Feeling Down at Work?
Have you begun to feel down at work lately? Maybe you’re bored or feel like all of the interesting projects and chances for promotion are going to co-workers. While things may not be so bad that you’re looking for another job, you know the quality of your work—and your career—will probably suffer if you don’t make changes. It’s time to take action.
Improve your current work situation
- Think about whether your expectations are realistic or unrealistic in your current position. Focus on realistic expectations in order to achieve positive results.
- Make changes to the way you spend your own time at work. You may be able to change what you do on your breaks, when you go for coffee or lunch and whether you spend your breaks alone, with co-workers or friends. Altering what you do in your own time could make you feel better about your work.
- Review how you spend your time away from work. If you aren’t happy away from your job, that feeling can carry over into how you feel about your work. Making changes to your lifestyle, like engaging in different family activities, starting new leisure pastimes or volunteering, may help you feel better about your work situation.
- Change your work routine to obtain greater satisfaction. You control some things in your work routine and your employer controls others. Think of ways you can change the work processes that you control so that you feel more productive and satisfied at the end of the day. You may also come up with ideas that can benefit your employer.
- Break down larger changes into stages. Change can involve risk. When you make changes one step at a time, the change and any risk become more manageable. Learn about setting SMART goals when you make changes.
- Identify and eliminate habits that make you feel negative about work. Examples of negative habits include complaining, gossiping, putting down other employees and engaging in office politics. Avoid these workplace traps.
- Become a mentor. Maybe you would like to use your skills and experience to mentor other employees. Taking an interest in helping someone else learn and grow can be challenging and rewarding.
Change can take time and effort
- Focus on positive attitudes and strategies that can change how people at work see you. Being friendly, reliable and a team player can all attract positive attention. Try these practical strategies to stand out at work.
- Be sensitive to the needs of co-workers and family members. The changes you’re making will probably affect them too. You may want to explain what you’re doing and listen to their concerns.
- Be open to learning new things that can benefit your work situation. Whether you take courses on work time, study on your own time or ask friends or co-workers for tips, learning can offer you opportunities that did not exist before. Find out about learning to enhance your career.
You can improve your work situation
If you’re feeling down at work, don’t ignore the feeling. The need for change can motivate you to move in a positive direction. Pay attention to your feelings and try to make changes that are within your control.
Be patient if you can’t identify changes to make right away. Good ideas can take time. Once you get started, you may be pleasantly surprised at how far change can take you.
Relevant Tips (alis.alberta.ca/tips)
Additional Reading (alis.alberta.ca/publications)