If you’ve ever asked, “I hate my job, what should I do?” you’re not alone. In fact, only 28% of employed under the age of 25 were satisfied with their jobs in 2013 (source: The Washington Post). You may not like your job due to it not being challenging or too stressful, your less-than-pleasant boss, annoying co-workers…the list goes on.
But the reality is that your job pays the bills (or at least that’s what it’s supposed to do) and may be a stepping stone to something better down the line. And because you spend 40+ hours per week at your job, it’s important to know what to do if you hate it.
So with all that said, here’s the first step you need to take if you hate your job:
1. Understand why you hate your job
This is not only the first step, but is arguably the most important.
It is very important to be able to explain to yourself why you can’t stand your position. The hate you’re feeling could just be due to something relatively small, and you might just need to think things over. You took the job in the first place for a reason. It may have been for the pay, or it may have been because it’ll help you reach the next rung in the ladder of success.
Here’s what you can do – write the reason(s) why you hate your job down on a piece of paper and let it sit for a few days or a week. After some time has passed, look back at it. Do you feel the same? Or do the reasons seem a bit petty now? This exercise will help you take a more objective look at your work.
2. Talk to your supervisor
The next step to take if you hate your job is to talk with your supervisor. Chances are, he or she has already been your shoes and might be able to shed some light. Often times, by speaking with someone more senior than you, your perspective can change. They also might be able to help fix the problem that is causing you to hate your job.
If your boss isn’t much help or is the reason for you hating your job, you can always talk to any mentors your have in your life (parents work too).
3. Move around in the company
Note that this is more ideal for larger firms.
If talking with your supervisor/mentor wasn’t helpful, it’s a good idea to look for another job at the same company you’re working for. Finding a new job at a company you’re already working at is almost always going to be easier than going out and finding a completely new job. This might be your ticket to getting away from your supervisor or the mind-numbing work.
What do do – While at work, be very inquisitive. Figure out what employees are doing in other departments. If this doesn’t really fly at your company due to a more stuffy culture, invite people out for drinks after work. The point is to understand what they do day-to-day and see if it’s something that you could see yourself succeeding in. Once you’ve got your eye on something, see if they have any positions open and go from there. Be extremely tactful when doing this…you don’t want to step on anyone’s toes.
4. Deal with it
If none of the above options did the trick, you might just need to simply suck it up and deal with it.
Again, realize that most people don’t like their job. And since your work takes up the majority of your time in a week, you’ll need to find ways to deal with it.
Here are a few ideas –
- Foster a positive attitude and a strong sense of humor. A joke here and there can make the workday go by much quicker.
- Once every month or so, go on a shopping spree and splurge a little bit (not too much).
- Pick up a hobby such as reading, chess, or watching quality films.
The main point is to not focus so much on work. By finding interesting activities outside of work, coupled with not taking yourself too seriously, you might end up realizing your job isn’t so bad after all.
5. Quit (professionally)
If all else fails, you need to quit. If your current job isn’t helping you grown, isn’t paying you enough, or is causing your life to be miserable…quit.
But do so professionally. You’ve heard this before, but we’re saying it again: don’t burn bridges. It’s best to clearly explain the reason why you’re separating from your company and leave amicably.
Realize, however, that the moment you quit, you immediately have a new job. Your new job is to find a job. By framing your situation in this way (shout out to Grant Cardone for this idea), it’ll cause you to take action and land a new position sooner than later.
Do you hate your job? If so, comment below with how you deal with work.