11 Jan I Hate My Job – Please Help!
If you’ve clicked on this link we’re guessing that you do in fact hate your job or that some part of you is looking to make a career change. Do you know what that change looks like? Is it a move sideways in your current job, a step up in a partner organisation or a total change of direction into something new? You might also have no idea, except that it’s time to make the change and that you need to start looking for something new.
So, what can you do to begin preparing to take the leap? Here are three things you can do to make sure that at the start of 2019 you are not clicking on this same link.
1. Get clear on what’s working for you and what’s not.
It can be easy when you are not enjoying your job, to think that what you need is a total change.
It is however, more likely that there are some things that are working well, but that they are getting drowned out by things that aren’t working.
Take some time away from the office and with a clear mind, draw a table on a piece of paper with three columns. Write ‘tasks I enjoy’ on the top of the left column, ‘tasks I don’t mind’ in the centre and ‘tasks I hate’ in the right column. Now, mentally step through a working week placing all of the elements that make up your working life into one of the three columns. It is tempting to just list the nuts and bolts jobs, like returning emails or meetings. Add these, but also think beyond them.
What about your commute? Do you have extra flexibility and the freedom to work from home? Don’t forget to consider your relationships, the community and culture of your work. The security and additional benefits you receive. The more detailed you are with this list the more you will start to create a picture of what you value in your working life and what you might be looking for in your next position.
2. Explore whose career you envy.
It’s easy to say you envy Beyonce or Bill Gates. But is there someone whose career you envy that is in a similar position to you with just a little more experience? This is a simple question and can often lead you to uncover career ambitions that you may be shy to voice or don’t have the courage to act upon. Take some time to think. What is it that makes you envious of that person’s career and can that information help you to navigate what you want to do next? What can they tell you about how a more satisfying career would look for you?
Best of all, if you know them, ask for some advice. You may even find they give you the tools to step into a similar position. Envy is not always a bad thing!
3. Ask and experiment to learn what’s out there.
Thinking about a change is not making it. Start taking action to investigate and explore new options. Asking a friend for career advice, or begin to experiment with a new skill or industry. Start dipping your toe in to making the change. Think of it like internet dating or buying a car. If you only have one option, you will pick the one option. What would happen if through asking friends or taking yourself on micro-volunteering opportunities you could learn about 4-5 new roles that are an even better fit for you?
A good way to think about it is to set yourself some achievable benchmarks that you can reach in 1-2 months. It could look like this.
This month I am going to:
- Have coffee with three friends in different industries that I am interested in
- watch 1-2 TED talks a week on an area that I am interested in
- look up different career pathways on the CareerHQ Careers Database (link below)
Observe how you feel with these experiments and see what signals and lessons you recieve. What do you keep thinking about or what perks up your imagination? These actions will be a rich information source to inform and positively impact your next step.
These are just three simple approaches to effectively navigating how you can think about finding a meaningful and satisfying work life. Enjoy!