Having a career is a bit like being in a relationship. You go through good patches and bad patches. There can be times when you love what you are doing, and times when you are wracking your brain as to why you started out on this path in the first place.
There is a lot of information out there telling us how to find the perfect job, but is it really about that? Is work always going to be just work, or can we be truly happy in our career? Let’s take a look.
Probably the number one aspect that we focus on when choosing a career is the field that we will be working in. Sometimes, this can have a lot to do with our skills and strength.
For example, those with good emotional intelligence often choose caring fields like medicine. Or those with spatial intelligence may pick something where they work in 3-D, like architecture. People who have an affinity for accuracy and figures often go into science roles or accountancy.
Of course, we all have a mix of different strengths, skills, and experience. It’s how they combine in each of us individually that makes certain careers appeal.
But what has this got to do with loving your work? Well, some folks believe that if you find the right field to work in, it will help you be happy in your job. There is certainly a ring of truth in this because many fields of work are seen as a vocation rather than just a job. People are motivated by helping individuals in need in that area or by working with particular skills. It does make sense that, if we get to use the skills that we are best at and enjoy, we will be a lot happier in our day-to-day role.
If you are not in a role in which you get to use for favorite skills, it might be time to move on and get retrained in an area that does float your boat.
Another factor that can affect happiness at work is the conditions that we find ourselves in. For some of us, it’s not about what we are doing so much but the environment in which we are doing it. That is why some people can be happy in one role, and then unhappy in a similar one.
If you find yourself in a situation like this, don’t settle. Reach out to your contacts in your field, and try an executive search to help you find another role, with conditions that suit you better.
While it can be frowned upon on to mention wages, the truth of the matter is that there are very few of us who work just for the sheer pleasure of it. Receiving a reasonable recompense for your time and effort in work is not unreasonable. In fact, most of us work to live, no matter how much pride or even identity we set by our job roles.
That means that getting a good salary and benefits package can be integral to happiness at work. You are bound to feel unhappy if you know others are earning more doing the same role as you, even if you do love what you’re doing. If you find yourself in a situation like this then ask for a pay rise or look for another role with better wages.