The paradox of having a stable job is how much of a blessing and a curse it may be. Quite like a toxic relationship, you feel trapped in it but you’d be far worse off without it.
What happens there is known to all: annoying colleagues, burnouts, reheated lunches, ruined Sundays and even worse Mondays, and that very brief sense of freedom that gives you false hope every day, Monday to Friday, at 5pm sharp. And regardless of how many times we could rebinge The Office, going to work IRL lacks that excitement. There’s no Dwight in sight, not even Toby. In fact, there may be Toby in the real workplace but that doesn’t add much fun overall, if any.
So today, we rolled up some of the most relatable and painfully accurate workplace memes to lift up everyone’s spirits. In the end, nothing helps as much as having a good laugh, so all you office-bound lost souls with back problems, have a good one.
A global poll conducted by Gallup has uncovered that out of the world’s one billion full-time workers, only a handful, 15% of people, are engaged at work. It is significantly better in the U.S., at around 30% engaged, but this still means that roughly 70% of American workers aren’t engaged. This comes as somewhat of a paradox, since a good job seems to be a thing that the whole world dreams of.
Millennials, individuals who were born between 1980 and 1996, seem to be especially demotivated. Most of them are coming to work with great enthusiasm, but the old management practices—forms, gaps and annual reviews—grind the life out of them. Unlike baby boomers, who thought of a job as “just a job,” millennials are more involved in their workplace, often finding their friends and love interest in that same workplace environment. But sadly, not many of them are lucky enough to say they like their job.
So in order to find out whether learning to like your job is a solution, and when one should think of a change in career, we spoke with Christine Mitterbaeuer, a licensed and ICF-approved career coach and serial entrepreneur who shared some very useful insights.
“Being positive and content in life is a matter of which perspective you choose to adopt. In other words, how you choose to look at things in your life, such as your job, determines how you think and feel about it,” Christine said and added that you could have a great job and not appreciate it. This may happen “because your focus is on what’s not going well in your personal life.”
The career coach argues that similarly, you could have a boring or stressful job and be happy with it, because you’re looking at the bigger picture. “The bigger picture might tell you that this job is paying a salary with which you can feed your family, or pay for an education to get a better job afterwards. Knowing this and reminding yourself of this daily can help change your attitude to a positive one, and allow you to enjoy and appreciate your job a lot more.”
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When asked how important it really is to genuinely like your work, Christine said that many people live happy lives despite slightly or even majorly disliking their jobs. “Why? Because their focus is on other positive elements in their lives. Perhaps their boring job allows them a lifestyle which is great, perhaps a lot of freedom to follow their hobbies and passions outside work. Or perhaps they focus on all the positive things they can afford because of having this job, which makes them and their families happier overall,” she explained.
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For most people, the atmosphere and the people in the work environment influence their sense of wellbeing a great deal, the career coach argues. “This depends on how social vs. independent the role is, and how introvert vs. extrovert you as a person are. You could have a boring job but the nicest colleagues, and if socializing means a lot to your sense of wellbeing, then this atmosphere might be enough to make work bearable or even fun.”
On the other hand, “you might also be the type who prefers quiet time so you can focus on your work, so in that case, the atmosphere might not mean a lot to you.” Christine concluded that “it’s important to know yourself so you can place a value on your colleagues and the atmosphere before you accept a new job.”
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