“Why am I here?!”

 

You can find your purpose in the most trivial jobs by changing the way in which you think. Previous research has shown that there is a negative correlation between purpose, meaning in life, and job satisfaction [1].  This means that when you find your work to be meaningful you are more likely to be satisfied with your role.

You can find meaning in your work by “job crafting”. Job crafting is a moniker coined by Dr. Jane E. Dutton of the University of Michigan. It is a term that describes the process in which you make your job more personal. This can be done by simply altering your approach to the duties you’ve been assigned. These alterations begin with shifting your mindset from “Why did I get out of bed this morning?” to “What can I learn from this experience?”

Let’s say that you’re a call center representative…. You hate your job. You hate appeasing disgruntled customers. You hate reiterating the same policy and procedures day in and day out. You’re under high stress from the moment you clock in because you need to meet your quotas.

While each of these grievances are valid, you have the power to outweigh them by focusing on the positive components of your job. Now this doesn’t mean that you should ignore the negative aspects, and give up on your dreams of becoming a small business owner. If you restructure the way in which you think you have the opportunity to use your current role as practice for the day you open up your own shop, as you gaining customer service  experience. Although the position may not be ideal or align with your long-term goals, finding ways to make your work meaningful will make the present a lot more pleasant.

[1] Lee, J., Cho, D., & Suh, Y. J. (2017). Purpose and Meaning in Life and Job Satisfaction Among the Aged. The International Journal of Aging and Human Development, 85(4), 377-402. doi:10.1177/0091415016688305

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