Unfortunately, not everyone has the privilege of working a job that they love—people need to pay their bills. Everyone has likely had a job that has made them want to curl up on the shower floor and dread going into work. If that’s the position that you’re in now, don’t worry. Disliking your job is a very normal thing. It’s not exactly healthy, but you certainly aren’t alone. Research has shown that less than half of Americans are currently happy with their jobs, and of the people who are unhappy, only a fraction of them are actively finding ways to get out of the situation. If you’re feeling miserable at work, here are some practical steps you can use to your advantage.
Before you make any permanent decisions, the best thing to do is to take a step back and thoroughly assess your situation. Ask yourself questions such as, “do I really hate my job or has it just been a bad week?” These questions are going to help you determine if it’s really that bad, or if you’re just tricked into thinking it is because of a stressful week.
Pinpointing exactly what it is that makes your work so dreadful is also very helpful. Ask yourself if it’s management that’s causing the issue, if you’ve outgrown your current position, if you feel underpaid, underappreciated, and underworked? Maybe it’s all of the above?
Once you’ve taken the proper amount of time to sit down, clear your head, and identify the main issue at hand, you can move on to the next step.
Vent to a Friend
Venting to a friend can be very beneficial, but it’s crucial which friend you choose to talk to. If you want to unload on a work friend, ensure that you are extra cautious. It’s possible that they can spread the word, which can put you in an awkward position and even cause you to lose your job.
Many people that you work with are going to have a better understanding of the struggles that you deal with, and they can offer some great advice. However, consider if getting an unbiased opinion from a third party is a better and safer option—the decision is yours.
The essential part of venting your frustrations and getting a second opinion, is that opinion is going to help you see whether or not your thinking is rational. The person giving you advice might even be able to help you come up with a solution. It’s always best to get that second opinion, but be sure you’re venting to someone you can trust.
Talk to Your Boss
Talking to your boss can be uncomfortable, but it’s crucial. Your boss might not know that you’re miserable at work unless you tell them. Bosses are different, but an understanding and good boss is going to listen to your concerns and work with you to solve them. They know that unhappy employees lead to lower productivity.
Make Your Decision
Once you’ve talked to your boss and went through the other steps, you are going to have a clear indication of what’s coming next. There are only two outcomes: leave or stay. You need to decide if you are going to stay and work with your manager to find a solution, or decide to tough it out while looking for a new job. You can also choose to quit entirely.
Constantly being miserable at work can you make you feel like you’re always in a hostile environment and it can have detrimental effects on your mental state. Your mental health is always more important than work, so taking the time to do what you can to change your situation is imperative. However, nothing is going to change if you don’t decide to help yourself. Use the tips above to help you find your solution, and if you ultimately decide to leave, remember that there is no shame in putting in your notice. That job might not be the right fit for you.