5 Ways To Like Your Job More

Whether you are just starting out and doing whatever it takes to get ahead, or you’ve walked into the same building that pays your dream salary for a decade, sometimes work sucks the life out of you. Not surprisingly, people get in a rut thinking the grass is greener somewhere else. Early on people eagerly wish for the type of success and fame they see their role models enjoying. Whereas later on in life, people become entitled and bitter because they haven’t “made” it yet. But other pastures aren’t always greener. You have to be OK with where you’re at in your career and pay less attention to where others are at. That alone will make Monday mornings more bearable.

Patience and hard work also go a long way toward reaching professional goals. But even when we’re looking and acting our very best, work can get us down. Whether it’s a bad boss, lack of infrastructure, low pay, or simply not where we want to be, our 9 to 5 grind can take its toll. And like in life, a healthy attitude is required to make it to TGIF. Here are 5 tips for making the work week more tolerable when you just can’t fake it anymore. Breathe, grab another cup of Joe and read on.

1. Work Reasonable Hours 

If you’re not a morning person but your job starts at 8:00 a.m., talk to your manager about starting later. People are like intricate machines, and unique operating systems perform better at different times for various reasons. In the future, always discuss a schedule that is most productive for you before you accept an offer. Because we live in a digital age, strictly enforcing certain hours (unless customers rely on you) is more of an old-school, petty way of micro managing rather than a real concern for employees who do good work.

Do not work over time unless you’re paid appropriately for it. There are few occupations where if you leave on time, people’s lives will be jeopardized. If you’re just starting out in your career or are still proving yourself at a new company, going the extra mile is always appreciated, but keep in mind that boundaries and respect must be earned. If you will not get paid to work extra, or you simply cannot stay late one night, respectfully tell your manager that you are not available. There is no point overworking yourself if there are no personal benefits to all of your hard work.

Check in with yourself from time to time to make sure your work life balance is on point.

2. Get Really Good at Pretending to Work

The amount of productive work that most people actually perform during a typical eight- to nine-hour work day is about 50%, and that’s high. Between meals, breaks, personal dealings, distractions from social media, and boredom, there isn’t a lot of time left. No one admits it and there are the exceptions for those who manage several people or travel a lot, but your coworkers are not doing more than you– they just look like they are. Get rid of the guilt: 80% of success is simply showing up. But do get off IG and start a personal passion project that you can work on in between assigned work. You signed up for the opportunity you’re in, so respectfully make the most of it for your employer and for yourself.

3. Try Stepping Up When You Want to Step Out

We already know that most of you have got the time to take on more responsibility. A lot of people become disdained at their job because of boredom, lack of support or a capped position. Ask your supervisors if there is anything you can do extra to help them. Take initiative when there are issues at work that you can solve or give more than asked. You’ll shine in the eyes of your superiors, you’ll gain a better sense of purpose, and you’ll find that you either still have a love for your career or maybe that it’s time to move on.

4. Start an Activity Near Work, Not with or At

Having something to look forward to that is super close to work makes a little of the pain go away. It’s like going to get your favorite treat as a kid at the ice cream shop near the doctor’s office. This new “favorite thing” can be an exercise studio, an artsy activity like pottery, self-improvement classes, jewelry making, or anything your child-like eagerness resonates with.

 5. Get a Plant and Stuff

Making your desk or work area homier psychologically relieves stress – it’s a fact. Plants reduce carbon dioxide levels and make the air you breathe healthier. In addition to personal interests like pictures, plants and small decorations, try putting out a container of wrapped candy for others to enjoy. See what happens in a week. I bet you’ll hate fewer people at the office. When people feel like they’re being “treated,” they’re nicer and more tolerable in general.