THIS Is What To Do When You Hate Your Job

You’ve spent several years – and countless thousands of dollars – getting that magic piece of paper. You’ve put in the hustle, built an admirable professional network, and nabbed your all-time dream job. Turns out, though, that your dream job is a bit of a nightmare.

Wondering what to do when you hate your job? Don’t panic or jump ship. Start with these five things:

1. Breathe

As with any time of trauma, the first and most important step is to take a deep breath. Acting right away means making rash decisions, and that’s the surest route to further trauma. This moment is not a time for action. Sit tight and suck air. When you’ve calmed down some, that’s the moment to move on to step two.

2. Assess

Now that you’re in this pickle, you’ve got to determine the length and breadth of the actual problem. Your dream job hasn’t lived up to its billing, but it’s important to know exactly where it’s falling short. If it’s something comparatively simple, like poor fit with your actual place of work, you may need to look elsewhere. However, during assessment you may discover that there are one or more aspects of the job itself that you find distasteful. At this point, just take note of these things for further consideration.

3. Strategize

For this stage, examine your options, based on your assessment from the previous step. Can you discuss the situation with HR? Would the same job at another company be better? If you’ve decided that no job on this career path is right for you, look at the kinds of lateral moves you could make based on your skills and experience. Or, consider whether you need to get further schooling, if not retrain entirely. Come up with several plans and weigh your options carefully. If you need to, take a quick detour back to step one before moving on.

4. Execute

You’ve taken several deep breaths, examined the problem in detail, and picked a plan. In this step, take the plunge. Whatever you’ve decided to do, take that famous shoe company’s advice and “Just do it!” Feeling a twinge of fear? We’ve got you covered over here. And remember, if at first you don’t succeed, it’s not the end of the world as you know it. Many, many people who became successful started down some blind alleys, career-wise. It’s vital to know you’re not the only one, and that getting help can be as easy as asking for it.

5. Reflect

So, what if you find that taking a specific action isn’t necessary – or just isn’t in the financial cards? What if the problem is one of perspective? If this is the case, take a few moments to reflect on the aspects of your chosen career that may not be as bad as you think they are. Just because something doesn’t turn out as expected, it does not follow that that thing is bad. Even if you’re able to find reassurance in the fact that you are employed when so many aren’t, surely that’s better than moping around and wishing you were doing something else. Take in the larger picture, and understand that while a big change may not be viable today, there’s always tomorrow.

Got a job that’s a lemon and you want your money back? Dish out your coping secrets down in the comments.

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