There are so many people that hate there jobs and are unwilling to put much effort in trying to make a change. As I have discussed in previous blogs, when people have toxic stress on a regular basis, they are more likely to have chronic illnesses and a shorter life. A documentary on this research is call “Stress the Silent Killer”. It goes through a longitudinal study of baboons. It is the research that somewhat informs our understanding of the effects of stress on our well-being.
You can access this video on youtube at this link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYG0ZuTv5rs
The other important thing to know is that not all stress is bad. Being challenged yet feeling a sense of mastery is what we call flow. I have been happy while doing stressful jobs that feel like flow to me but to other personalities it might feel toxic. There is a great Ted Talk on the benefits of good stress. Here is that great Ted Talk for you to watch as well by Kelly Mcgonigal. https://www.ted.com/talks/kelly_mcgonigal_how_to_make_stress_your_friend
Does your job light you up? On a scale of 1-10 how happy are you at your job? Is it a job where you have to keep learning but you can still stay on top of most of it? Do you feel that it fits in your personal passion statement that includes your dreams, goals, values, and passions. Do you think your are the person who brings light and encouragement to your workplace or might you be like the character on Saturday Night Live “Debbie Downer”.
You should watch this too. I am all about educating my readers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfE93xON8jk
Your job might be in one of three categories. It never lit you up. It once lit you up, but something has changed. It lights you up.
You have three variables you can try to change in order to be lit up at work. You can work on changing yourself. Is it really a bad job for you, or do you have the wrong attitude? Are you looking at things with a negative perspective? You can rewire your brain by changing negative thinking patterns. Sometimes no matter where we work, if we don’t work on changing ourselves we will find ourselves unhappy at work and in life in general.
You may also be able to change the way you work. You could organize more proactively so you have more flow. You could seek out opportunities to develop more skills, bringing more value to your employer and maybe more ease and productivity to your work. You could make suggestions respectfully to try to create good changes in an organization. If you are a boss, you could hire people that are good fits for given positions and develop people who are not thriving in their work. Find out why. Sometimes people need to be let go. That is hard for many bosses, but it is sometimes the answer. You can work on developing better relationships with those co-workers that you do not currently click with. There is a great resource called The Strength Finder. It is a book that has a code for an on-line assessment to discover five strength areas. We all have gifts to offer but we all show up differently. It is a resource I often share with clients that are in job transition. That leads into the last area you can change.
You might need to change your job. The Strength Finder might be a good start for you. If you need help figuring out how to organize your job search, I would be happy to assist you with this as a coach and consultant.
I hope that this blog was informative and you have some food for thought about being lit up about your work. Our work consumes most of our awake life and I feel we should have some joy and satisfaction from that kind of investment. What are your thoughts?