A good number of people are scared and unhappy with their jobs, they are afraid that they may be stuck in that job for the rest of their lives. In my experience as an HR Consultant, I have had a lot of people walk up to me telling me they hate what they do, they dread going to work, and they have been stuck with those feelings on that job for years.
I remember a time I changed jobs because I wanted to try something new in a different environment. I would always look forward to Fridays because of the upcoming weekend, meanwhile, Sundays were the unhappy days because I would have to go back to an environment I dreaded for the next five days. I patiently waited for two months on that job before I happily resigned. I had the money and the fancy title but it did not make me feel good.
These are a few tips that may help you, if you find yourself in this situation.
1. It is okay to want something different: A lot of us tend to endure the feelings and end up unhappy, most times till the end of our lives. The truth is that career happiness and fulfillment comes from enjoying your work, feeling purposeful, excited, competent and valued. It doesn’t come from money or a fancy title. Look inwards and you will find out that you are great at many things, identify those things you are passionate about and create impact rather than working like a robot. No matter how little the impact appears to be, it is better than working day after day feeling unhappy and sometimes useless.
2. When you love your job, a lot of things don’t matter: I remember when I started BI Solutions, Nigeria and the BI Empowerment platform, which is all about giving back, I was constantly putting all my money into it and I was thrilled at the impact the platform was creating. It was just amazing! I didn’t realize I hadn’t taken a holiday in 3 years or that I could barely afford to buy the fancy shoes I love. I was just happy, and as I was consistent in doing what I loved doing, I began to receive calls and before I knew it, I was getting paid for doing exactly what I loved to do.
Many times our problem is fear, opportunities would come and we instantly dismiss it thinking, “Well… how would I support myself doing that?”
I’m not saying that you don’t need a certain amount to survive, of course we all do, but the point is you may be surprised at how little you will need when your attention is taken up by the work you love.
3. You are never too old to change and learn: Never fall in the trap of ‘you are too old to change’. You need to identify that thing you are passionate about or the problem you want to solve, then begin to look around for opportunities. If you need to train to acquire those skills, of course it requires hard-work, and remember nothing good comes without hardwork. You may even need to go back to school or intern for free.
4. To be afraid is normal: Fear will definitely come. I was so afraid to leave paid employment for the great unknown, working for myself, building my business and the constant question of “Will I succeed or not?” ‘But how will you ever know if you don’t try?’ That fear will keep you motivated to work hard and not fail.
I will conclude by saying, have mentors in that field – that would help you take off. Think positively and keep positive friends around you. Take courage and venture out because the world is waiting for you.