Why Do We Work Until We Are Unable? Why Do We Work Until We Die?

Protest the Hero really nails it on the head with this part of their song, "Tidal". I would say 95% of the people in my life are always complaining about their job or exclaiming how they will never be working in a career they are passionate for. As you know - I've been working since I was SUPER young so I have always had this indescribable energy that I will not settle until I'm living the life I want. A huge part of our lives involves the work we do and life is just way too unpredictable and short to ever be miserable for at least forty hours a week. We end up spending more time at work than with our loved ones - so why torture ourselves like that? I've been at my current job for about four months. I work seven days a week for 6+ hours a day. I have had ZERO complaints or bad days since beginning this job! I cannot say that about any previous place of employment - and I've had A TON. I wanted to share some nerdy, sage advice on how to start on your journey to the career of your dreams - whether you know what that is or not! I hope this can help you out in, at the least, some minuscule way. All I hope for a majority of the world is success and happiness - I think it's totally achievable! 

****Before getting started, take a listen to that Protest the Hero song I quoted cause it's GODLY AND AWESOME: ****

ARE YOU IN AN INDUSTRY YOU LOVE RIGHT NOW?

If you are working right now - are you passionate, in some way, about what that company or business does? Think big picture - not necessarily the department you are in. You may love sports but you are at the call center but you wish to be on the marketing team. If you're answer was anything but, "No!", please move on to my other bullet points! If your answer was, "FRICKIN HECK YES", please continue. 

If you are passionate for the end result of the company you are in but are not in the right field of that business - you need to change it up! Otherwise you will burn yourself out and truly hate what you were originally passionate for. Here are some questions you need to ask yourself if you don't want to turn a new leaf in a totally different field:

 

  • Do I dislike my coworkers? 

  • Do I dislike the area I am working in?

  • Do I dislike the hours? 

  • Do I dislike my management team?

  • Do I dislike the clients I'm working with?

Once you truly pinpoint what the issue is - we can go from there!

Do I dislike my coworkers? - If this is what is bothering you, you need to figure out why! Did drama happen at work? Do you simply have no common interests with your coworkers? What's the true issue? If drama occurred - this is an easy solution.....well - easier said than done sometimes. If you do not want to take what happened between you and your coworkers to HR - you may want to sit down like an adult and see if you can agree to move on for the sake of the company. I've had to do this a few times at past jobs and almost every time it will work if you approach the talk with kindness and openness to constructive criticism. I know we all hate to admit when we are wrong but if this is going to affect your working conditions where you are trying to evolve in an industry you are passionate for - it's worth stepping up and finding a resolution! If you simply have no common interests with you coworkers - remember that work isn't a social party anyway. Keep it light and professional if you find the urge to socialize. If you believe you have zero interests among all of your coworkers - don't you find that bizarre? If you try a little harder I bet you will find SOMETHING! Don't put too much pressure on it and remain open. Otherwise - focus on work since that's what you're there for anyway. 

Do you dislike the hours? / Do you dislike the area you're working in? If you dislike your hours - talk to your manager! So many of us are scared to let management know when WE are unhappy in an area of work since we are so used to management telling US why they may be unhappy with our performance. It's totally fine to set up a meeting with your boss and, politely, map out why you are miserable at work. Good businesses want their employees to be happy! Trust me! It also demonstrates leadership to your manager if you word your meeting correctly! Don't just negatively blurt out, "I hate my hours and my department." Indulge in the art of cleverly speaking - so maybe say something like, " I really see myself doing more at this company and I can't accomplish what I want where I'm working now. Can you help train me to be more like you and advance in this company at a quicker pace?" Figure out where you CAN go in the business or if they are willing to morph your schedule to make you happier. This same piece of advice applies to the other bullet point - if you dislike the department you work in - change it! Experiment everywhere you can until you have that feeling that lets you know you're where you are meant to be. 

Do I dislike my management team? If you are having troubles with your management - this could be a gigantic red flag that cues you to start looking for other work. Obviously don't jump the gun! But, if you run out of people above others at your job and still think they all suck, it's definitely time to reconsider the company!

Do I dislike the clients I am working with? If you loathe your customers - this is an issue. A customer should be a reflection of the business! You can't hate every single client and expect to have the job of your dreams. It does not work that way. Of course you will always experience some crappy people - but the majority of your clients should not put you in a bad mood. Don't let other people control your emotions like that! You're a strong, independent, fierce, charming QUEEN after all. Maybe you should try harder to help other people have a brighter day instead of expecting them to make you feel better? You could also try thinking up new tactics and guidelines to present to your management team that could change the routine of what you were trained to do and that could result in your clientele being happier. 

ARE YOU IN AN INDUSTRY THAT YOU HATE RIGHT NOW?

From this question you have two options -- are you financially able to just abruptly quit your job to take the time you need to reflect on what you want to be doing? If you are - CONGRATS - you are one of the very few individuals that do not need to work to get by and I can safely assume that we are all insanely jealous. If you don't have to work and HATE your job - leave to give that opportunity to someone who needs it. Take some time to reflect on what gives you energy and passion! Also read along to see how to, in fact, figure that out!

If you are NOT able to just up and quit your current gig (like most of us) - this part is for you! If you've exhausted all options to make your work the best place it can be (by using the above points) - it's time to start searching. We all believe that we can never find a better job or whatever excuse you want to give yourself but the truth is if you really hate where you work - you can get out of there! Everyone is replaceable at any job. First things first - START PROJECTING YOUR GOAL TO LEAVE YOUR JOB. If you put positivity into the world and exclaim to everyone you know as much as you can that you are trying to , "______", the universe will HELP you. If you mope around complaining about your job, nothing will ever change. You NEVER know who could help you achieve your dreams! 

UPDATE YOUR RESUME

It's time to update your resume! If that intimidates you - ask around for help and Google the fuck out of what a good resume is. It's really not complicated: keep it short, be creative and don't try to fill a mold you think your future employer wants to see. They read cookie cutter resumes all day (trust me I have done plenty of hiring in my time) The point is to get your foot in the door to your interview. If you have job security - what do you have to lose by trying things outside of the box on your resume? I'll probably end up doing another post all about resumes because I am super amazing at making standout ones!

CRAIGSLIST, SNAGAJOB, SIDE GIGS, HOBBIES

Now it's time to put yourself out there and submerge yourself in solely the field(s) you want to see yourself in. ONLY apply for jobs you truly get excited about. Do this everyday! Let social media know you are searching for a job too. Also - start projecting your energy into your hobbies. Take your hobbies more seriously if you want them to turn into what you do everyday for a living. Check out paid gigs on Craigslist (and use common sense with accepting them). That will help get your name out there too! It's hard to give an example for every hobby you could have - but I'll use myself as an example. At jobs in the past I would wedge my way into writing for the company's blog or website. I would (and still do) contribute for OTHER websites to really get kenNERDdy out there in the universe. I follow TONS of forums, blogs and communities that give me the newest updates for blogging gigs and blogging tips. Get my point? Surround yourself almost entirely by what you want to be doing and eventually you will be doing it AND paying the bills with it!

QUIT YOUR JOB

Once you have a plan, a rough one even, put in your notice at your current job. You may need to pick up a few not so amazing jobs that do allow you to chase your dreams though! I had to do that for such a long time. Don't worry about how long your resume looks or anything like that - job flopping can be extremely helpful in finding the industry you want to be in too! It takes tons of failures and bad experiences to aid you in realizing what you want to be doing. It's just as important to see what you absolutely do not want to see yourself doing again since that will cross things off your probably long list of what you may want to be doing as a career. I NEVER thought I'd be working in the tattoo world but since I had no reservations about leaving jobs - I was able to land what I didn't know was what I was searching for. You may know (again I'll use myself as an example) that you want to use your business/managerial skills but have zero clue where you can put those talents to use without wanting to rip your brain out everyday. It's time to job hop. Have no fear further down the road when someone may ask you about your resume - be honest! Tell them you're looking for a good fit for YOU and haven't found it. It's not a big deal - trust me I worried for way too long about that! 

BE PATIENT

You know it took me years and years (over two decades) to discover where I need to be. It's going to be tough! By all means - stay at your mediocre job until you retire and dread every morning you wake up - but if you're over that...you can totally take your life by the balls and morph it to what you want it to be. It just will rarely happen overnight. Yes there are viral videos that give someone very minimal and terse fame - but don't compare yourself to them. Really, don't! The true recipe for finding that "it" job is:

Resilience, patience, a positive attitude, passion, and socializing. 

I think one of the most important things to not forget is simply don't stay at a place you hate. What's the point? You won't be doing any good for the company and vice versa. You're allowed to have a million jobs in a lifetime. Experience is invaluable. Just don't settle - nobody deserves that! You're allowed to have a couple of passions too - you don't need to sign a lifelong contract with just one thing. I have three jobs after all and not one ever feels like a "job"! 

EVENT OF THE WEEK

I surprised Stephen with tickets to this amazing, interactive art exhibit called Wonderspaces last week! It's a pop up museum type thing and is only here until July. It was one of the most incredible things EVER. If you're in the area - pay the $20 or whatever for the tickets and GO. It's only an hour or two of your time and technically you can stay as long as you want. My favorite exhibits were ADA and A Religious Experience. Unfortunately I could not participate in the virtual reality part since my left eye does not function but Stephen said it was rad!

PERFECT HUMANS NEWS OF THE WEEK

Birthday Blob Fish is OFFICIALLY here! Ain't no party like a blobfish party cause a blobfish party don't stop! Keep the party going forever with this cutie boy. He's a limited run too so get him before he does his Irish goodbye.

INTERVIEW ON DECK

I am very excited to announce that I will be interviewing Nara Youn - an animator for DISNEY! STAY TUNED AND #STAYNERDY