According to Forbes, in 2012 only 50% of adults reported being satisfied with their jobs. Job dissatisfaction can greatly increase levels of anxiety, depression and stress. If this speaks to you, there are a variety of reasons why you may be dissatisfied with your job— ranging from disappointment with salary to feeling unchallenged in your work environment. In a difficult economic climate, it can be frightening or overwhelming to think about making a change. However, the good news is that finding the job you love, or loving the job you have may be within reach, because the main resources you need to achieve happiness in your career —or any other part of your life for that matter—reside within you.
As a psychologist, I have seen with great consistency that those who are committed to doing what they’re passionate about, find that money and opportunity follow. Thus, it’s important to connect with what your passion is, so that you can decide if your current job has the potential to allow your passion to flourish and expand. If not, it may be time to lookwithin yourself and take the time to explore job and career options that will truly capitalize on your talents and passions.
With a career that’s personally gratifying, motivation comes from within you. Financial status, recognition, praise, and approval are certainly great, but no longer the driving forces responsible for your satisfaction. By connecting with those internal resources, you will find clarity around exactly what you are seeking and what your current job may be lacking.
If changing your job feels too frightening or is not possible at the current time, there may be ways to turn your current job into your dream job for now, or at least one you can tolerate while thinking about making a change. Once you’ve connected with what it is you’re missing, it will be easier to search for ways to make it happen for you. Examine your current job from a place of childlike curiosity. What opportunities for growth are available that you have not yet taken? Who can you connect with to enrich your daily experience? Are there creative ways to use your talents to do your job? Are there any obstacles, which contribute to your sense of unfulfillment that can be removed? If you ask these questions and still come up blank, a career or job change may be in order.
If you are ready for a career change, use those resources within yourself to think outside the box. For example, look to the ways in which you play (hobbies, pleasurable activities and interests) to begin connecting with what you truly enjoy. What activities allow you to feel best about yourself? If you had all of the time and money you could ever possibly need, what would you do then with your life? Asking yourself these “what do I really want?”themed questions will allow you to be more creative in identifying a career path to pursue that will be in line with your personal passions.
Recognize that no two people have the same talents and desires. Looking within yourself rather than outside of yourself will help you find many ways to blur the lines that separate work and play. Your inner resources are available to you twenty-four hours a day. With your commitment and a few strategies to access them, you —or anyone for that matter—can be living a life governed by your passions very quickly!
When the work that you do is the work that you love, not only will it come easier to you, but you will feel more aligned with your purpose as well as more satisfied, engaged, fulfilled, and inspired in your daily life.