The Monday blues are real; that sinking feeling of dread at the thought of going into work after a great weekend with family and friends. However, a couple of hours into the workday, you usually get back into the swing of things. When the Monday blues last all week, that’s when something needs to change.
If I hate my job has become your daily mantra, here’s what you can do about it.
Do I HATE my job?
There is a huge difference between not wanting to get up and start working in the morning and genuinely despising your job. If it’s working as a whole that you’re not happy about, there’s not much you can do about that! If it’s your current role, however, you have options that will make your work week much more enjoyable.
Remember, that a bad day can leave you feeling defeated and angry. Sometimes bad days can all come at once. So, do you genuinely hate your job or are things just challenging at the moment? If you can honestly say I hate my job and mean it, then there are some questions you’ll need to ask yourself.
Why are you unhappy?
We spend a long time at work. If you’re not happy at work, you’re spending a large portion of your week feeling miserable. That being said, making any sort of change to your job or career is a big decision to make. So, you need to be sure that you’re doing the right thing and think carefully about why you are unhappy.
Consider the following questions in relation to your current position:
- What exactly is causing you to be unhappy at work?
- How long have you been unhappy? Did anything significant happen around that time?
- Has there been a big change to your job recently?
- How are things in your personal life? Could this be affecting work?
- Are things more busy or stressful than they usually are?
- Are you unhappy with the job itself, the company you work for, or both?
They may be difficult questions to answer but taking the time to consider your reasons for feeling the way you do at work could help you gain a better understanding of what’s going on. If you can identify the issues, it’s much easier to tackle the solution.
Making a change
When things aren’t going well at work, your first instinct will be to jump ship. In the moment, it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and so you get your CV polished and start taking a look at what else is out there. However, remember that handing in that letter of resignation is something that can’t be undone.
A career change or changing jobs is a solution but it is a drastic one and should only be considered when all of your other options have been exhausted. No matter how bad things get, quitting without having another job to go to isn’t necessarily a good idea; it’s a rash decision that could harm your career and finances in the long run, so it shouldn’t be taken lightly. (Unless the circumstances are extreme.)
With that being said, what else can be done?
Never underestimate the power of talking things through. If you have concerns or worries at work, talk about them; whether it’s with a friend, relative or partner, a good rant can do the world of good. Discussing your problems with someone else not only gives you an outlet for your frustrations, but someone else may be able to offer suggestions or perspectives you hadn’t previously considered.
Talking isn’t strictly limited to your home life. In fact, talking with your manager could help to improve things massively at work. However, this is a situation in which you must exercise caution. You can’t walk into your manager’s office and start telling them how unhappy you are or how much you hate your job. It’s advisable to air any specific concerns you may have in a professional and diplomatic way.
The great thing about having an open conversation with your boss means that changes may come about as a result of your conversation. A slight change in your duties, an altered process, a new incentive or even something as little as new equipment can revolutionise your life at work.
If you’re not ready to have that conversation, or you feel it wouldn’t be appropriate, implementing change is something you can take ownership of yourself. Try new ways of managing your time, set yourself goals or do what you can to break up your workday. A little change can have a big effect!
3. Take some time
Stress or pressure can negatively affect your mood inside and outside of the office. It’s very easy to throw yourself into work and forget to take time for yourself. If you find yourself working into the night on a regular basis, try to be disciplined in implementing a ‘cut off time’ where you MUST stop working. Although you may feel you can get more done, if you overwork yourself, your productivity will suffer. In the long run, allowing yourself rest time will actually help you to work more efficiently!
When was the last time you had some time off? In busy jobs, it’s easy to forget about your holiday allowance – but it’s there to be used! Many workers are guilty of only taking off a day or two at a time, and never allowing themselves to recharge. Having some real time away from the work environment will give you some well-deserved rest and the opportunity to reflect. You could return to work with a new spring in your step and a refreshed mindset.
4. Invest in your personal life
If you feel out of control at work, one thing you can take control of is your personal life. Being happy outside of work can actually help you to feel happier at work. Exercise and healthy living is one aspect of your home life that can have a positive knock-on effect on your work life. Your confidence, mood and motivation will all benefit from an active and healthy lifestyle.
Have fun! If all you do is work, eat, sleep, repeat, of course you’re going to feel miserable. Although it may not be easy to find the time and energy to socialise, indulge in your hobbies or just do something that makes you feel good. Pushing yourself to do so could have a profound effect on your happiness.
Sometimes, it’s time to move on
If you’ve tried to improve things at work and you can still only think, I hate my job, then it may be time to move on. The same can be said if you have been unhappy at work for some time. You may be tempted to just walk out, but the best option is to try to find a new job before you leave. However, every situation is different – your happiness and health must come first.
If you’ve taken the difficult decision to find a new job, think carefully about what you need to be happy at work before you start applying for new roles. This will help you set out criteria for your next position or company to avoid finding yourself in the same situation. When job searching, stay focused and positive; your dream job could be just around the corner!