How should I enjoy my job?
Unhappy at work? Reasons to test + 8 safe tips
Bad climate, lousy boss, hardly any prospects: Quite a few employees are unhappy at work. What to do when you are unhappy at your job When work is no longer fun? Throw everything down immediately and nothing like out? Such a decision needs to be carefully considered. After all, the job change must be justified later. With our test you can find out whether you should change jobs. We also give you 6 tips on how to become happier at work ...
➠ Content: This is what awaits you
➠ Content: This is what awaits you
5 common reasons for dissatisfaction
Anyone who is unhappy at work is already tortured at the start of the working day. The causes for this can vary from person to person. However, particularly common reasons for job frustration are:
- High stress
More tasks than time - five days a week? That inevitably leads to stress. A lack of self-management is not always the reason. Extra requests from customers, a high level of sick leave among colleagues or high expectations from the boss increase the pressure.
- Low salary
Money is not everything. But it calms you down and is an expression of appreciation. If the salary is low compared to the performance, it feels like a bad rating.
- Lack of recognition
Never a word of praise, or otherwise little recognition? In the long run a guarantee to be unhappy at work.
- Annoying colleagues
Unnecessary quibbles and taunts among colleagues, exclusion and the like contribute to spoiling everyday work.
- No prospects
No prospects despite commitment? Neither job challenges nor development opportunities? This has a huge impact on job satisfaction.
The extent is crucial
No job is always fun. Everyone has anger and frustration at one point or another. The decisive factor is the extent of the above-mentioned reasons: Are you only acutely unhappy at work (and that's why you searched for this article) - or is this condition chronic? If the feeling of being in the wrong job has lasted for weeks or even months, you should take these warning signs seriously. Especially when there are physical symptoms: sleep disorders, headaches, gastrointestinal diseases. Regular complaints, regardless of whether they are psychological or physical, are often an indication that you need to change something.
Test: unhappy at work?
The question of how happy or unhappy you are at work depends on the much more decisive question: stay or leave? We have a free test for you to help you decide. He can help you to assess the current situation more clearly:
Here for the test
After 40, job dissatisfaction reaches a peak
How old are they? The question is less trivial than it sounds. According to studies by Dilip Jeste of the University of California at San Diego, job and life satisfaction follows a curve. The so-called "happiness curve" (see graphic). On average, it hits its low point in their early 40s. Then it rises again. So if you have just arrived in the middle of life, it can be quite normal to be unhappy at work or to experience a midlife crisis.
Why are so many 35 year olds unhappy at work?
The reason for the mid-30s and early 40s crisis usually has nothing to do with the job. Rather, it lies in the typical phases of life:
The first years after school and training are characterized by adventure and variety: most of them find a partner for life during this time, move in together and start their job. The phase of life is characterized by wild parties, exciting acquaintances, new experiences and lots of freedom.
The career follows: After starting their careers and earning their first salary, many specialize and find their “calling”. Salary increase (s) and promotion (s) are the wages. And all of that within 10 to 15 years.
Then the routine kicks in: We are in control of our job. Career changes are becoming rarer. The salary stagnates. And what about perspective at 35? Continue to work for at least 32 years ... Possibly in this position! It feels like life is reduced to weekends and vacations.
So it's no wonder that some people feel frustrated. If there is also stress, children or family pressure, it becomes a poisonous cocktail.
Unhappy at work: what to do?
A termination is a way out. Such a radical step should be carefully considered. Throwing everything down carelessly may not be a solution either. Who knows if the next job will be better?
So what to do when you're unhappy at work?
First check (for example with the above test) in which phase of life you are currently and analyze the causes of the current frustration. Maybe you are “just” dissatisfied. A simple rethinking, positive thinking and a few changes often help to regain the balance in life. This is how you can create new perspectives yourself:
Set yourself new goals
Ask yourself: what else do I want to achieve in my life? Professional? Private? Determination is not only an important step to more success - it also makes you happy. Because you have something that you are consciously working towards and thus take control of your life again.
Start a suitable project
Start an in-house project that brings you closer to your professional goals (see point 1) or trains the skills you want. That means more work at first. However, as soon as you can demonstrate the benefits of your project to your boss, this can lead to a reallocation of tasks. In the medium term, the work content will change - and with it what makes you unhappy.
Build a business on the side
If the current job does not meet your needs, you can become self-employed on a part-time basis. Of course, you have to discuss this with the boss beforehand and you need a permit for the sideline activity. A second mainstay not only creates additional security. You can also earn money with it on the side.
Enjoy the phase of life
Even if it is difficult: Enjoy the current phase of life. Perhaps a job phase has now come in which you can and should concentrate more on the family. After all, a career is not everything. That doesn't mean that nothing more will come in the next few years. Set the course for this, plan carefully - then take it one step at a time.
Especially for what you have already achieved. Gratitude is a root of health and wellbeing. You cannot be grateful and unhappy at the same time. Gratitude even makes you more resistant to stress. This was proven by studies by Martin Seligman and Tracy Stehen from the University of Pennsylvania. Your - grateful - subjects were able to reduce the perceived stress and also showed themselves to be more resistant to mental illnesses.
Justified unhappy in the job? the next steps
If the low is not temporary, you need to get to the bottom of the cause. If your work is not valued, that will not change even at 45. Other workers may find that their current job is the wrong one. That's another reason why you don't have to throw in the towel right away. In this case, too, there is something you can do to improve the situation:
First of all, you need to know where you are going. What are your tasks? Which values are important to you? How do you imagine the perfect work environment? Dissatisfaction is often a vague feeling. The fog disappears as soon as you have clarity for yourself where you want to develop. Define and formulate realistic professional goals for yourself. The faster you can find your way there.
As long as your boss does not know about your plans and talents, he cannot promote or use you. Anyone who feels under-challenged, overwhelmed or misunderstood in the job must address the problem. But always with preparation: Ask for a conversation with the boss and offer him alternatives: new projects, an internal job change, more work in the home office, further training ...
If all attempts to improve the situation fail, you can still change jobs. In this case, update your application documents. Activate your network. Stretch out your feelers - discreetly. So you have a goal too. And it is much more convenient to apply from a position that has not been terminated than without a job.
But always pay attention to the right motivation. It is an important success factor with every job change and every application (see video):
What other readers have read about it
Jochen Mai is the founder and editor-in-chief of the career bible. The author of several books lectures at the TH Köln and is a sought-after keynote speaker, coach and consultant.
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