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Dream Job. Does It Even Exist?

Dream Job. Does It Even Exist?

A lot of people, if not the majority, go through life with rather unrealistic expectations and notions concerning what they believe to be a dream job. What every particular person believes to be such an occupation is different, but there is one thing most people who talk about their dream jobs have in common – they never seem to have such a job at the moment. A dream job is always somewhere around a corner. After all, it is a dream – it is not attainable, it is just something to wish for.

So what is a dream job? Does it exist? Is there only one dream job for everyone? Let’s try to find out.

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What Is a Dream Job?

Everybody has their own definition of a dream job, and their own factors that define how close to the ideal the job is. For one person a dream job is closely associated with a huge paycheck and daily challenges. For somebody else money may not be such a huge motivation; he would be much more interested in a possibility to do something he likes and not be bothered by external distractions.

Is There Just One Dream Job for Me?

One of the most harmful misconceptions people hold about dream jobs is that each person has exactly one calling, and there is only one dream job that accommodates for it. In reality, for each person there exist countless positions in which he will be able to thrive and be happy – at least if he applies some effort.

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The thing is, it is your business to make yourself happy doing your job and not vice versa. Two things we always have power over are our thoughts and attitudes concerning things that surround us. It doesn’t mean that you can do any job equally well and be happy in the process, but it does mean that you can contribute a great deal to whether you feel content or miserable in your current position.

Do your job well, look for opportunities to improve yourself, rise higher than your immediate status, enhance your work process – and you will be amazed how closer your job will get to the ideal. Repeat to yourself that you are bored out of your mind, that your job is hopeless drudgery, that your bosses don’t appreciate you – and even the most enviable occupation will turn into a living hell.

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Does Dream Job Mean Constant Happiness?

Not in the least. Just like you are going to have moments of satisfaction even in the most hateful line of business, your dream job doesn’t guarantee an evenly blissful experience. There will be moments of frustration, annoyance and outright despair.

In practice, it means that you may currently have a dream job without realizing it, because you believe that if you aren’t satisfied with it 24/7, then something must be wrong. Any job has challenges, and not all challenges are pleasant, so don’t get discouraged.

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How Do I Look for My Dream Job(s)?

Try to remember what you liked most about your previous jobs? What kinds of activities did you like most at school or college? It doesn’t necessarily mean such things as mathematics or biology – perhaps you liked to organize things, and this inclination went through all your year at school and university, so it may be a good idea to look for jobs that include organizing.

Dream job is an extremely vague notion, but a powerful notion nonetheless. Don’t let a desire for a dream job in future spoil your current life and deter you from doing your present work well – for it may be much closer to be the occupation of your dreams than you think.

Featured photo credit: Businessman On Park Bench/nmdude4 via flickr.com

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Melissa Burns

Melissa is an entrepreneur and independent journalist. She writes about communication, entrepreneurship and success on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on July 13, 2020

How Not to Feel Overwhelmed at Work & Take Control of Your Day

How Not to Feel Overwhelmed at Work & Take Control of Your Day

Overwhelm is a pernicious state largely caused by the ever-increasing demands on our time and the distractions that exist all around us. It creeps up on us and can, in its extreme form, leave us feeling anxious, stressed and exhausted.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed at work, here are 6 strategies you can follow that will reduce the feeling of overwhelm; leaving you calmer, in control and a lot less stressed.

1. Write Everything down to Offload Your Mind

The first thing you can do when you begin to feel overwhelmed is to write everything down that is on your mind.

Often people just write down all the things they think they have to do. This does help, but a more effective way to reduce overwhelm is to also write down everything that’s on your mind.

For example, you may have had an argument with your colleague or a loved one. If it’s on your mind write it down. A good way to do this is to draw a line down the middle of the page and title one section “things to do” and the other “what’s on my mind”.

The act of writing all this down and getting it out of your head will begin the process of removing your feeling of overwhelm. Writing things down can really change your life.

2. Decide How Long It Will Take to Complete Your To-Dos

Once you have ‘emptied your head,’ go through your list and estimate how long it will take to complete each to-do.

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As you go through your list, you will find quite a few to-dos will only take you five or ten minutes. Others will take longer, often up to several hours.

Do not worry about that at this stage. Just focus on estimating how long you will need to complete each task to the best of your ability. Here’s How to Cultivate a More Meaningful To Do List.

3. Take Advantage of Parkinson’s Law

Now here’s a little trick I learned a long time ago. Parkinson’s Law states that work will fill the time you have available to complete it, and us humans are terrible at estimating how long something will take:((Odhable: Genesis of Parkinson’s Law))

    This is why many people are always late. They think it will only take them thirty minutes to drive across town when previous experience has taught them it usually takes forty-five minutes to do so because traffic is often bad but they stick to the belief it will only take thirty minutes. It’s more wishful thinking than good judgment.

    We can use Parkinson’s Law to our advantage. If you have estimated that to write five emails that desperately need a reply to be ninety minutes, then reduce it down to one hour. Likewise, if you have estimated it will take you three hours to prepare your upcoming presentation, reduce it down to two hours.

    Reducing the time you estimate something will take gives you two advantages. The first is you get your work done quicker, obviously. The second is you put yourself under a little time pressure and in doing so you reduce the likelihood you will be distracted or allow yourself to procrastinate.

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    When we overestimate how long something will take, subconsciously our brains know we have plenty of time and so it plays tricks on us and we end up checking reviews of the Apple Watch 4 or allow our colleagues to interrupt us with the latest office gossip.

    Applying a little time pressure prevents this from happening and we get more focused and more work done.

    4. Use the Power of Your Calendar

    Once you have your time estimates done, open up your calendar and schedule your to-dos. Go through your to-dos and schedule time on your calendar for doing those tasks. Group tasks up into similar tasks.

    For emails that need attention on your to-do list, schedule time on your calendar to deal with all your emails at once. Likewise, if you have a report to write or a presentation to prepare, add these to your calendar using your estimated time as a guide for how long each will take.

    Seeing these items on your calendar eases your mind because you know you have allocated time to get them done and you no longer feel you have no time. Grouping similar tasks together keeps you in a focused state longer and it’s amazing how much work you get done when you do this.

    5. Make Decisions

    For those things you wrote down that are on your mind but are not tasks, make a decision about what you will do with each one. These things are on your mind because you have not made a decision about them.

    If you have an issue with a colleague, a friend or a loved one, take a little time to think about what would be the best way to resolve the problem. More often than not just talking with the person involved will clear the air and resolve the problem.

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    If it is a more serious issue, then decide how best to deal with it. Talk to your boss, a colleague and get advice.

    Whatever you do, do not allow it to fester. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away. You need to make a decision to deal with it and the sooner you do so the sooner the problem will be resolved. (You can take a look at this guide on How To Make Good Decisions All The Time.)

    I remember long ago, when I was in my early twenties and had gone mad with my newly acquired credit cards. I discovered I didn’t have the money to pay my monthly bills. I worried about it for days, got stressed and really didn’t know what to do. Eventually, I told a good friend of mine of the problem. He suggested I called the credit card company to explain my problem. The next day, I plucked up the courage to call the company, explained my problem and the wonderful person the other end listened and then suggested I paid a smaller amount for a couple of months.

    This one phone call took no more than ten minutes to make, yet it solved my problem and took away a lot of the stress I was feeling at the time. I learned two very valuable lessons from that experience:

    The first, don’t go mad with newly acquired credit cards! And the second, there’s always a solution to every problem if you just talk to the right person.

    6. Take Some Form of Action

    Because overwhelm is something that creeps up on us, once we feel overwhelmed (and stressed as the two often go together), the key is to take some form of action.

    The act of writing everything down that is bothering you and causing you to feel overwhelmed is a great place to start. Being able to see what it is that is bothering you in a list form, no matter how long that list is, eases the mind. You have externalized it.

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    It also means rather than these worries floating around in a jumbled mess inside your head, they are now visible and you can make decisions easier about what to do about them. Often it could be asking a colleague for a little help, or it could be you see you need to allocate some focused time to get the work done. The important thing is you make a decision on what to do next.

    Overwhelm is not always caused by a feeling of having a lack of time or too much work, it can also be caused by avoiding a decision about what to do next.

    The Bottom Line

    Make a decision, even if it is to just talk to someone about what to do next. Making a decision about how you will resolve something on its own will reduce your feelings of overwhelm and start you down the path to a resolution one way or another.

    When you follow these strategies to can say goodbye to your overwhelm and gain much more control over your day.

    More Tips for Reducing Work Stress

    Featured photo credit: Andrei Lazarev via unsplash.com

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