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7 Questions To Ask Yourself If You’re Unhappy With Your Work

7 Questions To Ask Yourself If You’re Unhappy With Your Work

We spend a lot of our time and energy on our work. As a society, our jobs are one of the most important things in our lives. They provide for us, and they’re also a great source of fulfillment and happiness for those who enjoy their work. For those who don’t, however, work can be a chore. However, that doesn’t mean it’s time to quit. You might still be able to get enjoyment out of your job. If you’ve been finding yourself unhappy with your job lately, consider asking yourself the following seven questions.

1. Are you experiencing issues in other areas of your life?

If you’re having health trouble, if a relationship isn’t going well, or you’re stressed because of something totally unrelated to work, it might be that you’re carrying your problems around with you. It’s best to get these issues sorted out before you jump to conclusions about how you feel about your work. It is possible that your job will be enjoyable again once you sort everything else out.

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2. What short-term steps can you take?

Before doing something drastic like quitting, think about what you can do right now to make your job better for you. If you find something that you find will help you immediately, you’re more likely to slowly come around to enjoying your work. In any case, you won’t probably feel better about your work until you find a more enjoyable alternative.

3. Can you remove yourself?

If you can keep your effort at work and your feelings separated, it might be for the best. You should still continue to do your best, but don’t get too disappointed if something goes wrong with your work. While it’s good to be emotionally invested in your job, too much emotional involvement can lead to stress and anxiety. Try pulling back a bit.

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4. Can you talk to someone at work?

It can be incredibly helpful to have someone to talk to about your problems. Not only do you get to express your ideas out loud, but you can also get some great advice along the way. It may be that your coworker knows exactly how you feel and went through the same thing recently. Or, maybe your boss understands and is able to give you a new project that you enjoy. It all depends on your work and your relationships.

5. What are your career goals?

Are you set up to achieve them at your current job, or can you see them slipping away? If your future plans are getting derailed by your work, it might be time to rethink things.

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6. What were your initial expectations for this job?

A temporary gig just to get a salary might not be very fulfilling. And that’s okay. You certainly wouldn’t be the first person to take a job simply because you needed the money. However, if this job is something that you initially hoped to do for a long time, you might still be able to make it enjoyable again. Try to remember what attracted you to the job in the first place. It might help you regain that fulfillment.

7. What are you willing to do?

Do you want to go back to school? Learn a new set of skills? Take it upon yourself to turn your work around? Make some extra effort at the office? Change other things in your life? Search for a new job? It’s ultimately up to you. You are the only one who can decide if you can be happy with your work or not. While others can help, no one knows better than you do.

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Featured photo credit: Sybren Stuvel via flickr.com

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Last Updated on November 19, 2018

How to Find a Suitable Professional Mentor

How to Find a Suitable Professional Mentor

I went through a personal experience that acted as a catalyst for an epiphany. When I got fired from a job, I learned something important about myself and where I was headed with my freelance career. I realized that the most important aspect of that one rather small job was the influence of the company owner. I realized that I wasn’t hurt that the company and I weren’t a perfect match; I was devastated by the stark fact that I needed a mentor and I had almost found one but lost her.

Suddenly, I felt like J.D., the main character in “Scrubs,” chasing Dr. Cox and trying to rip insight and wisdom from someone I respect. The realization that a recognized thought-leader and experienced entrepreneur severed ties with me felt crushing. But, I picked myself back up and thought about five ways to acquire a mentor without having the awkwardness of outright asking.

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1. Remember, a professional mentorship must be mutual.

A professional mentor must agree to engage in a mutual relationship because, as the comedy T.V. series showed us, one simply cannot force someone to tutor us. We have to prove that we are worth the time investment through persistence and dedication to the craft.

2. You have to have common interests with your mentor.

Even if a professional mentor appears at your job or school, realize that unless you and this person have common interests, you won’t find the relationship successful. I’ve been in situations where someone I respected had vastly different ideas about what was important in life or what one should spend his or her free time doing. If these things don’t line up, you may find the relationship won’t be as fruitful, even when the mentor knows a great deal about one industry.

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3. Thought-leaders will respect your passion.

One of the ways you can prove yourself worthy to a professional mentor is through your passion and your dedication. No one wants to spend time grooming and teaching another who will not take advice or put the effort in to improve. When following thought-leaders on Twitter and trying to engage with higher-ups in a work setting, realize that your actions most often speak louder than your words.

4. Before worrying if he respects you, ask if you respect him.

On the other side of the coin, you should seriously reflect on those common interests and make sure you respect your professional mentor. Just because someone holds a title, degree or office does not mean that person is trustworthy or honest. Don’t be swayed by appearances and take the time to find a suitable professional mentor.

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5. Failure is often the best way to learn

I honestly have made more mistakes than I can count. I know I’ve learned a great deal from poorly organized businesses and my own poor choices. The most important quality I’ve developed is an ability to swallow my pride and learn from my mistakes. If life knocks me down nine times, I get back up 10 times. One of the songs Megadeth wrote, “Of Mice and Men,” resonates in my mind when I pull myself up by my bootstraps and try again for a goal I’ve set: “So live your life and live it well. There’s not much left of me to tell. I just got back up each time I fell.” Hopefully, this brief post can act as a professional mentor to you in your quest to find not only a brave leader but also a trusted adviser.

Featured photo credit: morguefile via mrg.bz

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