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Nine Ways to Be Happy in a Job You Don't Like
November 2010

For most of us, work is a requirement. And until we uncover or create the opportunity that allows us to work our passion, we may be in a job that's just, well…a job. Accepting that your 9-5 is just a job works fine until you finally start listening to your passion and purpose. Once you begin to acknowledge your purpose and feed your passion, your "day job" may begin to feel like a burden.

So how do you make it through 40+ hours a week without feeling like you are serving time for a crime you didn't commit? Here are nine tips on how to be happy at work:

1. Stay out of drama and away from contentious people.

2. Initiate a new project – tie it to a new skill you want to learn or practice.

3. Choose a better perspective – look for opportunities and wins instead of shortcomings and faults.

4. Find a buddy. Research shows that people that have friends at work have a higher rate of career satisfaction.

5. Learn something new – read a book, read an article, take an online course. Find a way to get new information and let it inspire you.

6. Practice gratitude. Be grateful for what you do have and what you have the potential to create.

7. Stop talking about how bad things are. Lift the weight of your environment by speaking positively about your work, your co-workers, and your company.

8. Keep working towards your passion. Whether it is five hours or five minutes, find a way to incorporate what you are passionate about into your routine.

9. Get a life. If you are pouring all of yourself into work that's not satisfying, create a better balance by adding more "extra-curricular" activities.

Bottom line: You don't have to be miserable even if you are in a miserable job. Taking responsibility for creating your own happiness at work puts you back in the driver's seat of your career where you belong.


alumni@drexel.edu