I Hate My Job – Or Do I?

I Hate My Job – Or Do I?

The 3rd most popular resolution, Find a new job is frequently made because “I hate my job”.  Before you go off and jump into a full blown job search, you may want to do a little inventory of what you don’t like about your job.

Is it:

  • I am not challenged with the work.  I’m bored.
  • I can’t stand working on the computer all day/I hate all the meetings I have to attend
  • I want to do some other type of work, but I don’t know how to make the shift
  • I like the work, the manager/company/co-workers make it nasty
  • I don’t know what I want to do, but it isn’t this


I’m Bored

Psychology Today says there are 3 reasons why you may be feeling bored:

  • Major disconnect – the company just works differently than you do.  If the organization is plodding and methodical and you are fast and creative, you could get bored fast.
  • Underutilized – you are performing work that is below your capabilities.  It’s too easy.
  • Confinement – there just isn’t anywhere for you to go.  There is no opportunity to grow and learn.

No one likes to be bored with their job, regardless of the reason.  Life’s too short to do something you hate longer than you must.  Identify what makes you bored with the job and find a job that will engage you, mentally and/or physically.

How did I end up in this job? 

There is a time in most of our lives when any job was a good job.  It could happen after we leave school, or we returned to work after raising a family, or we took the first job offered after being out of work for a significant time.  At the time we took the job, we knew it was just a short term solution, but 3, 5, 10 years later, we discover we are in a job we have no affection for and can’t understand how we got there.  If this is the case, it’s time to find out what you really want to do.  If you’ve kept the job you didn’t really like for a long time, there must be some skills you do well or you wouldn’t still be in it.  Find out what those skills are and then make it your job to find other jobs that use those skills.

There are parts of my job that drive me crazy

Most of the time, there are parts of jobs that make us want to scream.  Are you an active person who likes to interact with people?  A job as a data analyst is probably not a good fit.  Sitting at a computer all day with little or no contact with people would make you crazy.  On the other hand, if you don’t like to collaborate with team members and can’t understand why you are interrupted during the work day with meetings, maybe data analytics is what you need, not the management position.

If you have a job that doesn’t work with your personality and it makes you unhappy, you should look for a career that uses your natural talents.  You may be able to put up with the job that goes against your personality, but it will exhaust you and ultimately not make you very happy.

I don’t like the company/people I work with.

I see this as two different issues, although one can definitely influence the other.  A poorly managed team can make a person miserable.  The team members can start to take their frustration out on each other or they start to undermine their teammate’s work.  It can be found in many organizations and if productivity is falling, a change in management can fix it.  If you work for a company that is not well managed, this problem can spread throughout the organization.  There is probably nothing you can do to change the culture.  You either become part of it, or you leave. On the other hand, if you just don’t like your  cube mate, a discreet conversation with your boss might be helpful.

If you really like your job, in the company you hate, it may be good experience to stay for awhile.  Some of the best lesson’s I’ve learn have been in very uncomfortable organizations, and even if I wasn’t able to change the company, I learned a great deal about how to work through/around dysfunction.

I don’t know what I really want to do

Many people don’t know what they want to do.  When Oprah says to “do what you love and you’ll love doing it” these people want to cry.  I suspect, many of these people not only don’t know what they want to do, they don’t know who they are.  I found a great article in Forbes a few months back that ask 35 questions to help you think about your life and what would make you happy.  A few are:

  • If you weren’t scared what would you do?
  • What/Who did you make better today?
  • What’s your WHY? If you have a big enough WHY you’ll always figure out the What and the How. 

Without a doubt, at some point you will be unhappy with some aspect of (or somebody associated with) your job, but being clear about the reason could keep you from making the same mistake again.

Someone gave me good advice years ago that “you should always have your resume updated you should always be looking for your next job”.   At the time that seemed crazy, but I realize it was good advice.  Looking at opportunities, even if you’re not ready to change jobs, will keep you engaged in the processes and when it is time to move on, you’re ready to go.

What advice have you been given when you’ve been unhappy in a job?   Leave us a comment below or share using #findanewjob on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, or post a short clip on Youtube.

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I am passionate about helping women make the most of their skills and talents in the workplace, as well as encouraging them to ask for what they want and deserve. Creating Ask Ajna with Jae Lynn has been a labor of love and if we can help women find their authentic voice and support one another, we will build a community of change.

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