Stuck in the Mud, and Hating Your Job: 5 Questions To Bail You Out

I thought that this article could relate nicely to the article on “yes men.” It’s about getting what we really want with our lives, and our jobs.

Can you see yourself not at your job in six months? Are you experiencing that dread, that low level chronic dissatisfaction that starts to snowball into anger and general irritability?
I’ve totally been there. I used to let “life” happen to me, meaning that I would kind of wait it out, for that “right” moment or opportunity to come in and whisk me away. Guess what. It didn’t happen.

I had to come to the conclusion that, in order to be happy in my work, I had to take the bull by the horns and start to activate. The hardest part, for me, was taking responsibility and ownership for the fact that I am the only author or my life, and other people, situations, and job settings were merely the supportive or background players. It was up to me to start to make the leap over time.

So, with that in mind, if you are not enjoying your current job and want to get out, consider these 5 questions to help:

  1. Consider happiness/money formula: Can you live with the money, or is the money getting old and you want some “soul satisfaction”? Is the money all that great, that you sacrifice other things, like your time, happiness, relationships, stress, whatever?
  2. What can you really see yourself doing for work? (This is a tough question, so sit with it). If you’re not doing what you really love doing, then what keeps you in your current job, and how does it keep you? A lot of times, guys I counsel don’t know what they want, but they just get attached to the suffering in their current lousy job. If you found your passion, what would that look like? Sketch out that plan on paper, and share it with someone close.
  3. What resources will you need to start to put your plan into action? Money? Time? Family/friends/partner support? A new resume? A vague sense of what you really want to be doing? More education? There are lots of possible resources that you might need, and the trick is to identify them and get them down on paper.
  4. What are the pros and cons to staying in your current job? List them out. Do a massive brainstorm to list out every possible factor that contributes to your happiness or misery, and then weigh them against each other. Rank them according to importance.
  5. Lastly, what are the barriers to your professional “end zone”? Look closely and carefully now. What walls, fences, blockades do you put up in front of yourself mentally, that end up undermining your own success? This is a harder question, so I want you to sit with it for longer. Sometimes, we don’t even know how we keep ourselves imprisoned. Sometimes we play the victim. Sometimes we make excuses. Sometimes we wait for the world to happen, like me.

With these 5 questions in mind, start to consider making the change that you’ve wanted and thought wasn’t possible. Start to “live your bliss” and do the work that you were meant to do, and the world was meant to have you do.

About Jason

As "The Man That Men Will Talk To," Jason Fierstein, MA, LPC is a private practice counselor and psychotherapist for men and couples in the greater Phoenix, Arizona, area. He works with struggling men to find happiness in their lives, and with their wives.
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