If you drag yourself to work with a feeling of dread every day, this is for you.
No one likes every task they undertake throughout the course of their job, but that is quite different from considering quitting before every shift. I know I did this most days when I worked at a movie theater over the summer. It’s truly awful to feel that way on a regular basis.
Since not everyone has the luxury of just up and quitting, here are some tips that I’ve used to turn a bad experience around.
- Identify what’s making you feel so discontent.
Maybe you can barely stand your coworkers, or you feel your manager is incompetent. For me, I found it unrewarding and exhausting to deal with unruly customers and sweep up popcorn messes. Whatever it is, figure out what’s making you dread the job.
- Try to find the silver lining.
As trite as it sounds, thinking positive can make you feel better. If you do it enough, it becomes habit.
If I didn’t want to go to my shift at concessions because I knew it would be so busy I’d hardly have time to breathe, I thought “At least time will fly while I’m busy, and I get to be social with my coworkers.” If I was dreading the disgruntled customers I would have to handle working in the box office, I was perked up a bit knowing that I would have some down time where I could read a bit of my book.
At the very least, looking for the good in things will prevent you from being caught up in negativity.
- Vent to someone if you need to.
There is someone in your life who will let you give voice to your dissatisfaction and sympathize with you. Perhaps it’s a parent or a sibling or a friend. Just try not to complain too much. Excessive negative talk can make you, and the person you’re speaking to, feel worse.
Another way to potentially improve your work experience would be to talk to your manager professionally about how you are feeling and how they can help you make some changes. In all likelihood, your manager does not know that you are unhappy and will appreciate you bringing the issue to their attention. You could even come up with a professional development plan together. Setting goals (and achieving them) can drastically improve your work experience.
Finally, and most importantly, …
- Don’t let your frustration or exhaustion affect your job performance.
Discontent in your work can breed apathy, but don’t let it get the best of you! Tempting though it may be to slack off, keep your work above reproach. This way you will know that you are doing your best and you can feel good about how you handled yourself looking back on the experience.
Hopefully, something here speaks to you and will ease some of the strain you may be feeling.
If all else fails, maybe it is time to move on from this job. However, it never hurts to give it your all.
Know that you are by no means alone. Here are just a few articles to check out for more tips and commiseration: