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Last Updated on January 10, 2018

11 Reasons Why You Should Never Get a Full-Time Job

11 Reasons Why You Should Never Get a Full-Time Job

Full-time work is the default setting in our society, but that doesn’t make it your best option.

Surrounded by examples of successful businesses whose founders worked 80 hour weeks to make it happen, most people never fully explore the possibilities of being a part-timer. What’s stopping you: the money? The status? The fear of failure?

Whatever it is, take a deep breath and keep reading. Once you’ve checked out these 11 reasons, you might decide it’s in your best interest never to get a full-time job. Ever.

1. You Don’t Need to Work Full Time

Nobody truly needs to work 40+ hours per week. If you could work fewer hours without reducing your income, you’d take that option, right? You don’t need a specific number of hours’ work per week; you need a specific amount of income to live on. And there are ways to hit that target without long hours:

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  • work fewer hours at a higher rate of pay
  • become your own boss and set your own prices
  • create semi-passive income streams

2. You’ll Save Money

Working a full-time job means you barely have time to enjoy the money you earn, yet somehow it still gets spent.

Remember that specific amount of income you need? Given the choice between working full-time or cutting your discretionary spending, you’ll find ways to trim down your expenses! Avoiding full-time work is an effective motivator to get you budget-hacking like a boss. You might save even more money if working part-time or becoming your own boss means you spend less on transport, food, or childcare.

3. You’ll Be Healthier

If you reduce the stress of your job by choosing something with shorter work hours and greater flexibility, your body will thank you for it. You’ll notice improvements in your immune system, digestion, circulation, and other key signs of physical health compared to an exhausted full-time worker.

4. You’ll Eat Better

It’s easy to grab a ready-made sandwich or a sweet snack when you’re working, but you often don’t realise how fast all those choices add up to a big pile of junky, pre-processed crap. And if you’re a high-caffeine type who guzzles cola, coffee or tea while you work, you’ll suffer the after-effects right through until after bedtime.

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For a part-time worker, the “employee diet” has less of an effect because you have more time to buy and prepare healthy, fresh food.

5. You’ll Have More Energy

The better general health and diet of a part-time worker means that you’ll have a lot more energy than if you worked full-time. Instead of arriving home weary from a full day’s work, you’ll have more time to rest your body and mind, so that when the next day arrives you’re ready to meet it head-on and get stuff done.

6. You’ll Learn More

If you’re lucky, a full-time job comes with a few training opportunities. But if you want to learn something that isn’t included in your employer’s list of training courses, then you’ll have to learn it on your own time. Ha! Time to yourself is a precious rarity if you’re a full-time employee.

Stick to part-time jobs or self-employment and you’ll always have time to learn new things that make life even more awesome. Plus your brain will be less frazzled and more receptive to fresh knowledge.

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7. You’ll Get Creative

Along with better learning performance, part-timers and entrepreneurs often report that their creative thinking improved when they quit their full-time jobs.

Granted, this could simply mean that creative people are more likely to follow a part-time career path. It gives you the creative freedom you crave and lets you avoid the burnout that plagues creatives in high-pressure full-time jobs, but it’s also likely that having more time off work gives your brain greater opportunity to make the connections that spark creative insight.

8. You Can Diversify

There’s no rule that says you have to stick to one job at a time. Instead of working full-time at one thing, why not run two or three different part-time jobs in parallel? You’ll be less likely to get bored or stuck in inflexible ways of thinking.

Having the time to develop diverse projects also protects you from losing everything the way you could if your full-time job disappears in budget cuts and corporate re-shuffling.

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9. You’ll Worry Less

Thinking about work when you’re not working means one of two things: either you really love your job, or it’s getting you down.

Full-time work doesn’t only stress your body; it stresses your mind, too. For example, worrying about work during your time off disturbs your sleep more than almost any other work-related factor. You’re much more likely to fret about work all evening if you’ve done nothing but work all day, so skip the full-time job and you can skip the worry, too.

10. You’ll Live Longer

This shouldn’t come as a big surprise. Less stress, better food, more sleep… of course you’ll live longer. Overwork is a killer, and the longer the hours you work, the more it cuts your life expectancy.

11. You’ll Be More Productive

It sounds counter-intuitive, but it’s true. Spending less time working actually makes you more productive.

This is the “working on vacation” effect: when you’ve got a short amount of time to spend on work (and something fun to look forward to when it’s done) you’ll focus better, work faster and make fewer mistakes. Win!

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

How to Be Happy at Work and Find Fulfillment in Your Career

How to Be Happy at Work and Find Fulfillment in Your Career

If you’re going to spend 1/3 of our life at work, you should enjoy it, right?

Trust me, I know that’s easier said than done. Difficult coworkers, less-than-desirable tasks, or even just being in the wrong position can all lead to a lack of enjoyment and fulfillment in your work.

But what if I told you it doesn’t have to be this way? Or better yet, if you struggle with all of the above (and then some), what if I told you that enjoying your work and finding fulfillment regardless of those obstacles is possible?

Don’t believe me? I don’t blame you because I was there too. Before implementing the tips below, I struggled to get through each day, much less find real fulfillment, in the office. Now, even after the toughest days on the job, I still come away with feelings of pride, accomplishment, and fulfillment. The best news is, so can you.

If you’re ready to make those hours count and find happiness and fulfillment in the office, then read on to find out how to be happy at work and find fulfillment in your career:

1. Discover the root(s) of the problem

For this first step, we’ll need to think back to 8th-grade physics (humor me). We all know Newton’s 3rd law, “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” When you think about it, the same can be said outside of physics, and we see this law play out in our daily lives, day after day.

Simply put, all the issues we deal with in the office (and life in general) affect us in a noticeable way.

If you’re appreciated at work, like the work you do and receive frequent praise, promotions, or raises, then this will probably have an altogether positive effect on your life in the office.

But what if we reverse this? What if you feel under appreciated, get passed up for promotions, or get denied raises? This is sure to affect the way you feel at work on a negative level.

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So, before you can implement the steps of feeling happy and fulfilled at work, we first have to discover the reasons why you don’t feel that way already.

Think about it, write a list, or make a mental note. Run through all the reasons you’re dissatisfied in the office, and don’t hold back. Knowing the exact obstacles you’re facing will make overcoming them that much easier.

In fact, as a side-challenge to this article, I recommend picking the top three reasons contributing to your dissatisfaction at work and using the following tips to tackle them.

2. Practice gratitude for an instant uplift

Did you know the simple act of feeling grateful can increase your happiness and make you more fulfilled at work?[1]

Well, it’s true, and it’s scientifically proven.

Dr. Lisa Firestone notes that practicing gratitude “reminds us of what we lacked in the past.” Meaning, it serves as both a boost to happiness and a bit of a wake-up call that things have been or could be, much worse.

Trying to conjure up feelings of gratitude can seem almost impossible when your work situation seems bleak, but hear me out: There are incredibly easy ways to get started and it doesn’t involve trying to “force” yourself to feel grateful about things that stress you out.

For an instant pick-me-up, try this:

Find a loose piece of paper, a blank sticky note, or anything you can write on, be it physical or digital. List just three things that you are absolutely without-a-doubt thankful for in your life.

Now here’s the trick: Don’t just list what you’re grateful for, you have to list why you’re grateful for them, too.

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For example, simply saying “I’m grateful for my kids” will probably make you feel good, sure, but what if we could amplify the warm, fuzzy feeling into real, lasting motivation?

Instead, write the reason you’re so thankful for your children. Is it because they make you laugh and forget about other stressors? Or maybe they help to remind you of why you go to work every day in the first place?

Whatever your reasons may be, jot them down and keep your list somewhere you can see it while you work. A quick glance at your gratitude list throughout the day can provide powerful, positive motivation to keep going.

Bonus:

If you can find just three things to be thankful for that specifically relate to your job, and list why those things make you grateful, your list can also help you find fulfillment in your work itself which can give you an even bigger boost of positivity throughout the day.

3. Take meaningful time for yourself

We all know creating a strong work-life balance can be crucial to feeling satisfied in our jobs, but rarely do we ever address how we’re spending our time outside of work.

Many of us survive a 9-hour work day and commute home only to find ourselves busy with our personal to-do lists, running a household, and taking care of a child (or 2 or 3, and so on).

If you spend all your time working, whether in the office or within your household, you’re going to feel drained at some point. This is why setting meaningful time for yourself every day is highly important.

Look, I get it: I don’t know anyone in the working world who can shun all responsibility for a 3-movie marathon or happy hour with friends whenever they feel like it. But finding time for yourself, be it just 30 minutes to an hour, can really make a difference in how you feel at work.

This works because you’ll have time to actually relax and let the day’s stress melt away while you enjoy something just for you. The to-do lists and stressors will still be there after you’re refreshed and ready to tackle them.

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No time for me-time? Try this:

If you have a busy household, you’ll need to capitalize on a block of time you know will be completely uninterrupted. The easiest way to do this: try waking up 30 minutes to an hour earlier than usual (or push bedtime back an hour if you’re a night owl, like me) and take time to do something you enjoy.

This could be reading with a cup of tea, catching up on Facebook, spending time on a passion project—anything! As long as it’s meaningful to you, it works!

Bonus:

Starting your day with meaningful time for yourself can set you up to have a positive mood that lasts well into office hours, and having your me-time in the evening can give you something positive to look forward to during the day.

4. Get productive and feel accomplished

Don’t you just love the feeling of checking the last item off of a hefty to-do list? That’s because self-motivation can be a huge driver of positivity and success.

When we accomplish something, no matter how small, it makes us feel good, plain and simple. Applying this tactic to your daily work can be the motivator you need to find fulfillment during the daily office grind.

While there are tons of steps to get more done at work, I’ll share my personal favorite: Prioritizing.

Now, many people handle prioritizing differently. Some like to tackle the little tasks first so they can spend focused time on the big to-dos. Others like to knock out the big items first and get to the smaller ones when they can.

No matter which camp you’re in, you may be missing one crucial step: Time management.

So how’s this work? When you factor in the amount of time your priorities will take, it can transform your productivity ten-fold.

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Say you have three top priorities for the day. You might jump into the smaller ones or the bigger ones depending on your preferred method, and then find yourself out of time and bringing work home with you at the end of the day.

This is prevented when you factor in time. Knowing how long each item will take, or deliberately setting specific blocks of time for your priorities can help you accomplish more in the same 8-9 (or 12) hours that you typically spend at work.

Try this:

Take a look at your priorities and consider how long they should take. Pop into your Google calendar (or Filofax, whatever works for you) and schedule time to work on your priority items around any important meetings or events of the day.

The most important thing to remember is to stick to your dedicated time.

Often, when we know exactly how long we have to work on something (and honor this time limit), we’re motivated to get more done on time to avoid taking work home at the end of the day.

The bottom line

There’s no need to waste 1/3 of our lives feeling unsatisfied at work. Luckily, you now have the tools to get started, take back your time, and become happy and fulfilled at work again.

The only question is — which tip will you try first?

Featured photo credit: Ellyot via unsplash.com

Reference

[1]Psychology Today: The Healing Power of Gratitude

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