Right now, so many of us are working from home. HASHTAG: Coronavirus. And this might be a good time to think about your work life. Work is something all of us need to do to survive. We don’t always like it, and the repetitiveness of work can become frustrating. It’s not inspiring after a while, and becomes for so many, a means to an end.
I remember when I was younger, people began talking about finding work that you love. Don’t like numbers and banking? Don’t be a banker, was the philosophy. Which sounds only reasonable. But there was always something about this idea that didn’t sit right with me, and I think Henry Connick Jr best summed it up in the movie Hope Floats: “You find something you love, and then you twist it and torture it. Try and find a way to make money at it. At the end, you can’t find a trace of what you started out loving.”
I found that in my life. I started a career, and I expected it to be a certain way, and I loved what I did. And still do. But right at the right beginning that thing I loved to do was hard. And over the years I realized how entrenched in politics my profession was, and how helpless I was to change that, and the end result was feeling utterly trapped and ineffective. The work began to lose meaning. And it’s only recently that I was able to identify why I can still go to work every day without hating it completely, or why it hasn’t become for me simply a means to an end. It’s because I found something in my job that I loved. Just one thing though there’s so much that frustrates me, that angers me even, and saddens me as well, and that has made all the difference.
Finding something I loved has changed my attitude towards work. Because now when I’m at work, instead of feeling trapped, I feel invested. Previously, I was invested in a concept, now I’m invested in what I do that brings that concept to life every day. Even if some days I feel like I’ve failed. My focus is now on what I can give, not the end result. To me, in my line of work, that is what really matters and so while some days I cringe at the idea of going to work, or feel burned out, I know that I can keep doing my job because I love that one part of it more than the whole of the stuff that I have problems with accepting.
How to Find What You Love At Work
This is really going to be different for everyone. Because everyone is different and we don’t all work in the same job. There are different stressors, and how we react to those stressors is going to be different, so there is no easy answer. The best advice I have is to step back and examine your job and work objectively. Do not fall into the trap of being apathetic or forever jumping from one job to the next. If you enjoy a line of work, understand that no matter what company you work for there will always be parts of it that are less than ideal and you may not like. So instead of letting things that are out of your control wear you down, step back and really think about what you are doing for eight or more hours a day. Finding something you love to do, or know you are good at it, can make a big difference in how you feel about your job.
Perhaps it’s a part of your job that allows you to be creative, or that you enjoy helping others. Is your job mentally challenging and you like being engaged in problem solving? Do you get to be physical in your job, or enjoy some social aspect of the work? All of these little things might be the one thing that you love and that can keep you going back with a smile on your face. These may be “little things” but the main point is that if it is meaningful to you, then it makes your work relevant to you. And in the end, that is what we are looking for in our work, for it to be meaningful. And there are many places to find meaning no matter what line of work you are in because there wouldn’t be a need for that work if it wasn’t important. Find the one thing you are good at, or love and your job will suddenly be much less tedious than it was before. There will be moments and days where it all seems absurd and frustrating, but you’ll find those days easier to cope with than you would if you were apathetic and simply trying to clock your hours.
Love your job? Hate it? What do you think about today’s post?