Studies have shown that over half of Canadians hate their jobs and over half of our country's senior managers are considering quitting due to exhaustion: Is the idea of loving your job 'a unicorn with a rainbow horn'?
While statistics give us a meager fifty-fifty chance of happiness in our jobs, studies also show passionate workers outperform their peers, accelerating their career journeys. The trick to landing on the upswing of that fifty-fifty is to see each role, even the ones you aren't excited about, as an opportunity to learn something new, improve, and advance your personal career journey.
To back us up, here is how some wickedly successful people started their careers:
- Jeff Bezos - McDonalds
- Bernie Sanders - carpenter
- Elon Musk - lumber mill worker
- Ellen Degenres - oyster shucker
- Richard Branson - amateur 'bird breeder'
In short, your first roles won't likely be love at first sight but will teach, test, and strengthen you for what's next. Like any good 'unicorn', your ideal role will also be hard to catch, rare, and highly valued aka: extremely competitive. This said, the only myth in finding your ideal role is that it's luck - the competitive advantage you need to end up where you'll truly love your job is acquired through skill and experience building - through time.
This said, here are 3 easy ways to (try) to love your job (even if you don't like it):
- See it for what it is: A stepping stone. This means approaching your days strategically so that you squeeze the most value out of your work for your personal and professional (hard and soft skill) development.
- Write down a list of skills and experiences you want to be able to own and articulate: Apply yourself toward those skills and experiences each day and document what you did so that you can easily articulate this new value to your future employer.
- Find a mentor: Look within the company and see if there are roles that you can work toward, ones that excite you more than where you're at, and then find a mentor within the company - someone who can teach, motivate, and inspire you (maybe even advocate for you).
Loving your job is earned. Like anything valuable, a great career takes time, dedication, and patience. We're not saying that following the above three steps will instantly make you feel positive about your work but reframing how you see your work can make your pursuit toward bigger goals more meaningful - and that, well, that's something to love.