“To be successful, the first thing to do is to fall in love with your work.” – Sister Mary Lauretta
I’m flipping radio stations today, and the most unlikely 70’s tune makes me think of jobs . . .
Remember Stephen Stills’, “Love the One You’re With”? While I don’t recommend it for relationship advice (of course!), for some reason the following lyrics brought to mind some of the jobs I’ve had that I was less than enthused about when I heard (okay, you got me, sang) the lines,
“If you’re down and confused. And you don’t remember who you’re talking to . . . Concentration slips away . . . ”
Specifically, it was a Telephone Customer Service job repeating the same product and sales information over and over and over again, about 80 calls/day . . . we had gray cubes with soft walls pushpin full of reference charts and a personal picture or two, sales quotas, quality control measures to follow, all that. We half-joked we were dogs on a leash tied in the yard, but it really did feel like that sometimes, connected by my headset cord to my phone/computer . . . I was tolerating this job many moons ago because I wanted the big carrot dangling at the end of the contract — a free European Rail Pass for up to 2 months – in First Class no less!
So I decided to “love the one I was with”, and find everything I could to maybe not get myself to “love” the job, but at least be able to tolerate it without being miserable — and sometimes, even appreciate the positive aspects of it. I had some cool co-workers I enjoyed on & outside of the job. I had a fantastic supervisor who was supportive, AND fun. While the overtime was more work I didnt’ like, it paid well, was readily available and allowed me to save for my eventual Grand European Adventure. I was good at the work (even though I didn’t like it), others knew this, so I became a “go-to” person for questions when supervisors weren’t around (this is a resume builder, btw) . . . and eventually that last one led to a promotion, and work I LOVED as a trainer/employee development supervisor and a permanent position. And of course, I had that end-of-the contract “prize carrot” of that rail pass to motivate me . . . and I thought about that often.
What can you find about your “for now” work that you like well enough and can appreciate/focus on to keep you mostly satisfied and up to the required tasks?
— good co-workers or boss?
— learning opportunties for resume building skills?
— good benefits package/perks?
— something about the work environment? (close to home/school/transportation, casual dress, etc.?)
— opportunity to advance quickly and thus also improve your resume with transferable supervisory/training/management skills?
— enjoy the feeling of helping your customers/clients with service or being a part of a good company (or getting a good product out there?)
Getting clear on why you are doing what you are doing for now, and reminding yourself of the good things can go a long way towards your mental and emotional well being while working a less than satisfying job for awhile.
AND . . .
What are you going to do WHILE you make the most of the job you HAVE to find the job you WANT?
Never settle for too long . . . just use you “for now” job as a tool, a stepping stone, smartly, to bigger, better, shinier, more SATISFYING work ASAP!
Doo doo doo doo doo doo DOO DOO (IT)!