Most Americans Are Unhappy At Work: Are You One Of Them?
We all want to feel a sense of purpose when we go to work each day. We want to feel as if life is full of possibilities and that we are working towards something meaningful. But, according to research, many of us don’t feel that way. In fact, in recent years, there has been a drastic drop in people who report enjoying what they do each day. It can be hard to break out of that cycle. If you have a job you don’t enjoy, when are you to find the time to think about what you really want to do? And if you figure that out (no small task) when are you to find the time to pursue work in that area? Most of us know that simply seeking work is a full-time task. It’s no wonder so many people feel stuck. Most Americans feel dissatisfied in their work. Are you one of them?
You “live for the weekend”
You don’t consider work part of your real life. Your real life starts on the weekend. Work is just something you have to do to pass the time until the weekend comes around again, but you even spend some time at work emailing friends about what you’ll do this weekend and scheming for the weekend.
Or you even just live for 5pm
Perhaps you even just live for 5pm. Throughout the day, you’re texting your friends about happy hour, or emailing your partner recipes that you’d like to make for dinner. You feel that work is just a thing that gets in the way of you doing the things you’d actually like to be doing.
You disdain doing one extra task
If you’re asked to do something that isn’t exactly within your job description, your blood boils. You are very particular about only doing things that are within your job description—you don’t care about doing anything extra that might benefit the company as a whole.
You dream of being fired
You actually have dreams, in your sleep, about losing your job and it makes you happy. Your best dreams involve you suddenly not having your job anymore.
You have anxious nightmares about work
Meanwhile, you have nightmares about the ins and outs of the work day. These nightmares evoke as many feelings of terror as dreams about monsters. You’re stuck redoing the same spreadsheet over and over again, as if you’re in the seventh circle of hell.
You’re wishy-washy about other commitments
When you feel disenchanted by your work—the thing you do most of your days—you take on a wishy-washy attitude towards everything, like dating and your health. You have to go numb to survive work, and that numbness carries over to the rest of your life.
You feel a lot of pressure on vacation
When vacation comes around, you feel anxious. A lot of people struggle to feel completely satisfied on vacation, but you already feel worried about it in advance. You feel that vacation is the one thing that could possibly help you survive the rest of the year so it has to go well.
Passionate people make you sad
When you encounter people who love their job—people who want to talk about it, even when they aren’t working—you feel deep sadness. You’re encountering a lifestyle that you know is so different from your own.
You aren’t engaged in the workplace culture
The softball league. The happy hours. The lunches for everyone. You don’t participate. You don’t even go into the break room to sing happy birthday to the birthday person.
You don’t care if you make a mistake
If your superior gets upset with you for making a mistake, you feel nothing. You don’t care. You don’t actually put any stock in what you do. It doesn’t affect your feelings of self worth or your identity at all. So what do you care if you mess up?
You resent your pay
You feel angry about what you get paid. Even if you received a raise, you still resent your pay. It isn’t enough. But perhaps no amount of money could be enough to do your job because it doesn’t make you happy.
You arrive as late as you can
You arrive to work as late as you can without getting in trouble. You refuse to spend even one minute more there than you have to. If you pull up in your car early, you wait in your car until you absolutely must go in.
You need to check out to do work
You do whatever you can to feel as if you aren’t really at work when you are. Maybe you put in headphones and listen to podcasts all day. You just try to forget that you’re there.
You want to live on an island with a barter culture
You often think of just running away to some remote island with a barter culture where you’ll live in a hut. That’s how our minds work when we don’t like our lives. But you ultimately wouldn’t be happy on that island, either. You need to find your passion, and it isn’t picking coconuts (probably).
Your hobbies take you away
All of your hobbies work to remove you from your life as much as possible. You’re into things like virtual reality video games and Burning Man. You need something that is so distracting, you forget that you’ll return to work when it’s over.