What it Takes to Like Your job and Love Your Life
Few of us live in a black-and-white, easy-to-define world. Instead many of us have lives that necessitate walking a balance between happy moments and events that smack us without warning. Handling the good stuff is generally easy. It’s when things get messy we look for a quick way to get things back on track. For some, that means finding a set of rules to follow or allowing self-judgments to dictate what we believe we should or should not do. If only it were so easy.
One of these well-perpetuated judgments is the idea a job is not worth doing unless you love it. For many employees, this concept carries a lot of baggage. Who defines what loving your job means and where do you look for a job you’ll love? Is having a job you love the goal? Or is there equal importance in finding multiple reasons to enjoy time spent at work? Couldn’t the pursuit of many small happy things ultimately add up to a job and a life that you love in the end?
Cultivating Pleasure in the Little Things
Looking back over a day, a week or year, it’s not just the big milestones that bring pleasure. It’s also the small bright spots of kindness, recognition and giving that add up to a life of greater value. Although small, it’s sometimes difficult to immediately see the impact of an action or to feel its benefit, but it’s there. By continually looking for the bright spots, there’s suddenly more emphasis on positive things like the friendships made at work, celebration of accomplishments, and more, for regularly giving and receiving appreciation of a job well done.
Part of a Greater Whole
In the workplace, taking those good moments and plugging them into a larger group dynamic has the potential to make a good impact even greater. A big part of making these larger contributions effective is knowing how individual goals fit into the goals of a department or the culture of a company. By understanding this, you know when you’re contributing in a way that betters you and the company. When you no longer see this happening, it might be time to talk to a manager about other in-house opportunities or start an outside search.
Knowing what you like is the beginning but having the bravery to go after it means taking many smaller actions and setting goals even when you’re not sure it’s working. Each path is unique to the individual and what brings one person happiness will not necessarily be the same for someone else. Start by identifying the small things that make you happy and look for ways to add them into each day. Over time, this list can turn into a working blueprint for finding a job you like and a how-to for a life you love.