In the professional world, people often feel the need to choose between happiness and success. That’s according to Laura Garnett of Inc., who’s penned a great piece for the Daily Muse titled “3 Simple Ways to Love Your Job (Any Job).” As Garnett writes, many of us sacrifice joy in order support a family or live the lifestyle we feel the need to live. “Being viewed as a success, regardless of how you feel, ends up being another, more-often used metric for fulfillment,” she writes. “When your neighbors and family see you as successful despite your empty feeling, it makes it easier to endure.”
But you actually can love your job, and Garnett has three excellent tips for making it happen. It requires “hard work and strategy,” but at the end of the day, it’s totally worth it. Read on to see what Garnett recommends.
1. Commit to Your Goal — Loving your job isn’t easy. You’ve got to put some effort into it, and as Garnett writes, the key is to switch from a reactive perspective to a proactive one. This doesn’t just apply to searching for jobs or pitching new projects at your office. Once you land the gig or get the assignment, you’ve got to stay engaged. “Loving work is a commitment that requires active day-to-day prioritization,” Garnett writes. “It has to move from a wish-list item to a priority.”
2. Pinpoint What Fulfills You — It sounds obvious, but before you can truly love your job, you’ve got to know what kind of work you find most rewarding. This doesn’t mean going into accounting because your good with numbers or spreadsheets. “Your talent is not what you do,” Garnett writes. “It’s how you do what you do: How you think, how you most often problem solve, your go-to way of processing information.” Ask yourself, “What is my purpose? What drives me?”
3. Be Willing to Change Your Habits — As Garnett reports, Gallup surveys show that 71 percent of people are not engaged at work. If you’re going to be happy in your position, you’ve got to be stimulated and challenged. This might mean turning down projects and telling your superiors that you need to tackle other things. If the company can’t help, it might be time to find a new job. “Make an effort to create the opportunity you are seeking to be engaged in,” Garnett writes. “Being engaged and challenged should be added as a key business objective that has action items and goals.”