How many times have you overheard your colleagues, friends and family complaining how much they don’t like their jobs? And how many of us have thought to ourselves at least once how much happier we would be living a simple lifestyle somewhere in the picturesque countryside without the constant worries of commuting to work in overcrowded buses and trains and then rushing to the nursery or school to pick up our kids.
I had these thoughts on an almost daily basis when I was working for an international company in London many years ago. I liked the working environment and my colleagues, who all had interesting backgrounds. But I didn’t enjoy the job itself. I started as an analyst there straight after university and, at first it was all very exciting with my responsibilities including recruiting international teams of researchers, travelling to the Czech Republic and Slovakia and presenting to large multinational corporations. Then after about a year into my job, I grew tired of the same repetitive tasks, the same people I had to manage, the same queries from the same clients. And I knew it was time to leave…Work had become a chore, not a source of inspiration and self-improvement.
Doing something you don’t enjoy can make your life seem dull and unrewarding. It can kill your creative side and turn you into a human ‘robot’ doing the same thing over and over again with automatic precision but with a lack of thought and enthusiasm.
I was talking to my friend yesterday and mentioned that after I set up my own business, I felt that I have finally uncovered my creative side, which seemed long lost during my previous employment. When you do a job you are passionate about, working at the weekends and in the evenings no longer seems like a burden. In fact, you start to look forward to more work, become more of a risk-taker, learn to overcome difficulties and challenges with a positive attitude and self-belief. Setting my own business, for instance, made me free to discover new angles and approaches, unconstrained by bureaucracy, rigidity and strict reporting lines of an organisation I used to work for.
If you feel stuck and unhappy in your current job, then it is time for you do something about it. It may be hard to break away from something you know so well (and are good at) and venture into the unknown, but it is well worth the risk. Once you start the process, you will discover the inner strength and motivation you need to make your life-changing move. Don’t be afraid to explore opportunities and new avenues in your professional life – even something you have never thought you could be good at. Be daring and take calculated risks and you will get a return on your investment! I love this quote by Alexander Solzhenitsyn “If one is forever cautious, can one remain a human being?”
I will be glad to hear your thoughts – please feel free to post your comments!