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Is it possible to be happy in a job?

(38 Posts)
Changednamealready Thu 27-Feb-20 18:19:01

I work in a job whereby I feel the need (not obliged but work with safeguarding issues) to look at emails during my holiday and lay awake at night worrying about work.

I am sure lots of this is down to resilience and being a highly sensitive person. Am curious though, is anyone really happy in their work, waking each morning thinking yepee then leaving it behind at the end of the day?

OP’s posts: |
Drogonssmile Thu 27-Feb-20 18:22:52

I can't say I think yipee of a morning but I'm confident and happy in what I do. I leave the job at 4pm and don't worry about it until I'm back in the next day generally. It does get a bit boring though tbh which is why I am studying part time for a degree related to my job that will enable me to progress higher up the ladder. After 15 years doing the same type of job I'm ready for a bit of a challenge. I do appreciate being able to switch off though as my husband is the opposite, a bit like you OP!

Giveusthesummer Thu 27-Feb-20 18:26:11

I think it’s about finding a balance.

The people I know who expect to be “happy” at work have all had about a million jobs grin

I don’t expect to be “happy” at work, and accept that every job will have its faults, and some compromises are required. I’ve been in current job 5 years and a previous job 6/7 years.

But I wouldn’t tolerate something having a properly negative effect on my mental / physical heath. I left a job that was actually making me miserable as soon as I could find something else suitable.

ChaiTea1 Thu 27-Feb-20 18:38:15

OP I was like you in my last job. I would check emails on my holidays and on the weekends. It became a bad habit, it got to the point I suffered exhaustion and bad anxiety. The place was really toxic as well.
I then left that role and I’m in a better place now. I don’t have emails on my phone and don’t take my laptop home with me unless I’m WFH.
When I’m on holiday I do try and switch off, it’s a work in progress but I’m getting better!

To answer your question - yes, I’m now in that place where I love going to work. smile

ElderAve Thu 27-Feb-20 18:41:26

I think people have different tollerances/expectations. I have always been generally happy in my work, until I got to the point where I was ready to move on, but do have bad days and still look forward to the weekends. I don't really expect to be happier than that. Should I?

HelenaJustina Thu 27-Feb-20 18:44:47

I’m often happy at work. I have fab colleagues, my work can be frustrating and stressful but generally it’s challenging and stimulating and rewarding.
Doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate my down time but I definitely don’t dread Mondays.

Frequency Thu 27-Feb-20 18:52:27

I enjoy my weekend job in care. It used to be my full time job and still would be if it had room for growth and/or better pay and steady hours. I can honestly say, 90% of the time I am happy there. I like most of the residents and genuinely, properly care for some of them, as in I will go above and beyond to help them. I love the women I work with and am confident I am good at what I do and the residents who do appreciate us appreciate what I do and enjoy seeing me.

Sadly, the hours aren't steady due to zero hours contracts and a high turn over staff often leading to periods of overstaffing followed by periods of understaffing i.e 70 hours a week suddenly drops to 25 hours a week then creeps back up to 70. I can't survive like that as a lone parent with no financial support from the non resident parent so I found another job.

I don't hate my other job but I don't love it. I don't feel miserable there but nor do I feel particularly happy. I'm generally ambivalent about it but look forward to the opportunities it could lead to (it's a trainee position and the company are putting me through some pretty hefty, valuable certifications as part of the training).

Certain jobs suit certain people. I find I suit jobs that are social, physically active and varied or creative roles. I don't like being micro-managed.

happytoday73 Thu 27-Feb-20 18:55:33

Yes some people are. But to be honest that's certain personality types and some people that are lucky enough to have always wanted to be a X and get to do it and be great at it.
I feel you shouldn't rely on a job to make you happy, but it shouldn't make you miserable. Obviously odd bad days or annoying situations but overall have to accept its a job not entertainment.

I used to feel the need to be online and check my 'crackberry' (to quote my husband) however life events and bei v reduced to tears at thought of being in work have finally taught me to just check phone once a day a t weekend, not respond at weekend unless mega urgent and leave my phone and laptop at work when on holiday..
Me being in contact.. Feeling I'd sold my soul to the devil... My Enabling behaviour... Made me stressed... Its a cycle... I'm slowly learning

KisforKoala Thu 27-Feb-20 18:59:49

Can't say I sing 'yipeeee!' at half 5 in the morning, but I do love my job. And I have to work in my holidays/weekends. I'm currently doing a reduced role part time as I've just returned from mat leave and can't wait for baby to turn 3 and get his free hours so I can afford to go back to my proper role.

Emmapeeler1 Thu 27-Feb-20 19:09:06

I love my job. I don't take it home with me though. If I overwork, I get run down and that's when problems start. If you work with safeguarding issues, is there not a function in place for issues to go to someone else or to out of hours if you are not there?

GiveHerHellFromUs Thu 27-Feb-20 19:13:40

I like my job. Since having a baby my priorities have changed so I no longer get over-invested and I'm much happier for it.

It's not a job you'd ever dream of doing but I get a decent salary, work with nice people and have a good work-life balance.

Lipperfromchipper Thu 27-Feb-20 19:15:21

Yes I love my job!! I don’t have to work but I do...so I must either love it or be insane!! 😂

lazylinguist Thu 27-Feb-20 19:18:11

I'm a teacher. I was very happy in one of the schools I taught in (for 10 years). It was a lovely girls' private day school. Fab location; fantastic, polite, appreciative kids, good pay, long holidays, nice colleagues, relaxed atmosphere. Wish I still worked there, but I live at the other end of the country now!

CloudsCanLookLikeSheep Thu 27-Feb-20 19:24:50

I have odd days of happiness at work, but it's not continuous.

The main issue is that I feel I've stalled in my career and am stuck at a certain level, no promotion opportunities where I am and difficult to get a leg up when going for jobs externally.

So even though I enjoy the work to a certain extent I have this constant nagging feeling that I am at a lower level than I could be.

YewandOak Thu 27-Feb-20 19:27:12

It is,yes.

I love my job and honestly look forward to going in. It's the first job I've ever felt like this about.

Changednamealready Thu 27-Feb-20 22:59:25

Really interesting and varied responses. Surprisingly positive!
I think like someone else posted our expectations should be that the fact we’re getting paid for it means it’s not a hobby. I have the sort of job whereby if you make a mistake there are consequences. We’re all part time where I work so it can be a challenge.

I’d love to know what you’re all doing. Care work and teaching; I think the fact you enjoy these careers are also testament to your personalities. Kindness!

Thanks for sharing. I’ve fleeted through each post and plan to read again. Interesting some of you have learnt to switch off as home time or holiday ones.

OP’s posts: |
dustibooks Thu 27-Feb-20 23:13:43

You need to retrain your way of thinking.

I used to do the same as you, always thinking about work and worrying about stuff when I wasn't there. On the drive to work, I'd be going over in my head all the things I needed to do that day, and on the way home, I'd be going over it all again, and what I needed to do the next day. I'd often spend evenings and weekends fretting about it as well.

What changed? I went freelance and became self-employed. I had several clients and mentally had to change hats every day as I worked at one or another. It also dawned on me that since I charged by the hour, I wasn't getting paid for all the thinking I was doing in my own time! So I trained myself to mentally switch off the second I left work, and switch on again as I walked in the door the next day. It took a while, but it's easy now.

I'm an employee again now, and I can honestly say I never think about it at all when I'm not actually there.

And I'm far, far happier.

Sarcelle Thu 27-Feb-20 23:21:50

When you are middle aged and you have a job rather than a career, it's a struggle. Read an article about jobs, that 95 % are bullshit jobs. When you get to my point, seems pointless and depressing.

OhNooooooo Thu 27-Feb-20 23:29:18

I love my job. I work in a school office. I spend all day dealing with children and their parents and we have a lot of laughs. I feel a sense of purpose. Pay is rubbish though.

SparklySeal Thu 27-Feb-20 23:35:18

Some people crave that sort of stress and feeling needed. I work with lots who do not switch off on holidays etc but am getting better myself. I find most people (including me) have some job insecurity e.g. FOMO or fear of losing power/control

Anyway like @cloudscanlooklikesheep I have the same issue of being trapped. I'm not developing where I am, but its hard to secure another job vs cheaper, hungrier, younger grads who have no kids. So I'm pretty stuck.

GrumpyHoonMain Thu 27-Feb-20 23:37:12

I enjoy my job as I feel it gives me a purpose (I work in a banking sector that has huge overlaps in social care) but I don’t check my emails on the evenings or weekends and speak up when someone insists that I do.

Craftycorvid Thu 27-Feb-20 23:37:51

I love my job. Came to it quite late on (in my 40s) after a lot of soul searching and a period of consciously saying ‘yes’ to any and everything but only if it involved no commitment. It gave me some fascinating experiences and insights and led me to where I am now. The nature of my work means it’s unlikely to make me rich. Unless I focus entirely on being self-employed, I have to deal with the politics of my work. It does sometimes keep me awake at night as it involves people at vulnerable points in their lives.

Fedupandpoor Thu 27-Feb-20 23:40:35

It's not only elderly, young and immunosuppressed at risk though. The doctor that sadly died in China was only 34 and in good health.

Fedupandpoor Thu 27-Feb-20 23:41:16

Oops, wrong thread. As you were...

BackforGood Thu 27-Feb-20 23:41:52

Is it possible to be happy in a job

Yes, of course. Loads of people are

Do you leap out of bed shouting 'yipee' in the morning?

Never in my life - and that includes holidays, Christmas, Birthdays, and even my wedding day.

If you really think anyone thinks 'Yipee - I'll be at work within the hour - I can't wait' everyday, then you are living in a very surreal world That doesn't mean that hundreds of thousands of people aren't happy in their work though.
I like my job, but doesn't mean it doesn't have 'niggles' or 'downsides' - I shouldn't imagine there is a job anywhere that couldn't be improved in one way or another.

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