Unhappy. Exhausted. Stressed.

These are the words that came to mind as I looked at all of the faces around me on the train during my daily commute to work.

Nobody looked too excited about being there.

Of course, we have things in our personal lives that cause us to feel this way, but I couldn’t help but wonder how many people were dreading the day because they hate their jobs.

I was spending an hour and a half on the train every day, going back and forth to a job I didn’t enjoy. A job that had me counting down the minutes until I could go home. A job that was sucking the life out of me.

History kept repeating itself. I’ve had many jobs I didn’t like, and in that moment, when I was looking around on the train, I had a powerful realization.

I was never willing to DO anything about it!

My day would go something like this:

  1. Wake up wishing I didn’t have to go to work.
  2. Commute to work.
  3. Spend my day at work staring at the clock, hoping it would move just a little bit faster.
  4. Commute home from work.
  5. Sit in front of the TV mindlessly for a couple of hours.
  6. Dread going to work tomorrow.
  7. Cry.
  8. Go to bed.

Rinse and repeat. Sound familiar?

I was so wrapped up in how unhappy I was, how purposeless my life felt, and how I’d never find something I genuinely liked to do, that I wasn’t doing ANYTHING to try to shift the reality of it.

How was that helping me?

It wasn’t. Something had to change.

Slowly but surely, I started doing one productive thing per day that helped my days feel less tiring, while I worked to find a job I enjoyed. I committed to creating a future I was happy with, one step at a time.

Here are a few tips that might help you too:

  1. Determine the root of what is making you unhappy. Maybe your ideas aren’t being heard or implemented. Maybe it’s the company culture. Maybe it’s the industry or job itself. Once you know what’s really bugging you, you can work towards solutions while you look for something better.
  2. Make a list of pros your current job. if you hate it, what positives does your job give you? A paycheque? A great group of friends? Transferable skills? A great cup of coffee or a delicious croissant from the café nearby? Even if they’re small things, they can help you find joy in a tough situation.
  3. Find ways to be fulfilled outside of work. A solid morning routine really helped me with my mindset and made my day less draining. I loved walking my dogs. I enjoyed volunteering. What can you do before you get to work and after you get home that gives you a sense of purpose?

It’s really hard to feel stuck in a job you hate.

The harder part, though?

Allowing months and years to pass before actually DOING something to change it.

Learn from my mistake. Don’t get sucked in so deep to the point where you feel you’ll never find your way out.