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4 ways to love a job you hate

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We are all familiar with Confucius’ saying: “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”.

And with all the talk lately about unhappy Singaporeans and employees searching for jobs they feel passionate about, it’s easy to get sucked into the belief that you will only be happy in a job if it’s something you love doing.

Unfortunately, the reality is not every one of us will be lucky enough to land our dream jobs. However, there may be a silver lining to being in a job you dislike, or even hate.

1. This too shall pass

The only reason you’re still in this job is because you chose to stay. A small majority of us may be stuck in a job because of things like bonds or a lousy employment market, but with proper commitment and help, you should be able to find a new position eventually.

Remind yourself this job isn’t permanent and look at it as a stepping stone to greater opportunities

2. There’s nowhere to go but up

To quote another man, Churchill once said, “If you’re going through hell, keep going”. Yes, you may dread getting to work every morning and could list 20 other places you’d rather be than behind your desk, but everyone has to start somewhere.

Sticking to a job you don’t love might instil a bit of perseverance in you and teach you a lesson in humility. Even the most famous celebrities once had to earn their keep cleaning animal cages or selling duck rice.

Take your job as a learning experience, and take in as much as you can. Chances are your boss isn’t looking for someone who runs at the first sign of trouble so stay positive and your ship might just come in soon.

3. Find work-life balance

It’s bad enough that you’re miserable from nine to six everyday. While we’re not asking you to skive off, make sure you take time for yourself and loved ones. It might even be a good idea to spend Happy Hour with a couple of colleagues (who knows, you might find a shoulder to lean on or build office camaraderie).

Making sure you having passions and interests outside the office can help make the workweek more bearable.

4. Leave your office blues right where they belong – in the office

Bringing home negative energy from a bad day at work is never a good idea. It will leave your feeling anxious and stressed when you’re not in the office, affecting your work-life balance.

Try when possible to finish your work before the end of the day so you can forget about it when you leave. Set realistic work goals to make sure you’re not overwhelming yourself, and talk to a mentor or manager if you feel the stress is getting too much.

Remember, you may not love the job you’re in, but that doesn’t mean it has to be hell. Look for ways to better manage your workload, find a confidant if possible and set a practical plan to help you find a new – a hopefully better – job.

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Sabrina Zolkifi
Deputy editor
Human Resources Magazine Singapore

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