Posted By janice on September 29, 2013
A funny thing happened while writing this post.
I decided to write about finding your happy place and started put fingers to keyboard. Then one of my friends gave her two weeks’ notice.
I wasn’t surprised. My friend has been miserable at her job for some time and had been searching for a new job in a tight job market. By quitting her job without another lined up, she chose her sanity and health over the stress.
It’s scary. It’s brave. My friend knows some may call her crazy, but life is a series of choices.
Life is too short not to be in your happy place. I learned this the hard way, and since I didn’t learn it well enough the first time, it took a second experience for me to get it. In the two jobs I had before my current position, I stayed a year too long at each, and I was a burned out, unhappy and toxic mess by the time I left. When you’re burned out, unhappy and toxic, you are no fun to hang out with or engaged with your work.
I’m very fortunate to have been in a job for the past 13 years that keeps me engaged and makes me happy. Yes, there may be a bad day now and again, but I love my job.
Every now and again, I’ll have an organizing client who wants to talk to me about their productivity at work, but I quickly discover productivity isn’t the problem. They’re not happy with their job, themselves, or the world in general, and no amount of help managing email and clutter is going to help.
Being the straightforward kind of chick that I am, I usually ask “Are you happy?” when I sense there is something lurking in the background.
It’s difficult to make changes in the best of times, but when you’re unhappy, making change can be paralyzing. You can dip your toes in the water of change. So what should you do?
- Seek help. Talking to a therapist or a life coach can be helpful in sorting out what’s going on in your head, what you want and how you can get it. I’ve used both a therapist and a life coach over the years, and I’ve found the work with them very, very helpful.
- Make a vision board or list. Creating a vision board or drawing out your ideas, feelings and thoughts can surprise you. It helps you to realize what’s important to you and what goals you want to set.
- Volunteer. If you’re not sure about changing jobs, particularly if it’s in a different field, try volunteering for a group doing the work you’re considering. Many non-profits need help – especially the free kind.
- Take classes. You can take in-person or online classes. Websites such as Khan Academy offer a variety of short videos on numerous topics. Many colleges and university also offer MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) – free classes open to everyone. Check out websites, such as Coursera.
It’s never too late to find your happy place. Trust me.