Do you have to enjoy every minute of your work? This is something that I’ve been debating with buddies lately. Some of my friends just want to work, get paid, and move on with their lives. Others want to find a job that makes them totally happy all of the time.
When I read lifestyle design-related blogs, I notice the theme is to enjoy your work and to always be passionate about what you do. I actually love this theme. I’m sure most of us do. Nobody reading this wants to be miserable for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. Nobody wants to be frustrated with what they do for a living or with what they spend the majority of their time on.
I’ve been reading, learning, and experimenting with the idea of doing work that you enjoy for many years now.
This leads to an important question…
Are you entitled to enjoy even minute of your job?
Nope. While it’s great to find a way to get paid to do something that you enjoy (blogging about money, working as a personal trainer, or coaching high school students), you’re not entitled to it. Not every job or form of income will make you happy 24/7.
What if you hate your work?
There are solutions and you don’t have to worry about being stranded forever. Just because you hate your job now it doesn’t mean that you’re going to be stuck in a job that you hate forever. There are many options. It’s a beautiful time to be alive and earning a living in this world.
What can you do if you want to enjoy what you do?
“Instead of leading horses around, and instead of causing thirst, it’s your job to find the thirsty and offer them water.” — Chris Guillebeau
Do you have a quit date in mind?
Lately all sorts of blogs have popped up about exit strategies and age limits to when the blogger wants to call it quits (for example, Derek of Free at 33 or Joe of Retire By 40 — both sites are worth checking out!).
These bloggers have planned out an exit strategy. They chose an age for which they would like to retire and are working mercilessly to attain this goal (or in Joe’s case, to keep retirement going).
If you really want to get out of your job to spend more time with your family or to work on other projects, you need to set down and figure out an exit strategy. Some important questions to ask are:
The answers to these questions will help you out with figuring out an end game. What’s your deadline?
You’re not screwed if you hate your job. There are so many jobs out there that can make you happy. For the sake of repetitiveness, I’m not even going to get into blogging or “following your passions.”
If you’re young enough or still have the ambitious, you can do back to school. What sort of programs interest you? Between big universities, community colleges, and workshops, you can find a program that interests you and allows you to earn credentials in a field that you want to work in.
If you’re experienced enough, you can transfer companies to a job with a more suitable work environment. But, I don’t want to insult you with stating the obvious about that. I’ll just say this — the doors always open for you to leave and find work elsewhere. Don’t forget!
If you do happen to work for yourself, you have the option to outsource the work that you hate. In the 4-Hour Work Week, Tim Ferriss, mentions how he just about outsources everything from responding to emails to even once setting up blind dates.
If you think that trade-off is worth it, then you can outsource the work that you hate to focus on what you like. You have to run the numbers yourself here, because outsourcing isn’t always worth it.
You’re not going to enjoy every minute of every single day. Sorry to tell you that. You don’t have to be passionate about responding to emails, dealing with clients, or scouring the web for images to use for posts. It’s okay to be bored. Not every second of your day will excite the pants off of you.
How do you feel at work or when working? Are you generally happy with how things are?
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