Will Work for Happiness: The Importance of Being Fulfilled in Your Job

A real conversation with a real friend as she enjoyed her early morning 40 minute commute to the office: “I hate my job!  I hate it, I hate it, I hate it!  And I hate meetings about nothing and I hate wearing nametags so that people that don’t know me can pretend that they know me and make small talk about things I care nothing about!  And I hate meeting food.  No one eats sandwiches that small, but there are only enough sandwiches for two per person, and then because they think they fed you lunch, they think they can keep you in a three hour meeting even though your stomach has started to eat itself from the hunger pains and you might just pass out if it doesn’t end soon, but at least then the nametags will come in handy because the paramedics will know who you are.”

Okay, so my friend is a little dramatic!  But I remember it like it was yesterday: playing the corporate game in my power suit and stilettos and wanting desperately to run to the nearest amusement park or circus.  There’s nothing worse than feeling like your day to day life has become mundane, robotic, and has lost all meaning.

I don’t know about you, but if I can’t find a place within my daily role to showcase my creativity and enthusiasm for what it is that I do, I go running for the hills in search of something – anything! – that will fulfill that part of my spirit.  It’s how I stumbled into being an entrepreneur, after all; looking for a place in the corporate spectrum that allowed me to spend more time doing work that I loved with people that I admired and respected, and less time in meetings regurgitating numbers with people who probably felt as anonymous as I did.  It’s been amazing to be able to grow my talents in an environment that has provided endless opportunities for that growth, and even the day to day tasks that would be mundane in a workplace that I hated are enjoyable when they’re to facilitate something that I love.

Now, I’m not saying to up and quit your job and run off into the sunset to start your own arts and crafts store (although if that’s what your heart desires, than I’m all support!), but what I am saying is that it is worth exploring what your needs are to be on a work path where you feel happier and healthier – physically, emotionally and spiritually.

It was a huge decision for me to make.  I mean, I didn’t hate my job per se, I had really gotten the whole business-casual look down pat, I had put a few pictures on my desk so that it felt a little homey, and let’s not forget that consistent paycheque and those medical and dental benefits!

But the best career advice that I can offer to anyone is to work where you feel happy, fulfilled, and respected, whether it’s working for a huge corporation or working for yourself off of your kitchen table. There is no dollar amount that can make up for these things and no reasoning that can justify their absence.

Okay, so you hate your job.  Now what?

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