you don’t like the actual job that you’re paid to do – whatever it is, write it down on a piece of paper so that you know exactly what you’re dealing with. It’s best that you do this exercise while you have some time off from work, like the weekend or holidays so that none of your coworkers catch you fuming in your cubicle as you write mean things about them.
Once you’ve written down everything that you dislike about your job, try to think of the things that you actually like about it and note them down. Maybe you love the work that you do but it’s only the people you’re surrounded with that are the problem. Does your office have a free pantry or a cafeteria with good food and coffee? That’s a big plus. Write that down as well. Think of the colleagues that you do get along with or any other incentives you get from the employer which could serve as a motivation to go to work every day. Don’t forget: your paycheck is also a great reason for you to stick it out.
Learn New Skills
Career consultants say that people who dislike their current line of work simply ‘serve time’ in their current job instead of learning new skills which could actually help them get a better job eventually. Think of the new skills that you can add to your resume that will boost your chances of being called in for a job interview. Does your current employer offer any educational benefits? Use them to take some useful classes at a community college to expand your skillset.
Your current job is merely a placeholder which is buying you time while you prepare yourself for a better career ahead. Use this time for networking and applying at other organizations.
Talk to Someone
If you think that the work responsibility has changed over the past few months and find yourself doing a lot more than before, look into an opportunity to talk to your manager or boss about it – but before you do that, ask yourself if the treatment that you’re receiving is only unique to you or are the other coworkers facing the same problems as well? It is quite common for companies to assign more work to their employees after downsizing and exploit human resources without showing any appreciation towards the employees for their hard work.
In this scenario, it’s best to look for appreciation outside your professional circle. Maybe you friends and family recognize your efforts and can instill a sense of purpose in you by telling you that you’re doing a good job. If you feel the need to complain about your work to someone, do it outside the office. People who complain to their coworkers are setting themselves up for self-sabotage which can eventually get you fired.