Unhappy At Work? It Could Be Your Fault

You dread the sound of your alarm waking you for work every morning. When you get to work, the day seems to drag. None of the projects you’re assigned excite you. You’re always the first person to leave the office. Face it. You hate your job.

Could the problem be you?

The cause of your unhappiness could be from your own negative energy and perception of the situation, not putting an effort in your relationships at work or not feeling valuable.

How to deal with your own negative energy

While it’s not beneficial to see everything with rose-colored glasses, being pessimistic is even worse. A negative outlook on work can affect your performance and how your colleagues relate to you. Cy Wakeman, the author of The Reality-Based Rules of the Workplace, says, “Your thinking manifests itself in a way that affects everyone around you and the way they see you.”

If you find yourself complaining about a project or colleague, stop and write down just the facts of your issue without any inner commentary. Writing down the objective parts of a problem will help you see how you are adding unnecessary drama. Once you’ve done this exercise for a project or colleague, try doing it for your whole job. Changing your perception can be very challenging, but it helps if you are fully present in the moment and not allowing past experiences or future expectation to influence your judgment.

How to get along with your colleagues

Work is definitely more enjoyable when you like your co-workers. If you aren’t on the best terms with your teammates, it’s time for a gut check. Do you come off as standoffish? Do you prefer to eat lunch at your desk while the rest of your team spends lunch time together? Do you sometimes criticize a colleague’s work too harshly in front of others? Maybe you’re exuding that negative energy mentioned earlier in the article.

Whatever the case, put some extra effort in your relationships at work. Offer a helping hand to a teammate who is stressed with too many deadlines. Ask a colleague for a quick coffee. Just ask a coworker how their day is going. Simple, friendly gestures can go a long way and can make you happier at work.

How to find value in your work

The easiest way to find value in your work is by asking, “Why?” What is the purpose of a project in the big picture? A simple task like formatting a spreadsheet is important because it allows others to see data clearly and make critical decisions faster. If you’re not sure why a project is important, politely ask your boss. By knowing why your work is important to the company, you’ll be more motivated to get it done.

Another way to look at is what skills are you building with this project? For the spreadsheet example you’re learning organization skills as well as the ability to synthesize information and highlight important items.