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If you’re like most people, you may not enjoy your job very much. More than 70 percent of participants in a recent study reported feeling disengaged from their work.
And that’s not a good way to live your best life. If you want to do more than your regular nine to five, consider these practical strategies for finding meaningful work.
1. Accept that it’s ok not to have the answers
Not many people have a clear view of what sort of job they want. It’s normal to be confused, even overwhelmed by the pressure to make the ‘right’ choice.
You look on LinkedIn or Seek, and there are so many career options that it can feel way too hard. It’s easier to default to what’s familiar or what feels achievable.
Be kind to yourself and accept that finding the right career path is confusing. Then you can start to move beyond that and start planning.
2. Work out your values
The first step is to work out what’s genuinely important to you. Do you want to make lots of money?
Do you want to be admired or respected for your expertise? Are you happier working in the background, or do you like the limelight? Do you want security, or do you feel happy taking risks?
List what you really want in a job, and you’re a step closer.
3. Accept that there’s not one true job
Many people these days will have many jobs, many careers.
Your parent’s generation may have got into a career groove or even just stayed in the same job for decades, but nowadays, you can expect to switch jobs at least seven times during your working life.
The expectation that you choose one path and stick to it no longer holds. Once you’ve attained what you wanted to achieve, you can move on, try something different, and that’s ok.
4. Branch out
Changing your job doesn’t have to be all or nothing. You’ve probably heard the mantra ‘follow your passion.’
That’s great if it pays the bills, but if it doesn’t (and it might not happen in the beginning, regardless of later success), it’s fine to stick with your frugal job. Try a hybrid approach where you follow your passion after hours.
You can still keep food on the table while you write, paint, or teach a yoga or meditation class in the evenings and weekends. If you want to test a different sector, you can volunteer or sit on committees or boards.